Patrick Joseph McGovern was born on Aug. 11, 1937, in Queens. His father was a construction manager. When Patrick was about 5 years old, his family moved to Philadelphia, where he began delivering The Philadelphia Bulletin at age 8 and graduated from St. Martin of Tours School in 1951. After reading “Giant Brains” he invented a primitive computer that never lost at tick-tack-toe. The device helped him get a scholarship to M.I.T. where he majored in biophysics.
Patrick started a modest database in 1964 to track the growing use of computers and went on to build a global publishing empire that has produced scores of successful magazines and websites, including Computerworld and Macworld. “Ben Franklin is my role model,” he said. “Like him, I have a lot of enthusiasm for what information technology can do to improve the quality of life for mankind.”
Patrick passed away at the age of 76 in 2014. Patrick’s sister, Laurette Verbinski (SMT Class of 1946), contacted St. Martin of Tours school and wanted to make a donation in her brother’s memory specifically for technology. The generous contribution of $100,000 was received on behalf of the McGovern family and construction on the lab is underway. We are excited to have the opening ceremony to the lab in Patrick’s memory early next year in 2018.