The UCI community mourns the loss of beloved alumnus, friend and supporter Vincent Steckler ’80. The former CEO of Avast Antivirus Software died unexpectedly on June 15, 2021 at the age of 62.
Vince graduated from UCI in 1980 with a B.S. in information and computer science and a B.S. in mathematics. He joined Avast as CEO in 2009 and transformed the company from a small regional business into a global provider of internet security. Vince remained active in the Orange County community and was a strong advocate for equity and inclusion in the computing industry. As a global business leader who had a tremendous impact on technology and innovation, while also remaining dedicated to his alma mater, Vince was inducted into the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences (ICS) Alumni Hall of Fame in 2018.
“Our School was a cause close to Vince’s heart,” said ICS Dean Marios Papaefthymiou. “We are deeply saddened by the loss of a cherished friend and ardent supporter of the ICS community. At the same time, we remain as committed as ever to pursuing his vision of an accessible, equitable, and inclusive digital future for our society.”
Earlier this year, Vince and his wife, Amanda, gifted $10.4 million to UCI, half of which is supporting art history students, while the other half helped establish the Steckler Center for Responsible, Ethical, and Accessible Technology (CREATe) led by Chancellor’s Professor Paul Dourish, who was just named the first Steckler Endowed Chair in Information and Computer Science. The Stecklers previously donated $1 million to the Donald Bren School of Information and Computer Sciences to support women in computing, creating an endowed fellowship for graduate students as well as an endowed scholarship for undergraduates that receives permanent matching funds.
“Vince’s sudden passing has come as a tremendous shock,” said Dourish. “We are especially sorry that he will not be able to see the legacy and impact of his transformational gift. His passion for inclusivity and responsibility in the technology sector has built a foundation for research and education in this space for years to come, and we are devastated not to be able to share that with him.”
The ICS and UCI communities extend their sincerest condolences to the Steckler family and friends. Vince will hold a special place in the hearts of many at the UCI campus. He is survived by his wife, Amanda, and five children.
Per the family’s request, those who would like to share memories can do so by emailing email@example.com.