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15 December 2021

Editorial roles: Farewell and welcome

With this issue, a long era in the history of the Stata Journal comes to a close. Editor H. Joseph (Joe) Newton is retiring at the end of 2021.

Joe has been senior Editor from the outset of the Journal, the single-issue Volume 1 in 2001. He was also Editor of the Stata Technical Bulletin for 31 issues from May 1996 to May 2001, following Joseph Hilbe, who edited issues 1 to 12 (May 1990 to March 1992), and Sean Becketti, who edited issues 13 to 30 (May 1992 to March 1996). Joe was pivotal in the transition from a bimonthly Bulletin to a professional, reviewed quarterly journal, which is going stronger than ever after 20 years.

Joe has always been the model of a diligent and diplomatic editor. While not afraid to make the delicate and difficult decisions that are needed, his tacit philosophy has been that the Journal exists for the authors to communicate with the readers and that an editor's role is to make that process as easy and efficient as possible. Anyone familiar with academic and research journals will know that 25 years at the helm is quite exceptional service, to the academic and researcher community in general and the Stata community in particular.

On a personal level, I record that Joe and I have met a few times and have corresponded many more, with never a cross word in 20 years. He is the ideal co-editor.

Service has been a strong theme in Joe's career. Born and educated in New York State, and a self-described “rabid Buffalo Bills fan”, Joe began a lengthy Texan exile in 1978 on appointment to the Department of Statistics at Texas A&M University. In due course, he rose not only in that Department, where he is now Emeritus Professor, but also in the University administration, culminating in 15 years as Interim Dean and then Dean of Science from 2001 to 2015. This is thus his third retirement. Again, such a lengthy period as Dean, a role managing the collisions of irresistible forces and immovable objects, while fielding pressures from above, below, and all around, is quite exceptional.

We send Joe and his family warmest good wishes for a long and rewarding retirement.

Joe is succeeded as Editor by Professor Stephen Jenkins, a proud New Zealander who has been based in Britain since 1978 and is currently in the Department of Social Policy at the London School of Economics. A broad-minded economist and quantitative generalist, and a leader in the study of economic inequality, Stephen is a long-time Stata user. He has been active and prominent in the community on several levels, including software and article writer, Statalist contributor, meeting organizer and speaker, and as Associate Editor of the Journal from 2001. I look forward most warmly to working with him.

Nicholas J. Cox
Co-Editor, Stata Journal