Current Lab Members

Simon Bonner

Simon completed his PhD in statistics at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, BC, and then spent two years as a post-doc at the University of British Columbia. He was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Statistics at the University of Kentucky between January 2011 and June 2015. Currently, he holds a joint appointment as an Assistant Professor of Environmetrics in the Department of Statistical and Actuarial Sciences and Departments of Biology at the University of Western Ontario.

Simon’s research interests lie in the fields of ecological statistics, Bayesian inference, and Markov chain Monte Carlo sampling. Most of his work has focused on developing models for the analysis of complex mark-recapture data. Particular problems he has worked on include modeling the effects of time-dependent, individual covariates, accounting for misidentification in mark-recapture experiments, and analyzing “big” mark-recapture data sets.

Amanda Ellis

MeAmanda is a graduate student in the Department of Statistics at the University of Kentucky and received her undergraduate degree from UK in mathematics and philosophy.

Amanda’s current research project looks at photo identification data of whale sharks.  Currently, she is interested in using the data from several matching algorithms to  identify photos that belong to the same animal, estimate the error in the identification process, and include the matches and error in MR models. She is also interested in the application of this process in record linkage.

Amanda enjoys coding and is the current maintainer and co-author of the R-package npmv. This package performs nonparametric inference for the comparison of multivariate data samples and has been used in the analysis of neurological studies.

Han-Na Kim

IMG_1988Han-Na received her BSc in statistics from Simon Fraser University and will join our lab as an MSc student in the Department of Statistical and Actuarial Sciences in September 2016. Han-Na is interested in Markov Chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) and applied Bayesian Statistics and is currently working on MCMC implementation for mark-recapture models and spiking neuron models.

Previous Lab Members

Woodrow Burchett

2014-11-24 18.15.24Woody successfully defended his PhD thesis titled “Improving the Computational Efficiency in Bayesian Fitting of Cormack-Jolly-Seber Models with Individual, Continuous, Time-Varying Covariates ” in May of 2017.  The full text of his thesis is available in the University of Kentucky digital archives. Woody is also a co-author of the R packages npmv and visreg and is currently working as a statistician with Pfizer pharmaceuticals in New London, Connecticut.

Ben Augustine

AugustineBen is a locally extirpated member of the Bonner lab, having dispersed back to his native habitat in the mountains of southwest Virginia. He received his Bachelors degree in Wildlife Science from Virginia Tech and Masters degrees in Forestry and Mathematical Statistics from the University of Kentucky. He is currently a PhD student in the Department of Fish and Wildlife Conservation at Virginia Tech.

Ben is currently working on extending mark recapture models for hair snare experiments where there may be a behavioral response to capture, but not all hair samples produce an individual identification. In these cases, it is no longer known with certainty which captures were first captures and which were subsequent captures where previously-captured animals will have a different capture probability. However, this information can be recovered by modeling the capture, hair deposition, subsampling, and DNA amplification processes.

Ben enjoys working at the interface between Ecological Statisticians and applied Wildlife Biologists and has several previous and ongoing collaborations serving this role. He has collaborated on projects studying a diverse array of species including black bear, elk, desert tortoise, northern spotted owls, and Florida panthers.

Gabrielle Miles

Gabby completed her Masters degree in Mathematical Statistics at the University of Kentucky and earned her undergraduate degree in Applied Math and Statistics from Radford University. She currently works as a Senior Biostatistician at Roche Diagnostics in Indianapolis, IN.

As a graduate student at UK, Gabby was interested in the applications of statistics for ecology and participated in research on non-timber forest products. She collaborated on a project modeling the relationship between below ground and above ground biomass of black cohosh in which a linear mixed effects model was developed to predict root mass based on simple above ground measurements.