Rayid Ghani, Chief Scientist For Obama Campaign, To Speak At Sewanee Jan. 31

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Rayid Ghani, C’99, will speak at the University of the South on “The Role of Data, Technology, and Analytics in the Presidential Election.” He will give his talk at 4:30 p.m. CST Thursday, Jan. 31, in Convocation Hall on the Sewanee campus. 

Mr. Ghani was the chief scientist at the Obama for America 2012 campaign focusing on analytics, technology, and data. He will talk about how the Obama campaign used analytics to improve decision-making across the organization and will describe how data from a variety of sources was used to improve fundraising, volunteer activities, and voter mobilization. 

Mr. Ghani’s work focused on improving these campaign functions using analytics, social media, and machine learning—developing algorithms to fine-tune messages to voters. He will discuss what kind of data was available to the campaign, what technologies were developed, and how the resulting products were used by the campaign. Although the focus will be on the election, Mr. Ghani will also discuss how some of the same techniques can make other organizations more successful through better use of data and analytics.

Before joining the campaign, Mr. Ghani was a senior research scientist and director of analytics research at Accenture Labs. He has more than 10 years of applied R&D experience in machine learning, data mining, text mining and other analytics areas across politics, retail, healthcare, manufacturing, intelligence and financial services industries.

At Accenture Labs, Mr. Ghani was responsible for setting the R&D vision and agenda for analytics, inventing new analytics algorithms, conducting analytics R&D, and the commercialization of early-stage research. His work has been featured in numerous stories in publications such as Time, the New York Times, Slate, Business Week, Financial Times, Chicago Tribune, US News & World Report, and NBC.

Mr. Ghani’s lecture is the 2013 Sherwood Ebey Lecture, co-sponsored by Friends of the Library. The annual Sherwood Ebey Mathematics Lecture is an endowed lectureship with the goal of presenting mathematically sound ideas in a manner that makes them accessible to a general audience.


Red Bank Middle School Celebrates Earth Day

After retreating to the gym, Red Bank Middle School had a successful day raising money for science, math, and band.  Rich Pokorny said, "A huge thanks to everyone who came out, and especially to World Sales, USBorne Books, Nicolai Designs, Rodan and Fields, Mary Kay, Lularoe, Young Living Essential Oils, Rain on a Tin Roof, Cowbell Central, Bluestar Woodworks, Pet Placement ... (click for more)

Bonny Oaks School's "Get-together At The Statue" Set For April 29

Last year Bonny Oaks School established the last Saturday of every April as the annual date to “Gather at the Statue” for all alumni, friends, staff, and families.   "The gathering is a celebration of life for those we lost the year(s) before," officials said.   The Statue, donated and erected by alumni in 2014, is on the former grounds of The Bonny Oaks School located ... (click for more)

Hamilton County Schools On 2-Hour Monday Delay Due To Weekend Storms

Due to this weekend’s storms and heavy rain that lead to numerous power outages and road closures, Hamilton County schools will be on a two-hour delay on  Monday . This will allow buses to operate during daylight hours to avoid debris in roadways. School-age childcare will open at the regular time. (click for more)

Angela Faye Parker, 50, Arrested In Stabbing On Glass Street

Angela Faye Parker, 50, was arrested early Sunday morning after stabbing another female. Chattanooga Police responded to 2302 Glass Street at 12:15 a.m. to an assault. The victim and Ms. Parker were both patrons of the Pay-Pay Lounge.   The victim advised that she was physically attacked and maced by Ms. Parker in the restroom. Upon arriving home for the evening, ... (click for more)

No Tax-Supported Entity Should Get Secrecy In Spending

A shadowy situation has emerged in Chattanooga with an organization that manages millions of taxpayer dollars with no transparency and such a surprising disregard for accountability that one wonders what it would take to wake up elected officials who are supposedly in charge. Welcome to the Chattanooga Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, whose lawyer threatened to sue the ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Is Dr. Edwards The One?

Just hours after the chairman of the Hamilton County School Board emailed a list of 14 candidates on Friday afternoon to be considered as the next Superintendent of the 42,000-student system to the other board members, Dr. Nakia Edwards, an Assistant Commissioner with the Tennessee Department of Education, became the early “common sense” favorite. And, at first glance, she has ... (click for more)