The department is pleased to announce the appointment of Pankaj K. Agarwal as department chair effective August 15.
Agarwal is the RJR Nabisco Professor of Computer Science and Mathematics. He received his PhD from Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences in 1989 and joined Duke as an assistant professor in computer science the same year. He served as department chair 2004-2010. His research focuses on developing efficient algorithms for large-scale geometric problems, which arise in a wide range of applications.
"I am honored and humbled by the trust my colleagues have bestowed on me," says Agarwal. "This is an exciting time in computer science. I look forward to working with my colleagues and the administration to take the department to the next level."
Colleagues are pleased that Agarwal will serve again as chair. Says associate chair Richard Lucic, "I am very enthusiastic to be working with Pankaj again. I am confident his unique vision and leadership will guide the department to new levels of achievement and influence, both at Duke and in the larger quantitative community."
Agarwal takes the reins from outgoing chair Ronald Parr, who states, "I’m extremely pleased that Pankaj will serve as our next chair. Pankaj was a beloved and widely respected chair the first time he served. I have no doubt that he will continue in that tradition as he guides our department through an extraordinarily important phase of our growth."
Of his predecessor, Agarwal notes, "I have big shoes to fill. Ron always has been a strong advocate for the department; as chair, he worked very hard on our behalf. The department made great strides under his leadership, and we will build on those successes."