Memoriam Details

  • Ken Kaplan
  • Birth / Death: 1932-2012
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Professor Kenneth R. Kaplan, Chair of the Department of Computer Science at Rutgers University from 1991 to 1997.  Bracketing his chairmanship, Ken was Associate Chair from 1981 to 1990 and again from 1996 to 2001. His soft-spoken, yet persuasive leadership helped guide the department through an explosive growth period that saw computing transition from punch cards to portable laptops. He left an indelible stamp on CS students and faculty, as well as the entire University community.

At Rutgers, Ken Kaplan demonstrated his strong interest in, and dedication to, computer science education by leading the development of the core curriculum as Associate Chair of the department and establishing the introductory course on data structures, which he taught for many years. At the graduate level he taught queuing theory and other related courses in computer systems and programming, influencing the research and careers of many of the graduates of our program. He was a wise and thoughtful advisor of students at all levels in the program; students found him available for consulting on their problems, and willing to share his experience and knowledge with them. His colleagues remark on the graceful and gentle way in which he could convince them to teach a course, advise students, or help structure the educational programs of the department. His patience and perseverance went a long way in ensuring that the department ran smoothly and efficiently.