A Conversation with Stephen Portnoy

Xuming He, Xiaofeng Shao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Steve Portnoy was born in Kankakee, Illinois in 1942. He did his undergraduate studies in mathematics at Massachusetts Institute of Technol ogy, and then earned a master’s degree and a Ph.D. degree from the statistics department at Stanford University in 1966 and 1969, respectively. Steve Portnoy has had a distinguished career and is widely recognized as a preeminent mathematical statistician. He has made pioneering and influential contributions in several areas in statistics, including asymptotic theory, robust statistics, quantile regression, and statistics in biology. He has published more than 100 research articles. He is a former co-editor of Journal of the American Statistical Association (Theory and Methods), an elected fellow of American Statistical Association (ASA), Institute of Mathematical Statistics (IMS) and American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Steve’s professional positions have included being on the faculty of the Department of Statistics at Harvard University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for more than 30 years. He was a founding member of the Department of Statistics at the University of Illinois in 1985 and served as the division chair for the Statistics Program in the Mathematics department before the Statistics department was established.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)443-454
Number of pages12
JournalStatistical Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2022


  • Asymptotic approximation
  • high-dimensional models
  • quantile regression
  • robust statistics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Statistics and Probability
  • General Mathematics
  • Statistics, Probability and Uncertainty


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