University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

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Hillmyer receives prestigous McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair

Department of Chemistry Professor Marc Hillmyer has been awarded a prestigious McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair by University President Eric Kaler. This is one of the University’s highest faculty awards. Professor Hillmyer is only the second professor in the University’s College of Science and Engineering to receive the honor.

The Presidential Endowed Chair acknowledges the critical contributions of important University faculty who have distinguished themselves and their departments in the missions of research, education and public engagement. Recipients are recommended by their college dean and chosen at the discretion of the president based on their academic and research accomplishments and their contributions to advancing the university among its peers.

“Marc is one of the most accomplished faculty members in the College of Science and Engineering and is, I believe, most deserving of this special recognition,” said Steven Crouch, dean of the University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering.

Hillmyer has nearly 300 refereed publications to his credit. Since becoming an assistant professor in 1997, he has advised or co-advised 38 doctorate students and 55 post-doctoral fellows, and mentored more than 90 undergraduate students in his laboratory. He has attracted more than $9 million in sponsored funding as a principal investigator or co-principal investigator. He also led the successful effort to secure the new $20 million National Science Foundation-sponsored Center for Sustainable Polymers, which aims to develop the next generation of sustainable plastics made from renewable sources.

Hillmyer has taught all levels of chemistry courses at the university. He also was one of the founders of the popular K-12 outreach program called “Energy and U” that teaches more than 10,000 kids every year about the basic principles of energy and literally ignites their interest in science.

Hillmyer received his bachelor's degree in chemistry from the University of Florida and his doctorate in chemistry from the California Institute of Technology. After completing a postdoctoral research position in the University of Minnesota's Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, he joined the Department of Chemistry faculty at Minnesota in 1997.

He is currently a Distinguished McKnight University Professor and leads a research group focused on the synthesis and self-assembly of multifunctional polymers. In addition to his teaching and research responsibilities, Hillmyer serves as an associate editor for the American Chemical Society journal Macromolecules and is the director of the Center for Sustainable Polymers at the University of Minnesota, a National Science Foundation Center for Chemical Innovation.