Honoring Steve Tuecke
Tributes to our colleague and friend Steve Tuecke, Globus co-founder, who passed away on November 2, 2019.
We miss you Steve! Love always, and thanks.
–The Globus team
When I first met Steve, he explained the central premise of Globus thusly: that scientists and researchers should have excellent tools, built by an outstanding engineering team at a professional level of quality.
That ethos has permeated the organization, and though his leadership will be sorely missed, the goals he set remain firm. For all of us who carry on here, we do so guided by his determination and vision.
When I was starting grad school I visited Argonne in 2000 and talked to Steve about interning with him at the Distributed Systems Lab. He convinced me that working at a National Laboratory would much more rewarding than another higher paid jobs I had lined up in the industry. I never regretted working with him that summer, and the following summer at Argonne on Globus research. Now I’ve had 20+ years working at Sandia National Laboratories—still working on distributed systems, PKI, authentication, etc.—all because he introduced me to to a love of cyber security and working at a National Lab. Thank you Steve.
This is truly saddening and shocking. Had wonderful conversations with Steve on Globus on multiple occasions; surely will miss him. Truly an Amazing person devoted to what he was doing. I wish and pray for strength to his family and friends. God bless him!!
I am so very sorry to hear of Steve’s passing. He was such a talented individual, and a very good person.
I know he will be sorely missed among his professional colleagues.
I know how difficult it will be for the family and close friends to deal with his loss, and the terrible sadness it will leave among the family. Please never hesitate to lean on family and friends - they are there to help you and support you, whenever you need a shoulder to lean on.
The happy memories and thoughts of his wonderful presence will help to nurture you. Keep thinking about how much happiness and joy he brought to your lives, and how much he loved you.
Steve transformed the way we think about what we now call cyberinfrastructure, and he transformed the way we think about operating and sustaining it. I always found him generous with his time and insights for our own projects.
This is terrible news. I wish to express my deepest condolences to his family.
Discussions with Steve were always inspiring. He will be much missed!
–Gregor von Laszewski
I’m heartbroken by the loss of such a great collaborator. Steve brought a passion and vision to every discussion that he was involved in and made those around him better. He was always eager to try something new and exciting. In brief personal interactions I could see that he had even more passion for his family and friends. Know that his love and dedication to you came out to those around him, treasure those memories, and use them to inspire yourselves and others for years to come. With my sincerest condolences.
It has been an honor to know Steve for a majority of my career. He was always a smart and thoughtful colleague. I am so sorry for his family, may his memory be a blessing to them. He has definitely left this world way too soon. He will be sorely missed by our entire community.
Steve, you were such a Good Guy. You will be missed. My heart goes out to all. ❤️
It was great experience for us to collaborate with you and the Globus team. You always gave us useful and insightful advice.
Rest in Peace, Steve.
–Yoshio Tanaka, AIST, Japan
I always admired the vitality, intelligence and honesty that Steve brought to the world. Whether he was presenting to a global audience or simply running into you in a hallway, Steve gave you a level of attention and passion that could make lasting memories from any conversation. The joy he brought to life and the love he expressed for his family were truly inspiring and shined out frequently whenever I heard him.
I feel deep sorrow for Steve’s passing and feel lucky that I was able to know him for a short time.
This news shocks and saddens me greatly. I met Steve when I was at Platform Computing and later we worked together when he was at Univa. I still have memories of him in meetings passionately discussing the design for new software. Every year at Supercomputing I would seek out Steve at the Globus Online booth to see how things were progressing. It was great to see him and the evolution of Globus Online.
God bless him and his family.
I met Steve in 2016 and my cubicle was very near to Steve’s office. It is truly saddening and shocking to hear the news.
I feel that our meetings, discussing a couple of potential optimizations to Globus Toolkit just happened yesterday and your ideas are always inspiring and your suggestions are always aculeate.
Steve hired me at Argonne when I was a wet behind the ears college grad. His vision, work ethic, and leadership were inspiring. His positive influence on me has lasted throughout my career. As Ian said, this is heartbreaking news. I hope over time his family can find peace remembering his strength of will, his spirit and his character.
Steve, in every interaction with you I learned and was stimulated by your vision, joyful leadership, and technical depth. Thank you for your dedication to scientists everywhere. I am sorry for you and yours that you were taken too soon.
–Jonathan C Silverstein
Steve was an inspiration to work with. Technically strong, an outstanding communicator, a good leader, and a friendly person. He will be missed.
This is beyond shock, hearty condolences to Steve’s friends, family, colleagues and the community at large he put a mark upon.
Steve was a visionary in setting a path for Cyberinfrastructure practitioners. I thoroughly enjoyed all my interactions with him and his enthusiasm is addictive.
I will dearly miss running into him at most of the conferences.
The Univa family has lost one of the great ones.
We will miss you Steve.
Rest in peace.
I am so very sad to hear of Steve’s passing. He was a brilliant but down-to-earth leader and technology contributor, knowing all the details but able to communicate those appropriately to any audience. I remember him saying, at some meeting or conference along the way, soon after Globus Online was generating lots of buzz and interest, “wow finally we have done something useful!!” Of course, everything else along the way WAS useful … but his sense of humor was appealing and approachable. Holding him and his loved ones in my heart.
God bless Steve and his family.
So devastating, so sad. He was exceptional in everything he was doing. He was always so good to other people, and this is how I will remember him.
My thoughts and my prayers are with his family and friends.
It’s been a long while since I left the Globus team but I clearly remember Steve’s passion and enthusiasm for the work he was doing. His dedication to the project, team and the Globus community was inspiring.
Steve, you’ll be greatly missed.
Steve’s passion was contagious and I I felt so inspired by him. it’s so rare to find someone of his abilities and personality.
I met Steve multiple times over the years, but we first met when he hosted me for my first travel on my very first CS project (related to GridFTP which Steve worked on back then). Me, feeling thrown into the cold water about all those ‘Grid’ things, found a very warm welcome, patience and support which I learned to appreciate in the whole Grid community – people like Steve made that community.
This is very sad news to me. My deepest condolences go to his family, friends and colleagues.
Three fond memories of Steve:
1) when we have deep technical discussions, and mid-sentence he stops, ponders and says “being the devil’s advocate here”, then countered any and all argument I could ever come up with by pushing things to their extreme positions.
2) Running up and down Venice beach before a full-day meeting was about to start. He always outpaced me towards the end.
3) A really nice day when he visited Stockholm and we took a day off and rented kayaks.
We didn’t have much contact in recent years, but Steve was a true friend, a kind soul, and a great mind. This is a sad day.
On behalf of the EGI Council and EGI community in Europe, I would like to express our deepest sadness for the sudden departure of Steve.
We had a wonderful working relationship and appreciated Steve for his openness, collaborative spirit, and vision. We will miss Steve.
Our sincere condolences to the family, the many friends and the Globus Team.
–Tiziana Ferrari Technical Director, EGI Foundation, Amsterdam
For the best part of twenty years Steve was a source of both technical inspiration and frustration and a towering example of technical leadership that had a global impact.
From a first lecture at the start of the UK e-Science Programme about the Globus toolkit, to the Global Roadshow discussing OGSA and OGSI that was part of the Global/Open Grid Forum, to the move towards a work leading SaaS solution for science that Globus has become.
Both as a colleague and a friend it will be impossible to find a replacement. My sincerest condolences to his family and friends.
I had the great fortune to be friends with Steve for 20+ years and travel the world with him for Fermilab, Argonne, Univa and UChicago. We are absolutely gutted by the cosmic injustice of his passing.
We will always remember Steve for his generosity with time and willingness to assist our projects. His contribution and legacy will continue to flourish as his work is ingrained in many projects across the world. Sincere and heartfelt condolences to his family and the Globus team, he will be missed by many of us.
–Nirav Merchant and CyVerse team
You will be missed but will never be forgotten. RIP.
This is such a terrible shock. Steve was such a valuable colleague and always, always had a smile on his face. I so enjoyed working with him on the very many projects where science gateways and Globus intersected. We were both strong supporters of one another’s work. This is a terrible loss to have Steve leave us all so soon. He has truly shaped the future of cyberinfrastructure and has had a great impact on the conduct of science. My thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time.
A ready laugh, smile.
One candle to another
Many of the concepts found in today’s cloud computing platforms were inspired by Steve and his work on distributed grid systems. He will be missed, yet his computing contributions will live on forever.
Steve had incredible vision, and we would not be where we are today without his dedication and immeasurable contributions to scientific computing. I always enjoyed meeting with him and he brought an infectious positive energy to all Globus events I attended. He will be sorely missed. Our deepest condolences to his family, friends, and colleagues.
–Thomas Cram and the NCAR RDA team
You were such a Great Guy, always joyful, always full of ideas, always funny and motivating! We did the “Initiative for Globus in Europe, IGE” together and it was such a fun project! I enjoyed every meeting with you in Germany or in Brussels. It is so sad to receive this news. The world still needs you!
So sad. Steve was a great friend, mentor, and leader. I will always be thankful for conversations, the guidance, and his passion for science. Much of who and am today and what I do has roots in our interactions. Best thoughts to this family, the Globus team, and friends.
–Von Welch [see also tribute blog posted here]
The very first time I met Steve we dove deep into a topic that (as it turned out) both he and I had been thinking about in different ways for years. He was always that easy to connect with, and always had a way to change how you looked at the world.
I am greatly saddened to learn of Steve’s passing. I will miss his insight and thoughtful collaboration - he listened as well as he spoke. My condolences to his family and the Globus team.
I will always fondly remember the great technical discussions I had with Steve in the very early days of GridFTP. He was very interested the DPSS project I was working on at the time. RIP Steve.
I didn’t know Steve in the technical sense with his involvement in the computer community but did know that his exceptional mind was something to admire and celebrate.
I was fortunate to travel with Steve and hang out with him, Karla and the kids. He was dedicated to being a remarkable father always teaching his kids with lifelong lessons and watching movies like ‘Monty Python and the Holy Grail’ to drive home the importance of having a sense of humor.
It was grueling to watching him deteriorate over many months but we were grateful to have that special time to concentrate on letting him know how much he was loved, getting in some typical corny jokes, remembering all the good times we spent together.
All of our hugs to Karla and the kids. We hope that all of the wonderful memories of Steve will carry them through this difficult time and beyond.
May peace, love and kindness be yours today and beyond.
–Beth and Rich Wellner
Steve was a great guy. I enjoyed many opportunities to work and talk with him. I always learned something good when we talked. Very sad for the news.
I recall one time in particular at a Lustre User Group meeting. It was Steve’s first time to attend. He was feeling a bit out of place but soon was integrated with the group.
–J. Ray Scott
Steve was a compassionate and consummate professional. May his family find grace in his memory.
My first interaction (and later ones) with Steve were very refreshing. He was easy to talk with, had a child like enthusiasm and vigor, yet fascinating depth in his subject area. I found it impressive for a person with such experience and accomplishment to not only blend in with others and talk at ease, but also keep the spirits up.
I am saddened by his loss. My sincere condolences to the family and friends.
I will always remember Steve for his tremendous drive, energy, and enthusiasm. His early passing is a great loss. My condolences to his family.
Steve, you were a great inspiration! I always admired your clarity of thought and tireless push for progress. I have fond memories of many illuminating whiteboard sessions and intense technical discussions. You were always able to pick arguments apart without being intimidating or arrogant.
As a somewhat shy guy at the beginning of my career, you on more than one occasion said “Let’s hear what Thomas has to say about that”, when I was struggling to get heard. It makes me proud to say I had the pleasure of working with and for you.
You will be missed!
Steve and I went to high school together. He was my friend and teammate on the Dekalb High school basketball team. I’m sorry we lost touch over the years but our friendship will always remain. God bless Steve and rest in peace.
Oh. No. There are no words. Thank you for seeing a young student giving a presentation all those years ago and encouraging them to reach for the stars. My life would likely have been different if you hadn’t taken the extra step of introducing me to Ian and Carl. While I have not yet accomplished all that we spoke about that day, I hold onto the hope that someday I will reach the end of the journey. On that day I will think of you; believing you are there cheering me on in spirit. Thank you for caring Steve. You will be missed.
You obviously touched many lives professionally and personally. Deepest sympathies to your friends and family, Steve. I pray that they may find some peace and comfort during this difficult time.
Oh no. crying He is such a great leader, his personality will truly be missed.
Steve has been a friend of my father’s for so long it feels like forever. We all battle hardship through our lives, but in Steve’s case, it feels like more than just that. To lose such a selfless inspiration of the Globus team and a friend to all, it is more than just a shame. Steve always wanted the best for everyone, one of his most admirable traits. A selfless, intelligent role model. I feel truly blessed to have spent the little time I did with him. My most sincere condolences to his family and team. Let us never forget the brilliant times we all had and make valiant efforts to follow in his size 13 footsteps :)
Much love from me to you all.
Steve’s smile, effusive warmth, delightful laugh…and his patient, thoughtful conviction in doing the right thing for the right reason at the right time were generously shared gifts. Such a great privilege and pleasure to have known Steve.
I have not had a chance to meet Steve since graduating from St. Olaf. Steve was my freshman roommate. I remember that Steve was always on the cutting edge in regards to computers. He had one of the early computer programs that generated a monotone voice when you typed out text. This provided all of us with a great deal of entertainment and served as a fine tool for teasing and practical jokes. For some reason, being called a nerd by a computer was so much more fun than in person.
It was interesting to learn about all the wonderful things that Steve was able to achieve, including his work with Globus. Steve made an impact on many people and will certainly be missed. I am sad that he has passed at such a young age.
So young, so brilliant and vibrant, I am shocked and saddened.
I will always remember Steve spending time with me at SC before the demo floor was fully open to let me try Globus live, and it was so easy, and he gave me an orange Globus t-shirt. Steve was always honest and earnest, thoughtful and brilliant, a great listener, thinker and collaborator. We should all channel more of Steve in our work.
Steve, you will always live on in our community. Thank you for your global and extremely valuable contributions to research and data science.
–Florence D. Hudson
I started my PHD on “Grid Computing” reading his works: I have cited his papers tens of times.
Steve’s energy, passion, and thoughtfulness was always very inspiring.
Throughout my career, projects came and went; what lasts are the relationships built with great people. Working with Steve was fun, inspirational, a lot of work and a lot of laughs. I have worked with brilliant jerks; I have worked with mediocre minds with warm hearts. Steve was brilliant and an outstanding human being. It is with great sadness that I realize I will never have another knock down drag out technical “fight” with Steve. Good teams have good “fights” and Steve was great to have on your team.
He was a great friend.
My spiritual prayer for him and his family, relatives, and friends.
May the Spirit of God guide him in heaven to explore Spiritual High Performance Computing and maybe will meet him someday in 100 years in Heaven.
Gee, I missed him a lot.
–Dr. Klaus Einstein Lee
Truly saddened to hear this! I have some very fond memories of working and traveling with him. Soon after the Univa acquisition of UD, we traveled for a week and half in France, Switzerland. Spent the weekend between work meetings in St. Tropez, Nice, Eze. Great memories, wonderful person! May his soul RIP!
I’m so sorry to hear this, it is truly a shock. Steve is such a valued collaborator and friend, going back so far - I have learned so much from him. My deepest condolences to Steve’s family, colleagues and friends. I will truly miss him.
I’m very sorry to hear about Steve’s passing. It has been an honor to know him. He was an inspiration on professional and personal level and he will be truly missed. My thoughts are with his family.
On average I probably interacted with Steve only two or three times a year over the past decade, but he had such a joyful, capable, memorable presence that it seems as if I had spent much more time with him. My sincere condolences to his friends and family.
Steve was always full of joyful energy, and we will miss him. Rest in peace.
So sad to hear untimely death of Steve. I had known him for more than a decade. In his death we lost a technology visionary.
On behalf of The Energy Science Network (ESnet), we are deeply saddened by the passing of Steve Tuecke. Steve has been a devoted partner in our shared mission to help scientists realize the full potential of computing and networking. What better way to spend your career than to support some of the greatest discoveries of our generation and the generations to come. We are proud to call Steve not just a partner but also a friend. We extend our heartfelt condolences to Steve’s family, friends and colleagues.
I was shocked to learn of this news today. I met him once at a Globus class he was teaching at the time. He was the face of Globus and a central presence in our national HPC endeavors. It is hard to imagine he will no longer be with us. I send my sincere condolences to his family and colleagues.
I worked as a student with Steve back in the early 90’s at ANL, when Grid was just becoming a thing. He was part of a group of friends and colleagues that shaped my career path, and gave me some of the most fun adventures of my graduate school years. While I’d lost regular touch with Steve over the years, we’d sometimes catch each other at a conference or workshop and his gigantic beaming smile would lead a quick conversation and leave me thinking “Man - this guy doesn’t age!”. I am shocked and saddened to hear of his passing, and express my deepest condolences to his family and colleagues.
I am deeply saddened by Steve’s passing. I first met him in the early stages of the e-Science programme in the UK. He was enormously good fun to work with - and I had the honour of serving on the Globus Alliance Board with him for a number of years. I always found him a great pleasure to work with - full of ideas and mischief - and an unusually clear understanding of what could be made to work. He was also very good at listening - not that common in our scientific world.
His family must be terribly heartbroken and I send my best wishes and thoughts to them. He will be missed by all of us who knew him.
Steve, your passionate drive, immense systems knowledge and tireless energy will be sadly missed. I remember your insights leading to the new OGSA architectures, your dynamic engagement with everybody at GGF. You visited the e-Science Institute in Edinburgh and gave fantastic talks and courses to fire up the UK community. You had clear vision about where we should take distributed systems infrastructures and were tenaciously committed and tireless in pursuing that vision. Every time you stayed on Wintonhill, you had a new technology, noise-cancelling earphones, white noise to help you sleep, … that I immediately sought to emulate. You average velocity and altitude was very impressive in those days. We need more professional distributed-systems engineers like you! But I suspect you were unique.
Steve meant so much to Globus, the scientific community at large, and to each of us personally in profound ways. I came to know Steve as a mentor, a leader, and a technical wizard. Steve was the person who hired me at Globus, helped ideate many successful projects, mentored me directly to bridge the gap between materials science and data infrastructure, and ultimately took a big risk hiring a “materials science guy” that was building data services in his spare time. Steve and I connected in our first meeting in his office at Argonne when we simultaneously described how passionate we both were about building the data infrastructure necessary to advance and accelerate science. Clearly, we could do that more effectively teamed up at Globus, and I still can remember the genuine smile we both had on our faces when it all came together. Later, we became close collaborators, and I came to respect Steve for his forthrightness, his unmatched technical knowledge, his vision, and the way he actually cared deeply about each member of the team.
I’ll always cherish the team lunch meetings with Steve and the crew. Steve always drove us, often in his car covered in cheerios from the kids. The lunches stretched on for many hours, buoyed by Steve’s deep voice, endurance, and his unique way of deeply thinking through problems out loud. Now these meetings, which invariably led to great new concepts and directions, seem to have not been nearly long enough.
People often casually assign the word “family” to describe a team or a company, but the atmosphere at Globus is “family” and is truly unique. For this, Steve deserves tremendous credit for helping to create the framework and promoting a culture that has allowed the team to grow and flourish. I just wanted to say thanks for all that Steve has done for science and for me and my family. Today, through we have tears in our eyes, we continue on with steeled resolve towards a vision that we jointly set forth with Steve, and with appreciation for the time we had together.
One of my first introductions to the new data management for science - “e-science”, grid computing - was at GGF 5 in Edinburgh (https://www.ogf.org/Meetings/GGF5/). I vividly remember Steve chairing his sessions, preseting his “straw man” proposals for discussion and building consensus and clarity in the slightly chaotic environment of disagreeing participants, random passers-by, and newbies like myself. Over time I saw how much he contributed to the field, through his standards work, his software, technical insights and personal qualities. Thanks for everything, Steve, we shall miss you.
–Jens Jensen, OGF
On behalf of Steve’s many friends in Compute Canada, I offer sympathy. Steve was instrumental in making Globus widely available to the Canadian research community, and in collaborating on feature enhancements that continue to benefit the broader community. Steve was a good friend, and excellent collaborator. He will be missed.
Steve and his enormous talents were an inspiration for us all. When installing the experimental Compositional C++ compiler at SC95, Steve dropped by briefly to help. After that, I came to feel that somehow he was able to debug “by sense of smell.” While I haven’t worked with him after the early Globus years, I am saddened by his passing. He will be missed. Our thoughts go out to his family.
You are one of the reason I decided to pursue further studies. So sorry to hear you are no more with us. May you rest in peace.
I’ve had the honor to work with Steve in the time when Globus Online was extremely new. The cloud was new, Amazon emerging and the grid research was pressured by these new resource providing cloud infrastructures as challengers. Steve had the foresight to marry both these worlds and take advantage of both their strengths. New ways of working emerged and i was happy to contribute in discussions, adaption of tooling to the concepts and smile along the way. I take honor in having worked together in the international collaborations. A very intelligent and warm spirit has moved on.
–Oscar Koeroo (previously Nikhef, now at a Dutch telco)
Steve, you have touched us all with your vision, your passion and your accomplishments.
You’ve given scientists great tools for leveraging computation to make our world a better place. And you’ve built a fabulous team of people that is passionately dedicated to continuing your work.
You’ve truly been an inspiration to all of us, and our memories of you will always be a blessing to us and to all your colleagues around the world.
May your family find great comfort and pride in your achievements and the difference you made in the worlds of science and computing, and to all of us in the UChicago-Argonne community.
Steve was a well-regarded member of the Argonne community. My thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues. He will be missed by many and his legacy of service to the research community will live on through Globus.
–Paul Kearns, Director, Argonne National Laboratory
Steve was very tall. I remember him visiting Sun Micro to brainstorm the Grid. He was wearing shorts and had a big smile on his face. He was in essence a child. He moved from one idea to another with ease, maybe too fast for us. He was the quintessential scientist and a mensch.
–Miha Ahronovitz, Product guy
Steve seems to have understood leadership in a way no other leaders of even large organizations have. He earned respect and influence with his technical strength, and he has built a strong engineering culture and leadership that is now required to carry on his vision at Globus. Long live Globus!
To Steve’s Family– I met him through a mutual friend, Rick Davis, MD. In a Madison, Wisconsin college apartment community. His big friend. Friends from their undergraduate degree St. Olaf, Northfield, Minnesota. Steve was invited to be one of our groomsmen at our wedding. The two guys came together for weddings, the birth of their children, and most importantly the celebration of their friendship. Ski trips, trips to Europe, trap & skeet shooting, hiking, climbing, and eating. M&M jars, nachos, pizza, fish on the grill and good beer. I am forever grateful for your friendship. You will be missed incredibly.
I had the distinct pleasure of working with Steve while in IBM’s Grid Computing Division. He was both brilliant and kind and my heart just broke when I learned of his passing
–Tamara Forand Crawford
I knew Steve in a different way - he was a precocious 5 year old when we moved across the street and I became his main babysitter for a few years. It’s remarkable to read about his professional achievements, and especially the love and respect he clearly inspired. RIP, Steve. You made your parents proud.
I just learned of Steve’s passing. I have worked with Steve on Globus/Grid related projects since the late ’90s. He was always easy to work with, helpful, and kind. He will be missed. My heart goes out to his family. RIP Steve.
I only just spotted this. It’s terrible news. Such a strong, able and charismatic presence in any organisation or meeting.