Dave Allen Honored as American Chemical Society Fellow

Headshot of Chemical Engerineering Professor David AllenDavid Allen, professor of chemical engineering in the Cockrell School of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin, has been named a 2013 Fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS) in recognition for his contributions to atmospheric chemistry, air quality management and environmental education.

Allen is one of 96 distinguished scientists inducted as an ACS Fellow this year. The honor recognizes outstanding achievements in chemistry and important contributions to ACS, the world’s largest scientific society. This year, new ACS Fellows will be recognized at the 246th ACS National Meeting’s induction ceremony Monday, Sept. 9, in Indianapolis.

“This is an honor bestowed on members for their outstanding accomplishments in scientific research, education and public service,” said ACS Immediate Past-President Bassam Z. Shakhashiri. “Their individual contributions to ACS, to science, and to society are hallmarks of distinction in keeping with the ACS mission of advancing the chemical enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of earth and its people.”

Allen, who is an award-winning teacher, instructs undergraduate courses in the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering, including one of the university’s signature courses for first-year students, “Sustaining a Planet.”

He is director of the UTeachEngineering program at UT Austin and was recently selected to lead a new National Science Foundation-funded program aimed at retaining freshmen in engineering majors by teaching calculus through hands-on activities.

An internationally recognized expert in air quality, Allen recently completed a major field study to measure methane emissions from natural gas production, including hydraulically fractured wells, of which little scientific data exists. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas that can be released into the atmosphere during natural gas production, processing and transportation.

The study, unparalleled in scope and approach, was conducted in collaboration with the Environmental Defense Fund and nine of the nation’s leading natural gas producers. Allen expects the study will be published in a scientific journal this fall.

Additionally, Allen directs the State of Texas Air Quality Research Program and UT Austin’s Center for Energy and Environmental Resources. In 2009, he won the Research Excellence In Sustainable Engineering Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. In 2012, he was named chair of the Environment Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board for a two-year term.

Allen received a B.S. in chemical engineering with distinction from Cornell University in 1979 and a M.S. and Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the California Institute of Technology in 1981 and 1983, respectively. He has also held visiting faculty appointments at the California Institute of Technology, the University of California, Santa Barbara, and the Department of Energy.

About the American Chemical Society With more than 163,000 members, ACS is the world’s largest scientific society and one of the world’s leading sources of authoritative scientific information. A nonprofit organization chartered by Congress, ACS is at the forefront of the evolving worldwide chemical enterprise and the premier professional home for chemists, chemical engineers and related professions around the globe.

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