This year's recipient of the Kaufman Award is Dr Chenming Hu. I can't think of a more deserving recipient. He is the father of the FinFET transistor which is clearly the most revolutionary thing to come along in semiconductor for a long time. Of course he wasn't working alone but he was the leader of the team at UC Berkeley that developed the key structures that keep power under control and so allow us to continue to scale process nodes.
In the past, the Kaufman Award recipient has been finalized in the summer and actually awarded at a special dinner in the fall. This year is different. The award will take place at DAC in Austin on Sunday evening. The award will be presented by Klaus Schuegraf, Group Vice President of EUV Product Development at Cymer, Inc.
Often the Kaufman award is for work that had a major impact on EDA or semiconductor many years ago, although of course like Newton (almost) said, today's EDA stands on the shoulders of yesterday's giants. And Dr Hu's work certainly has device modeling is certainly like that. But it is hard to imagine a more timely award than this, nor to better what Aart de Geus, chairman of the award selection committee (and co-CEO of Synopsys...but you knew that right?) said:
"Recognizing Chenming Hu the very year in which the entire EDA, IP, and Semiconductor industry is unleashing the next decade of IC design through the 16/14nm FinFET generation is not a coincidence, but illustrates how a great contributor can impact an entire industry!”