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Ivan Fellegi: A statistician who made his mark

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Released: 2018-12-03

Widely known as a pillar and pioneer at Statistics Canada, Ivan Fellegi was Chief Statistician of Canada from 1985 to 2008. Throughout his 22 years in the role, he worked hard to constantly improve Canada's statistical agency. During that time, Statistics Canada was often recognized as one of, if not the best statistical agency in the world.

Infographic 1  Thumbnail for Infographic 1: Dr. Ivan Fellegi, Chief Statistician of Canada (1985 to 2008)
Dr. Ivan Fellegi, Chief Statistician of Canada (1985 to 2008)

In 1957, Ivan Fellegi began his brilliant career with the Dominion Bureau of Statistics. For the next 50 plus years, he held various positions with increasing responsibility throughout the agency, including more than two decades as Chief Statistician of Canada.

Mr. Fellegi drew on his extensive experience, exceptional skills, and the principles of independence of knowledge, political impartiality and rigour to provide the agency with leadership and vision and transform it into a modern, prominent, forward-looking statistical organization.

During his mandate, he made outstanding contributions to the advancement of statistical science and helped to improve relations among statistical organizations around the world. His numerous contributions include his work on the rotating panel sample design, response variance, and statistical confidentiality.

His exceptional contributions earned him a number of awards, including the Order of Canada, the Outstanding Achievement Award of the Public Service of Canada, the Medal of the City of Paris, and several honorary doctorates.

To this day, Ivan Fellegi continues to make an invaluable contribution to the agency as Chief Statistician of Canada Emeritus. Thanks to his work and leadership, Statistics Canada plays a key role in helping the country's democracy run smoothly by providing citizens, organizations and governments with high-quality data.

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