EECS Department

Mort Rahimi

Morteza (Mort) A. Rahimi
Professor, Electrical Engineering & Computer Science


Prof. Rahimi has served information technology in higher education as a teacher, researcher, and administrator for the past forty years. Recognizing the broader societal responsibilities of higher education, he has leveraged his university leadership to support regional, state, and national initiatives and organizations throughout his career.

Mort joined Northwestern University as Vice President and Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in 1992. Under his leadership, Northwestern has evolved into one of the most technologically advanced institutions in the country. Information technology now plays a critical role in advancing the University's strategic goals for instruction, research, and administration. His award-winning Northwestern Information Technology organization supports robust and reliable systems and services to the entire University community and its affiliates.

He plays a key role in central planning for Northwestern, assuring implementation of systems that improve the administration of the University, a collaborative online environment that supports innovative instruction and learning, and advanced resources to distinguish the University’s research and scholarly activity.  He chairs the University’s Enterprise Systems Executive Committee.  He founded the International Center for Advanced Internet Research, which collaborates with academic and industrial research teams throughout the world for development of next generation networks.  His networking operations host StarLight, the exchange point for all US and over 30 international advanced research networks.  He serves on the National Science Foundation Business and Operations Advisory Committee, various corporate and civic advisory boards, Big Ten Chief Technology Officers, and is a trustee of the Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum.

Prior to Northwestern, he worked at Wayne State University. As chairman of the Computer Science Department, he established the Ph.D. program. As Director, then Vice President of Information Systems, he reorganized and expanded IT services to the University and initiated a campus-wide Total Quality Management (TQM) program. During his tenure at Wayne State, he created a service arm for the University that made it possible for many non-profit and private corporations to purchase computational services from the University.

While at Wayne State, he introduced technology-training programs throughout the state, operating the Small Business Development Centers for the State of Michigan. He helped create an 18-channel wireless educational television system in southeastern Michigan. He helped organize the Michigan Enabling Technologies and served as the chair of its Board. He organized the Metropolitan Center for High Technology in Detroit to provide an incubator for new technology companies and served as its president. He also chaired the board of Merit, a Michigan statewide networking organization that built the NSFNet, which became the Internet when Advanced Network Services was formed to make the NSFNet available for commercial use.

Mort joined the Michigan State University engineering faculty in 1968 where he helped create the Computer Science Department. During his tenure, he created the Artificial Language Laboratory, which did pioneering work in computer-assisted instruction and in development of communication devices for the handicapped. He worked with many school districts throughout Michigan to establish enabling technology laboratories for communication and training. He holds B.S. and M.S. degrees in Mathematics from Michigan State University and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Iowa.

McCormick School of Engineering & Applied Science Northwestern University EECS Department