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Professor of Statistics in the George R. Brown School of Engineering


Leadership is a key component to my day-to-day, mid-term and long-term contributions. Throughout my career I have helped shape and develop the various communities to which I belong. At Rice University I have held many leadership roles at all levels of the university. I am most proud of my role as chair of the department of statistics at Rice for fourteen years. As the first hire of the statistics department founded in 1986, I have had the unique opportunity to work  along with my colleagues to lead and develop this department to the international stature it has today. Our department is enriched by path-breaking research and educational programs including several inter-disciplinary programs. Several programs that I helped initiate include programs that span multiple institutions. We are all very proud of what we have been able to collectively achieve.

In addition to my leadership of the department, I am the founding and current director of the Rice Center for Computational Finance and Economic Systems (CoFES). CoFES serves as a focal point for engineering centered research and education in statistical finance. We established an endowed conference namely the Eubank Conference on Real World Markets, held each April. Through CoFES I lead a popular undergraduate minor (FCAM), support statistical finance curriculum for the broader Rice community, hold ongoing weekly discussion groups related to quantitative finance, and maintain an active statistical finance research program. Often CoFES research is collaborative with faculty in economics, finance and computer science.

Recently I augmented my Rice leadership and research portfolio to include the development of the Kinder Institute Urban Data Platform. With generous funding from Houston Endowment, I am leading the effort to pull together and curate research ready data for purposes of furthering the growth of Houston and bettering the life of its residents. All data is geocoded allowing easy integration across disparate data sets, thereby expanding the urban questions that can be scientifically answered.

Currently at Rice, I am serving as chair of the Graduate Council, as a member of the Data Science+X steering and hiring committee, and am leading the Rice Academy of Fellows. I also serve on the Conflict of Interest and Commitment Committee. For previous leadership roles at Rice please see my CV.

More broadly in the statistics community, I am Vice-President of the American Statistical Association (ASA) and serve on the National Academies Committee on Applied and Theoretical Statistics (CATS). I have served as President of the Southern Regional Council on Statistics, and as elected representative to numerous sections and councils of ASA. I recently served on the U. S. EPA Science Advisory Board on Hydraulic Fracturing Research Advisory Panel. Locally in Houston I interface with City officials, the Houston based research groups and community organizations related to air quality and health.