People Spotlight

new faculty

Duke Engineering welcomes five new regular-rank faculty members this academic year:

  • In BME, Mike Lynch, co-founder of OPXBIO, which develops and produces bio-based chemicals and fuels, became a new assistant research professor.
  • ECE added associate professor Mike Gehm, who specializes in computational sensing and founded Arizona Sensors LLC, and assistant professor Galen Reeves, whose research lies at the intersection of signal processing, statistics, and information theory.
  • MEMS gained associate professor Volker Blum, from the Max Planck Institute in Berlin, who joins the team at Duke’s Center for Materials Genomics, and associate professor Missy Cummings, from MIT, whose research focuses on human-machine interactions.


John Albertson was reappointed as the W.H. Gardner Jr. Chair of Civil and Environmental Engineering. During his first term, Albertson led the department through a successful strategic planning effort, made a number of strong hires and led improvements in student advising and faculty mentoring, as well as the creation of the new environmental engineering major that is Pratt’s first new major program in 40 years. His reappointment through 2016 became effective July 1.

Earl Dowell, chair and William Holland Hall Professor of MEMS, was named to the National Research Council Committee on Review of Specialized Degree-Granting Graduate Programs of the Department of Defense in STEM and Management. 

Warren Grill, the Addy Family Professor in BME, was selected as Duke University’s Outstanding Postdoc Mentor for 2013 for his excellence as a teacher, advisor, advocate and role model for postdocs throughout their professional training. Earlier this year, Grill was appointed to the Department of Veterans Affairs Advisory Committee on Prosthetics and Special Disabilities Programs.

Adam Wax, the Theodore Kennedy Professor in BME, was elected to the board of directors of the Optical Society of America—the leading professional society for those who “fuel discoveries, shape real-world applications and accelerate achievements in the science of light.” 

Tosh Chilkoti discussed his research into novel drug delivery techniques at the annual meeting of the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES) as the recipient of the 2013 Pritzker Distinguished Lectureship, the society's most prestigious award. Chilkoti, the Theodore Pilkington Professor in BME, was also named a fellow of the BMES as well as of the Controlled Release Society this year. 

Pratt executive-in-residence and adjunct professor Vivek Wadhwa was named one of the Most Influential Minds in Tech in the TIME Tech 40.

Three outstanding teachers on the Pratt faculty were selected for a second term as Bass Teaching Fellows in the Bass Program for Excellence in Undergraduate Education. Henri Gavin, the Yoh Family Associate Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering; Craig Henriquez, the James L. and Elizabeth M. Vincent Professor of Biomedical Engineering; and Wanda Neu, the Jeffrey N. Vinik Professor of Biomedical Engineering, will hold the chairs through June 2016. 

Monty Reichert, the Alan L. Kaganov Professor of BME, was reappointed as associate dean for diversity and PhD education. He will serve in this role for the coming academic year before taking a well-deserved sabbatical in 2014.