2019 Alumni Notes Graduation Years 2009-2010
Katrina (Jackson) Anderson
Since the last update, a lot has happened for our little family. We have added a member — Abigail May was born on February 21, 2018, and is now a rambunctious one-year-old that constantly keeps her sister, Maddelyn, and the rest of us on our toes. We have been able to see that both our girls grow so much in just one short year, and it’s amazing to get to see each of their personalities come out — they are both stubborn just like their parents.
Professionally, I defended my dissertation in May 2018 and graduated in August — it was an interesting process to do so with two littles, but I am so grateful to my husband who was my rock and Super-Dad during the whole process. I also started a new job as a tenure-track professor of management science for Marymount University in Alexandria, Virginia. I am the “resident” statty, which has its fair share of interesting projects. I developed an applied statistics minor as well as an interdisciplinary graduate program that will both see their first set of students this fall. I am working on getting an ASA chapter established at our university and hopefully tying it into a Stat Club much like the beloved one at Cal Poly. My research is still ongoing from my time at Baylor, and I am going to JSM this year so hope to see some of you in Denver.
Lots of things have happened for me in the last year. Biggest news, I got married in January! My wife and I met while we were both attending Cal Poly and started dating a few years ago. We've settled into a new home in San Francisco with our dog. I also took a new role at Amazon working on Twitch. Twitch is a well-known service for streaming video games. Esports (professional video game playing) is something my wife and I are both passionate about, so getting closer to that world is a great opportunity for us. I'm looking after the creator experiences team, a group that builds the tools and analytics that video game streamers like Ninja use to understand and manage their audience. Overall, we've been really excited about what's happening and looking forward to the future.
I am currently a second-year Ph.D. student in the UCLA Department of Statistics. My research interest is in applying point process data (events occurring randomly or in a clustered process in time or space) to disease outbreaks. While current forecasting techniques apply earthquake event-aftershock models to the spread of disease, my goal is to incorporate an additional "productivity" term which takes into account prior population exposure or vaccination to improve accuracy. Before starting the Ph.D. program, I worked for five years as a biostatistician for the Department of Radiology at UCLA. My job included analyzing and managing clinical trial data that came through the department as well as providing statistical support to the UCLA Medical Center.
P.S. As a grad student volunteer at the UCLA Data Fest 2019, I lay witness to TWO Cal Poly teams winning awards (six total awards given, 75 total teams). That put a smile on my face. Keep up the hard work!
I am still living in Seattle and working for Amazon. Since the last update, I've transitioned to the Amazon Go. Amazon Go is a new store concept powered by technology that allows customers to just walk out. I manage the merchandising team for 11 stores, often traveling to our four stores in Chicago, three in San Francisco, and four in Seattle. In my spare time, I've started a new hobby of open water swimming. I completed two swim competitions last year in Vancouver, British Columbia, and Lake Tahoe. This year I look forward to more swims, traveling and new adventures.
I am still a data scientist at 24 Hour Fitness in the finance department. My title is manager of member payment analytics. The fitness industry has been so great to me both inside and outside the office. Inside, I get to solve financial questions with creative statistical solutions. Sometimes that involves the old trusty regression analysis and other times cluster analysis is the best answer. Outside the office 24 Hour has always been very supportive of my own fitness journey. This year I won my age group for the Morgan Hill sprint triathlon, 10th for overall women. The training kept me in shape to fit in a wedding dress! My husband graduated from Cal Poly business, but we never met while in San Luis Obispo. I’m sure we crossed paths at some point, but we formally met in 2015. We got married in Kansas this year and recently bought a home in Gilroy, California.
I'm just finishing up my fifth year as faculty in the Statistics Department at Cal Poly, and it's been a ton of fun. My wife and I went to Japan last summer for a statistics education conference and then immediately were off to Peru to hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu. It's been a terrific experience to get involved at Cal Poly in so many ways: department committees, Academic Senate for the university, advising student teams for the ASA DataFest event at UCLA, the College of Science and Mathematics Student Research Conference and our department's summer research program. I look forward to continuing and helping connect students with amazing experiences and opportunities.
Wow, it has been a quick 10 years since I graduated from the program. After graduation I attended CSU Long Beach for my master's degree in statistics. Since graduating in 2011 I've been working as a principal statistician for the Department of Medicine Statistics Core at UCLA. We are a consulting group of approximately 15 faculty and staff statisticians who assist the medical school with clinical trials, posters, grants, manuscripts and education. I've recently progressed into more of a supervisory role and really enjoy it.
Most of my time is spent collaborating with investigators from various departments and divisions including: anesthesiology, cardiology, dentistry, infectious diseases, oncology, pediatrics, pulmonary/critical care, radiology and urology. I just hit the century mark for co-authored publications on PubMed (the National Institutes of Health repository for manuscripts) and am very proud of that. I definitely caught the statistical consulting bug from my Stat 465 professors — Smith and Walker — and am grateful that I did. I may be somewhat biased, but I feel it's one of the most rewarding and versatile specializations in our field.
More importantly, I got married to another master's level statistician, Joyce, in April 2018, so of course our honeymoon was to Vancouver where we went to JSM and explored British Columbia (see us enjoying the Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island). We also just had a baby, Brian, in March 2019, so we are adjusting to that and trying to savor every moment. See one of his first smiles in the photos!
I can't thank the department enough for giving me a solid foundation and interest in statistics, which has allowed me to pursue a rewarding and enjoyable career. I'd also like to thank my former classmates (you know who you are!) and a big thank you to the faculty who inspired me AND put up with the antics of Oliver and me without strangling us (notably Carlton, Chance, Doi, Roy, Schaffner, Sklar, Smith, Smidt, Walker). I wouldn't be here without your support, humor and encouragement.
I've moved from the Bay Area (Silicon Valley) to L.A. (Silicon Beach, yes that’s a thing) and am working in software still. I have transitioned from an analyst to a product manager where I manage systems and infrastructure for data storage and reporting. Something new is that I now co-manage a new hip hop label called AOYNOM (All of You None of Me). The four rappers are in the picture. We've been touring around college campuses trying to change the culture of hip hop to be encouraging, hopeful and inspirational. We are trying to reach a generation that we think is the most impactful and powerful to make a change in this world. Check us out on www.aoynom.com!
Emily (Tietjen) Shelburne
The old news is that I’m still teaching in Merced. Loving the statistics classes that I get to teach, three sections this year including the AP. The new news is that I’ve been teaching an intro computer science course, and next year I’ll get to teach a section of AP computer science. Mostly though, I’ve been enjoying time with my kids and a few fun trips.
Daniela (Sakamoto) Saldana
Last year, I left Amgen after nine years for a career change. It was a bittersweet decision, but I am very excited for this career change. I am still living in Woodland Hills, but I am now working for AIG Individual Retirement (annuities). My new role is as a customer insights manager, where I use analytics to derive insights on financial advisors. I also use machine learning to make predictions on whether agents will stop selling AIG products. It’s a challenging adjustment, as the team and role are brand new, but it is also a good opportunity to bring new technologies and ideas that provide value immediately. In my personal life, things have the usual business. My dog Daisy and I still train in agility, and I just got back from Japan this past week after 10 days travel.