Douglas Van Houweling
Dr. Douglas Van Houweling was serving as chief information officer at the University of Michigan and chairman of the board of the MERIT Network, a statewide computing network in Michigan in 1987, when the National Science Foundation awarded MERIT the responsibility for the operation and management of its NSFnet national backbone – the foundation upon which the global Internet was built. During MERIT’s seven-year tenure, Internet traffic and connectivity grew by more than 400% per year. By 1992, when the NSFnet project began transitioning the Internet backbone to commercial providers, more than 6,000 networks were connected, one-third of which were outside the United States. And by 1994, networks in 94 countries were connected and the Internet had become a global phenomenon. Read Dr. Van Houweling's full bio here.