Krista Walton Named Interim Chair of the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Krista Walton Named Interim Chair of the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Krista Walton Named Interim Chair of the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Effective July 1, 2021, Krista Walton, associate dean for Research and Innovation in the College of Engineering, Robert "Bud" Moeller Faculty Fellow, and professor, will serve as interim chair for the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.

Walton will begin her interim role in July after the current chair, David Sholl, transitions to a joint appointment with Georgia Tech and the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). At ORNL, Sholl will be the director of the Laboratory's new Transformational Decarbonization Initiative.

“David has spent the last eight years working tirelessly for the School,” said Walton. “During his tenure, rankings improved, the School became more diversified, and additional funds were raised to drive student innovation. I have a strong, personal connection to ChBE where I’ve worked for the past 12 years and am honored to help us transition to a new chair.”

Walton currently serves as the associate dean for Research and Innovation in the College. She will continue in this role, while also serving as interim chair.

“Before becoming associate dean for the College, Krista began her career in the School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, serving as a professor and faculty fellow,” said Raheem Beyah, dean and Southern Company chair of the College of Engineering. “She has excellent working relationships with the faculty and staff of the School, and I have every confidence she will continue the upward trajectory of both teaching and research to ensure the School thrives while we search for a new chair.”

Walton’s research focuses on the design, synthesis, and characterization of functional porous materials for use in adsorption applications, including carbon dioxide capture and air purification. Walton’s accomplishments have been recognized by many prestigious awards, including the Department of Energy’s  Ernest Orlando Lawrence Award in honor of her contributions to the fields of atomic, molecular and chemical sciences (2021); the inaugural International Adsorption Society Award for Excellence in Publications by a Young Member of the Society (2013); and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (2008). Walton currently serves as an Associate Editor for the ACS Journal Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, and was the founding Director and Lead Principal Investigator of Georgia Tech’s Department of Energy – Energy Frontier Research Center, UNCAGE-ME.

Walton received her B.S.E. in chemical engineering from the University of Alabama-Huntsville in 2000 and obtained her Ph.D. in chemical engineering from Vanderbilt University in 2005. She also completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Northwestern University in 2006.

Search Committee Named

Dr. Samuel Graham, Eugene C. Gwaltney, Jr. Chair of the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, will chair the search committee tasked with finding a permanent chair. An External Advisors group of alumni and supporters is also being formed to help guide the search process. This will be an international search.

The Search Committee includes:

Blair Brettmann – Assistant Professor

Julie Champion – Associate Professor

Christian Cuba-Torres – Lecturer

Michael Filler – Associate Professor

M.G. Finn – School Chair, Chemistry and Biochemistry

Yoyin Ibikunle – Graduate Student

Kiyana Jacobs – Staff

Shelbe Johnson – Undergraduate Student

Paul Kohl – Regents’ Professor

Carson Meredith – Professor

Sally Ng – Associate Professor

Ami Waller-Ivanecky – Staff

Andrew Medford – Assistant Professor

Sankar Nair – Professor

Donna Peyton – Staff

Krista Walton – Professor

Corey Wilson – Associate Professor