Phil Kaufman Award for Distinguished Contributions to EDA

The Phil Kaufman Award is jointly sponsored by the ESD-Alliance and the IEEE Council on Electronic Design Automation and honors an individual who has had a demonstrable impact on the field of electronic design through contributions in Electronic Design Automation (EDA). The award was established as a tribute to Phil Kaufman, the late industry pioneer who turned innovative technologies into commercial businesses that have benefited electronic designers. Additional information can be found on the ESD-Alliance website.

Note: Phil Kaufman awardees will automatically be included in the Phil Kaufman Hall of Fame, which additionally honors well-deserving individuals who have made significant contributions to the ESD field but who passed away before their contributions have been recognized with the Phil Kaufman Award. Such nominations must be done on a dedicated form.

Historical Background:

Phil Kaufman received his BSEE (1964) and MSEE (1966) from the University of Michigan. After many years as a design engineer at Interstate Electronics and Computer Automation, Phil joined Intel's microprocessor component group in 1976, where he became a design manager.

The complexity of microprocessor chips was increasing rapidly, with corresponding increases in design time. In 1982, he joined Silicon Compiler Systems as chairman and CEO. SCS was an early provider of high-level EDA tools to speed the design of complex ICs. The tools were adopted by a number of system and IC design companies.

As the complexity of ICs increased, so did the issue of verifying the designs. In 1988, Phil joined Quickturn Design Systems, where he became CEO. An early provider of emulation systems used to speed the verification of complex chips, Quickturn's systems enabled engineers to find and fix bugs much faster, thus speeding the development of complex chips. His former employer, Intel, was among the many companies using Quickturn's systems.

Phil's interest in electronics began with his childhood interest in electric trains, followed by amateur radio, then personal computers.

Phil died of a heart attack during a business trip in Japan on 17 July 1992. The EDA Consortium founded the Phil Kaufman Award in 1994 to honor his memory and contributions to the electronic design industry.

Visit the Phil Kaufman Hall of Fame, honoring well-deserving individuals who made significant contributions died before their contributions were recognized with the Phil Kaufman Award

Annual award dinner honoring awardee. The recipient’s name will be listed on a permanent large award and a smaller individual award will be presented to the recipient. Hotel and airline expenses of the recipient and spouse/partner will be included.
ESDA and CEDA will split the cost of the award and travel expenses of the recipient.
An award dinner will be held in the Silicon Valley.
Basis for Judging:
Factors for consideration for honoring an individual who has had demonstrable IMPACT in the field of electronic design through contributions in Electronic Design Automation (EDA) include Business Impact; Industry Direction and Promotion Impact; Technology and Engineering Impact; Educational and Mentoring Impact. The nominee’s contributions are judged by its beneficial impact on working electronic designers and engineers.
Deadline for submitting nominations is June 30th. Open to any individual who has made a demonstrable beneficial impact on working electronic designers and engineers. Beginning in 2010, the Phil Kaufman Award committee updated the nomination form with new sections of interest and limitations on the length and number of endorsements one can submit on behalf of the nominee. Older nominations may be resubmitted on the new form (below) for consideration. Moving forward, all nominations older than 3 years will be rolled off unless resubmitted.
Nomination Details:

The deadline is 30 June of the nomination year.

PLEASE NOTE: Award recipients may be announced on the IEEE CEDA website, newsletter, and relevant Social Media sites.

Nomination Form



Pasquale (Pat) O. Pistilli

For his efforts in formalizing the EDA industry and as founder of the Design Automation Conference (DAC)

Aart de Geus

For his technical and business impact on the EDA industry

Robert K. Brayton

For numerous accomplishments and technical contributions