One of the world’s greatest statisticians passed away on 22 August.
It was with great sorrow that we learned of the death of Dr. Calyampudi Radhakrishna Rao. He would have reached the age of 103 on 10 September.
Dr. C. R. was one of the first generation of students to receive a Master’s degree in statistics in India in 1943, thanks to an agreement between the University of Calcutta and the Indian Statistical Institute.
It was following a question from a student during his teaching in 1943 that he derived what is now known as the Cramér-Rao bound, which he did not publish until 1945. It was in this same article, published in 1945, that he proved for the first time the Rao-Blackwell theorem, which was proved independently by David Blackwell in 19473.
Rao was awarded the Samuel Wilks Prize. He was a member of eight national academies in India, the United Kingdom, the United States and Italy, and received a dozen prizes, medals and other awards for his contributions to statistics and science more generally. In June 2002, he was awarded the US National Medal of Science, the highest distinction in the field of scientific research.

Our deepest condolences to the world’s statistical community and to his biological family.

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