Joe Levin was the vice president of research and product development at the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE). He started at the CBOE in the 1980s and led the development of a long list of index products and benchmarks, including the VIX. He died in August of 2018.
Levin received the William F. Sharpe Indexing Lifetime Achievement Award in December of 2008 for his work in creating revolutionary products in the listed options markets.
At CBOE Levin oversaw the development of many industry "firsts," including the first security index option (S&P 100 Index options - OEX); the first measure of market volatility (CBOE Volatility Index - VIX); the first options strategy-based index (CBOE S&P 500 Buy-Write Index - BXM); and the first tradable volatility products (VIX futures and options). 
Levin developed the concept of a benchmark market volatility index derived from options prices in 1993. He commissioned Professor Robert Whaley, then at Duke University, and worked closely with him to develop a formula that measured the implied volatility of the U.S. equities market by measuring the prices of certain options on the S&P 100 Index. This led to the launch of the benchmark VIX, the first ever market volatility index.
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