Dr. Theresa Mayer
Vice President for Research and Innovation, Virginia Tech
"Attending graduate school in the ECE Department at Purdue University was the single most important stop on what has turned out to be an incredibly exciting and rewarding professional career journey. As a first generation student, I feel very fortunate that Purdue gave me the chance to learn from faculty who are world-renowned leaders in nanotechnology research and education. My mentors and colleagues at Purdue also taught me the value and importance of collaborating across boundaries, striving for excellence, and persevering in the face of challenges. I am honored to have been selected for this award, and thank my mentors for helping me to develop the skills and confidence that I have needed to walk through the doors of opportunity each time they opened."
Dr. Theresa Mayer is the Vice President for Research and Innovation and a professor of electrical and computer engineering at Virginia Tech.
Prior to her current positions, she was a distinguished professor of electrical engineering and the Associate Dean for Research and Innovation in the College of Engineering at Penn State University. From 2005 to 2014, she served as the site director of the National Science Foundation(NSF)-supported National Nanotechnology Infrastructure Network, which enabled advanced nanotechnology research and technology transition for partners in academia and industry. During this time, Dr. Mayer also was as an associate director of the Penn State Materials Research Institute, where she was the director of the Nanofabrication Laboratory and on the leadership team of the NSF-supported Materials Research Science and Engineering Center for Nanoscale Science.
Dr. Mayer is widely recognized for her research in nanotechnology and its applications in electronic and optical devices. Her research and outreach activities have been funded by extramural agencies including the National Science Foundation, Department of Defense, National Institutes of Health, Department of Energy, and industry. Dr. Mayer has received numerous awards for her teaching and research, including the NSF CAREER and IEEE Fellow. She has served her profession in roles that include Senior Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Nanotechnology journal, General Chair of the IEEE Device Research Conference and the Gordon Research Conference on Nanostructure Fabrication. Over her career, she has been active in engaging girls and women to explore opportunities in science and technology.
Dr. Mayer received her bachelor’s degree in electrical and computer engineering from Virginia Tech in 1988, and master’s and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from Purdue University in 1989 and 1993, respectively.