James Francis Hannan Visiting Scholars
in Theoretical Statistics and Probability
James Hannan in 1955
James Francis Hannan (1922 – 2010) joined the Department of Mathematics at Michigan
State University in 1953 following graduation from the University of North Carolina.
He was one of the five original members of the Department of Statistics when it
was created in 1955. In his long career, Jim published important and novel findings
in statistics and game theory, directed or co-directed twenty graduate students
to their PhD’s and helped countless others. He particularly enjoyed the challenge
of creating concise proofs; in reading a proof in Jim’s thesis, Wassily Hoeffding
is said to have remarked “What is this…a telegram?” For more about the life of James
Hannan, see A Conversation with James Hannan,
, 25, No. 1, 126-144.
Jim was in his office practically every day of the year and was most willing and
anxious to help graduate students and fellow faculty. In the same spirit of generosity,
his wife Bettie has chosen to honor her husband’s legacy with a gift establishing
an endowment to support visiting scholars.
James Francis Hannan Visiting Scholars in Theoretical Statistics and Probability