About Me

Recent/Upcoming events

January 8-11, 2025: I will present my research in the ILAS Special Session on Matrix analysis and applications at JMM 2025 in Seattle, WA.

October 26-27, 2024: I am co-organizing the Special Session on Random matrices, related structures, and applications at the AMS Western Sectional Fall Meeting, hosted by UC Riverside.

May 9, 2024: I will present my research in the Probability Seminar at UCSD.

May 8, 2024: I will present my research in the Combinatorics and Probability Seminar at UCI.

May 1, 2024: I will present my research in the Math Physics and Probability seminar at the University of Arizona.

April 13-14, 2024: I presented my research at Midwest Numerical Analysis Day 2024, hosted by the University of Iowa.

April 4, 2024: My paper "Distribution of the number of pivots needed using Gaussian elimination on random matrices" is now available in The Annals of Applied Probability, Vol. 34, No. 2, 2294-2325 (April 2024).

March 11-15, 2024: I participated in the Universality and Integrability in KPZ workshop  and celebration of Jeremy Quastel's 60th birthday, hosted by Columbia University.

March 8, 2024: My paper with Jia Cai and Yunke Wan "Random matrix statistics and safety rest areas on interstates in the United States" (preprint version)  has been accepted for publication and will appear in the Journal of Statistical Mechanics: Theory and Experiment.

Previous events

Short bio: I am the Richard Pierce Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Arizona, mentored by Nick Ercolani. Starting in Fall 2024, I will be a Stefan E. Warschawski Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Mathematics at the University of California, San Diego, mentored by Ioana Dumitriu. My primary research is in random matrix theory and numerical linear algebra, with an emphasis on applications to problems in numerical analysis, integrable systems, statistical modeling, random graphs and number theory. I also am involved in educational research and outreach relating to equal access issues in STEM. I completed my Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of California, Irvine in 2021, under the advisement of Mike Cranston and Tom Trogdon (University of Washington). My dissertation, entitled "Numerical, spectral, and group properties of random butterfly matrices", can be found here.

I completed my AB in mathematics from the University of Chicago in 2006. I then worked for 9 years in the "real world", first as a research analyst with the Social and Economic Sciences Research Center with Washington State University and then as a data analyst/BI engineer with the Office of Research Information Services at the University of Washington. I started my Ph.D. program one month after the birth of my first son (not pictured).

Outside of math, I enjoy running, watching movies, doing trivia, and spending as much time as possible with my family (me+wife+two sons+dog). My most recent hobby involves relocating scorpions found in my backyard using a blacklight, although I much prefer not finding scorpions in my backyard using a blacklight which though still is much more highly preferred than finding scorpions inside my house.

Pronouns: he/him/his

Contact: johnpeca@math.arizona.edu

Office: Math 710

Address: Department of Mathematics
University of Arizona
617 N Santa Rita Ave
Tucson, AZ 85721