Joe earned three degrees at Princeton, culminating in a Ph.D. in linguistics in 1968, after which he taught at Rutgers and Guelph universities for several years. Having become a forerunner in computational linguistics, he then joined Bell Laboratories, where he designed computer-to-computer communications protocols that remain in use today. After retirement he continued to work in “fuzzy logic,” presenting papers internationally and serving as president of the North American Fuzzy Information Processing Society. He was a true scholar, approaching each new interest by spending hours in the library researching it. He was known for his kindness, selflessness, and high ethical standards. He influenced many young people during his career by being a role model for them.
He is survived by his wife of 42 years, Carol Broll; children Joseph, Catherine, and Bruno; and six grandchildren.