Distinguished Alumni Award - Science and Technology

Mark Crispin authored the Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP), which made email accessible and efficient for users worldwide, in 1986 while working at Stanford University. IMAP allowed users to access email from multiple computers or mobile devices; improved handling of email attachments; and created the ability to organize and search email messages without downloading them. He later worked as a software engineer for the University of Washington for 20 years before joining Messaging Architects, an email management and security firm.

Mr. Crispin was author of more than two dozen RFCs (Internet standards and reference documents) as well as contributing to countless others. He was especially skilled in UNIX C programming, and possessed experience in multiple other computing languages including Python, Objective C, and SmallTalk. He also built one of the world’s first 32-bit network address kernels during an era when 8-bit addressing was still standard.

Mr. Crispin passed away in December 2012 in Washington state.