Lisa Mendez

Lisa Mendez
Senior Data Analyst

Lisa Mendez is a Senior Data Analyst at HEB, a privately owned grocery company based in South Texas. She has been programming in SAS® for more than 14 years, and has extensive knowledge of Base SAS, including data step programming, macros, PROC SQL, arrays, loops and other statistical procedures. Mendez is committed to sharing knowledge and has published and presented papers and presentations at the SCSUG Educational Forum and SAS Global Forum. She is a two-time participant in the SAS Global Forum Student Ambassador Program (2009, 2011) and an executive committee member of the South Central SAS Users Group. Mendez has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in computer information systems, and a PhD in education with a concentration in organizational leadership and certification in adult education.

How long have you been using SAS®?

14 years.

What SAS products have you used in the past? What products and solutions are you currently using?

Base SAS, SAS/GRAPH®, SAS/STAT®, SAS/ACCESS® Interface to Teradata (PROC SQL to pull data from a data warehouse), and we just purchased JMP® software and will be using that for data discovery for customer insights.

What is a problem you have solved using SAS?

I have solved many problems using SAS, but unfortunately most details are proprietary and cannot be shared.

What is the most innovative way you have used SAS?

I have used SAS to automate various data reports. Many people use Microsoft Excel and re-create reports every week, month or year. I have written SAS programs that can automate these reports, even with dynamic variables, using many of SAS software's internal macro variables. Automating reports that have varying data is a challenge, but not impossible.

What is your most memorable SAS moment?

My most memorable SAS moment was meeting Dr. Goodnight, first at SAS Global Forum 2009, then again at SAS Global Forum 2011.

How has SAS changed in the time you have been using it?

I began using SAS on the mainframe, and moved to PC SAS. Then I was introduced to SAS® Enterprise Guide® and now JMP software. It has become more GUI-related, and SAS has provided easier ways to dig into the data without remembering all of the Base SAS syntax. However, it has also kept its robustness, which has allowed me to program in SAS all this time. Although it has evolved with more visual analytics, I tend to remain a Base SAS programmer.

Have you ever attended a SAS users group meeting or SAS Global Forum? If yes, please list them.

My first SAS Global Forum (SUGI) was in 2005 in Philadelphia. Ever since that first conference I was hooked. I've attended SAS Global Forum in 2006, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012 and 2013. My journey with SAS users groups has evolved. It began at a Birds of a Feather meeting at SUGI 31 in San Francisco. I met the South Central SAS Users Group Executive Committee and other South Central regional members and SAS users. From there, I began attending the SCSUG meetings after winning a student scholarship.

I then started helping SCSUG with its student scholarship program and was invited to become a member of the Executive Committee. I co-chaired the 2011 SCSUG Educational Forum in Fort Worth, TX, (although I didn't actually attend it due to the birth of my child two weeks earlier). I am currently the Academic Scholarship and Junior Professional Coordinator for SCSUG, and I spent a few months on the Users Group Steering Committee. I also started a few in-house users groups as well.

Has your work with SAS been influenced by any other members of the SAS community?

Every time I meet a SAS user my work is influenced. SAS users are unique and extremely smart and innovative. I have met many people within the SAS community, and they have provided me with excellent programming advice and innovative solutions to problems. SAS users have a network that is so strong that I have become friends with many people across the globe. I feel that the SAS community is a very tight group that always finds ways to help each other succeed.

If you could point a new SAS user to one resource, what would it be?

I would normally point a new SAS user to a regional users group, but times they are a-changin'. RUGs are moving in new directions, and some no longer exist. The next best source of users group interaction would be local users groups (LUGs) if they are available. Social media outlets are also a great place to begin to connect with SAS users (LinkedIn and Facebook), along with SAS Listservs and other beneficial blogs created by SAS users.

SAS Circle of Excellence - 10 Years

SAS Milestones

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