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2015 Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award

Jackson Hu
Jackson Hu

Jackson Hu, a semiconductor industry veteran with nearly 40 years of experience in the fabless IC design and foundry sectors, is now a Venture Partner for WI Harper, a VC firm in San Francisco. Hu also currently serves on the Board of Directors for Atoptech and the Advisory Boards of Bitfury and Insilixa, all startup companies.

Hu has held a number of technical and executive positions throughout his career. At S3, Hu and his team of five engineers developed the industry’s first single-chip GUI accelerator in 1991, the S3 86C911, enabling Microsoft Windows to run more smoothly and quickly. The company became the leading graphics chip provider. By 1995, nearly every major PC graphics had followed S3’s lead and added 2D GUI acceleration support.

As president and CEO at SiRF, Hu led the company’s development of a cost-effective and accurate chipset that brought GPS into smartphones.

Hu was chairman and CEO at UMC, the world’s second largest semiconductor foundry. During his five-year tenure, he launched a program that allowed 22 universities to run research projects on Silicon Shuttle, which enabled researchers to verify their advanced designs and prototypes in UMC silicon.

He also leveraged his design expertise to assist UMC’s development of comprehensive solutions enabling the production of leading-edge SOCs in a cost-effective foundry environment.

More recently, Hu was chairman and CEO of NeoEnergy Microelectronics, a fabless analog IC design company for improving power efficiency.

Hu credits his career advancement and accomplishments to the disciplined training he received from his thesis advisor, U of I Professor Saburo Muroga, and to the strong, balanced education provided by CS @ ILLINOIS.