Michael Lacey: A Great Mathematician!

Michael Thoreau Lacey is a legend we have grown to know as a mathematician. His love for the complexity of numbers and science started long ago and it has led him to be a household name in universities and companies around the country. He has several accolades and awards marking all the achievements he has contributed to the masses, along with extensive research which has been recognized by various institutions. Michael Lacy’s research is still viewed by several people, from students to other curious minds!


Born Sept 29, 1959, Mr. Lacey is among the baby boomers of this nation. This country endured plenty during that time, including wars and division of nations but Michael wanted to break down those barriers by using his mind with numbers and science to get him out of those surroundings. Michael received his PhD from the University of Illinois in 1987 under the leadership of Mr. Walter Phillips. His research work has been on probability, harmonic analysis and ergodic theory in the years to follow his degree. The thesis he wrote solved the problem of the law of the iterated logarithm. This describes the magnitude of a random walk, which is a path that consists of the succession of random steps in some mathematical space. Random walks are of interest and there are several types of them. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Lacey) (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Random_walk)


Michael Lacey went on to become a professor at Louisiana State University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Indiana University. While at Indiana University from 1989 to 1996, he received the National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship. This is a US government agency that supports fundamental research and education in the field of science and engineering. With an annual budget of over $7 billion annually, this organization truly focuses on making sure the integration of math, science and engineering remains strong among its creative efforts. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Science_Foundation)


In 1996, Michael Lacey became the Professor of Mathematics at Georgia Institute of Technology. He received the Guggenheim Fellowship for his partnership with Xiaochun Li. The Guggenheim Fellowships are grants awarded to those who have demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship for exceptional creative ability in the arts. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guggenheim_Fellowship) He has advised undergrads, mentored more than 10 postgrad and has written recommendations for some of them. Michael Lacey is a humble man with a giant mind and his work will continue to be seen by future generations to come.