Engineering and Architecture names dean finalists

PULLMAN Three finalists have been named and invited to visit campus in January in the search to succeed Anjon Bose as dean of the Washington State University College of Engineering and Architecture.

Selected by a search committee of the WSU Office of the Provost, the three finalists are Jinglu Tan, interim chair for the Department of Chemical Engineering and co-director of the Bioprocessing and Biosensing Center, University of Missouri; Candis Claiborn, associate dean of the WSU College of Engineering; and Ken Williamson, head of the departments of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering and Chemical Engineering, Oregon State University.

“The search committee and search firm have worked very hard to identify candidates to come to campus for the interviews,” said Dean Mike Griswold, chair of the search committee. “We are very pleased that these candidates will be visiting WSU. This stage of the recruitment process is critical and I would like to encourage everyone to attend the interviews and provide comments to the provost.”

Numerous sessions and interviews are slated during the visits and all faculty and staff are invited to attend open sessions with the candidates.

Schedules will be announced as soon as they are finalized.

Jinglu Tan will be visiting WSU on January 19 and 20. He received a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Shandong University of Technology in 1979, a master’s degree in agricultural engineering from the University of Alberta in 1986, and a doctorate in engineering (mechanical and agricultural) from the University of Minnesota, where his research focused on compressible-fluid system modeling and control, in 1990.

Since completing his doctorate, Tan has been on the faculty of the University of Missouri, where he has held a number of academic and administrative positions. Since 2000, he has been professor and chair of the Department of Biological Engineering. Since 2001, he has served as director of the Division of Food Systems and Bioengineering, which consists of four academic departments/programs and an extension program. He has served as interim chair of the chemical engineering department for the past year and been co-director of the Bioprocessing and Biosensing Center since 1997.

Tan’s research over the years has involved thermo-fluid system modeling, vacuum system control, predictive control, food process modeling and control, computer vision applications in food quality evaluation, and fuzzy logic and neural network applications in sensory analysis.

His current research activities include imaging and classification techniques for tissue differentiation, GFP- and plant-based biosensors, visual system modeling and identification. He has published about 130 research papers in professional journals and conference proceedings and holds five US patents. His research has been funded by NSF, USDA, industry groups and private companies. He has been a consultant to companies like Alfa Laval, Germania, SRC Vision, Spartan LLC and Kellogg’s on real-world process control and automation problems.

Scheduled for interviews and sessions on Jan. 23 and 24, Claiborn received a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Idaho in 1980 and then worked in the petroleum industry for both Chevron and the Atlantic Richfield Corporation. She subsequently earned a doctorate in chemical engineering at North Carolina State University.

Claiborn has served as associate dean of the WSU College of Engineering since 2003. She joined the WSU faculty in 1991 and is a well-known researcher in the area of air quality. At WSU, she has collaborated with other researchers in the Laboratory for Atmospheric Research to study atmospheric-biospheric interactions of trace gases. Recently, she has developed a research program in atmospheric aerosols, in which she collaborates with her colleagues in the Laboratory for Atmospheric Research, as well as others in the School of Public Health at the University of Washington, the Chemistry Department at Eastern Washington University and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

Claiborn has received several teaching awards in her department, including Outstanding Teaching Faculty in Civil Engineering in 1994, the Leon Luck Faculty Award for the Most Effective Professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering in 1998, and the Outstanding Teaching Faculty in Civil Engineering in 1999. She also received the Richard Crain Faculty Award for Distinction in Ethics Teaching in 2003.

Williamson, who will be on campus Jan. 30 and 31, received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Oregon State University in 1968, his master’s degree in environmental engineering from Oregon State University in 1970, and his doctorate in environmental engineering from Stanford University in 1973.

He has been at OSU since 1973 and has developed a nationally recognized environmental engineering program.

Williamson also serves as the associate director for the Western Region Hazardous Substance Research Center and administers a variety of programs that assist center faculty with moving research results to full-scale field applications. He directs the center’s Technical Outreach Services Program that assists communities with dealing with the impacts of local hazardous waste sites.

In 1997, Williamson won an alumni award which recognizes the most outstanding faculty member for both teaching and research in the college.

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