William A. Cherry's Educational/Professional History

I spent kindergarten and 1st grade at Pedregal Elementary in Rancho Palos Verdes, CA. During 2nd-6th Grade, I attended Jackson Avenue Elementary, in Livermore, CA.

For 7th-8th Grade, I attended East Avenue Middle School, also in Livermore. While at East Avenue, I learned a good deal of the math I know now. Among other things, we learned the axioms for fields and rings, we studied modular arithmetic, and we had to memorize pi to 100 decimal places, although I could only tell you the first 20 from memory now. Besides learning math, I spent a lot of time playing the trombone in various school bands and earning merit badges in Boy Scout Troop 900. Looking back, one of the best decisions I made was to take a couple of semesters of typing class back at East Avenue.

In 1984, I graduated from Livermore High School. Livermore high had a "math learning center" where students could learn math at their own pace. This enabled me to study algebra, geometry, trigonometry, analytic geometry, matrices, and Fibonacci numbers in my first two years of high school, followed by calculus in a regular classroom, and linear algebra and differential equations at what is now called Las Positas College, but which was then a branch campus of Chabot College. I continued to spend a lot of time playing trombone and continued to go camping with the Boy Scouts. My junior and senior years, I was fortunate to get a part time job (with full-time hours at times) at Energy Resource Associates where I first did data entry but quickly progressed into doing more serious computer programming and starting a small software development team consisting of myself and two friends. In addition to practical computer skills, while at ERA I learned a lot about the business world.

In 1988, I earned my B.A.S. in mathematics and political science from Stanford University. Both majors have more in common than you might think in that learning to make concise logical arguments is a big part of learning both disciplines -- many would say I never learned this skill. While in college, my trombone playing gradually diminished. Most of my years at Stanford, I was fairly active in the service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega. I spent part of my junior year studying French language and French politics in Tours, France. The language classes I had at Stanford in French and in Russian have been very useful to me as a research mathematician. While attending Stanford, I was fortunate to have scholarship assistance from the federal government, the State of California, the Elk's club, and the Fannie and John Hertz Foundation. While in college, I also had a part time job selling computer software at Softwaire Centre in Palo Alto.

The summers of 1986 through 1989, I was a "career summer intern" working as a software design engineer at Microsoft, where I worked mostly on Lotus compatibility issues in the Excel group.

In 1993, I received my Ph.D. in mathematics from Yale, under the direction of Serge Lang. My last year of graduate study was supported by a doctoral dissertation fellowship from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

From 1993-1998 (the last two years on leave), I was an Assistant Professor of mathematics at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI, where my research was partially sponsored by a grant from the National Science Foundation. In Michigan, I regularly took figure skating classes, a hobby which I had started during my last year at Yale.

From 1996-1997, I was a member of the School of Mathematics at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton, NJ.

During the 1997-1998 academic year I was an Alexander von Humboldt Stipendiat in the function theory group of the mathematics department at the Technical University of Berlin under the supervision of Mario Bonk. While in Germany, I learned to speak German at Speak and Write in Marburg.

I came to UNT in the fall of 1998, where my research has been supported in part by grants from the National Security Agency. I had the good fortune to spend Spring 2006 doing research in number theory and function theory at MSRI with support from MSRI and Faculty Development Leave from UNT.

My main extracurricular activities since coming to Texas have been slowly fixing up an old run down house I bought in Aubrey, gardening, and attending Dallas Wind Symphony concerts.

Flights I've taken that were later investigated by the NTSB

United 805, December 12, 2000
Delta 1521, August 16, 2001
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