Newsletter - October 2005 Download the pdf version

Message from the President
Election Time
NV-ASA Mentoring Workshop
SAVE THE DATE! - Fall Statistics Symposium in Las Vegas
JSM 2005 in Minneapolis
SPECIAL OFFER for NV-ASA Members - SPSS Directions User Conference

Dear Nevada ASA Member,
Fall is here! It’s time for the NV-ASA Annual Meeting!!  We hope you will join us for lunch on October 22.  Read on for more details.

Upcoming Events!!!

Saturday, October 22, 2005   9am – 3pm
Mentoring Program Kick-off & Annual Meeting
UNR & Little Waldorf Grill, Reno NV

Saturday, November 19, 2005    8:30am – 2pm      
Fall Statistics Symposium - “A Statistics Sampler”
Moyer Student Union, UNLV, Las Vegas NV

Read on for more information!!

Co-editors: Alicia Chancellor Hansen and Hokwon Cho


Message From the President
    By Debra Stiver, President
Annual Meeting Coming Soon – Join Us!
This year’s NV-ASA annual meeting will take place in Reno on Saturday, October 22. At this meeting, we will introduce the newly elected officers for year 2006, cover budget matters, highlight the accomplishments of the past year, and look at future needs and programs related to our chapter growth and membership.  We invite you to participate in the annual meeting which will be held at the Little Waldorf Restaurant on North Virginia Street, across from the University of Nevada, Reno.  The meeting will include a luncheon and begin at approximately 12:30 p.m. Look for flyers announcing a definite start time and cost for the lunch.  Given our nominee slate, we will be seeing some new faces on the 2006 NV-ASA board.  New member participation is crucial to keeping our chapter active and growing. Please mark your calendars and join us for this meeting to see what NV-ASA is all about!
Mentor Program Kick-Off:  Have You Ever Considered Being a Mentor?

Earlier this year, NV-ASA was awarded a $5,000 Strategic Initiatives Grant from national ASA to develop a mentorship program in Nevada.  Prior to the annual meeting on October 22, NV-ASA will be conducting a mentoring program development workshop.  The workshop will be held on the University of Nevada campus and will start at approximately 9:30 a.m.  During the workshop, various existing mentor programs and resources will be presented and evaluated.  The ultimate goal of the workshop is to select the unique path we want to take for our Nevada mentoring program.  Additionally, participants will develop materials, guidelines and strategies for implementing the program.  Once these materials are developed, NV-ASA plans to conduct mentor training workshops in both northern and southern Nevada. Several members from around the state have already signed up to participate.  If you are interested in becoming a mentor, we hope you will join us at this workshop.  There is no cost to participate.  For a description and further information on the program, see the article in this newsletter by Chad Cross.  Location and exact starting time will be emailed to members.
Some Notes From The JSM Meetings Held This Summer In Minneapolis……
Your Chapter Representative, Hokwon Cho and I attended the Joint Statistical Meetings (JSM) this summer in Minneapolis.  Every year, chapter officers are invited to a variety of functions including the Council of Chapter (COC) Annual Business Meeting and the COC Workshop and Reception.  These annual gatherings provide a forum for chapter officers to learn about activities being conducted by other chapters, resources available from national ASA to help individual chapters meet their goals, and new ASA programs and grants that may have been developed during the previous year.  I was pleased to learn that the Nevada Chapter accomplishes a great deal by national standards, especially given our small membership.  For a chapter to be in good standing with national ASA, they must accomplish the following:  elect officers according the chapter’s constitution; hold at least one chapter meeting per calendar year; and, report certain information to the national office including an annual report of chapter activities and finances.  Our officers have done a great job in meeting these requirements.  Additionally, NV-ASA conducts several workshops throughout the year such as the northern and southern Career Day events and other speaker forums.  For our size – the efforts exceed national expectations!!  Any member wishing information on resources should contact one of the NV-ASA Board  – much is available to members for the enhancement of education and professional development.
HOPE TO SEE YOU ON OCTOBER 22!!!                       

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Election Time
     By Sandra Catlin, Past-President and Chair, Nominating Committee

The Nominating Committee is very pleased to announce the candidates for the offices of President, Northern Vice-President, and Secretary.   We express our appreciation for these individuals’ willingness to serve.  Brief biographies of each of the candidates follow below.  All current NV-ASA members will receive electronic ballots that must be returned by Tuesday, October 18, 2005.

Nominee for the Office of President:
Charles Davis has been active in statistics for over thirty years as a teacher, researcher, and consultant.  He helped to form the Northwest Ohio Chapter of the ASA in the late 1970s, and served the Chapter in various capacities while on the faculty of the Department of Mathematics of the University of Toledo.  Since 1985 he has focused on research and consulting in environmental statistics, with special emphasis on characterization and monitoring in regulatory settings.  He is currently Principal Statistician at EnviroStat, whose clients include the U.S. Department of Energy and its contractors, along with a range of environmental and engineering firms across the country.
Nominee for the Office of Northern Vice-President:

Toni Sipic is currently an economics graduate student at the University of Nevada, Reno.  Besides taking classes and writing his thesis, he works as a graduate assistant.  Currently Toni is teaching the Principles of Statistics in the College of Business.  This is his second semester of teaching this class, and he has also taught the Principles of Microeconomics and Macroeconomics. He has just recently become a member of the ASA, and is looking forward to contributing to the organization.
Nominee for the Office of Secretary:

Alejandra Livingston has been working for the state of Nevada for 9 12 years.  For the past year, she has been working for the State of Nevada Department of Corrections as an Economist III, where she is responsible for managing the Statistics & Planning Section which produces much of the data for the department, including on-going statistical reports used to assist in operational and planning decisions, analysis of legislation, projections, and development of master capacity plans. Alejandra also worked as a Grant and Projects Analyst for eight years for the University’s Office of Sponsored Projects and for the Nevada Division for Aging Services.  In both these organizations, Alejandra had responsibilities in federal reporting requirements.  She was the lead person in the management of the National Aging Information System which was a federally mandated program meant to track statistical information on the aging population for every state. Alejandra earned her first hands-on experience in statistics while earning Bachelor’s and a Master’s Degree in Economics at UNR.  During this period, Alejandra was a Teaching Assistant in statistics and econometrics, and worked as a Research Assistant for the Center for Economic Development and for the City of Reno Redevelopment Agency.  Alejandra is married with two children, ages 4 12 and 7, and also has a many hobbies.

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NV-ASA Mentoring Workshop
     By C. L. Cross, Education Committee
The NV-ASA will be hosting a mentoring workshop on October 22, 2005 at UNR.  The workshop is part of a larger effort by the officers and members of the NVASA to participate more fully in the statistics community in Nevada.  Last spring we submitted a proposal to the ASA national office requesting funds to begin a mentoring program.  We were delighted to have received $5000 towards our efforts. The goal of the mentoring program is to more actively involve professional statisticians in the statistics community by introducing them to statistics students and high school statistics teachers.  We hope that these professionals will serve as mentors to provide support, research/teaching ideas, and other statistical expertise to those students and teachers interested in becoming more involved in their chosen fields.

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Fall Statistics Symposium in Las Vegas
Saturday, November 19, 2005

The half-day symposium and luncheon will take us on a tour of current applications of traditional and non-traditional statistics from a variety of fields.  It is also an opportunity for the statistical community to network for future resources, to discuss our professional needs and solutions, and to brainstorm about options for strengthening the use of statistics in the Las Vegas community and the state.
Watch the NV-ASA web site and your email for more information.  If you would like to help with the symposium as a volunteer or speaker, please contact Carol Thompson at or at (702) 731-5550 x207.
Be there!!!

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JSM 2005 in Minneapolis
     By Hokwon Cho, NV-ASA Chapter Representative
Traveling to participate in the annual Joint Statistical Meeting (JSM) is always very exciting for me, not only because the meeting is one of the biggest statistical conferences, but also because it provides tremendous opportunities for all attendees – faculty, students, researchers, and public and private sector statisticians. This year, the meeting was held Aug. 7-11 in Minneapolis, Minnesota by ASA, IMS (Institute of Mathematical Statistics), IBS (International Biometrics Society) and SSC (Statistical Society of Canada), the main international organizations for statistical sciences in North America.

I attended JSM for two major reasons: to give a presentation in a contributed session and to attend the Chapters’ meetings as NV-ASA’s chapter representative. I left McCarran International Airport on August 6, accompanied by Frank, an MS Statistics graduate student and an NV-ASA member.  After four hours, we arrived in Minneapolis, a city less humid than I expected (although it did rain a couple of times during our stay).  Since our hotel was about 11 blocks from the Convention Center where JSM was held, I walked everyday along the Nicollet Mall Street and the city park, which are known as the sight-seeing centers in Minneapolis.

In the ASA presidential address, Dr. Fritz Scheuren, who visited Las Vegas for our chapter’s 2004 annual meeting, talked about JSM’s main theme: “Using Our Discipline to Enhance Human Welfare.”  JSM 2005 included seven keynote addresses, several plenary sessions, approximately 530 presentations, exhibits, continuing education, and many attractive events with lots of fun and fun and fun!!!  A new addition to this year’s conference was the daily issue of JSM Highlights, which included highlights of the day’s activities and many other interesting and useful pieces of information for all attendees.

Our Chapter President, Debra Stiver, and I were invited to two ASA chapter-related meetings, the Council of Chapters (COC) sponsored meeting and the COC Workshop. These meetings provided useful opportunities for local chapter officers to communicate in a forum, and to exchange ideas about chapter activities and interests. Unfortunately, my attendance at the first COC meeting was cut short because it partially overlapped with the time of my presentation. The next day I attended the Council of Chapters Workshop and Reception. The topic of the annual business meeting, given by the COC chair, Ms. Janet Buckingham, was “ASA Task Force on Welcoming New Members.” She provided valuable information for recruiting new members, such as how to write a welcoming letter, how to identify ASA members who are not members of a local chapter, and what information is available on ASA’s COC website. Mr. Nicholas Horton, the Chair of the Boston Chapter of ASA, gave an introduction to Mu Sigma Rho, the National Honor Society for Statistics. In February 2005, the National Mu Sigma Rho organization approved a proposal that allows ASA Chapters to become affiliate chapters of Mu Sigma Rho (website: Their future plans are to expand membership to more colleges and universities, and to maintain a list of liaisons at the local level.

On Wednesday, the 10th, I had a chance to visit the Mississippi River with one of my former classmates from Washington D.C. We walked across the stone bridge and observed the river for an hour. The river looked very steep since we were on the upper stream, and I found three docks in operation for boats and barge ships. Even though I saw only a limited part of the city, it would be very nice to visit Minneapolis another time. In the evening, leaving the remaining events and enjoyable sights behind I had to be headed for Las Vegas – my home. Goodbye to JSM 2005 and Minneapolis. Thank you!

The next JSM 2006 will be held in Seattle, Washington. For the entire program of JSM, you can visit the ASA website at Then, click Meetings & Events. Hope to see you all in Seattle in the next year!

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SPSS is holding its Directions User Conference at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, November 16-19, 2005.  NV-ASA members can register for the conference at the lowest rate of $299 up to the day of the event “only” by contacting Jeff Robinson, SPSS, Inc. at (800) 543-2185 x 3732 or  This registration includes all conference events on Thursday and Friday, November 17-18.  Pre- and post-conference training is additional.  For more information on the conference, visit

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