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Rice University’s Klara Jelinkova and Internet2 Evangelist Kenneth Klingenstein Recognized for Outstanding Contributions to Research and Education

Posted on Mar 07, 2019 by Sara Aly
Tags: 2019 Internet2 Global Summit, Community, Frontpage News, Higher Education, InCommon, Leadership, Strategic Leadership, Trust & Identity

WASHINGTON, D.C., March 7, 2019 – Internet2 announced the recipients of the President’s Leadership Award and Lifetime Service Award, in recognition of outstanding service and contributions to the research and education community. The awardees were recognized during the annual Global Summit event that is taking place in Washington, D.C. this week:

  • Klara Jelinkova, vice president for international operations and IT & chief information officer at Rice University, is the recipient of the President’s Leadership Award.
  • Kenneth Klingenstein, evangelist for trust and identity at Internet2, is the recipient of the Lifetime Service Award.

President’s Leadership Award
In recognition of an individual within the Internet2 community with exceptional leadership and service exemplifying the essence of Internet2 membership, enabling services and achievements beyond the scope of any individual institution that benefit the national and global research and education communities.

“Klara’s time, energy, and leadership have helped make the Internet2 community’s trust and identity capabilities what they are today,” said Howard Pfeffer, president and CEO of Internet2. “Particularly noteworthy during Klara’s leadership was the successful completion of a revised InCommon Federation charter and bylaws, establishing community processes to help mature and grow the InCommon Federation’s operations and capabilities, and increased global connectivity with the community of research and education trust federations through GÉANT’s edugain infrastructure in Europe.”

From L-R: Kevin Morooney, Internet2 vice president of trust and identity; Howard Pfeffer, president and CEO of Internet2; and Klara Jelinkova, vice president for international operations and IT & chief information officer at Rice University. Image courtesy Internet2.

Klara Jelinkova is vice president for information technology and chief information officer at Rice University. She is responsible for strategic technology issues ranging from governance, policy, and resource allocation to protocol and organization. She represents the university's information technology interests both regionally and nationally.

Jelinkova currently serves as an Internet2 board member and as chair of the trust and identity program advisory group. Previously, she served on the InCommon Federation steering committee from 2013-2018, leading as chair from 2014-2016 and as vice chair in 2013. She also served as chair of the trust and identity in education and research (TIER) community investor council 2015-2018, providing guidance and oversight for the TIER investment and program.

Prior to Rice, Jelinkova was the senior associate vice president and chief information technology officer at the University of Chicago. While there, she restructured and realigned the IT function and was responsible for a number of system implementations and technology upgrades. She supported the global aspirations of the University of Chicago by overseeing the technology implementation of centers in Beijing, Delhi, and Hong Kong.

From 2006–2010, Jelinkova served as the assistant vice president of shared services and infrastructure at Duke University, where she was also the interim CISO. Before Duke, she spent 10 years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Jelinkova is an active member of several regional and national higher education organizations and serves on several industry advisory boards. She is also a lead principal investigator (PI) for several National Science Foundation grants.

Jelinkova holds a bachelor’s degree in economics and Slavic languages from the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

For more details about the President’s Leadership Award and to learn about prior recipients, visit

Internet2 Lifetime Service Award
For exceptional global leadership in the evolving world of digital identity. For keen vision and acuity in enabling new paradigms and services of enduring benefit to global research, education and beyond. For mentorship and personifying the essence of true collaboration and membership in Internet2 and InCommon.

“Ken’s dedication and contributions to the research and education community for over 40 years of service in higher education are profound,” said Kevin Morooney, vice president of trust and identity at Internet2. “As it is with most visionary leaders, they can appear to be two places at once. Not only has Ken been one of the undisputed founders for the activities we now call trust and identity, but he was also one of the original university CIOs who envisioned having a high-speed data network dedicated to the needs of research and education.”

Ken Klingenstein, evangelist for trust and identity at Internet2. Image courtesy Internet2.

Kenneth “Ken” Klingenstein is evangelist for trust and identity at Internet2, responsible for fostering the development and dissemination of middleware interoperability and best practices through partnership efforts of leaders among campus IT architects, corporations, and government agencies. He has drawn together a thriving community of national and international technical talent that has delivered on several software development projects, the impact of which have been profound. He is especially notable for catalyzing and leading identity architects to a consensus on standards which have become a global reference model for accessing services across research and education.

Since 2000, Klingenstein was the principal investigator on seven awards from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and one award from the Department of Commerce addressing a broad range of topics, including integrated middleware, authentication and authorization, privacy management, and virtual organizations. These awards cumulatively involved over a dozen collaborating Internet2 member organizations and over $12M in federal funding that resulted in important research and collaboration tools that were developed, including InCommon Federation, Shibboleth, Grouper, COmanage, and OASIS security assertion markup language (SAML).

One of the true Internet pioneers in the higher education IT community, Klingenstein was early involved in NSFnet development, chaired the Federal Networking Council advisory committee, and has participated in many federal advisory groups on network policy and technology. He served on the board of the Corporation for Research and Educational Networking (CREN), and was among the key initiators of public key infrastructure (PKI) security activities at a national level.

Klingenstein was one of the first people in the country to recognize the importance of community and school networking: he received the first NSF grant issued to systematically network a school district and create professional development opportunities for teachers, and a similar community network grant from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration for the Boulder Community Network. His many workshops, talks, and publications convey his intelligent perception of a complex technology environment with authority, wit, and clarity.

Klingenstein's academic career has taken him from the University of California, Santa Barbara, to the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, where he became director of computing services in 1981, and then to the University of Colorado (CU), Boulder, as director of information technology services in 1985. In 1999, he was named CU Boulder's chief technologist and loaned out to spearhead the Internet2 Middleware Initiative.

Under Klingenstein’s leadership, the Internet2 Middleware Initiative led the successful development of Shibboleth, the community-developed, open-source software that has enabled the growth of privacy-preserving federations; the OASIS security assertion markup language (SAML) standard, which Shibboleth uses to exchange identity data between federated partners; and the InCommon Federation, the U.S. research and education identity management federation. Both InCommon and Shibboleth were created with support from the NSF.

Klingenstein holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Brandeis University, as well as a master’s degree in mathematics and doctorate in applied mathematics from the University of California, Berkeley.

About Internet2
Internet2® is a non-profit, member-driven advanced technology community founded by the nation’s leading higher education institutions in 1996. Internet2 serves 316 U.S. universities, 60 government agencies, 43 regional and state education networks and through them supports more than 100,000 community anchor institutions, over 1,000 InCommon participants, and 59 leading corporations working with our community, and 70 national research and education network partners that represent more than 100 countries.

Internet2 delivers a diverse portfolio of technology solutions that leverages, integrates, and amplifies the strengths of its members and helps support their educational, research and community service missions. Internet2’s core infrastructure components include the nation’s largest and fastest research and education network that was built to deliver advanced, customized services that are accessed and secured by the community-developed trust and identity framework.

Internet2 offices are located in Ann Arbor, Mich.; Denver, Colo.; Washington, D.C.; and West Hartford, Conn. For more information, visit or follow @Internet2 on Twitter.

Media Contact: Sara Aly
Communications Manager, Internet2