SIAM News Blog

Obituary: Joyce R. McLaughlin

It is with great sadness that we share with the community the passing of long-time SIAM member and volunteer Joyce R. McLaughlin, who passed on October 23, 2017 at the age of 78. Dr. McLaughlin, a nonlinear analysis expert, was the Ford Foundation Professor in the Department of Mathematical Sciences and the founding director of the Inverse Problems Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She frequently lectured on her work in nonlinear analysis as applied to parameter identification in inverse problems, which has applications in several areas including medical imaging, ocean acoustics, and inverse problems in vibrating systems.

Joyce R. McLaughlin. Photo credit: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Dr. McLaughlin was named an inaugural fellow of the American Mathematical Society in 2012, which acknowledged her distinguished contributions to the creation, exposition, advancement, communication, and utilization of mathematics. She delivered an invited lecture on her distinguished research regarding inverse problems in vibrating systems for the International Congress of Mathematicians in 1994, as well as a series of eight lectures for a Conference Board of Mathematical Sciences Lecture Series in 2001. More recently, she was recognized for her work in the biomechanical imaging of tissue, the results of which are being employed - together with ultrasound or MRI images - as a new medical diagnostic tool. Her biomechanical imaging work was the subject of her 2004 AWM/SIAM Kovalevsky Lecture and prize.

Dr. McLaughlin was an inaugural Fellow and Board Chair of SIAM, where she was a valued and major contributor over the years, a member of the Scientific Board of the American Institute for Mathematics, and a member of the International Advisory Board for the Inverse Problems journal.

Dr. McLaughlin will forever be considered a friend of SIAM, and our thoughts are with her family.

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