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Doerge Appointed Interim Head for 2008 - 2009


Rebecca W. Doerge Mary Ellen Bock

Rebecca W. Doerge and Mary Ellen Bock

Dean Vitter appointed Rebecca W. Doerge, Professor of Statistics, Professor of Agronomy, and Director of the Statistical Bioinformatics Center, as the Interim Department Head of Statistics effective August 18, 2008 until June 30, 2009. Mary Ellen Bock, Professor and Head of the Department of Statistics, will be taking a sabbatical during the year.

Doerge joined the Department of Statistics in 1995. She has received awards for both teaching and research: Teaching for Tomorrow Award (1996); Outstanding Assistant Professor for Excellence in Teaching and Research (1997); Outstanding Teacher of Undergraduates in the School of Science (1998); University Scholar (2001); College of Science Graduate Student Mentoring Award (2007). In 2007 she was elected Fellow of the American Statistical Association and Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She is the associate editor for three journals, The Plant Cell, Statistical Applications in Genetics and Molecular Biology, and Genetics. Doerge has played an integral role in the establishment of Genomics at Purdue University, and continues to forge new ground in the exciting areas of statistical genomics, quantitative genetics, and bioinformatics. Her research program currently encompasses four broad areas: development of statistical methodology for genetic mapping and quantitative trait loci (QTL) location; applying up to date genetic mapping and (e-)QTL methodology to real experimental data; assessing genetic variation and diversity of populations and germplasm collections; and understanding and analyzing gene expression, protein expression, and epigenomic data for the purpose of statistically designing and then testing (epi-)genomic/biologically based questions. Under her direction, 10 graduate students have completed their Ph.D. and 11 more are currently working towards their Ph.D. She is part of the National Science Foundation's $50 million iPlant Collaborative which will for the first time unite plant scientists, computer scientists and information scientists from around the world to provide answers to questions of global importance such as food supply and climate change.

Bock was named Head of Statistics in 1995 when the founding head, Shanti S. Gupta, stepped down after 27 years of serving as the department head. Building on the solid foundation established by Professor Gupta, Bock has spent the last 13 years helping to further develop statistics and probability at Purdue. Since 1995, the department has added research and courses in areas of application such as bioinformatics, genomics, massive data, machine learning, visualization, and computational finance. In addition to expanding the research scope of the department, Bock's leadership has seen the size of the department double, both in the number of faculty and the number of students. Bock is a Fellow of the American Statistical Association, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics and an elected member of International Statistical Institute. In 2006 she was recognized as a Purdue Woman Pioneer and received the Violet Haas Award. She served as President of the American Statistical Association in 2007.

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