INFORMS President's Award

2015 Awardee(s): Jack Levis, UPS

The 2015 INFORMS President's Award is awarded to Jack Levis for his significant contributions to the practice of operations research and analytics, and for service to the profession in both extensive outreach and in improving INFORMS operations.

In his four-decade career at UPS, Jack Levis has overseen process reengineering through the integration of multiple planning and control systems, enabling the seamless integration of their physical and virtual networks.  As the Director of Process Management, he has led breakthrough changes for UPS and has reduced millions of driving miles, giving UPS significant competitive advantage, through the UPS award-winning package flow technology and ORION (on-road integrated optimization navigation) system.

Jack is an influential leader within INFORMS. During his service as the INFORMS Vice President of Practice (2010-2013), he led the development and introduction of a new budgeting system for INFORMS. He has also served INFORMS as a member of the Strategic Planning Committee, Sections/Societies Committee, Professional Recognition Committee, and Meetings Committee, as well as leading the 2007 INFORMS Analytics Conference as General Chair. To strengthen ties between academia and industry, he and CPMS collaborated with the INFORMS Board and UPS C-suite to create the UPS George D. Smith Prize.

Jack Levis is a superb ambassador for operations research and analytics through keynote talks, the popular press, and his advisory council positions (including those with the U.S. Census Scientific Advisory Board and the Analytics Certification Board).  The popular episode on Making Stuff Faster featuring his operations team at UPS (in the Making Stuff series on the PBS series Nova) is a prime example of his success at outreach.

In 2003, his team won the INFORMS Prize, and was an Edelman Prize runner-up (“UPS Optimizes Its Air Network”).  As written in the INFORMS Prize citation, “While providing myriad cost savings, operations research is indeed a strategic lynchpin and a significant source of competitive advantage for UPS.” Jack Levis has also received multiple industry awards including those from InfoWorld, CIO Top 100, Gartner Business Intelligence, and Computerworld Premier 100.

The purpose of the INFORMS President's Award is to recognize important contributions to the welfare of society. Jack Levis is not only an ambassador of operations research and analytics, spreading word about the value of these techniques: he also practices what he preaches. He has led the analytics and operations research practice at UPS, providing improved societal value by enabling organizations and individuals to better carry out their missions through reliable and timely package deliveries.  It is an honor to present the 2015 INFORMS President's Award to Jack Levis.

Purpose of the Award

The purpose of this award is to recognize, and thereby encourage, important contributions to the welfare of society by members of our profession at the local, national, or global level. Achievements suitable for this recognition may be in technical or scientific education or in paid or voluntary consulting or management (commercial, academic, governmental, or nonprofit). The accomplishments honored need not have been documented by personal execution of formal or informal OR/MS studies but could have been reflected in support or promotion of OR/MS efforts. The award is given each year at the National meeting if there is a suitable recipient. The award is a framed certificate with a brief citation.

Past Awardees

2015 Awardee(s)
Jack Levis, UPS
2014 Awardee(s)
András Prékopa, Rutgers University
2013 Awardee(s)
Arthur M. Geoffrion, UCLA, Anderson School of Management
2012 Awardee(s)
Andrés P. Weintraub, CSAV
2011 Awardee(s)
Kenneth R. Chelst, Wayne State University
2010 Awardee(s)
Jonathan P. Caulkins, Carnegie Mellon University
2009 Awardee(s)
Ralph L. Keeney, USC
2008 Awardee(s)
Margaret L. Brandeau, Stanford University, Management Science and Engineering
2007 Awardee(s)
Lawrence M. Wein, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business
2006 Awardee(s)
Vijay Chandru, Chairman & CEO, Strand Life Sciences
2005 Awardee(s)
William P. Pierskalla
2004 Awardee(s)
William "Al" Wallace , Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Decision Sciences & Engineering Systems
2003 Awardee(s)
Richard C. Larson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2002 Awardee(s)
Edward H. Kaplan, Yale University
2001 Awardee(s)
Seth Bonder, The Bonder Group
2000 Awardee(s)
William W. Hogan
1999 Awardee(s)
Leonard Kleinrock, University of California, Computer Science Dept.
1998 Awardee(s)
Jan M. Chaiken
1997 Awardee(s)
Warren E. Walker, Delft University of Technology
1996 Awardee(s)
Arnold I. Barnett, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management
1995 Awardee(s)
Not Awarded
1994 Awardee(s)
Gerald J. Lieberman, G. Lieberman Consulting LLC Lucius Riccio, Columbia University
1993 Awardee(s)
Alfred Blumstein, Carnegie Mellon University, Heinz College
Featured Award

Award Information

The purpose of this award is to recognize, and thereby encourage, important contributions to the welfare of society by members of our profession at the local, national, or global level.

Click here to learn more about the application process.


2016 Committee Chair:

Edward Kaplan
2016 INFORMS President
Beach Professor Operations Research
Yale University


Click here for committee information