The department has 23 award-winning core and courtesy faculty members, including a member of the National Academy of Engineering. The department has 23 award-winning core and courtesy faculty members, including a member of the National Academy of Engineering.

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Faculty Honors & Awards

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The Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering includes faculty members with major appointments in chemical and biological engineeringm, as well as collaborating faculty members with major appointments in biomedical engineering, civil engineering, or materials science and engineering who are affiliated with the department through joint or courtesy appointments.

Our faculty members have been frequently recognized for their excellence in research and teaching. Among the faculty, there are National Science Foundation PYI/NYI/CAREER Award recipients, a PECASE awardee, a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and winners of numerous other awards in specific research areas.

2015-2016

  • Julius Lucks received the ACS Synthetic Biology Young Investigator Award.
  • Mike Jewett was invited to speak at an invitation-only meeting organized by The Royal Society and the U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS), sponsored by the Sackler Foundation, where leaders will discuss the Trends in Synthetic Biology  and Gain of Function and Implications for Regulation.
  • Mike Jewett’s work on a novel protein conjugation method that offers new possibilities for biomaterials was featured on the cover of Bioconjugate Chemistry.
  • Randy Snurr is the 2015 recipient of the Ernest W. Thiele Award from the Chicago Local Section of AIChE.  Randy joins a stellar list of recipients, which includes current and former NU faculty members: Harold Kung, Julio Ottino,George Bankoff, Dick Mah, and George Thodos. http://www.aiche.org/community/sites/chicago-local-section/ernest-w-thiele-award.  Randy received the award "For advancing the application of nanoporous metal-organic frameworks in gas separations and storage and showing the power of molecular simulation to design new adsorbents”.
  • Michael Jewett was elected as the Division 15 (Food, Pharmaceutical and Bioengineering) Vice Chair for the American Institute of Chemical Engineers for 2016, succeeding to chair in 2017.
  • Randy Snurr was named to the 2015 list of Highly Cited Researchers by Thomson Reuters.
  • Harold Kung has been appointed Editor-in-Chief for Applied Catalysis A: General, which is a newly created position.
  • Josh Leonard was invited to testify before the World Anti-Doping Agency on the potential for using advanced gene therapy and synthetic biology technologies to cheat in sports.
  • Bill Miller was appointed to the Science Advisory Committee of The Nature Conservancy of Illinois.
  • Michael Jewett was invited to give the Suzanne C and Duncan A Mellichamp Distinguished Lecture at the  Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Josh Leonard’s research was featured in a Science Magazine technology feature on extracellular vesicles: http://www.sciencemag.org/custom-publishing/technology-features/membrane-messengers-extracellular-vesicles
  • Linda Broadbelt delivered a plenary lecture at the 24th International Symposium on Chemical Reaction Engineering.

2014-2015

  • Michael Jewett was selected as the recipient of the McCormick Cole-Higgins Award for Excellence in Teaching.
  • Keith Tyo has won an NSF CAREER Award for his project “Engineering Non-Growth Metabolism for High-Yield Biochemical Production”.
  • Josh Leonard was invited to give a keynote lecture on the interface of synthetic biology and regenerative medicine at a meeting of the Society for Biomaterials (March 23) and at the Second International Workshop on Mammalian Synthetic Biology - the premier event in this emerging field (April 25).
  • Research from Randy Snurr’s group on destruction of nerve agents in metal-organic frameworks was published in Nature Materials and also featured in Science.
  • Eric Masanet was selected to serve as Head of the International Energy Agency’s Energy Demand Technology Unit in Paris for his sabbatical leave.
  • Michael Jewett was the recipient of a Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award.
  • A paper from Michael Jewett’s lab, “Protein synthesis by ribosomes with tethered subunits”, was published in Nature.  Erik Carlson, a graduate student in Mike’s lab, was the first author. This work was highlighted in numerous venues, for example  "News of the Week" in C&E News, The Scientist, and Scientific American, among others.
  • Harold Kung has been awarded the 2015 R.H. Wilhelm Award in Chemical Reaction Engineering from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.  This is an Institute-level award, AIChE's most prestigious awards, honoring eminent chemical engineers for career accomplishments, service to society, and service to the institute.

2013-2014

  • Harold Kung was named a Walter P. Murphy Professor, was elected as a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and also was appointed to the Editorial Advisory Board of Industrial Engineering and Chemistry Research.
  • Randy Snurr was named as one of Thomson Reuters Highly Cited Researchers for 2014. Snurr and the others earning this honor earned the distinction by writing the greatest numbers of reports officially designated by Essential Science Indicators as Highly Cited Papers—ranking among the top one percent most cited for their subject field and year of publication, earning them the mark of exceptional impact.
  • Luis Amaral was selected as a Fellow of the American Physical Society.
  • Mike Jewett was appointed as one of four associate editors for the journal ACS Synthetic Biology and was selected as McCormick Teacher of the Year through the Cole-Higgins Awards for Excellence in Teaching. He was interviewed for Microbe magazine related to his Nature Molecular Systems Biology paper on ribosome synthesis. He was also elected as the second Vice Chair of Division 15c, Bioengineering, which is part of the Food, Pharmaceutical, and Bioengineering Division of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and will succeed to first Vice Chair and Chair in subsequent years.
  • Eric Masanet, joint with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, was selected as a participant in the National Academies Frontiers of Engineering Education Symposium. Masanet was featured on WBEZ's Worldview program discussing food waste.
  • Dean Julio M. Ottino was invited to deliver the second Thomas H. Chilton DuPont Lecture.  
  • Papers published by Fengqi You’s group in AIChE Journal were the first and fourth most highly cited papers in 2012, and first and third most highly cited papers in 2013. You’s work on solar panel manufacturing that was published in Solar Energy has received significant attention from the press, including a feature in Nature.
  • Keith Tyo received an NIH Transformative R01 Award as part of a team comprised of researchers from Harvard, Northwestern, RIC, and MIT that is focusing on recording neural activities onto DNA.
  • Linda Broadbelt was appointed as an associate editor of Industrial Engineering and Chemistry Research, was elected to the Electorate Nominating Committee of the Engineering Section of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and was elected as the second Vice Chair of the Catalysis and Reaction Engineering Division of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, and will succeed to first Vice Chair and Chair in subsequent years.
  • Wes Burghardt was elected as the Vice Chair of the Polymer Physics Division of the American Physical Society and will help lead the division for the next four years through succession.

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2012-2013

  • Two faculty members, Luis Amaral and John Torkelson, were selected as Fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
  • Mike Jewett was selected as a participant in the National Academy of Engineering Frontiers in Engineering symposium.
  • Jennifer Cole was selected to the equally prestigious National Academy of Engineering Frontiers of Engineering Education symposium.
  • Josh Leonard was selected as a recipient of the Ver Steeg Faculty Award in recognition of excellence in work with graduate students.
  • Fengqi You was awarded the 2013-14 NU-Argonne Early Career Investigator Award for Energy Research.
  • Julio M. Ottino presented the 2012 TechniGraphicS Foundation Lecture at IIT Bombay, India, delivered the Distinguished Research Lecture in Chemical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, delivered an Eminent Lecture at the National Technical University of Singapore and a keynote Lecture to their Board of Trustees, and was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers.
  • Keith Tyo was selected as one of only 20 participants to the SynBio LeAP (Leadership Accelerator) workshop which emphasizes synthetic biology in the public interest.
  • Harold Kung was appointed as an honorary professor at the Nanjing University of Technology and was appointed to the Fundamental & Computational Science Directorate Advisory Committee of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory.
  • Linda Broadbelt was invited to give a keynote lecture at the North American Meeting of the Catalysis Society.
  • Justin Notestein’s paper “Shape-selective sieving layers on an oxide catalyst surface” was published in Nature Chemistry and featured in Chemical and Engineering News.
  • Randy Snurr was named to the Editorial Board of the journal Adsorption and the journal Adsorption Science & Technology.
  • Eric Masanet's work on slashing greenhouse gas emissions from big data centers was published in Nature Climate Change.