Awards & Recognition > Awards and Scholarships

Karl E. Peace Award

2015 Karl E. Peace Award Winner

James J. Cochran, University of Alabama James J. Cochran, University of Alabama
For tireless humanitarian efforts that leverage statistical training and expertise in the areas of international development and the world statistical community to improve the well-being of people across the globe; for outstanding leadership in consulting, instruction, and advancing statistical science in developing countries around the world; and for service and dedication to ASA committees, his students, and his profession.

The Karl E. Peace Award for Outstanding Statistical Contributions for the Betterment of Society, established in 2012, recognizes statisticians who have made substantial contributions to the statistical profession and to society in general. The award was established by Christopher K. Peace, son of Karl E. Peace, on behalf of the Peace family to honor the life work of his father.

Each recipient receives an engraved award and cash prize, presented at the awards ceremony during the Joint Statistical Meetings. The current amount of the cash prize is $1,000, which is divided evenly among the winners. The award is given every year if, in the opinion of the awards committee, there is a nominee worthy of the award.

About Peace

Peace was born into a family of southwest Georgia sharecroppers in Baker County, Georgia, on July 28, 1941. He overcame an impoverished background to become immensely successful, both academically and professionally. Read his full biography.

Selection Criteria

The award is bestowed upon distinguished individual(s) who have made substantial contributions to the statistical profession, contributions that have led in direct ways to improving the human condition. Recipients will have demonstrated through their accomplishments their commitment to service for the greater good.

Important Dates

Nominations are due by March 15 each year. The award is presented at the Joint Statistical Meetings the same year.

Responsibilities of the Award Recipient

The award recipient is responsible for providing a current photograph and general personal information the year the award is presented. The American Statistical Association uses this information to publicize the award and prepare the prize.

How to Submit a Nomination

Nominators should submit, at minimum, a CV and two letters of support for their candidate. The nomination should clearly document the candidate's substantial contributions to the statistical profession and how these contributions have led in direct ways to improving the human condition, as well as demonstrate the candidate's commitment to service for the greater good. Submit nominations electronically to Pam Craven,, by February 1.

Biography (short version)

Karl E. Peace was born into a family of southwest Georgia sharecroppers in Baker County, Georgia, on July 28, 1941. He overcame an impoverished background to become immensely successful, both academically and professionally. In the third quarter of his freshman year, he earned a Georgia State Teacher's scholarship that helped him complete his bachelor's degree in chemistry. He went on to earn a master's degree in mathematics from Clemson University and to teach at several colleges and universities before earning a PhD in biostatistics from the Medical College of Virginia (MCV).

Peace began to pursue a career in biostatistics in the pharmaceutical industry in 1978. After rising from an entry-level biostatistician at Burroughs-Wellcome to vice president of worldwide technical operations at Parke-Davis/Warner Lambert, he started Biopharmaceutical Research Consultants Inc. in 1989. In 2004, his endowment to honor his late wife led to the creation of the Jiann-Ping Hsu School of Public Health (JPHSOPH), the first school of public health in the University System of Georgia (USG). In creating the JPHSOPH, the board of regents also named the center for biostatistics, created by Peace, the Karl E. Peace Center for Biostatistics.

Peace made many contributions to the literature, publishing 10 books and more than 150 articles. He also contributed much to the statistics profession and was awarded many honors, including the following:

  • 1998 Distinguished Alumnus of GSU
  • 2003 GSU Alumnus of the Year in Private Enterprise
  • First recipient of the President's Medal at GSU in 2005
  • 2009 recipient of the GSU Award for Excellence in Research and Scholarly Activity
  • Georgia Cancer Coalition's Distinguished Cancer Scholar at GSU (a first for GSU) from 2002-2007
  • First GSU recipient of a grant from the Georgia Research Alliance
  • Endower of the first Eminent Scholar Chair at GSU
  • Endower of the Karl E. Peace/JP Hsu Eminent Scholar Chair in Public Health at GSU
  • Endower of 13 scholarships at GSU
  • Benefactor if the GSU library, Center for Disabled Students, and the music and art departments
  • Cited as GSU's greatest benefactor in the 2004 Campaign for National Distinction

Peace received the Deen Day Smith Award for Service to Mankind in 2008. On March 26, 2008, he received a standing ovation from the Georgia House of Representatives as they acknowledged his contributions to furthering biostatistics and public health in Georgia.

In April of 2008, the Georgia House of Representatives passed HR #2118, honoring Peace for his contributions to the medical field, Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health, Georgia Southern University, and citizens of Georgia. Also, he was cited by the U.S. House of Representatives for his contributions to drug research and development, public health education, philanthropy, and professional service in September of 2009.

Peace was the 1991 Star Alumnus of the MCV; 2005 recipient of the MCV Founder's Society Award; 2007 recipient of the American Public Health Association (APHA) Statistics Section Award for his contributions to the pharmaceutical industry in drug research and development; founder and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Biopharmaceutical Statistics; founder of the Biopharmaceutical Applied Statistical Symposium (BASS); and recipient of meritorious service awards from the American Society for Quality Control, Drug Information Association, BASS, Southwest Georgia Cancer Coalition, and Georgia Cancer Coalition.

Peace endowed two scholarships at the University of California at Berkeley, including the Jiann-Ping Hsu/Karl E. Peace Chair in Biostatistics; three scholarships in biostatistics at MCV; one scholarship at Randolph-Macon College; and the Jiann-Ping Hsu Biopharmaceutical and Regulatory Sciences Session at the annual meeting of the International Chinese Statistical Association. While living, he donated millions to education and health-related activities, enabling hundreds of students to earn their BS, MS, MPH, PhD, Dr. PH, or MD degrees.

Peace was elected Fellow of the American Statistical Association in 1991, was the 2008 recipient of the Tito Mijaries Lifetime Achievement Award from the Philippine Statistical Association, and was the inaugural recipient of the President's Medal for outstanding contributions to Georgia Southern University in April 2005. He was chair of the ASA Biopharmaceutical Section and its work group activity, as well as chair of the biostatistics subsection of the Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association and its training committee and the Statistics Section of the APHA.

Although he was proud of his many academic, professional, business, philanthropic, and educational accomplishments, Peace was most proud of his efforts to uplift others, particularly his mother, siblings, wife, son, uncle, and numerous friends and students. He also was proud of his efforts within his native Baker County (endowing five scholarships at GSU for students from Baker County and providing monetary contributions so citizens could undergo cancer screenings); the Boys and Girls Club of Bulloch County, Georgia; and various other organizations, including the American Cancer Society, Georgia Cancer Coalition, Southeast Georgia Cancer Alliance, Southwest Georgia Cancer Coalition, Komen for the Cure, and American Heart Association. In 2011, the center for academic achievement at the Boys and Girls Club of Bulloch County was named in honor of Peace.

Past Winners

2014: Gary Grove Koch, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, for exemplary scholarly research, teaching, and practice leading to improving public health, including a global impact on the design, analysis, and conduct of clinical trials in pharmaceutical regulation; for tireless efforts mentoring and leading students to fulfill their academic pursuits and promise; and for a philanthropic vision and commitment to his profession, universities, and students.

2013: Richard Macey Simon, National Cancer Institute for contributions that have played a pivotal role in bridging the gap among statistics, clinical research, and translational medicine to improve human health.

2012: Fritz Scheuren, NORC at the University of Chicago for an exemplary career that has translated impressive statistical contributions into support of humankind, particularly through extensive international human rights work, and for effective leadership and advocacy in the promotion of volunteerism among ASA members.

2012: Marvin Zelen, Harvard University and Frontier Science Foundation for outstanding statistical contributions and dedication to the establishment of collaborative partnerships between biostatistical and clinical sciences-particularly in the design, conduct, and analysis of clinical trials and cancer screenings-and for visionary international professional leadership.