Speaker Biographies

Zhenan Bao
Stanford University

Zhenan Bao is a Professor of Chemical Engineering at Stanford University, and by courtesy a Professor of Chemistry and Zhenan BaoProfessor of Material Science and Engineering. Prior to joining Stanford in 2004, she was a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff in Bell Labs, Lucent Technologies from 1995-2004. She has over 400 refereed publications and over 60 US patents with a Google Scholar H-Index of >110.

Bao served as a Board Member for the National Academy Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology and Board of Directors for the Materials Research Society (MRS). She is an Associate Editor for Chemical Sciences. She serves/served on the international advisory board for Nature Asia Materials, Journal of American Chemical Society, Advanced Materials, Advanced Functional Materials, Advanced Energy Materials, Advanced Electronic Materials, ACS Nano, Chemistry of Materials, Nanoscale, Chemical Communication, Macromolecules, Organic Electronics, Materials Horizon and Materials Today. 

Bao was elected as a member of the National Academy of Engineering in 2016. She is a Fellow of ACS, AAAS, MRS, SPIE, ACS PMSE and ACS POLY.  Bao was the recipient of the AICHE Andreas Acroivos Award for Professional Progress in Chemical Engineering 2014, ACS Polymer Division Carl S. Marvel Creative Polymer Chemistry Award 2013, ACS Author Cope Scholar Award 2011, Royal Society of Chemistry Beilby Medal and Prize 2009, IUPAC Creativity in Applied Polymer Science Prize 2008, American Chemical Society Team Innovation Award 2001, R&D 100 Award 2001. 

Bao was selected by MIT Technology Review magazine in 2003 as one of the top 100 young innovators. She is among the world’s top 100 materials scientists by Thomson Reuters.  She is a co-founder and on the Board of Directors for C3 Nano, a silicon-valley venture funded start-up commercializing flexible transparent electrodes using nanomaterials.


Michelle Chang
University of California at Berkeley

Michelle is an associate professor at UC Berkeley in the Departments of Chemistry and Molecular and Cell Biology. She received Michelle Chang her PhD from MIT, working with JoAnne Stubbe and Daniel Nocera, and her postdoctoral training with Jay Keasling at UC Berkeley. Her research group works at the interface of enzymology and synthetic biology, with a focus on studying biological fluorine chemistry, formation of mixed-valent nanomaterials by directional-sensing bacteria, and processes involved in developing synthetic biofuel and monomer pathways. She has received the Dreyfus New Faculty Award, TR35 Award, Beckman Young Investigator Award, NSF CAREER Award, Agilent Early Career Award, NIH New Innovator Award, DARPA Young Faculty Award, Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, 3M Young Faculty Award, Arthur Cope Scholar Award, and Pfizer Award.


Eric Jacobsen
Harvard University

Eric Jacobsen was born in New York City and received his B.S. degree from New York University in 1982.  His PhD work was Eric Jacobson done at U.C. Berkeley under the direction of Robert Bergman.  In 1986, he returned to the East Coast of the U.S. for an NIH postdoctoral fellowship at MIT with Barry Sharpless.  In 1988, he began his independent career with the first of five blissful years on the faculty at the University of Illinois.  He moved to Harvard University as full professor in the summer of 1993, and he was named the Sheldon Emory Professor of Organic Chemistry in 2001.  He served an extended term as Chair of the Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology from 2010 to 2015. 

Eric Jacobsen directs a research group dedicated to discovering useful catalytic reactions, and to applying state-of-the art mechanistic and computational techniques to the analysis of those reactions. Several of the catalysts developed in his labs have found widespread application in industry and academia. These include metal-salen complexes for asymmetric epoxidation, conjugate additions, and hydrolytic kinetic resolution of epoxides; chromium-Schiff base complexes for a wide range of enantioselective pericyclic reactions; and organic hydrogen bond-donor catalysts for activation of neutral and cationic electrophiles.  Jacobsen’s mechanistic analyses of these systems have helped uncover general principles for catalyst design, including electronic tuning of selectivity, cooperative homo- and hetero-bimetallic catalysis, hydrogen-bond donor asymmetric catalysis, and anion binding catalysis.   

In addition to the Janssen Prize (2010), the awards Jacobsen has received include the NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award (1990), the Packard Fellowship (1991), the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (1992), the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellowship (1992), the ACS Cope Scholar Award (1993), the Fluka “Reagent of the Year” Prize (1994), the Thieme-IUPAC Prize in Synthetic Organic Chemistry (1996), the Baekeland Medal (1999), the ACS Award for Creativity in Synthetic Organic Chemistry (2001), the NIH Merit Award (2002), election to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences (2004), the Mitsui Catalysis Science Award (2005), the ACS H.C. Brown Award for Synthetic Methods (2008), election to the National Academy of Sciences (2008), the Noyori Prize (2011), the Nagoya Gold Medal Prize (2011), the Chirality Medal (2012), the Remsen Award (2013), the Esselen Award (2015), and the ACS Arthur C. Cope Award (2016).


Richard Schrock
Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Richard R. Schrock received his PhD degree in inorganic chemistry from Harvard in 1971.  After spending one year as an NSF Richard Schrock postdoctoral fellow at Cambridge University and three years at the Central Research and Development Department of E. I. duPont de Nemours and Company in Wilmington Delaware, he moved to M.I.T. in 1975.  He became full professor in 1980 and the Frederick G. Keyes Professor of Chemistry in 1989.  His interests include the inorganic and organometallic chemistry of high oxidation state, early transition metal complexes, catalysis and mechanisms, catalytic reactions that involve alkylidene complexes, and the catalytic reduction of dinitrogen.  He has received numerous awards and medals, the most prominent of which is the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 2005, which he shared with R. H. Grubbs and Y. Chauvin.  He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, and is a Foreign Member of the Royal Society (London).  He was Associate Editor of Organometallics for eight years, has published more than 575 research papers, and has supervised over 180 PhD students and postdocs.


Jin-Quan Yu
Scripps Research Institute

Jin-Quan Yu received his B.S. in Chemistry from East China Normal University in 1987. He earned his PhD from the University of Jin-Quan Yu Cambridge in 1999, under the tutelage of J. B. Spencer. After a productive postdoctoral interlude with E. J. Corey at Harvard, and a year as a Royal Society Research Fellow at the University of Cambridge he joined the faculty at Brandeis University in 2004. He moved to the Scripps Research Institute in 2007, where he received tenure in 2010, and is now the Frank and Bertha Hupp Professor of Chemistry.

Honor/Awards: (Brief List)
2014 - Elias J. Corey Award
2013 - Raymond & Beverly Sackler Prize in the Physical Sciences
2012 - Fellow of American Association for the Advancement of Science
2012 - Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry
2012 - Mukaiyama Award, Society of Organic Synthesis, Japan
2012 - ACS Cope Scholar Award
2012 - Bristol-Myers Squibb Award
2011 - Novartis Early Career Award in Organic Chemistry