Derek Friend

Derek Friend

Ph.D. student


Derek’s educational background is in programming and statistics, but his interest in natural resources and wildlife has led him to geography, where he can apply his quantitative background to ecology and spatial analysis. More specifically, he has been using data from GPS loggers to investigate the movement patterns of desert tortoises in the Mojave Desert.


  • MS, 2018, Data Science, South Dakota State University
  • BA, 2017, Computer Science, Dordt University


Gasdaska, A., Friend, D., Chen, R., Westra, J., Zawistowski, M., Lindsey, W., & Tintle, N. (2019). Leveraging summary statistics to make inferences about complex phenotypes in large biobanks. Pacific Symposium on Biocomputing, 391–402.