ASA Headlines

Nine ASA Members Elected AAAS Fellows

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) council has elected 401 members as fellows. These individuals will be recognized in February for their contributions to science and technology at the fellows forum during the AAAS annual meeting in San Jose, California.

The ASA members elected as fellows to the AAAS Section on Statistics are the following:

  • Susmita Datta, University of Louisville
  • Mark Andrew Espeland, Wake Forest University School of Medicine
  • Robert Jackson Hardy, University of Texas School of Public Health
  • William Q. Meeker Jr., Iowa State University
  • Paula Karen Roberson, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
  • John P. Sall, SAS Institute
  • James J. Schlesselman, University of Pittsburgh
  • Stephanie Shipp, Virginia Tech University
  • Clifford Spiegelman, Texas A&M University

The entire list can be viewed here.

Schenker Named NCHS Deputy Director

Current ASA president, Nathaniel Schenker, has been named deputy director of the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). In announcing the news, Charles Rothwell, NCHS director, said Schenker has been instrumental in developing collaborative statistical relationships within NCHS and with other federal statistical agencies. Schenker currently is the agency's associate director for research and methodology. He joined NCHS after serving in several capacities in the biostatistics and biomathematics departments in UCLA's School of Public Health and School of Medicine. Schenker will assume his new role in February. Read the NCHS press release.

ASA Adopts New Guidelines for Undergraduate Statistics Programs

The ASA has endorsed new guidelines for the undergraduate statistics curriculum that will help ensure bachelor's graduates have the necessary capacities to use data to make evidence-based decisions. The Guidelines for Undergraduate Programs in Statistical Science were adopted last week by the association's board of directors. A work group of ASA members chaired by Nicholas Horton, professor of statistics at Amherst College, recommended adapting the undergraduate curriculum to account for the increased importance of data analysis, teamwork, communications and other relevant skills and experiences in today's practice of statistics. Read more.

Nominations Sought for 2015 Don Owen Award

The San Antonio Chapter is accepting nominations from ASA chapters in North America for the 2015 Don Owen Award, which is presented to a statistician who embodies the three-fold accomplishments of Donald B. Owen: excellence in research, statistical consultation, and service to the statistical community. Read more...

Editor Search

The American Statistical Association seeks editors for the following journals:

Except for JABES, nominations and applications for all editorships should be sent to

With the exception of Technometrics, the deadline for nominations is December 9; applications are due February 15, 2015.

TAS Announces Special Issue

The American Statistician editorial team announces the development of a special issue focused on undergraduate programs in statistics and statistical science. This special issue will be coedited by Nicholas Horton of Amherst College and Johanna Hardin of Pomona College and include a mix of invited papers and papers submitted in response to this call. Emphasis will be placed on articles suitable for "Teachers Corner" and "Statistical Computing and Graphics"; however, editors will consider other article types (i.e., statistical practice, history corner, and interdisciplinary). Click here for article guidelines and submission deadline and instructions.

Former Census Heads Write About Need for Independent Federal Statistical Agencies

In an October 30 opinion piece for Roll Call, former Census Bureau Directors Robert M. Groves and Kenneth Prewitt call strong, independent federal statistical agencies a "bedrock of democracies." Titled Erosion of Federal Statistical Agencies Puts Sound Policy at Risk, the piece speaks to the recent Senate action weakening the National Center for Education Statistics in the broader context of the federal statistical system. "For statistical data to be perceived as sound and independent, its producing agencies must completely control the data's collection, analysis, and publication, including control over its planning, budget, press releases, and information technology," the duo write.

Registration for CSP 2015 Now Open!

The 4TH Annual ASA Conference on Statistical Practice will continue the conference's focus on opportunities for attendees to learn new statistical methodologies and best practices in statistical analysis, design, consulting and statistical programming. The conference will also allow attendees to further their career development and to strengthen relationships in the statistical community. Join us for short courses, poster sessions, concurrent sessions, exhibits, and tutorials. Register today!

Follow ASA's Awareness Campaign on Social Media

ASA PR Campaign Launched You can get the latest updates and interact with others following the ASA's This is Statistics” public awareness campaign on social media. The campaign encourages high-school and college undergraduate students to take statistics courses in college, or even major in the subject. Two primary outlets – Facebook and Twitter – are driving the campaign's social media activities (there also is a YouTube page featuring video profiles of two ASA members). In just 45 days, 571 people and organizations have "liked" the campaign on Facebook, and the campaign has attracted 536 followers on Twitter. For more information, contact Jeff Myers.

Winner of Free ASA Membership

Winner of Monthly Drawing for FREE ASA Membership Congratulations to Darshy Sinha, winner of the October drawing for FREE ASA membership.


Other Recent Headlines

Statisticians Prominent in Nature Magazine's 100 Most-Cited Articles of All Time

The October 30 issue of Nature features the 100 most-cted research articles of all time, and nine are by statisticians. Number 11 on the list and the most-cited statistics article is the 1955 article by Kaplan and Meier in the Journal of the American Statistical Association on survival analyses. To read more, see this ASA Community blog entry.

Statisticians Well Represented on Forensic Science Reform Oversight Body

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) announced on November 3 the composition of its 24 subcommittees for the Organization of Scientific Area Committees (OSAC), the NIST-administered body to strengthen forensic science. Including the previously announced members of the five OSAC committees and its oversight board, 14 statisticians will serve on OSAC. These and other appointments to key forensic science panels acknowledge the importance of statistics to bolstering the forensic sciences. For more information, see this ASA Community blog entry.

Statisticians Contribute to Research on Spread and Mobility of Ebola

The University of Washington's Elizabeth Halloran and the University of Florida's Ira Longini are coauthors on four pieces that have appeared recently on the spread of Ebola and its mobility and interventions. For more, see this ASA Community blog entry.

Blackwell Honored with Science Medal

David Blackwell, an eminent statistician at the University of California, Berkeley who was the first black admitted to the National Academy of Sciences and an ASA Fellow before his death in 2010, has been named a 2014 National Medal of Science honoree posthumously. Established in 1959, it is the premier honor for American scientists and engineers. Conferred by the U.S. president, the medal has been awarded to nearly 500 pioneering individuals. Several ASA members—including John Tukey (1973), Calyampudi Radhakrishna (C.R.) Rao (2002), Bradley Efron (2007), and S.R. Srinivasa Varadhan (2011)—previously were honored. Read more.

ASA Now Accepting Nominations for 2015 Fellows and Awards

We believe it is important to recognize individuals who have made significant contributions in the field of statistics. Please consider nominating one of your colleagues for an ASA award or Fellow. Information about ASA awards.

ASA Currently Accepting Nominations for the 2015 Deming and Noether Lecturers

Please consider nominating a colleague for these prestigious lectures that honor the life and work of W. Edwards Deming and Gottfried E. Noether. Awardees will give the lectures at the Joint Statistical Meetings and receive a cash prize and engraved award. Details can be found here.

Monroe G. Sirken Award in Interdisciplinary Survey Methods Research

Monroe G. Sirken created an endowment to recognize a distinguished researcher for contributions to interdisciplinary survey research that improve the theory and methods of collecting, verifying, processing, presenting, or analyzing survey data. The first honoree will give the Sirken Lecture at the 2015 Joint Statistical Meetings and receive a $5,000 honorarium. View nomination instructions and more information about Monroe Sirken.

TAS Special Issue: Statistics and the Undergraduate Curriculum

The American Statistician editorial team announces the development of a special issue of TAS focused on issues related to undergraduate programs in statistics and statistical science. The issue will include a mix of invited and submitted papers. Although an emphasis will be placed on articles suitable for Teachers Corner and Statistical Computing and Graphics, the team also will consider articles for Statistical Practice, History Corner, and Interdisciplinary. Read more.

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