Karen Pieper graduated from the Master’s program in Biostatistics at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 1987. She worked as a statistician for a year in Chapel Hill on a contract with the Environmental Protection Agency. For the next ten years she worked on clinical trials and registry databases for what was then called the Duke Databank for Cardiovascular Disease. For a year of that time, she was living in Northern California, telecommuting with Duke, whilst teaching introductory statistics at Humbolt State University. She left Duke in 1996 to work with Frank Harrell as he established the new Biostatistics program at the University of Virginia. A year later, she moved to Asheville, North Carolina and developed Pieper Statistical Consulting where she consulting with pharmaceutical and insurance companies, medical centres, academic centres, and taught a course in statistics at a local college.
Karen returned to the Duke Clinical Research Institute and became the Associate Director of Clinical Trials Statistical Operations at Duke Clinical Research Institute where she oversaw the analytic work for the presentations and publications of the DCRI cardiovascular mega trials databases and Duke cardiovascular disease databank. She is now the Director of the Statistical Research Sciences.