Prof. Clark Landis becomes UW-Madison Department of Chemistry chair

By Tatum Lyles Flick
Department of Chemistry Communications

Man with glasses smiling
Prof. Clark Landis

Clark Landis, who has been with the UW-Madison Department of Chemistry for 30 years, will take over as department chair on July 1, 2021, to begin a three-year term.

His goals as department chair are to attract outstanding faculty and students, improve departmental infrastructure for research and education, and to complete our ongoing Departmental reorganization. These goals support the department in its mission to conduct world-class, groundbreaking research in the chemical sciences while offering the highest quality of education to undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral associates.

Through the pandemic, Landis led the undergraduate program as it transitioned, in just two weeks, from in-person to virtual instruction of more than six thousand students. 

“Clark has been instrumental in leading the undergraduate program through the pandemic, while still maintaining our department’s high level of service to students and their education,” said Judith Burstyn, Department of Chemistry chair, whose four-year term ended in June. “I look forward to seeing what he will do as department chair.”

Landis received his Bachelor’s of Science in Chemistry in 1980 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and his Ph.D. in Chemistry in 1983 from the University of Chicago. Prior to his academic career, Clark worked in the Central Research Labs of Monsanto Company. His research encompasses discovery and in-depth mechanistic analysis of catalytic transformations, chemical bonding theory, and development of new instrumentation for operando studies of chemical reactions.

He is a fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, and the American Chemical Society. He has received numerous research and teaching awards, including the ACS Award in Organometallic Chemistry.