I am a PhD student studying Computer Science at UMass Amherst.

I work in the Database Lab with Dr. Gerome Miklau and Dr. Daniel Sheldon. My research interests include data privacy, machine learning, numerical optimization, probabilistic modeling, and high-performance computing. In my free time, I enjoy functional programming, solving project euler problems, analyzing baseball data, and blogging about all the above and more.

Recent News


  • R. McKenna, R.K. Maity, A. Mazumdar, G. Miklau, “A workload-adaptive mechanism for linear queries under local differential privacy” in Proceedings of 46th International Conference on Very Large Data Bases (VLDB), 2020. [Code]
  • S. Kuppam, R. McKenna, D. Pujol, M. Hay, A. Machanavajjhala, G. Miklau, “Fair Decision Making using Privacy-Protected Data” in Proceedings of 3rd International Conference on Fairness, Accountability, and Transparency (FAT*), 2020.
  • R. McKenna, D. Sheldon, G. Miklau, “Graphical-model based estimation and inference for differential privacy” in Proceedings of 36th International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML), 2019. [Code]
  • R. McKenna, G. Miklau, M. Hay, A. Machanavajjhala “Optimizing error of high dimensional statistical queries under differential privacy,” in Proceedings of 44th International Conference on Very Large Data Bases (VLDB), 2018. [Code]
  • D. Zhang, R. McKenna, I. Kotsogiannis, M. Hay, A. Machanavajjhala, G. Miklau “Ektelo: A Framework for Defining Differentially-Private Computations,” in Proceedings of Special Interest Group on Management of Data (SIGMOD), 2018. [Code]
  • G. Bernstein, R. McKenna, T. Sun, M. Hay, G. Miklau, D. Sheldon “Differentially Private Learning of Undirected Graphical Models using CGMs,” in Proceedings of 34th International Conference on Machine Learning (ICML), 2017.
  • R. McKenna, S. Herbein, A. Moody, T. Gamblin, M. Taufer “Machine Learning Predictions of Runtime and IO Traffic on High-end Clusters,” in Proceedings of 2016 IEEE International Conference on Cluster Computing (CLUSTER), 2016.
  • R. McKenna, V.K. Pallipuram, R. Vargas, M. Taufer “From HPC Performance to Climate Modeling: Transforming Methods for HPC Prediction into Models of Extreme Climate Conditions,” in Proceedings of the 10th IEEE International Conference on e-Science and Grid Technologies (eScience), Munich, Germany, 2015.
  • C. Sahin, P. Tornquist, R. McKenna, Z. Pearson, J. Clause “How Do Code Obfuscations Impact Energy Usage?” in Proceedings of the 30th International Conference on Software Maintenence and Evolution (ICSME), 2014.

Selected Blog Posts