Gayle Bieler

Director, Center for Data Science

Education

  • MS, Mathematics, Boston University
  • BS, Mathematics, Boston University
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Gayle S. Bieler is a Senior Statistician and founding Director of the Center for Data Science at RTI International. Ms. Bieler has been at RTI for more than 30 years, and her Center for Data Science is in its fifth year of successful operation. Under her leadership, CDS has grown to a multidisciplinary team of 22 data scientists, software developers, and visual designers who work on projects that address important national problems, improve local communities, and transform research. She is passionate about building and leading a vibrant data science team that solves complex problems across multiple research domains, that is a hub of innovation and collaboration, and a place where people can thrive and be at their natural best while doing meaningful work to improve the world. The most important things to her are 1) people and 2) impact, and in that order. 

Ms. Bieler brings not only her knowledge of data science and its role in problem solving, but also three decades of organizational, project, and people management skills. Throughout her career, Ms. Bieler has led statistical projects and research initiatives in public health, the life sciences, and the social sciences. She is experienced in statistical analysis of complex data from designed experiments, observational studies, and software development for probability-based sample surveys and has led large, multiyear projects in the public and private sectors. She was the driving force behind SUDAAN®, RTI’s commercial statistical software package designed for analysis of complex survey data, for over 20 years. In that role, she oversaw SUDAAN development, training, and documentation. She has several first-author statistical publications to her name and interacts directly with both government and commercial clients on her projects. She is currently engaged in a data coordinating center project that is exploring the predictors of cognitive decline in military members exposed to mild traumatic brain injury (concussions).  

Ms. Bieler is a continuing advocate for applying data science to solving problems in our local communities and as a nation, not as a side interest but as the main thrust of our data science work and the reason for our Center’s existence (see her blog post for datascience.com). Ms. Bieler is a continuing force behind RTI’s recent work with the Durham Police Department on CFS Analytics (helping local law enforcement make better use of 911 data) and RTI-Star (a tool that leverages local law enforcement data to evaluate racial disproportionality in traffic stops), and with the Greensboro Police Department on improving the efficacy of their warrants system. CFS Analytics was featured in the White House’s Data-Driven Justice Initiative in 2016. Ms. Bieler recently organized and chaired an invited session on Data Science for Social Good at the 2018 Joint Statistical Meetings in Vancouver, Canada.

Ms. Bieler earned her Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Mathematics, with a minor in Anthropology, from Boston University.

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