University of Tennessee

Haslam Faculty Member Appointed to Memorial Fellowship

June 25, 2021

Allen Pannell, lecturer with the Department of Business Analytics and Statistics in the University of Tennessee, Knoxville’s Haslam College of Business, has been named the first Amy Foster Memorial Research Fellow.

The fellowship is designated exclusively for business analytics and statistics faculty, preferably for a faculty member performing applied/translational research directly impacting the life expectancy for those affected by metastatic breast cancer research.

“Allen is ideally qualified to be the Amy Foster Memorial Research Fellow,” Mike Galbreth, Pilot Corporation Chair of Excellence and department head, said. “His ambitious research agenda on metastatic breast cancer aligns perfectly with the fellowship’s goals.”

Beyond his exceptional qualifications, Pannell has a personal connection to this fellowship.

“Amy was my wife; she died of metastatic breast cancer, which is now the focus of my research,” Pannell said. “Thanks to a generous donation and a match from the Haslam Foundation, I have the honor of being the first Amy Foster Research Fellow. Most importantly, this endowment will honor Amy and support in perpetuity important research into the second leading cause of death in women.”

Foster died in 2014 as Pannell was working on his doctoral dissertation on mortgage industry statistical modeling. They had been married less than 16 months, and the sudden tragedy prompted Pannell to change his dissertation to focus on metastatic breast cancer. (Read more about the couple and Pannell’s research.)

About the Department of Business Analytics and Statistics at UT’s Haslam College of Business

The Department of Business Analytics and Statistics’ mission is to create knowledge through research and to disseminate that knowledge through its degree programs. The faculty uses the results of its application-focused research to educate students on how to effect positive change within organizations by emphasizing skills such as communication and team building alongside the targeted and effective use of analytics. The department’s continually evolving curriculum draws upon state-of-the-art theoretical and practical content from the fields of statistics, machine learning and operations research.