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February 9, 2010—The
Software Engineering Institute (SEI) extends its condolences to the
family of U.S. Representative John M. Murtha who died Monday, February
8. Murtha represented Pennsylvania’s 12th Congressional District since
1974 and was the first Vietnam War combat veteran elected to Congress.
“Representative Murtha was an advocate not only for Carnegie Mellon
and the SEI, but for the western Pennsylvania region,” said Paul D.
Nielsen, director and CEO of the SEI. “On behalf of the men and women
of the SEI, I extend my deepest sympathies to Mr. Murtha’s family and
This year, the SEI celebrates 25 years of leadership in software and
systems engineering research that benefits the U.S. Department of
Defense (DoD) and other organizations worldwide. Carnegie Mellon would
not have been successful in securing the bid for the SEI had it not
been for the support of state and federal government officials like
In the two years leading up to the contract award for the SEI,
Murtha served as a pivotal member of the Carnegie Mellon proposal team.
He stated at the time that Carnegie Mellon had one of the top computer
science programs in the world and that the university’s proposal
clearly demonstrated a long-term vision for how the institute would
impact the DoD and the software industry.
Nielsen stated that Murtha’s support of the SEI continued for 25
years. He made frequent visits to campus, most recently in August 2008,
to be briefed on the university’s research advancements in biometric
security devices and mobile and video game technology. Murtha
specifically highlighted the SEI CERT program’s computer forensics team
and its support of the U.S. Secret Service and Department of Justice
for the indictment of 11 individuals responsible for the largest
identity theft case in history.
Murtha stated that CERT’s role in this landmark case underscored its
importance to computer security over the past 20 years. “The SEI and
its relationships with government agencies like the DoD and Department
of Homeland Security have allowed for the successful development of
forensics tools used by law enforcement agencies and other government
sectors,” he said.