Xiru Zhang, MA’90, PhD’91, P’22 named to Brandeis University Board of Trustees

Xiru Zhang
Photo/Alyse Gause

Xiru Zhang

Brandeis’ first PhD candidate in computer science has joined the university’s Board of Trustees.

Xiru Zhang, MA’90, PhD’91, P’22, was elected by the trustees to a four-year term. The vote was taken at a virtual meeting of the board April 27-28.

Zhang was the first doctoral candidate in Brandeis’ fledgling computer science department 35 years ago, which today sees the highest enrollment of all departments in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. He went on to become a research scientist in artificial intelligence, then pursued a successful career in asset management and investment. Today, he is the founder of Double Q Investments and a research affiliate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s McGovern Institute for Brain Research.

Zhang studied at Brandeis with the late Professor David Waltz, a pioneer in the field of artificial intelligence. To honor his mentor, Zhang made a founding gift to help establish the David Waltz Graduate Fellowship Endowment Fund at Brandeis. 

"Xiru will bring to the board a fresh and important perspective on both graduate and undergraduate education," said President Ron Liebowitz.

“As a PhD recipient from China and the first person ever to earn a doctorate from our computer science department, he offers a unique point of view,” Liebowitz said. “He is highly regarded in local technology and financial circles, and as an engaged parent, hosted one of our presidential roundtables on the future of Brandeis. I welcome the opportunity to work with him as a trustee.”

Zhang and his wife, Hongmei Li, reside in Weston, Mass., and have been members of the Parents Leadership Council since 2019. Their two children include son Zachary ’22.

"I am pleased to welcome Xiru to the trustees,” said the Board’s chair, Meyer G. Koplow '72, P '02, P '05. “As an experienced researcher in the world of technology, as an investor of keen financial acumen, and as a committed Brandeis parent, he will bring a valuable perspective to both the Academy and the Investment committees to which he has been appointed."

Also at the April 27-28 “virtual” meeting, the Board re-elected seven trustees: Leslie Aronzon ’84; Madalyn Friedberg; Georg Muzicant ’02, MA’03; Stephen Reiner ’61; Barbara Sander; Carol Saivetz ’69, P’97, P’01; and Mindy Schneider ’75, P’17.

Elected to the Brandeis Board of Fellows were seven individuals: Susan Kay Feigenbaum, PhD’74, P’08, P’17; David Hodes ’77; Paul Levenson ’52, P’78, P’82, H’87, Trustee Emeritus; Jay S. Pepose ’75, MA’75, P’08, P’17; Laura Schor; and Nancy Sherman Shapiro ’69.

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