The article immediately below first appeared in the 2017 News of Fellows section of the Royal Statistical Society's online StatsLife pages. It is re-published here by kind permission of the Royal Statistical Society.

Geoffrey Mallin Clarke, 1928-2017

Geoff Clarke photoWe are very sad to report the death of one of our most long-serving and distinguished fellows, Geoff Clarke. Geoff was a highly respected statistician who made a major contribution to the training of applied statisticians in the United Kingdom, East Africa and elsewhere. Over many years he held various offices in the Institute of Statisticians and the Royal Statistical Society and played a significant role in achieving the merger of IoS and RSS in 1993.

Geoff graduated with a Postgraduate Diploma in Statistics in 1953 and began his career at Long Ashton Agricultural and Horticultural Research Station where he became the first resident statistician. In 1966 he moved to the Mathematics Division of the University of Sussex and became reader in applied statistics in 1973. In 1983 he was appointed as a consultant in applied statistics at the University of Kent and became director of external courses. In 1993 he became an honorary reader, a role which he held until 2011. Geoff had numerous papers published during his long career and six books including A Basic Course in Statistics co-authored with D. Cooke.

Geoff had a longstanding relationship with the RSS; he was elected a fellow of the Institute of Statisticians in 1976 and held several roles including vice chair 1990-92, a crucial period in the negotiations that led to the merger of IoS and RSS. He was joint honorary secretary of the Society 1992-98 and was a highly valued member of the Professional Affairs Committee, serving on the examinations board in various capacities until 2010. He was a Chartered Statistician and Chartered Scientist and was awarded the RSS Chambers Medal in 2001.

A long-term project dear to Geoff’s heart was the development of statistics education in African countries. He advised on and validated training courses run by the East Africa Statistical Training Centre (EASTC) in Tanzania and the Central Statistical Office of Zimbabwe becoming external examiners for both. He played a key role in the development of English-speaking Centres in the UN Statistical Training Programme for Africa and also lectured on University of Kent external statistics courses in Nigeria, Tanzania and Malawi.

Geoff was also a member of the Mathematical Sciences Panel, Council for National Academic Awards and an assessor for new courses and course reviews in statistics at ten different institutions. Colleagues describe him as a highly talented, dedicated and hardworking statistician who contributed greatly to the training of applied statisticians.


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