Danielle O’Connor Dean ’10 Receives Distinguished Alumni Award

Danielle O’Connor Dean '10 was one of six recipients of the Distinguished Alumni Award this year. She was presented the award by UMass Amherst Alumni Association President Michaella Morzuch at the Great Hall of the Massachusetts State House on April 24. Also in attendance was UMass President Marty Meehan, Chancellor Kumble R. Subbaswamy, and Dean of Natural Sciences Steve Goodwin.

Danielle O’Connor Dean is a senior data scientist lead at Microsoft Corporation in the Algorithms and Data Science Group within the Cloud and Enterprise Division. She leads an international team of data scientists and engineers working on machine learning solutions, within the field of artificial intelligence, that address a variety of business needs.

Dean is recognized for her novel combination of survival analysis and mixture modeling to simultaneously model multiple event processes. She is the lead author of three major publications and co-author of the data science modeling book, Data Science with Microsoft SQL Server 2016.

Within the international data science industry, Dean is a sought-after speaker. She has presented at more than 20 conferences in the last three years including conference keynotes at SQLbits and SQL Nexus, and had a featured speaker role at Strata & Hadoop World Conference in Singapore in December of 2015.

Dean is also dedicated to mentoring young women. She is an active advisor with Girls Who Code, a board member of Microsoft’s Women@NERD (New England Research & Development) resource group, and a career advice contributor through Microsoft’s Professional Data Science Degree Program.

During her time at UMass Amherst, Dean earned two bachelor’s degrees: the first in psychology with a minor in mathematics and statistics, and the second in organizational behavior through statistical analysis through the Bachelor’s Degree with Individual Concentration (BDIC) program. She went on to complete her doctorate degree in quantitative psychology with a concentration in biostatistics at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she studied the application of multi-level event history models to understand the timing and processes leading to events between dyads within social networks.

Dean has been recognized with multiple awards and honors such as the UMass Amherst 21st Century Leaders Award, Senior Leadership Award, the LeBovidge Research Fellowship, and Psi Chi Regional Research Award.

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