Benjamin Slivka & Lisa Wissner-SlivkaLisa Wissner-Slivka earned a B.A. in Computer Studies from Northwestern University in 1985 and an M.B.A. from the University of Washington in 1988. She worked at Microsoft as a program manager and product manager on programming language tools and electronic mail applications for six years. She currently serves on the boards of the Bellevue Schools Foundation, Social Venture Partners, Kindering Center, and the Puget Sound Susan G. Komen Foundation. Her past board service includes Bush School, Seattle Children's Theatre, and the Overlake Hospital Foundation, and she was co-chair of the Kindering Center capital campaign that completed successfully in 2001. She is in the process of training for her eleventh marathon.

Benjamin W. Slivka grew up in the Mount Baker neighborhood of Seattle and graduated from Garfield High School. He met Lisa at Northwestern University, where he earned B.S. degrees in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics in 1982, followed by a M.S. degree in Computer Science in 1985. He spent 14 years at Microsoft working on OS/2, MS_DOS, Windows, Java, and MSN.

Perhaps Benjamin's most visible project at Microsoft was starting the Internet Explorer team and leading it through the release of IE 3.0. After a brief stint at Amazon.com, he retired in 2000 to focus on his family and philanthropy. He co-founded DreamBox Learning in 2006, and DreamBox Learning K-2 Math--a web-based math game for kids 4-8 years old--launched in early 2009 to rave reviews. He is a Trustee of Northwestern University and a director of the Garfield High School Foundation. He dabbles in digital photography and maintains a handful of web sites.

The purpose of this endowment is to help graduate students with financial need pursue degrees in Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington. Recipients shall be graduate students and must demonstrate financial need, as determined by the Office of Student Financial Aid.

Year Awardee
2009-2010William Austin Webb
2010-2011Samuel Kaufman
2011-2012Raymond Cheng
2012-2013Stuart Pernsteiner
2013-2014Pavel Pancheckha
2014-2015Daniel Gordon
2015-2016Christopher Clark, Benjamin Jones
2016-2017Anran Wang
2017-2018Sherdil Niyaz, James Noeckel