“PROVING GROUND” by Kathy Kleiman Wins 2023 Middleton Award

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Proving Ground: The Untold Story of the Six Women Who Programmed the World’s First Modern Computer (2022, Grand Central Publishing, New York) was selected as the winner of the 2023 William and Joyce Middleton Electrical Engineering History Award by the IEEE History Committee. Written by Kathy Kleiman Senior Fellow at American University and founder of the ENIAC Programmers Project, Proving Ground tells the story of the six pioneering women who were tasked with figuring out how to program the world’s first general-purpose, programmable, all-electronic computer (ENIAC). Kleiman discovered these women while studying programming as an undergraduate at Harvard. That began her quest to tell their story and restore these women to their rightful place as technological revolutionaries.

Kleiman received the recognition from Saifur Rahman, 2023 IEEE President, during a presentation ceremony held during the November 2023 IEEE Meeting Series in Washington, DC. She regaled attendees at the ceremony with stories sharing glimpses into what the reader will discover when reading the book.

Melissa Russell (r), IEEE Computer Society Executive Director, and Nita Patel (l), 2023 IEEE Computer Society President congratulate Kathy Kleiman (C) on receiving this prestigious award.

Kleiman is the 9th recipient of the Middleton Award. Past recipients include:

The William and Joyce Middleton Electrical Engineering History Award is made possible thanks to a bequest received from the namesakes estates. The Middleton History Award recognizes the author of a non-fiction book published within the previous three years in the history of an IEEE-related technology that both exemplifies exceptional scholarship and reaches beyond academic communities toward a broad public audience.

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