Donald Gross

ORSA President, 1989

Donald Gross was the 38th President of ORSA He was Distinguished Research Professor of Operations Research and Engineering at George Mason University from 1995 until his retirement. From 1965 to 1995, he was on the faculty of The George Washington University, retiring as Professor Emeritus in June 1995. Prior to joining academia, he served as a First Lieutenant, U.S. Army Signal Corps, from 1962-63 and was an Operations Research Analyst at the Atlantic Refining Company from 1961-65.

At George Washington University he was Chairman of the Operations Research Department (1977-88). He served as Program Director of the Operations Research and Production Systems program of the National Science Foundation while on a leave of absence during 1988-90. He also served as Acting Dean of the School of Engineering and Applied Science from 1990-91 and Associate Vice President for Research and Graduate Studies for the University from 1991-93. He was a consultant to the Institute for Defense Analyses, Research Analysis Corporation, and various agencies of the U.S. Government.

His areas of expertise are queueing theory and discrete event simulation and his areas of application interest are telecommunications traffic, air traffic control, and repairable item inventory control. He is co-author of the text Fundamentals of Queueing Theory now in its 4th edition. He also published numerous articles in the professional literature.

While President of ORSA he was involved in an effort of bringing O.R., math and science to the high school and middle school levels. He and Bill King, then President of TIMS, set up the Little Committee to look into merging the 2 societies, an effort that led to the creation of INFORMS in 1995. He was active in the Washington OR Council (now WINFORMS), which led to his appointment as General Chair of the fall 1980 joint ORSA/TIMS national meeting. The General Chair position led to his becoming a member of the joint ORSA/TIMS meetings committee, ORSA Council, and eventually President. He was also a member of the INFORMS Council. He is Fellow of INFORMS. He was awarded the Kimball Medal in 1996.

BS (mechanical engineering), 1956, Carnegie-Mellon; MS (operations research) and PhD (operations research), 1959, Cornell.