HSPH Biostatistics: News and Updates


Natalie Exner Wins 2012 ENAR Modeling and Prediction RAB Poster Award
Doctoral student Natalie Exner won the first annual International Biometric Society's Eastern North American Region (ENAR) Modeling and Prediction RAB Poster Award at the 2012 ENAR Spring Meetings in Washington, DC. Natalie won the overall award as well as the student award for her excellent poster entitled: "Incorporating HIV-1 genetic diversity into an algorithm for incidence estimation," co-authored by Vladimir Novitsky and Marcello Pagano. Well-deserved congratulations to Natalie!


Yen-Tsung Huang and Jennifer Sinnott Win 2012 ASA Biometrics Section Travel Awards
The department is proud to announce that doctoral students Yen-Tsung Huang and Jennifer Sinnott are winners of 2012 ASA Biometrics Section Travel Awards. A cash award in the amount of $800 will accompany each award. Yen-Tsung's winning paper (co-authored with Drs. Xihong Lin and Tyler VanderWeele) is entitled "Joint Analysis of SNP and Gene Expression Data in Genome-Wide Association Studies". Jennifer's winning paper (co-authored with Dr. Tianxi Cai) is entitled "Omnibus Risk Assessment via Accelerated Failure Time Kernel Machine Modeling". Yen-Tsung and Jennifer will be recognized for their achievements at the 2012 Joint Statistical Meetings in San Diego in late July. Hearty congratulations to them both!


Tamar Sofer wins 2012 ENAR Distinguished Paper Award
Doctoral student Tamar Sofer has been selected to receive one of the International Biometric Society’s Eastern North American Region (ENAR) Distinguished Student Paper Awards for the 2012 ENAR Spring Meetings in Washington, DC. The award recognizes her excellent paper entitled: "Variable Selection for High-Dimensional Multivariate Outcomes with Application to Genetic Pathway/Network Analysis." Congratulations to Tamar!


Lauren Hund Wins 2011 APHA Statistics Student Paper Competition
The department is pleased to announce that current doctoral student, Lauren Hund, is the winner of the 2011 APHA Statistics Section student paper competition. Lauren was invited with three other finalists to present her paper at the conference on November 1, and her work, "Using LQAS to assess changes in prevalence of global acute malnutrition within longitudinal surveillance systems", took top prize. Congratulations, Lauren, on this well-deserved honor!


Alumnus Katherine Halvorsen Wins ASA Mosteller Statistician of the Year Award
The department is delighted to announce that Dr. Katherine Halvorsen, Professor of Statistics at Smith College, will receive the 2012 Mosteller Statistician of the Year Award. Every year the Boston Chapter presents the Statistician of the Year award to a distinguished statistician who has made exceptional contributions to the field of statistics and has shown outstanding service to the statistical community. In 1997, this award was renamed the Mosteller Statistician of the Year award in honor of the 80th birthday of its first recipient, Fred Mosteller. Dr. Halvorsen received her doctoral degree from our department in 1984. Congratulations, Katherine, on this well-deserved honor!


Richard Gelber Receives European CanCer Organisation Clinical Research Award
The department is delighted to announce that Dr. Richard Gelber has received one of the two 2011 European CanCer Organisation (ECCO) Clinical Research Awards. The ECCO Clinical Research Award is conferred in recognition of an outstanding international contribution to the integration of scientific research and clinical practice in the field of cancer. The award was presented on the occasion of the European Multidisciplinary Cancer Congress in Stockholm, during the Presidential session of Monday 26th September. To read more about the award, and Dr. Gelber's research which led to the recognition, please visit the European CanCer Organisation website. Congratulations, Rich, on this well-deserved honor!


Alumnus Melody Goodman to Serve on Regional Health Equity Council
Dr. Melody Goodman, currently Assistant Professor, Division of Public Health Sciences at Washington University School of Medicine, has been nominated and confirmed for appointment as a member of the Regional Health Equity Council for Region VII. From her nomination letter:

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the National Stakeholder Strategy for Achieving Health Equity and the HHS Action Plan to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities. Together, these documents represent the federal commitment for addressing health equity and closing the health gap for racial, ethnic, and underserved communities.

The National Stakeholder Strategy calls for ten Regional Health Equity Councils whose members will serve as leaders and catalysts to strengthen health equity and enhance collaboration between stakeholders, align initiatives and programs, and leverage assets to more effectively accomplish health disparity reduction goals.

Melody is an alumnus of our program, receiving her PhD in Biostatistics in 2006. The Department would like to offer their congratulations to her for this well-deserved honor!


Xinyi (Cindy) Lin Receives a Student Travel Support Award
Xinyi Lin received the award at the third Toxicogenomics Integrated with Environmental Sciences (TIES) Conference that took place September 15–16, 2011 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC) William and Ida Friday Center for Continuing Education in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. The two-day event was sponsored by the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), the U.S. Food and Drug Administration National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR), the SAS Institute, and UNC. The international meeting focused on how bioinformatics and emerging technologies help researchers better understand the environmental influences behind the development and progression of human disease. Congratulations, Cindy!


Department Welcomes Our Incoming Class
The incoming class to the Department of Biostatistics consists of 24 students. Of the twenty-four new students, 12 are enrolled in our Ph.D. doctoral program, 1 in the special student program, and 11 in our Master's program. Of these new degree students, 13 are U.S. citizens or permanent residents and 11 are international students. There are 7 women and 17 men, and their prior degrees are distributed as follows (1 EdS, 1 PhD, 7 have a prior Master's degree, 15 enter with Bachelor's degrees). The Department welcomes the new students to our program and wishes them every success during their stay with us and beyond.


The New Faces - (left to right) Godwin Yung, BaoLuo Sun, Abhishek Chakrabortty, Patrick Staples, Joey Antonelli, Yuanyuan Shen, Donghoon Shin, Chung Chi Wu, Emma Holdrich, Lin Liu, Fei Li, Shelley Liu, Dustin Rabideau, Expeditho Mtisi, Mark Wymer. (Missing: Craig Bielski, Leslie Calloway, Yan Dong, Yared Gurmu, Jim Kaminiski, Heather Mattie, Dale Myers, Rui Zhao)

You may view a set of pictures of the incoming class taken from the 2011-2012 Photo Directory (internal only) here.



Winston Hide Receives ISCB Award for Outstanding Achievement
The Department is pleased to announce that Dr. Hide is the first ever ISCB Award for Outstanding Achievement winner. As stated on the International Society for Computational Biology website:

Dr. Winston Hide of the Harvard School of Public Health was presented with the ISCB Award for Outstanding Achievement, and, as part of this award, delivered the ISCB Keynote lecture at the ISCB Africa ASBCB 2011 conference in Cape Town, South Africa.

A unique award from the International Society for Computational Biology, the ISCB Award for Outstanding Achievement was presented as a means of recognizing Dr. Hide’s significant achievements in an underdeveloped region of the world. The award was proposed by ISCB President Burkhard Rost, and the Society’s highest-ranking leaders - the member-elected Officers of ISCB that serve on the Executive Committee - unanimously approved.

Congratulations, Win, on this well-deserved award!



Brian Claggett Wins Jiann-Ping Hsu Pharmaceutical and Regulatory Sciences Student Paper Award
The department would like to congratulate doctoral student Brian Claggett for his recent selection as the Jiann-Ping Hsu Pharmaceutical and Regulatory Sciences Student Paper Award winner. His manuscript, entitled "Estimating Subject-Specific Treatment Differences for Risk-Benefit Assessment with Competing Risk Event-Time Data", was submitted to the 20th Annual International Chinese Student Association (ICSA) Applied Statistics Symposium Student Paper Awards. He gave a presentation on his paper and participated in the student award ceremony at the symposium from June 26-29, 2011 in New York City. Congratulations, Brian!


Congratulations Graduates!
The Department of Biostatistics would like to offer their congratulations and best wishes to our students who graduated in the 2011 Spring Commencement ceremony. Receiving a Doctorate of Philosophy degree were Matthew Austin, Rajeev Ayyagari, Mariel Finucane, Alane Izu, Peter Lipman, Farzad Noubary, Elizabeth Ogburn, Shannon Stock, and Melissa Whitney. Receiving a Master of Science degree were Robert Chang, Sung Eun Choi, Kathryn Fitzgerald, Jason Liu, Paula Moraga-Serrano, Jia Weng, and Rui Zhao. Emmanuel Dimont, Natalie Exner, Kate Fisher, Travis Gerke, Lauren Kunz, Christina McIntosh, Mark Meyer, Rajarshi Mukherjee, Rebecca Payne, Jarupon Fah Sathirapongsasuti, Eric Solis, David Swanson, and Richard White received Master of Arts degrees. We wish our graduates much success in the future!

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Last Update: April 5, 2012