Member Spotlight

Roger Cox, '70

Roger CoxRoger Cox, mathematics ’70, has been a member of the Dean’s Leadership Council for more than 10 years. A co-founder of Cinco Networks, Inc., with his partners he built the company from the ground up to develop and market network management software. Cox served as the senior vice president of worldwide sales and set up distribution in North America, Europe, Asia, Latin America and Australia. In 1997, he and his partners sold Cinco Networks to Network General Corp., a Nasdaq company, and it was one of the largest software acquisitions of the year. After the acquisition, Cox served as vice president at Network General until he left the company in 1998.

Cox, who spent most of his life in Atlanta, is now retired and living in Destin, Fla., with his wife, Sherry. He enjoys tennis, saltwater fishing, bridge, spectator sports and college football. He also tutors high school students in algebra, geometry, pre-calculus and calculus.
He and his wife have two children, a son, Darryl Cox, international business ’98, who works in the technology industry in the Atlanta area, and a daughter, Maureen Cox-Myers, who is the sole proprietor of a horse farm in the Atlanta area.
cruiseA lifetime member of the Auburn Alumni Association, Cox is active in the Emerald Coast Auburn Club, which serves the Ft. Walton and Destin areas in Florida. He is currently serving his second year as the club’s secretary, and he was chair of the Nominating Committee for the past two years. He also served for three years on the club’s Board of Directors. When he lived in Atlanta, he was a member of the Atlanta Auburn Club for approximately 20 years.
In addition to serving his local Auburn Club, Cox and his wife support COSAM financially. They designated the Roger and Sherry Cox Endowed Scholarship, which is awarded to mathematics or applied mathematics students. They have also given generously to other areas in COSAM, such as the math building project.

How did you get involved in the Dean’s Leadership Council?

Tammy Hartwell asked me to come and observe a meeting; shortly thereafter I accepted an invitation. I wanted to do my part to help Auburn and COSAM and at the same time, meet new friends among alumni, faculty and undergraduates.

What talents and/or qualities do you possess that make you a valuable member of the Dean’s Leadership Council?

My professional experience has been more in the entrepreneurial area, which may be somewhat different from others on the council. My career was primarily in small business; others on the council have had much higher profile careers in much larger organizations (corporations, universities, government organizations, etc.).

BCS GameWhat do you believe are the greatest strengths of COSAM?

Excellent faculty and administration, motivated students and strong alumni support.

Is there a particular area of COSAM that holds significant interest for you?

I would really like to see Auburn and COSAM replace Parker Hall with a state-of-the-art mathematics building very soon. As an undergraduate, I took classes in Parker Hall in the 1960s. I think it is high time a replacement building is provided.

Why do you support COSAM financially?

I have supported COSAM in several ways over the last few years, and I believe it is important to assist Auburn and COSAM in attracting the best new students to attend Auburn. The education I received at Auburn had a great deal to do in whatever success I have enjoyed, and I want to help others to attain that same success in their lives.

fishingHow has your education at Auburn contributed to your success?

I took my first programming course while I was a mathematics student at Auburn. I don't believe it was a required course, but I took it as an elective. It was an old programming language called Fortran, and later at Auburn I took a COBOL course as well. This piqued my interest in computers. After my sophomore year I decided to enter the “co-op program,” a work-study partnership between Auburn and many employers who were seeking technical talent. Through the Auburn Co-op office, I wound up working as a programmer and analyst at the National Security Agency located at Fort Meade, Md., while I was still an undergraduate. For two years I alternated quarters attending Auburn, then working at NSA — I put a lot of miles on my ’67 Chevy in those two years. NSA was only interested in hiring engineers and math majors, so my choice to major in math was very important to landing the job. After graduation, I accepted a fulltime job at NSA and worked there for five more years. My math training taught me important critical thinking skills that were directly transferrable to the computer field. The programming work at NSA was more mathematically oriented than most commercial programming jobs, and I was particularly well prepared for the NSA environment due to my Auburn training. Even after I left NSA, I felt my math training was a great asset to enable me to compete effectively in the private sector.