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Carriquiry, Alicia

Published onMar 12, 2021
Carriquiry, Alicia

Alicia Carriquiry, 2017

Commissioned by University Museums and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. U2017.123

ALICIA CARRIQUIRY (MS ’86, PhD ’89 statistics) is a Distinguished Professor of Statistics at Iowa State whose work has helped people better understand and measure what  they eat with regard to nutrition.

During her 26-year career, Carriquiry developed statistical methods to better measure food consumption, specifically, nutrient intake. She was elected in 2016 to the National Academy of Medicine for the work she has done to advance the understanding of nutrition and dietary assessment.

She was born and grew up in a seaside community of Montevideo in Uruguay. In keeping with Uruguay’s quality education, Carriquiry attended a British private school, following 27 classmates from kindergarten through high school. She said she still keeps in daily contact with them through social media.

In 1982, Carriquiry moved to the United States to attend graduate school at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. In 1985, she moved to Ames, where she met her husband, Wolfgang Kliemann, who grew up in northern Germany and was assistant professor in mathematics.  They were married in 1987 and, except for a few trips elsewhere, have remained in Ames. “I consider myself almost a native Iowan,” she said. Carriquiry’s 89-year-old mother lives with them in Ames.

“I have enjoyed a long and productive professional life here,” Carriquiry said. “Iowa State provided me with an environment in which I could succeed, and with the means to develop a rewarding career.  Wolfgang and I have had many opportunities to move elsewhere, but always chose to stay at ISU.”

She credits her success to her mother, “for keeping me in the expensive private school even though doing so was really beyond her means,” as well as her husband, “for being ultra-supportive, a lot of fun to be around, and a great partner.” She said professional mentors “opened many doors for me” and answered many questions. She also appreciates her 35-year friendship with Sarah Nusser and “all women who came before, making it possible for me to realize my professional dreams.”

At home she relishes the New York Times crossword puzzle, taking pride in solving the most difficult puzzles on Friday and Saturday even though she is not a native English speaker. She also reads, gardens and enjoys cooking from scratch.

Her advice to others is to “have empathy and be kind. We live in a society and what I do has an impact on other people’s lives.”

Dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Beate Schmittmann: Recognized by the National Academy of Medicine, Alicia Carriquiry’s commitment to exceptional interdisciplinary research in areas such as nutrition, forensics and mental health showcases how LAS research can contribute to solving our most pressing global challenges.

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