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Bharucha-Reid, Albert T. (1927-1985)

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Born Albert Turner Reid in Hampton, Virginia, November 13, 1927, this world-renowned mathematician earned his bachelor’s degree at Iowa State University in 1949 but never completed a graduate degree in his chosen field.  Despite this, he immediately found work as a research assistant and statistician at the University of Chicago, Columbia University, and the University of California at Berkeley. Early in his career Reid published papers on mathematical biology. 

Reid married Rodab Phiroze Bharucha whose surname he adopted.  By 1956 he was employed in a teaching position at the University of Oregon and in 1961 was associate professor of mathematics at Wayne State University where he headed the Center for Research in Probability. 

Bharucha-Reid’s area of expertise was probabilistic analysis and its application. He published nearly 70 papers that touched on biology, physics, engineering and economics, and six books, including Elements of the Theory of Markov Processes and Their Application (1960), Probabilistic Methods in Applied Mathematics (1968), and Random Polynomials, Probability and Mathematical Statistics (1986).  After rising to Dean and Associate Provost of Graduate Study at Wayne State, Bharucha-Reid headed south in 1981 to become Professor of Mathematics at the Georgia Institute of Technology.   Two years later he was a distinguished mathematics professor at Atlanta University.  In 1984 he was awarded an honorary science degree at Syracuse University.   Bharucha-Reid continued as editor of the Journal of Integral Equations until his death on February 26, 1985.

R. Garcia-Johnson, “Albert Turner Bharucha-Reid” in Notable Black American Scientists (Detroit: Gale, 1999); Ray Sprangenburg and Kit Moser, African Americans in Science, Math, and Invention (New York: Facts on File, 2003).


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