Daniel Lacks named chair of Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering

Daniel Lacks, the C. Benson Branch Professor of Chemical Engineering, has been named chair of the Case School of Engineering’s Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.
Lacks has been a member of the Case School of Engineering faculty for 13 years. His research interests lie in molecular simulation of materials, and he has emerged as a leading figure in the university’s international efforts and influence. He created a unique study abroad opportunity for engineering students that allowed them to take one of their core course, thermodynamics, in Botswana, where they could see the principles brought to life in real-world scenarios. In addition to teaching formal courses abroad, he has taken dozens of students to perform solar panel installations in developing countries like Lesotho and Namibia. He was also the first western faculty member to visit an engineering school in Myanmar, where he played a key role in updating the country’s engineering curriculum and taught the first U.S. course in the country’s history after it reopened to the world following 50 years of political and academic isolation.

“Dan is truly a global citizen, both in terms of his research reputation and valuable international perspective,” says Jeffrey L. Duerk, dean of the Case School of Engineering. “He is an internationally renowned researcher in the field of electrostatics and he is dedicated to creating international opportunities for students and faculty alike, designing courses that provide rich cultural immersions for students abroad and serving as a strong advocate for internationalization here on campus. His efforts have been a key component in building our reputation as a leader in engineering research and education around the world.”
A respected researcher and educator, Lacks has supervised more than 19 graduate students, mentored some 50 undergraduate students and has hosted dozens of visiting Fulbright scholars from around the world.