About Me

Recent/Upcoming events


October 19, 2021: I will share my research in the Analysis, Dynamics, and Applications seminar at the University of Arizona (postponed from 9/7).


October 28-31, 2021: I will be attending the paraDIGMS Fall 2021 Conference, hosted virtually by IMSI.


Previous events

Short bio: I (he/him) am the Richard Pierce Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Arizona, mentored by Nick Ercolani. My primary research is in random matrix theory, with an emphasis on applications of random matrices to problems in numerical analysis, machine learning, data science, physical system 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 PhD 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 numerical 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. During this time, I continued to recreationally work through math books while also eventually enrolling in graduate math courses at the University of Washington. I then decided to leave the cubicle behind for good (knock on wood) by formally entering grad school full-time in 2015, starting my PhD 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+two dogs). 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.

Contact: johnpeca@math.arizona.edu

Office: Math 710

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