Leadership Team

John Towns
John Towns

PI and Project Director, XSEDE
Executive Director, Science & Technology, NCSA
Deputy CIO, Research IT, Technology Services

John Towns is Deputy CIO for Research IT for Technology Services at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He is also the Principal Investigator and Project Director for the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE) project and the Executive Director of Science and Technology at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications. Towns plays significant roles in the deployment and operation of high-end resources and services, and distributed computing projects providing leadership and direction in the development and provisioning of advanced computing resources and services. His background is in computational astrophysics utilizing a variety of computational architectures with a focus on application performance analysis. 

Tracy Smith Headshot
Tracy Smith

Director of Research IT and Innovation, University Of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tracy Smith is the deputy to the DCIO for Research and is responsible for the Research IT team.  She is involved in various governance activities, including the IT Council, where she partners with stakeholders to draft forward-looking IT strategies that support faculty, students and staff.  Her technical focus is currently on smart cities and IoT.  Tracy’s background is in networking with an emphasis on wide area networking.  She was involved in the community broadband project, UC2B, and is passionate about finding ways to leverage the resource for civic-tech collaborations.

Tim boerner head shot
Tim Boerner

Assistant Director, NCSA, University Of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Tim Boerner is the lead for Research Computing Services for Research IT, and is responsible for daily operations and strategic planning for the Illinois Campus Cluster Program, the Active Data Storage service, and the High-Throughput Computing pilot. He is also the manager of the XSEDE Data Transfer Services team, which provides efficient and reliable networking and data services to the XSEDE community. Tim likes to solve problems and make the world a better place, but sometimes settles for just traveling to better places in the world.

Amy Hovious Headshot
Amy Hovious

Lead Research IT Support Coordinator, University Of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Amy Hovious is the lead for Research IT Support for Research IT, which includes areas such as training, consulting, software development support and more. She is also the lead for the Research IT Portal. Amy has a background in technology, started as a web and database developer and has grown into this leadership position. She enjoys bridging the gap between humans and technology. She is an advocate for collaborations and partnerships and knows it takes a village to make Illinois successful.