Ruthie Lyle Cannon

IBM Master Inventor; USAA Research Engineer

Ruthie Lyle Cannon

Dr. Ruthie Lyle-Cannon (’98) is philosophical about life. “I’ve completed only a part of my journey,” she says, “and I’m looking forward to the growth and adventure that the next part might bring.

Her journey so far has been an eventful one. Lyle-Cannon has the distinction of being the first black woman to earn a doctoral degree from what was then known as Polytechnic University and one of the rare women to be named Master Inventor at IBM, a company she joined in 1999. She is now a lead research engineer at USAA, a financial services company dedicated to the security and well-being of members of the U.S. military and their families.

Throughout her career she has been a strong believer in the power of networking, especially among alumni. "Early in my career, I cold-called one of the top executives at a Fortune 500 company,” Lyle-Cannon has said. "When she heard I went to Poly, she took the call. That speaks for itself."