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AT&T Chief Technology Officer Krish Prabhu joins UTA faculty, named to College of Engineering Hall of Achievement

Sunday, February 28, 2016 • Media Contact: Herb Booth

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Krish Prabhu, president of AT&T Labs and chief technology officer, has been named to The University of Texas at Arlington’s Engineering Hall of Achievement and appointed a research professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

Krish Prabhu

Krish Prabhu

Prabhu was recognized as the sole 2016 Hall of Achievement honoree Friday during the College of Engineering’s annual awards and scholarship banquet. Since 1979, the College has inducted distinguished individuals who, through performance and example, have made significant contributions to the engineering profession.

Before joining AT&T in 2011, Prabhu was chief executive officer of Tellabs, an Illinois optical network technologies company. He served as chief operating officer of Alcatel in Paris from 1991 to 2001. His career includes corporate leadership positions with Rockwell Telecom and Bell Laboratories. He also served as an adjunct UTA electrical engineering professor in the mid-1980s.

He will remain in his current role at AT&T while serving as a resource for UTA as it bolsters its research and teaching in his areas of expertise.

Prabhu expressed appreciation for the UTA recognition and noted UTA’s increasing reputation for excellence and its recent “highest research activity” designation by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, the definitive list for the top doctoral research universities in the United States.

“I am honored to be named to the Hall of Achievement in the College of Engineering at The University of Texas at Arlington,” Prabhu said. “I’m excited to be affiliated with this incredible institution and look forward to being a resource for the students who will make a positive impact on the technologies of the future.”

UTA President Vistasp M. Karbhari said Prabhu’s extensive experience in research, corporate leadership, innovation and venture funding will immediately amplify the College of Engineering’s reputation on the global stage.

“Dr. Prabhu has an exceptional history of leadership and innovation, and his induction into the Engineering Hall of Achievement is well-deserved. We are delighted that Dr. Prabhu has accepted a position as research professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering which will allow him to be a resource for our students,” Karbhari said. “Our partnership with AT&T is an example of how a major research university such as UTA can leverage academic excellence with industry partners to create relationships that transform the student experience and strengthen University research leadership.”

Prabhu’s involvement with UTA will be of great benefit to the University and its research endeavors because his background meshes with areas in which UTA researchers excel, said Duane Dimos, UTA vice president for research.

“We are excited to recognize someone with a background in the areas of big data and cyber security, which are research areas in which we are highly active,” Dimos said. “Krish’s extensive experience in these areas, and in leading – and encouraging – innovation at a major global corporation, will allow our current faculty and students to help develop transformative new programs and proposals to move us forward in the area of data-driven discovery.”

Prabhu began his career in 1980 as a member of technical staff at Bell Laboratories where he was engaged in research on video coding and image processing. He joined Rockwell International in 1984 and led a team of engineers developing fiber optic telecom products that were deployed by companies such as MCI, Ameritech and Southwestern Bell.

Later, at Alcatel, he led a team that was the first to launch digital subscriber line or DSL products for broadband Internet access. These were widely deployed all over the world.

Prabhu also served as a partner at Morgenthaler Ventures, where he assisted in developing information technology and communications start-ups. He has advised industry-leading telecommunications and semiconductor companies and also has served on several public and private company boards.

Prabhu earned his Master of Science degree and doctorate in electrical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh. He received his Master of Science in physics from the Indian Institute of Technology and his Bachelor of Science in physics from Bangalore University.

Since joining AT&T in 2011, Prabhu has overseen the company’s global technology direction, which includes network innovation, product development and research, the intellectual property organization and the global supply chain organization.

Hong Jiang, chair of the UTA Department of Computer Science and Engineering and a former National Science Foundation program director, said Prabhu will bolster the department’s strengths in big data and cyber security – critical areas of research identified for growth through the University’s Strategic Plan 2020: Bold Solutions | Global Impact.

“We are very fortunate to honor Dr. Prabhu, not only because of his long and illustrious career as a technology visionary and industrial leader, but also because he is an outstanding researcher and enabler of cutting-edge research and development,” Jiang said.

“His experience in leading AT&T’s research and development in the areas of big data analytics and cyber security will be tremendously valuable to our ongoing efforts to position ourselves at the national forefront of research and education in these areas. Dr. Prabhu is very personable and loves to teach, which, combined with his rich industrial and leadership experiences, will no doubt make him very popular among our students.”

The University’s growing collaboration with AT&T is furthering the University’s work to advance data-driven discovery. Several faculty members in Computer Science and Engineering and other disciplines are engaged in active research projects aligned with Prabhu’s areas of expertise, including:

  • Heng Huang, professor of computer science and engineering, who has secured more than $3 million in National Science Foundation grants to support big data analyses that could lead to earlier identification of Alzheimer’s disease; data mining of medical records data to help physicians personalize patient treatment, predict health care needs and identify risks that can lead to readmission; and building an interactive gene expression database.
  • Physics professor Kaushik De, who is director of the UTA Center of Excellence for High Energy Physics, and Gergely Zaruba, a computer science and engineering professor, have collaborated with the Argonne and Brookhaven National Laboratories to develop a universal version of PanDA, a workload management system built to process huge volumes of data from experiments at the Large Hadron Collider in Geneva, Switzerland. The $700,000 grant from the Department of Energy will allow more people to use PanDA, which played a significant role in the discovery of the Higgs boson, or “God particle.”
  • Kay-Yut Chen, a professor of information systems and operations management and a renowned behavioral and experimental researcher from Yahoo! and Hewlett-Packard, uses big data analytics to explain why people make the decisions they do in business and how those decisions can be predicted.
  • Michael Vasilyev, an electrical engineering professor, who won a $675,000 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency grant to use quantum mechanics to securely and quickly transport information over large distances.

-- written by Jeremy Agor


About The University of Texas at Arlington

The University of Texas at Arlington is a Carnegie “highest research activity” institution of more than 50,000 students in campus-based and online degree programs and is the second-largest institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher Education ranked UTA as one of the 20 fastest-growing public research universities in the nation in 2014. U.S. News & World Report ranks UTA fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. UTA is a Hispanic-Serving Institution and is ranked as the top four-year college in Texas for veterans on Military Times’ 2016 Best for Vets list. Visit to learn more, and find UTA rankings and recognition at