Karen K. Gleason, Associate Provost
Alexander and I. Michael Kasser Professor of Chemical Engineering Massachusetts Institute of Technology

March 24, 10:45 am – 11:45 am, Warnock Engineering Building L104

Adel F. Sarofim Distinguished Lecture: “All in the Life of a Chemical Engineer: From Spectroscopist to Accidental Entrepreneur”

Dr. Karen K. Gleason has been a member of the MIT faculty since 1987 and has served as Executive Officer of the Chemical Engineering Department, Associate Director for the Institute of Soldier Nanotechnologies; and as Associate Dean of Engineering for Research. She is a member of the National Academy of Engineering.

Gleason’s research focuses on the near room-temperature synthesis of ultrathin, conformal organic films by chemical vapor deposition (CVD). Gleason has authored more than 250 publications and holds 18 issued US Patents for CVD polymers and their applications in optoelectronic, sensing, microfluidic, energy storage, and biomedical devices, and also for the surface modification of membranes.

Gleason is a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) and held the Donders Visiting Professorship Chair at Utrecht University, Netherlands. Her awards include the ID TechEx Printed Electronics Europe Best Technical Development Materials Award, the AIChE Process Development Research Award, and Young Investigator Awards from both the National Science Foundation and the Office of Naval Research. She has delivered the Van Ness Award Lecture at the Rensselaer Polytechnic University and the Tis Lahiri Lecture at Vanderbuilt University.

In 2001, Gleason co-founded GVD Corporation, which has successfully scaled-up and commercialized technology invented in her MIT lab. GVD is headquartered in Cambridge, MA and has manufacturing facilities in Greenville, SC.

Gleason received her Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley. Her B.S. and M.S. degrees are from MIT where she also won All-American honors in swimming.

Professor Adel F. Sarofim (1934-2011)

This endowed lecture honors the contributions of Presidential Professor Adel F. Sarofim, a member of the faculty at MIT from 1965 to 1996 and then at the University of Utah’s Chemi- cal Engineering Department from 1996 through 2011.

Sarofim’s research spanned scientific and engineering issues ranging from radiative heat transfer and combustion to energy, health effects and the environment. At the Uof U he was Presidential Professor and Associate Director for Research for the U’s Institute for Clean and Secure Energy. His scholarly contributions include more than 350 peer-reviewed papers that garnered nearly 5,000 citations. Sarofim was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in 2003.

Among his many honors across engineering disciplines, Sarofim’s Department of Energy Homer H. Lowry Award citation reflects well the sentiments of his colleagues, students and friends: “Adel Sarofim is a compassionate human being who inspires students and colleagues, and who contributes significantly across the full spectrum from fundamental science through real-world design concepts.”

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