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New Chair of Department of Statistics

David Dahl
Photo by Marcos Escalona

Dean Grant Jensen of the College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences is pleased to announce that BYU has appointed Professor David Dahl as chair of the Department of Statistics starting July 2022. Dahl is replacing Professor Scott Grimshaw. Candace Berrett and William Christensen will serve as associate chairs
“David Dahl is well loved and respected amongst his colleagues as a strong scholar, gifted teacher, and dedicated citizen,” said Jensen. “We’re grateful that David is willing to serve and help the department take the next big step towards our destiny as an ‘Everest’1 of education. The Department of Statistics helps many thousands of students pursue their dreams every year.”

Dahl's research interests are Bayesian nonparametrics, model-based clustering, random partition models, statistical computing, and bioinformatics. His work has appeared in journals including the Journal of the American Statistical Association, Annals of Applied Statistics, Journal of Computational and Graphical Statistics, and Bayesian Analysis. He teaches both undergraduate and graduate classes, including Bayesian statistics, statistical methods, and statistical computing.

"The Department of Statistics blesses the lives of thousands of students each year because of our top-notch faculty, who are both internationally recognized in their fields and dedicated to the mission of BYU,” said Dahl. “I am humbled by the opportunity to serve the students, faculty, and staff in the department and the university more broadly."

Dahl joined the BYU faculty in 2012 after starting his academic career at Texas A&M University. He received a Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Department of Statistics and the Department of Biostatistics and Medical Informatics. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees from Brigham Young University. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the International Society of Bayesian Analysis.

As part of the transition, Jensen acknowledged the dedicated leadership and effort of outgoing chair, Scott Grimshaw. “We’re tremendously grateful for Professor Grimshaw and his leadership during such pivotal and important years. It’s no small thing to lead a department that is growing very quickly with soaring enrollments and majors,” he said. “He has served the department well including shepherding it through the pandemic, overseeing the transition to a new building, working with three different deans, and hiring many talented faculty and staff.”

1 Spencer W. Kimball, “The Second Century of Brigham Young University,” devotional given at Brigham Young University, October 10, 1975. Available at