Internet pioneer Leo Beranek ’36 dies at 102

Engineer and acoustician Leo Beranek ’36, one of Cornell’s most distinguished graduates, died Oct. 10, 2016, at age 102. 

Leo Beranek
Leo Beranek

Beranek grew up in Solon, Iowa, and attended Cornell College, majoring in physics and mathematics. To earn tuition money he fixed radios and wired buildings—including Cornell’s Merner Hall—as a Cornell student. 

A chance encounter while helping a man with a flat tire near campus led Beranek to apply to Harvard University for graduate school, and he received a full scholarship. Bolt, Beranek & Newman, the company he helped found, built the first computer-based network, which paved the way for the creation of the internet.

For more information, see his life timeline, and the New York Times obituary.