Professor Kalliat T Valsaraj is the Vice Chancellor for Research & Economic Development at LSU. He holds the titles of Charles and Hilda Roddey Distinguished Professor in Chemical Engineering and Ike East Professorship in Chemical Engineering. He is a Fellow of both the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). In 2010 he was awarded the LSU Rainmaker Award in the Senior STEM category and in 2011 he was awarded the Distinguished Research Master award by LSU. The professional societies of AIChE and ACS (American Chemical Society) awarded him the Charles E Coates award in 2012.
He received the M.Sc. in Chemistry from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras in 1980 and a Ph.D. in Chemistry (with Chemical Engineering as Minor) from Vanderbilt University in 1983. After a brief stint at the Arkansas Engineering Experiment Station of the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, he joined LSU in 1986 as a research associate. He later became a regular faculty in the Cain Department of Chemical Engineering and progressed through the ranks to a tenured full professor. He served as the Department Chair from 2005 to 2011. He has also provided service as a member of the Faculty Senate, Chair of the College of Engineering Policy Committee, and several other committees during his 27 years of service to LSU.
His research area is in environmental chemical engineering. He has broad research experience in wastewater treatment, atmospheric chemistry and, modeling the fate and transport of contaminants in all three environmental media (air, water and soil/sediment). He has mentored 12 Ph.D. (2 more in progress), 19 MS (2 more in progress) students at LSU and several postdoctoral students in addition to hosting a number of visiting professors in his laboratory.
His present research is concerned with the transformations of pollutants on atmospheric aerosols (fog, rain, ice and snow), mercury sequestration in sediments and, studies on chemical dispersant design for sub-sea oil/gas spill. He is the author of 1 textbook (with three editions), 175 peer-reviewed journal articles, 27 book chapters and 2 U.S. patents. He has made over 200 national and international presentations and 27 invited seminars and plenary lectures on his research. His research has been supported by the NSF, EPA, DOE, DOD, USGS and several private industries. He was very active in one of the longest lasting (1982-2002) Centers of Excellence at LSU in the college of engineering, viz., the U.S. EPA Hazardous Substances Research Center which brought in about $30 million in research funds during its lifetime. He is presently co-directing another $10.34 million Consortium on Molecular Engineering of Dispersants (CMEDS) funded by the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative. He has consulted for various private industries and also provided service to several review panels, state and federal agencies.
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Professor Matthew R. Lee is the Senior Associate Vice Chancellor in the Office of Research & Economic Development. Dr. Lee is a criminologist and public health scholar who received his Ph.D. in Sociology from Louisiana State University in 1999. He spent 5 years on the faculty in the Department of Sociology at Mississippi State University before coming back to LSU in 2004. He is currently a Professor of Sociology, co-founder and co-coordinator of CAPER, the Crime and Policy Evaluation Research group. He is an elected member of several scholarly honor societies, including Alpha Kappa Delta – the International Sociology Honor Society, Phi Kappa Phi, and Sigma Xi – the Scientific Research Society. He was named an LSU Rainmaker in both 2008 and 2009.
His research and teaching interests are in the broad areas of criminal violence and public health. He has written or co-authored more than 55 peer reviewed journal articles and book chapters, and has received NSF CAREER and SGER grants, Board of Regents Enhancement funds, and research support from other sources. He has been heavily involved in mentoring outstanding graduate and undergraduate students, including students who have become Ronald McNair and Perkins Fellows, and a Truman Scholar and Ford Fellow.
The substance of his scholarly work lies in the areas of racial inequality, social structure and violence; rural violence; cultural influences on violence; and community public health issues. He is a major proponent of civic community theory in sociology, and has demonstrated its broad applicability to the explanation of community variation in social pathologies.
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Dr. Gus Kousoulas is the Associate Vice Chancellor for Research & Economic Development at LSU. Dr. Kousoulas joined the LSU faculty in 1988 and became full professor in 1994. He is currently professor of virology and biotechnology at the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine, with adjunct appointments at the LSU Department of Biological Sciences, LSU College of Science and the the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Parasitology at the LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, and the LSU Health Sciences Center’s Stanley S. Scott Cancer Center in New Orleans. He also holds an appointment in the School of Animal Sciences at the LSU AgCenter, and he is an affiliate member of the Tulane National Primate Research Center located in Covington, La.
He is the lead researcher of the LSU-Tulane “Center for Experimental Infectious Diseases,” which is funded by the National Institutes of Health. His research interests are focused on the molecular biology of human herpes viruses, including Kaposi’s Sarcoma Associated Herpes virus, which causes Kaposi’s cancer in humans. Kousoulas has extensively utilized viral vectors for vaccine development and cancer treatment, and has constructed and patented herpes simplex viruses that can selectively replicate in human breast cancer cells providing a unique approach to treatment.
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Gary R. Byerly is the dean of the LSU Graduate School and the Fenton Alumni Professor of Geology. He is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Geological Society of America, and the Geological Society of South Africa. His primary interests are in the Earth’s early evolution (physical, chemical, and biological). He has spent 35 years mapping in the Barberton Mountains of South Africa where a sequence of rocks 3.6 to 3.2 billion years of age remain remarkably preserved. Among his 80 publications are three books, three maps, and four papers in Science and Nature.
Byerly received his BS, 1970, MS, 1972, and PhD, 1974, from Michigan State University. He was a Smithsonian Post-doctoral Fellow at the U.S. Museum of Natural History, and a National Research Council Post-doctoral Fellow at the U.S. Geological Survey prior to his appointment to the faculty at LSU.
As Dean of the Graduate School his major efforts are: 1) to develop a more effective enrollment management plan that will grow LSU graduate programs by 30% in the next five years; 2) continue to promote new processes for paperless, secure, and accessible student applications and academic records; 3) work with faculty on new online professional Master’s programs and graduate certificate programs; 4) recruit and graduate a larger portion of under-represented minorities; and, 5) create partnerships with other universities, as well as government, corporate, and non-profits, to provide pathways from degrees to careers.
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Dr. Duran serves as the Gordon A. Cain Chair for STEM Literacy and Director of the Office of Undergraduate Research at LSU. He also serves as Executive Director of the Gordon A. Cain Center for STEM Literacy. Dr. Duran came to LSU in 2009 following 20 years at the University of Florida, where in addition to winning an NSF Young Investigator Award as a professor of chemistry, he initiated a variety of teaching and international research programs. Having earned a doctoral degree from the University Louis Pasteur in Strasbourg, France, Dr. Duran’s international programs have subsequently produced great successes for participants, including a Rhodes Scholar in 2001, a Marshal Awardee in 2009, and students who are now professors in several countries.
While at Florida, he was a member and subsequent PI of the NSF funded nationwide Chemistry REU Leadership Group and in 2005 was a co-organizer of the “Pan-REU Workshop” involving all seven directorates of NSF for the first time. In 2009, Dr. Duran was awarded with “Chevalier (knight) dans l’Ordre des Palmes Academiques” for lifetime contribution to French Education. In 2010 he led the sixth renewal of the LSU Undergraduate Howard Hughes Medical Institute award, after having started the program at Florida four years earlier. Dr. Duran has also maintained a strong research effort in materials/polymer research that has included more than $20M in support from more than 100 funded proposals and agencies ranging from NSF to ONR, AFOSR, and DARPA. He has also been active in curricular development, serving as a consultant to McGraw Hill and Addison Wesley publishers.
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Jennifer L. Jolly, Director of Creative Initiatives received her Ph.D. in educational psychology with a concentrate in gifted education from Baylor University.
Currently she is an associate professor in elementary and gifted education and Division Leader of Curriculum and Instruction. Her research interests include the history of gifted education and parents of gifted learners. Jolly is the vice-president of The Association of the Gifted (CEC-TAG) and co-editor of Excellence and Diversity in Gifted Education (EDGE). She also is on the editorial advisory board for Gifted Child Today and the Journal for the Education of the Gifted. In 2013, Jolly was awarded NAGC’s Early Leader Award. She also received the Michael Pyryt Collaboration Award from AERA/Research on Creativity, Giftedness, and Talent SIG (with Dr. Alex Garn & Dr. Michael Matthews) in 2012, the 2011 Louisiana Council for Exceptional Children Higher Education Professional of the Year, and the 2010 American MENSA Research Award.
Jolly established a summer camp for gifted learners in partnership with the Louisiana State Museum, which hosts local gifted students each June. Before her tenure at LSU, she taught in both gifted and regular education classrooms as a public school teacher.
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