Home » A Statistician's Life, Additional Features, Celebrating Women in Statistics

Ginger Holt

1 March 2024 283 views No Comment

Affiliation: DataBricks

Educational Background: BSc, Industrial Engineering, Texas A&M University; PhD, Statistics, Rice University

Ginger Holt grew up in Fort Worth, Texas, in a family passionate about education. She always loved math and science in school since the answers were either “right” or “wrong,” unlike in other areas that were more subjective.

Holt’s statistical journey began by earning an undergraduate degree in industrial engineering at Texas A&M University. She found statistics courses were her favorite among all engineering courses. She then earned a PhD in statistics from Rice University, focusing on advancing research in multivariate time series analysis.

Having a love of teaching, Holt decided to pursue a career in academia. She further explored multivariate time series methodology development as an assistant professor of systems and information engineering at the University of Virginia. However, though she enjoyed the teaching and research aspects of an academic position, she did not enjoy the time she spent in pursuit of research funding.

Seeking new challenges, Holt transitioned to private industry by working for BP as a quantitative analyst and used time series methodologies to explore technical trading strategies based on dynamics in the energy market between drivers such as supply, demand, pricing, and weather. She later moved to HP to use her time series knowledge for market sizing and demand forecasting for HP’s enterprise business in the customer intelligence team. Her journey continued to Walmart Labs, where she specialized in item-level forecasts for millions of items to drive efficiencies within Walmart’s e-commerce supply chain management business. Subsequently, Holt spent five years at Facebook, engaging in capacity planning, forecasting, and building data products in the infrastructure data science team.

Holt considers it a great achievement to have been able to learn about so many subject areas/domains, including energy, finance, retail, and technology. Her favorite aspect of a career in data science is its ability to foster new learning opportunities.

Currently at DataBricks—a data and AI software company—Holt works to unify forecasting processes across the company, generating forecasts for finance, sales, go-to-market, and capacity planning and ensuring consistency and alignment across different domains. Her team builds tooling in data platforms and data science to make data engineering and data science work scalable at DataBricks and for DataBricks’ customers.

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