Amy H. Herring

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Amy H. Herring
EducationB.A. English and B.S. mathematics, University of Mississippi, 1995
Sc.D, biostatistics, Harvard University, 2000
Scientific career
InstitutionsUniversity of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Duke University
ThesisMissing Covariants in Survival Analysis (2000)
Doctoral advisorJoseph G. Ibrahim

Amy Helen Herring is an American biostatistician interested in longitudinal data and reproductive health. Formerly the Carol Remmer Angle Distinguished Professor of Children's Environmental Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, she is now a professor in the Department of Statistical Science and research professor in the Global Health Institute of Duke University.[1] She was the lead researcher on a 2013 study whose data showed many American women were reportedly virgins at the birth of their first child.[2][3]

Education and career[edit]

Herring graduated summa cum laude from the University of Mississippi in 1995, with a double major in English and mathematics.[1] She completed an Sc.D in biostatistics at Harvard University in 2000; her dissertation, supervised by Joseph G. Ibrahim, was Missing Covariants in Survival Analysis.[1][4]

She joined the North Carolina faculty in 2000, where she became a fellow of the Carolina Population Center in 2006 and Carol Remmer Angle Distinguished Professor of Children's Environmental Health in 2015. She moved to Duke in 2017[1] as part of a hiring initiative to expand Duke's faculty in the quantitative sciences.[5]


In 2013, a longitudinal study led by Herring and published in the British Medical Journal compared the dates of childbirth and of first intercourse reported in separate questions by a sample of American women, and determined that according to this data one out of every 200 women in the US had given virgin birth. Herring stated that she found it "highly unlikely" that these women believed themselves to be virgins at the time of their children's births, and suggested that the result might instead be a combination of unintentional inaccuracies by the subjects and of respondents being unwilling to admit to having intercourse.[2][3]

Awards and honors[edit]

In 2010, Herring was elected as a Fellow of the American Statistical Association.[6] She won the Gertrude M. Cox Award for outstanding contributions to applied statistics in 2012.[7] In the same year, the American Public Health Association gave her their Mortimer Spiegelman Award.[8]


  1. ^ a b c d Curriculum vitae, September 2017, retrieved 2017-11-02
  2. ^ a b James, Susan Donaldson (December 18, 2013), "'Strange Nativities': Scientists Find 45 'Virgin Births' (and Some Virgin Fathers)", ABC News
  3. ^ a b Boesveld, Sarah (December 17, 2013), "One in two hundred US women in study report having virgin births — but researchers think it's no miracle", National Post
  4. ^ Amy H. Herring at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
  5. ^ "A quantitative investment in promoting the sciences at Duke: Collaborations, new hires are part of strategic plan's goal for raising university's stature in the sciences", Duke Today, September 26, 2017
  6. ^ ASA Fellows list, American Statistical Association, archived from the original on 2017-12-01, retrieved 2017-11-02
  7. ^ Herring honored with statistics award, UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health, June 5, 2012, retrieved 2017-11-02
  8. ^ Herring presented with APHA's distinguished Spiegelman Award, October 31, 2012, retrieved 2017-11-02

External links[edit]