Kagan leads MRS Board of Directors for 2021

    On January 1, Cherie R. Kagan (University of Pennsylvania) assumed the presidency of the Materials Research Society (MRS) for 2021, after serving as vice president/president-elect for 2020. She succeeded Matt Copel (IBM T.J. Watson Research Center), who now serves MRS as immediate past president.

    In last fall’s annual election of officers and directors, Carolyn R. Duran (Intel Corporation) was elected vice president/president-elect. Dawnielle Farrar-Gaines (Johns Hopkins University) and Shenda Baker (Synedgen Inc.) will continue to serve their terms as MRS secretary and MRS treasurer, respectively. MRS Executive Director Todd M. Osman is also a MRS officer.

    Newly elected members to the MRS Board of Directors are Baratunde Cola, Georgia Institute of Technology; Claudia Felser, Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids; Ilke Arslan, Center for Nanoscale Materials and the Nanoscience and Technology Division at Argonne National Laboratory; and Kyoung-Shin Choi, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Members of the Board may serve on the Board’s committees (Finance, Executive, Governance, and Nominating), Board task forces, or other ad hoc efforts commissioned by the Board.

    Cherie R. Kagan



    Kagan is the Stephen J. Angello Professor of Electrical and Systems Engineering, professor of materials science and engineering, and professor of chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania. Kagan is also Penn Engineering’s Associate Dean for Research. She graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1991 with a BSE degree in materials science and engineering and a BA degree in mathematics and earned her PhD degree in materials science and engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1996. In 1996, she went to Bell Labs as a postdoctoral fellow, and in 1998, she joined IBM’s T.J. Watson Research Center, where she most recently managed the “Molecular Assemblies and Devices Group.” In 2007, she joined the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. She has served MRS as a member on the Board of Directors, External Relations Committee, Mid-Career Researcher Award Subcommittee, and as a symposium organizer.

    Carolyn R. Duran

    Vice President/President-Elect


    Duran is vice president in the Data Platforms Group and general manager of Memory and I/O Technologies at Intel Corporation. She received her bachelor’s degree in materials science and engineering from Carnegie Mellon University and her PhD degree in the same field from Northwestern University. She is responsible for a broad scope, including pathfinding, architecture, validation, and standards development. During her 22-year tenure at Intel, Duran has continued her lifelong learning in the area of materials research, spanning thin-films process development, supply chain, lithography chemicals, sustainability, and Intel’s Responsible Minerals Sourcing program. Duran developed advanced copper and barrier materials processes for three generations of interconnect technologies and has led thin-film research and process engineering programs across multiple areas. She holds five patents in the area of semiconductor process engineering.

    Matt Copel

    Immediate Past President


    Copel is a research staff member at the IBM T.J. Watson Research Center. He received bachelor’s and PhD degrees in physics from Harvard University. His research interests include structural characterization of advanced electronic materials, metal-oxide gate dielectrics, ferroelectric/metal interfaces, surface chemistry and processing, and ion beam analysis. He has contributed to areas where electronic materials are critical to industrial applications, using expertise in structural characterization to guide development. He co-invented the technique of surfactant-mediated epitaxy. He served on the MRS Board of Directors (2016–2018), the MRS New Publications Products Subcommittee (2011–2014), and several MRS task forces. He received the IBM Outstanding Technical Achievement Award in 2013 and is a Fellow of the American Physical Society.

    Dawnielle Farrar-Gaines



    Farrar-Gaines is a senior electrical and materials engineer at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory. She is responsible for providing creative solutions to problems across disciplines, including micro- and nano-systems, extreme and multifunctional materials, stimulus-responsive sensing, microelectronics, and packaging. She earned a PhD and a MS degree in materials science and engineering, as well as an MS degree in electrical engineering, from Johns Hopkins University. She has nine patents, received the MRS Woody Award in 2013, won first place in the Innovation in Materials Science (iMatSci) forum in 2014, and served as chair of the MRS Women in Materials Science and Engineering Committee, as a member of the Board of Directors and as a Symposium Organizer.

    Shenda Baker



    Baker is president and CEO of Synedgen Inc. Previously, Baker served as CEO of Synspira Therapeutics and spent 20 years as a professor of chemistry at Harvey Mudd College. Her research focuses on designing polymers and understanding their interactions at complex interfaces. Baker served on the Board of Directors for MRS and has served on advisory boards with the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, and the Department of Energy. Baker is a member of the American Chemical Society and MRS and currently serves on the Board of Synspira. She is co-inventor on all Synedgen and Synspira technology.

    Todd M. Osman

    Executive Director


    Osman received his PhD degree in materials science and engineering from Case Western Reserve University and serves on the Board of the Council of Engineering and Scientific Society Executives. During his tenure, MRS has enhanced its focus on broadening participation in science and engineering; grown its awards, education, and student programs; and expanded its communications and meetings portfolio. Osman spent 11 years at United States Steel Corporation, where he received peer and corporate recognition for his research and coordinated cooperative R&D programs in North America, Europe, and Asia. He has authored numerous articles and given invited talks on topics including commercial and social impact of materials, innovation, leadership, diversity and inclusion, product development, and fracture of materials.

    Board of Directors

    Ilke Arslan (2023)

    Arslan is the director of the Center for Nanoscale Materials and the Nanoscience and Technology Division at Argonne National Laboratory. After receiving her PhD degree in physics from the University of California, Davis, she spent two years at the University of Cambridge working under the National Science Foundation International Research Fellowship and the Royal Society USA Research Fellowship. Her research has centered around understanding structure–property relationships of materials for energy applications through advanced methods of the (scanning) transmission electron microscope. Arslan has received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers and the Oppenheimer Science and Energy Leadership Program. She has received the MRS Undergraduate Materials Research Initiative Award, MRS Graduate Student Gold Award, and has served in various roles at MRS, including 2017 Fall Meeting Chair, Editorial Board member for MRS Bulletin, and Volume Organizer for MRS Bulletin.

    Leonard J. Brillson (2022)

    Brillson is a professor of electrical and computer engineering and physics at The Ohio State University, where he is also the Center for Materials Research Scholar and a University Distinguished Scholar. He obtained his AB degree from Princeton University and his MS and PhD degrees from the University of Pennsylvania, all in physics. He is a Fellow of the Materials Research Society as well as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American Physical Society, the AVS Science & Technology Society, and is a former Governing Board member of the American Institute of Physics. He has served on the board of editors for several technical journals, including currently the Journal of Electronic Materials. He has more than 370 publications and three patents. He received the AVS Gaede-Langmuir Award in 2006 and the Ohio State University Distinguished Scholar Award in 2017. In MRS, he has been active in the Government Affairs Committee.

    Kristen H. Brosnan (2022)

    Brosnan is the technology director at Superior Technical Ceramics. Brosnan received her BS degree in materials science and engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and received MS and PhD degrees in materials science and engineering from The Pennsylvania State University. Brosnan is a fellow of ACerS and is a member of The Minerals, Metals & Materials Society, MRS, and the Society of Women Engineers. Brosnan was recognized with the GE Women in Technology award in 2017. She recently co-chaired the 2018 MRS Fall Meeting and has served on the Industrial Engagement Committee for MRS since 2018.

    Kyoung-Shin Choi (2023)

    Choi is a professor of chemistry at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received her BS and MS degrees from Seoul National University in South Korea. She then moved to the United States and received her PhD in chemistry from Michigan State University. Choi’s research combines solid-state chemistry, electrochemistry, and materials chemistry to address fundamental challenges of designing electrode materials and electrocatalysts for electrochemical and photoelectrochemical applications. She has received the 2015 Innovation Award from the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation, the 2010 Iota Sigma Pi Agnes Fay Morgan Research Award, and currently serves as an Associate Editor for Chemistry of Materials. She has organized two MRS symposia and has served as a volume organizer and an author for MRS Bulletin.

    Baratunde Cola (2023)

    Cola directs the Nanoengineered Systems and Transport Lab at the Georgia Institute of Technology, which helped to start Carbice Corporation, TCpoly, and the Academic and Research Leadership Network. He received his BE and MS degrees from Vanderbilt University and his PhD degree from Purdue University, all in mechanical engineering. In 2017, he was named the top scientist or engineer in the United States under the age of 35 by the National Science Foundation through the Alan T. Waterman Award. He is a Fellow of AAAS, a member of the International Semiconductor Industry Heterogeneous Integration Roadmap Thermal Working Group, and is on the Board of Advisors for the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. He has chaired MRS meeting sessions, co-organized symposia on thermal energy, and has published in MRS journals.

    Coray M. Colina (2022)

    Colina is University Term Professor; Professor at the Department of Chemistry and Affiliate Professor at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering; and member of the Butler Polymer Research Laboratory and the Center for Macromolecular Science and Engineering at the University of Florida. She completed her PhD degree in chemical engineering at North Carolina State University. She has received the 2021–2022 Fulbright Scholar Award, 2019 Cooperative Research Award in Polymer Science and Engineering, and the 2017 Women in Physics, Virtual Special Issue on Women in Physics. Colina recently co-chaired the 2018 XXVII International Materials Research Congress (IMRC) co-sponsored by MRS.

    Catherine Dubourdieu (2022)

    Dubourdieu is a full professor at Freie Universität Berlin and is the head of the Institute at the Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin für Materialien und Energie (HZB). She is also involved in establishing the Helmholtz Energy Materials Foundry. She earned an Engineer diploma and an MSc degree from the Institut Polytechnique de Grenoble (France) in 1992 and a PhD degree in physics from the University Grenoble Alpes in 1995. She co-founded the European School on Nanosciences and Nanotechnologies (ESONN) in Grenoble and served as its adjunct director until 2006. She has more than 140 publications, 10 patents, and received the IBM Faculty Award in 2014. Dubourdieu has been active in MRS throughout her professional career since 1997 as well as in the E-MRS.

    Claudia Felser (2023)

    Felser studied chemistry and physics at the University of Cologne, Germany, completing both her diploma in solid-state chemistry and her doctorate in physical chemistry. Since 2011, she has served as the director of the solid-state chemistry department at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Physics of Solids in Dresden. Her research focuses on the design and discovery of novel inorganic compounds, in particular, Heusler compounds for multiple applications in thermoelectrics, spintronics, and rare-earth hard magnets and new topological quantum materials. Felser received the Alexander M. Cruickshank Lecturer Award from the Gordon Research Conference, a SUR-grant Award from IBM, and the Tsungmin Tu Research Prize from the Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan, the highest academic honor granted to foreign researchers. In 2019, she was awarded the APS James C. McGroddy Prize for New Materials.

    Sarah Heilshorn (2021)

    Heilshorn is the Lee Otterson Faculty Scholar and associate professor of materials science and engineering at Stanford University. She received her PhD degree from the California Institute of Technology in 2004 while working with David Tirrell. Her research team specializes in integrating concepts from polymer physics and protein engineering to design materials for medical applications. This approach to biomimetic materials design has enabled several new technologies, including the development of injectable materials for cell transplantation and printable materials for regenerative medicine. She has organized multiple symposia, served as a Meeting Chair for the MRS 2016 Fall Meeting, and is a current member of the Program Development Subcommittee.

    Frances A. Houle (2021)

    Houle is deputy director of the Liquid Sunlight Alliance, a DOE Energy Innovation Hub, and a senior scientist in the Chemical Sciences Division and Molecular Biophysics and Integrated Bioimaging Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She received her PhD degree from the California Institute of Technology. Her research interests are in the areas of coupled reaction-transport processes in solar energy conversion systems and their components, and chemical modification of aerosols, nanoparticle, semiconductor, metal and polymer interfaces, surfaces and films using novel experimental and computational techniques. She is a member of the American Chemical Society, the Electrochemical Society, and MRS. She was active in establishing the African Materials Research Society, and, more recently, she was a member of the New Meetings Subcommittee, where she participated in the development of streamlined process for evaluating sponsorship of meetings in areas of MRS interests.

    Mônica Jung de Andrade (2021)

    Jung de Andrade is a Global Product Manager Electronic Materials at MilliporeSigma. She earned her PhD degree in materials science and engineering in 2010 from the Université Paul Sabatier (France) and the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil). Her research interests include dry-draw of carbon nanotube sheets and spinning of yarns; nanostructured materials as building blocks for nano-/microdevices; and (bio-) chemical and physical properties of nanostructured materials. She has served as chair of the International Students Academic Affairs Subcommittee at MRS, is the founder and president of the MRS UTDallas Chapter, is president of the Materials Engineering Academic Center at the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (UFRGS, Brazil), served twice as the lead organizer of scientific/technical symposia at international conferences, and received the 2017 MRS Woody White Service Award.

    Sergei V. Kalinin (2021)

    Kalinin is the corporate fellow at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) and a group leader at the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences at ORNL. He holds a joint associate professor position in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and an adjunct faculty position at Pennsylvania State University. He received his PhD degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 2002. He is a Fellow of MRS, American Physical Society, Institute of Physics, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and American Vacuum Society. Kalinin has organized numerous symposia and was a Meeting Chair for the 2014 MRS Spring Meeting and the IUMRS Meeting in Cancun in 2017. He served as a Volume Organizer in 2012 for MRS Bulletin. His research interests include the application of physics-based machine learning and automated experiment methods in atomically resolved and mesoscopic imaging, for atomic fabrication and physics discovery, as well as electromechanical, electrical, and transport phenomena on the nanoscale explored via scanning probe and scanning transmission electron microscopy.

    Kisuk Kang (2021)

    Kang is a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the Seoul National University in the Republic of Korea. He received his PhD degree in materials science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Kang has been an organizer for various MRS Meeting symposia and served as a Graduate Student Award Subcommittee member. His research interests range from the fundamental understanding of materials from theoretical calculations to the system analyses and developments of new types of rechargeable batteries. He currently leads national research projects on new materials discovery for advanced rechargeable batteries.

    Linda S. Schadler (2021)

    Schadler is the Dean of the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences at the University of Vermont. She graduated from Cornell University with a BS degree in materials science and engineering and received a PhD degree in materials science and engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. She served as a faculty member at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA, before spending 22 years at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute before moving to UVM. Schadler is a Fellow of MRS and ASM International. She has co-authored more than 180 journal publications, several book chapters, and one book. She is a former editor of JMR and is a former member of ASM International’s Board of Trustees and the National Materials Advisory Board.

    Ting Xu (2022)

    Xu is currently a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Department of Chemistry at the University of California, Berkeley. She is also a faculty member in the Materials Sciences Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. She received her PhD degree from the Department of Polymer Science and Engineering at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and was a joint postdoctoral fellow at University of Pennsylvania and National Institute of Standards and Technology. Xu served as one of the Meeting Chairs for the 2012 MRS Fall Meeting in Boston and has served on the MRS Communications subcommittee since 2014. She has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed papers and books and has received several awards.

    Yusheng Zhao (2021)

    Zhao is a chair professor in physics and the vice president for research (acting) of the Southern University of Science and Technology (SUSTech), China. He also serves as the dean of SUSTech Academy for Advanced Interdisciplinary Studies and as the director of SUSTech’s Office of Research. Zhao earned his BS degree from Peking University and his PhD degree from Stony Brook University. He served as a senior scientist and team leader in his 18-year tenure at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Zhao was director of the DOE/NNSA Center for High Pressure Science and Engineering and a professor at UNLV. He has presented tutorial lectures at MRS Meetings, set up satellite meetings, and organized special sessions.


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    Kagan leads MRS Board of Directors for 2021. MRS Bulletin 46, 76–80 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1557/s43577-020-00015-x

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