Photo of John Cioffi

John Cioffi

  • National Medal of Technology and Innovation
  • Communications

For advancements that helped bring high-speed Internet to the world. The digital subscriber line that he helped invent ignited the growth of the digital age, vastly increasing people’s access to information, reshaping the global economy, and transforming how we work, communicate, and find community.

John M. Cioffi is an American electrical engineering who loves and specializes in the theory and implementation of digital data transmission for telecommunications. Cioffi received a Bachelor Science from University of Illinois in 1978, and a PhD from Stanford University in 1984, both in electrical engineering. He was a Bell Laboratories Member of Technical Staff from 1978-1984 and a IBM Research Staff Member from 1984-1986. Cioffi joined Stanford’s faculty in 1986 eventually becoming the Hitachi America Chair in Engineering, and he is today part-time recalled emeritus professor supervising data-transmission research and teaching Stanford’s most advanced graduate communication courses.

Cioffi has been active in technology start-ups, many with former Stanford students known informally as “Cioffi’s Kids.”  He founded, with Stanford, Amati Communications Corp in 1991 as CTO and VP of Engineering to develop further the now globally standardized DSL designs, still used on over 500 million internet connections.  Amati went public in 1985 and was #2 NASDAQ growth stock that year before its purchase by Texas instruments in 1997.  He also served Marvell Semiconductor from small private company to public success on its board and as Executive-Compensation Chair from 1999-2006.   He founded, with his wife Assia, ASSIA Inc in 2003, which has pioneered the use of artificially intelligence and software virtualization technologies in access networks globally affecting 100’s of millions of internet subscribers.

Cioffi’s awards include IEEE AG Bell (2010), Kirchmayer (2014) and Millennium Medals; Member Internet (2014) and Consumer-Electronics (2018) Halls of Fame; Marconi Fellow (2006); Member, US National (2001) and UK Royal (2009) Engineering Academies. IEEE Women in Coms Mentoring Award (2019).  Has also served over a dozen boards of directors, presently ASSIA (Chairman), PhyTunes (Chairman), Marconi Society (Vice-Chairman), & Tinoq. He has coauthored 800+ papers and 150+ heavily licensed patents.