The number of ECE ILLINOIS faculty members.
Alumnus H.S. "Hank" Magnuski (BSEE '65) and his wife, Cynthia Jose, established the Magnuski Professorship in ECE as a way to honor Hank's father, Henry, a longtime Motorola employee who designed the circuits that were used in the first portable FM two-way radios, or walkie-talkies. A native of Poland, Henry Magnuski fled his homeland in 1939, shortly before the Nazi invasion. He accumulated 25 patents in VHF communication and microwave fields during his career before he passed away in 1978.
An entrepreneur, Hank Magnuski invented PC-to-fax technology and co-founded GammaLink Co. to commercialize his discovery. As one of the nation’s fastest growing privately held companies GammaLink merged with Dialogic Corporation in 1989 and the combined companies’ worth exceeded $100 million. Intel ultimately acquired Dialogic Corporation in 1999.
In 1995, Magnuski founded Internet Video Services, Inc. (IVS), one of the first providers of video services over the internet. As a part of IVS, he also created MediaMart, one of the first e-commerce sites. Magnuski co-founded NCast Corp. in 1998 to develop reliable and easy ways for people to communicate over the internet.
A National Academy of Engineering member and internationally known expert on information theory and error control codes, Richard Blahut joined the ECE faculty in 1994 after a successful 30-year career at IBM. Blahut has written seven advanced textbooks and monographs.
"I thank the Magnuski family for making this [award] possible," Blahut said at the investiture. "The Magnuski name is now linked to mine and I hope that they will be satisfied if I use this opportunity to produce an additional series of books."