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Jeffrey Ralph Kell

Jeffrey Ralph Kell

Jeffrey Ralph Kell 57, of Ringgold, Georgia passed away Wednesday, November 25, 2015. A lifelong resident of the Ringgold area, he was a graduate of Ringgold High School. While in High School, Jeff worked part time in the UTC computer center, and then as a UTC student employee and finally as a full time employee for more than 35 years of service. Jeff loved roller coasters and scuba diving. His passion for scuba diving took him to many places and also worked for a short time at the Chattanooga Aquarium where he fed the sharks. He was the keyboard player in the Alethea Band and was the Director of Network Services for The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. A key contributor to the development of LISTSERV, Jeff was instrumental in UTC’s earning the LISTSERV 25th Anniversary plaque, which lists UTC as the 10th University to deploy LISTSERV. He was one of the original programmers of the UTC Student System which supported student success at UTC until July of 2013. He was primary programmer of the UTC Report of Academic Progress or RAP system, the first UTC online unofficial degreed audit system that was in service from the late 1970’s until it was replaced by Banner in 2010. He was a key player on the engineering and deployment of the UTC network, dating back to before UTC was on the Internet. His work on the serial Gandalf system provided the UTC campus network the capability to provide online campus registration of students in the late 1970s. Jeff’s architectural skills in networking were used to grow UTC Internet access from 768 KB to a 3 MB link, and with multiple upgrades for the last 20 years to build what UTC has today. Over time, Jeff preserved and provided the campus one of the most secure campus networks in the state. His dedication to network security was validated during a four day, no-notice campus wide test conducted by System Security. He engineered the network to provide a dedicated connection to Internet 2 for the UT Chattanooga GENI rack, to support the development of the next generation Internet. UTC is the only non-Research 1 institution in the United States with a connection to the GENI network. Jeff was selected by The Tennessee Higher Education Information Technology Symposium (THEITS) as the 44th recipient of its 2015 Distinguished Service Award. An avid supporter of THEITS, he has presented for the last eleven years on multiple networking topics to overflow audiences. He was very active in the REN ISAC community with a national reputation on network operations and security. He has served on various UT System security committees and technical working groups. He has also been extremely active on multiple security and networking discussion lists.

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