Introducing Three New Associate Directors at CNSI

August 31, 2015

CNSI is delighted to announce the appointment of three new Associate Directors- Associate Professor Javier Read de Alaniz, Associate Professor Megan Valentine, and Assistant Professor Stephen Wilson. Please read more about them below:

Javier Read de Alaniz is an Associate Professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. Nationally recognized for his research on the development of new reaction for the synthesis of architecturally challenging and biologically important molecules, Javier has also demonstrated a serious commitment to teaching, for which he received Harold J. Plous Award in 2015.  He has been an active faculty mentor to programs that encourage/support STEM students from historically-underrepresented groups, including several CSEP programs at CNSI.  In 2015, he was awarded a CNSI Challenge Grant to develop an intermural nucleus of PIs to develop ‘smart’ polymers that are responsive to light or temperature.   

Megan Valentine, an Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering, has a long history of association with CNSI, where her research group employs state-of-the-art nanoscale manipulation and measurement techniques to probe diverse biological materials on length scales from that of single proteins (a few nanometers) to that of entire cells (~ 100 microns or more). This highly interdisciplinary work lies at the intersection of engineering, physics, biology and chemistry. Megan’s commitment to outreach activities and the research community at UCSB is also evident in her successful NSF funding for the CNSI INSET program, which provides research and lab experience to undergrads.  In fall 2015, Prof. Valentine will be a Fulbright Scholar in Paris.  In addition to their excellent research opportunities, “the outstanding record of ESPCI ParisTech in the recruitment and retention of women to S.T.E.M. fields was one of the many attractions in selecting it, and France, for my sabbatical,” Valentine said in an interview with the UCSB Current. 

Professor Stephen Wilson recently arrived at UCSB from the Physics faculty at Boston College, and immediately became part of the CNSI community, setting up his office and lab in Elings Hall.  He is a an Assistant Professor in the Materials Department and affiliate faculty at the Materials Research Lab, with a research focus on condensed-matter physical properties of matter such as magnetoelectronic and superconductive phenomena emergence.  In 2015, he was named a Hellman Fellow, and was also awarded a $1 million Keck Foundation grant to be used in the development of new instrumentation for bulk crystal growth.