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Roger Pinkham Named 1st Ada Peluso Visiting Professor of Mathematics

Roger S. Pinkham, professor emeritus of mathematics at Stevens Institute of Technology, has been named the first Ada Peluso Visiting Professor of Mathematics and Statistics at Hunter. The professorship was established this past fall.

Professor Pinkham, a nationally known expert in statistics, numerical analysis, and probability theory, was in the mathematics department at Stevens Institute from 1966-2009 and was head of the department from 1967-1986.

A graduate of the University of Maine, Pinkham received his PhD in mathematics from Harvard. He has taught at Duke, been a member of the Statistics Department at Rutgers and the Statistical Techniques Research Group at Princeton, and a member of the technical staff at Bell Telephone Laboratories. He has also acted as a consultant for IBM, Bell Labs, Union Carbide, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and CompuServe, among others.

In 1987 he received the Mathematical Association of America's Distinguished Mathematics Teacher Award, and in 1982 and again in 1992 was named "best teacher" in a poll of Stevens Institute graduates conducted by the Institute's Alumni Association.

In 1982, while at Stevens, Pinkham taught the first students ever required to have a computer as freshmen. They wrote "their own numerical toolbox," he said, "which allowed them to solve differential equations, solve simultaneous linear equations, find zeros of functions, and much more. We all had great fun."

He has published dozens of articles in such journals as Transactions of the AMS, Ann. Math. Stat., Biometrika, J.SIAM, Jour. Assoc. Comp. Math., Amer. Jour.of Human Genetics, Jour. Roy. Stat. Soc., Bio. Cyber, Jour. of Sys. and Software, Amer. Math. Monthly, Spatial Vision, and Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics. He has just completed a book titled On the Distribution of First Significant Digits.

At Hunter he has taught courses in probability, statistics, and numerical analysis at the graduate level. "Some Hunter seniors have elected to take these courses," he said, "and have done marvelously well."

The Ada Peluso Visiting Professorship was established by Hunter Professor Emerita Ada Peluso, who joined the Hunter mathematics department faculty in 1966, was chair of the department from 1999-2010, and has been a longtime supporter of the College.

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