Alison Butler, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, has been named associate dean for bioengineering, a newly created position at the University of California, Santa Barbara. The new position underscores the strength of interdisciplinary research at UCSB, a hallmark of the university and of scientific research in the new century.
Biology, chemistry, physics and engineering will all be a part of her new job.
"We're really well positioned to develop new, cross-disciplinary research," said Butler. "The research programs of many of us at are right at the interface of biology and engineering, including my own which includes looking at how bacteria get iron, as well as engineering new functions into metalloenzymes and microorganisms."
"We will be using engineering principles to study biological problems," Butler added. "And we will be making new devices based on biologicalsystems, taking advantage of how biological systems work."
Butler will work with Matthew Tirrell, the dean of The College of Engineering, and with Martin Moscovits, dean of the Division of Mathematics, Life and Physical Sciences in the College of Letters and Science.
"Alison Butler is a dynamic and widely respected scientist whose leadership will shape a program in bioengineering on this campus that has distinctive character, one that builds on UCSB's strengths," said Tirrell.
Butler received her Ph.D. from the University of California, San Diego in 1982. She was a NIH Postdoctoral Fellow at UCLA and Caltech before joining the faculty at UCSB in 1986. Her awards include an American Cancer
Society Junior Faculty Research Award; the UCSB Harold J. Plous Memorial Award; and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellowship. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Currently she is a member of the editorial boards of the Journal of Biological Inorganic Chemistry, the Journal of Inorganic Biochemistry and Inorganic Chemistry.
She is also the chair-elect of the bio-inorganic subdivision and a former member of the executive committee of the Division of Inorganic Chemistry of the American Chemical Society.
Note: A j-peg photo of Alison Butler is available.