Kimiko Osada Bowman (August 15, 1927 – 13 January 2019)^{[1]} was a Japanese-American statistician known for her work on approximating the probability distribution of maximum likelihood estimators and for her advocacy for people with disabilities.^{[2]}

Life

Kimiko Osada was born in Japan in 1927 before emigrating to the United States in 1951. She became a U.S. citizen in 1958.^{[1]}

She contracted polio while young, and became paralyzed from the neck down, but learned to walk again through years of physical therapy.^{[2]}

She began her undergraduate studies in home economics at Radford College, but was persuaded by the college president to become a scientist. She studied both mathematics and chemistry and completed a B.S.Ed. in mathematics in 1960.^{[2]}^{[3]} She earned a Ph.D. in mathematical statistics from Virginia Tech in 1963; her dissertation, advised by Leonard Shenton, was Moments to Higher Orders for Maximum Likelihood Estimates with an Application to the Negative Binomial Distribution.^{[2]}^{[3]}^{[4]}

As a senior research scientist at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Bowman worked on the distributional properties of estimators based on non-normal data.^{[1]} Bowman also frequently visited Japan in association with the U.S. Office of Naval Research.^{[2]}^{[3]} After 45 years of service, she retired in 1994.^{[1]}