Cecil C Rousseau, United States of America

Posted Friday 13 July 2012

[Cecil C Rousseau]

Cecil C Rousseau receives his award from ICMI President Bill Barton at ICME-12 in Seoul, South Korea, 13 July 2012. WFNMC President Maria Falk de Losada (Colombia) is at left, Senior Vice President Alexander Soifer is second from left and at right is Jane Rousseau.


In 1968, Cecil C Rousseau received the Ph.D. in physics from Texas A&M University, with research under the direction of John L Gammel. Cecil was a member of the physics faculty at Baylor University from 1968 until 1970, and then he changed both disciplines and affiliations by taking taking a position in mathematics at what was then Memphis State University. He remained at that position until retirement in 2008.

His research record is dominated by contributions to graphical Ramsey theory; however it includes work in other areas of combinatorics, physics, applied analysis, and mathematical statistics. Most of his work is collaborative, including 35 joint papers with the most famous collaborator of all, Paul Erdös. The University of Memphis has recognized his contributions by awarding him a Meritorious Faculty Award in 1992 and a Dunavant Professorship in 1998.

Known as an avid problems creator and solver, over the years Cecil has contributed, solved, or edited problems for AMC competitions, MAA publications, Fibonacci Quarterly, SIAM Problems and Solutions, PME Journal, and others.

Cecil's Olympiad connection began with an invitation from Murray Klamkin to contribute problems for the then new exam, the USAMO. Cecil has been a member of the USAMO Committee for most of the intervening years. In the intervals (1992 to 1997) and (2004 to 2008) he was Chair of the Committee. In 1974, the first year the USA participated in the IMO, Cecil served as Deputy Leader. He served as Deputy Chief Coordinator when the USA hosted the IMO in 1981. He served as Coach and Leader for (1985 to 1987) and (1991 to 1993). At the invitation of the Canadian organizers, he served as a Problems Captain in 1995. When in 2001 the USA again hosted the IMO, he was there as Chair of the Problems Committee and Chief Coordinator.