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Christopher Saunders

Chris Saunders


Associate Professor of Statistics / NRM Affiliate Associate Professor

Office Building

Architecture, Mathematics & Engineering Building



Mailing Address

Architecture, Math & Engineering Building 250
Math & Statistics-Box 2225
University Station
Brookings, SD 57007


Saunders_Full Vita 2017 Spring.doc(78.5 KB)


California State University, Chico Mathematics B.S., 1996-2000
University of Kentucky Statistics M.S., 2000-2002
University of Kentucky Statistics Ph.D., 2002-2006
George Mason University Intelligence Community Fellow, 2006-2008
Visiting Scientist with the FBI Labs Forensic Science Research Summer 2013

Specialty Area

  • Mathematical Statistics
  • Statistical Pattern Recognition

Awards and Honors

2016 Young Investigator Award from the Jerome J. Lohr College of Engineering, South Dakota State University

2014 MITRE Distinguished Paper Award with Drs. Rosen and Guharay for “A Structured Approach for Rapidly Mapping Multilevel System Measures via Simulation Metamodeling”


Intelligence Community Postdoctoral Research Fellowship Award, Eric Kalendra as Research Fellow, Christopher Saunders PI, $240,000, 2010-2012

Quantifying the Effects of Database Size and Sample Quality on Measures of Individualization Validity and Accuracy in Forensics, National Institute of Justice Grant Award, Christopher Saunders PI, Linda Davis co-PI, $974,981, 2010-2014

Decomposition-Based Information Elicitation & Aggregation, Aggregative Contingent Estimation (ACE) Program, Broad Agency Announcement IARPA-BAA-10-05, Charles Twardy PI, Kathryn B Laskey co-PI, Christopher Saunders co-PI, Approximately $8,200,000 over four years. (I had to step down as co-PI to accept my position with MITRE)

ORISE Visiting Scientist Award, summer funding to support the work of the Counterterrorism and Forensic Science Research Unit of the FBI Labs. Summer 2013

Foundational Research into the Quantification of the Value of Forensic Evidence for Complex Evidential Forms arising from Impression and Pattern Evidence, National Institute of Justice Grant Award, Christopher Saunders and Cedric Neumann as Joint PI’s. 2014-2017, $780,301, Award 2014-IJ-CX-K088

Work Experience

Associate Professor of Statistics (with Tenure), Department of Mathematics and Statistics, South Dakota State University 2016–Present

Gastprofessor, Department of Mathematics, University of Salzburg, Summer 2015

Assistant Professor of Statistics, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, South Dakota State University 2012–2016
Signal Processing Engineer Lead, Washington Signal Processing Department, The MITRE Corporation, 2011–2018

Associate Research Professor, Applied Information Technology, George Mason University,
effective August 2012

Assistant Research Professor, Document Forensics Laboratory, George Mason University,
2008– June 2012

IC Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Document Forensics Laboratory, George Mason University, 2006–2008

Area(s) of Research

Statistical Learning Theory, Pattern Recognition, Forensic Identification of Source Problems, Categorical Data Analysis, and Statistical Approximation Theory

Applications of Research

Presentation and Interpretation of Forensic Evidence, Signal Processing, Large Scale Simulations, Forecasting, Biometrics, Bioinformatics