University of Pittsburgh
June 8, 2005

Pitt Chemical and Petroleum Engineering Professor Anna C. Balazs Appointed to Distinguished Professorship

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH—The University of Pittsburgh has named Anna C. Balazs a Distinguished Professor of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering in the University's School of Engineering.

Balazs received the title of distinguished professor for her "extraordinary levels of achievement" within her field. Balazs' research focuses on theoretical and computer modeling of the thermodynamic and kinetic behavior of polymer blends and composites. She also investigates the properties of polymers at surfaces and interfaces. Pitt Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg made the appointment on the recommendations of Gerald D. Holder, dean of the School of Engineering, and Pitt Provost James V. Maher.

"The School of Engineering has a long and proud history of high achievement," said Nordenberg. "Professor Balazs and her colleagues have added to that legacy and to the University's reputation for research excellence by synthetically engineering a process that is enormously difficult. Her pioneering work builds upon and advances previous research in the field and is the basis for important and widespread application."

Balazs earned the A.B. degree, with honors, in physics at Bryn Mawr College in 1975, and the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in materials science and engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) in 1977 and 1981, respectively. After holding postdoctoral positions at M.I.T. and the University of Massachusetts, she joined Pitt's Department of Materials Science and Engineering in 1987 as an assistant professor. In 1997, Balazs moved to the University's Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering.

In addition to distinguished professor, Balazs is also Robert Von der Luft Professor and a researcher in the University's McGowan Institute for Regenerative Medicine and Institute of NanoScience and Engineering.

Balazs also is a Senior Visiting Fellow at the Oxford Center for Advanced Materials and Composites and the Materials Science Department of Oxford University in England. Among her many awards are the Chancellor's Distinguished Research Award from Pitt and the National Science Foundation's Special Creativity Award. A fellow of the American Physical Society, Balazs has served in a number of leadership positions, been actively involved in international conference organizations, and served on many advisory and editorial boards. She also consults for such firms as Dow Corning and Dow Chemical Company.