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Director, Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis&Professor

The University of Kansas
University of Kansas Lawrence Campus

Job Details

Position OverviewThe Center for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis (CEBC) is a designated research center at the University of Kansas (KU). In 2003 the center was established as an National Science Foundation Engineering Research Center (ERC) with the mission to develop cleaner, safer, energy-efficient technologies that protect the planet and human health. The CEBC Director establishes the Center's research mission, vision and goals in alignment with the university’s strategic plan. The Director also holds a joint appointment as a tenured faculty member within the Department of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering situated within the School of Engineering. The Director reports to and serves at the pleasure of the Vice Chancellor for Research.

The CEBC community comprises 67 employees, including faculty and staff researchers, postdocs, graduate students, and professional staff. CEBC facilities are located in the Life Science Research Laboratories building, 3 miles west of KU's main campus.

The CEBC is internationally recognized for research, education and mentoring the next generation of scientists. Researchers are driven to explore and seek sustainable chemical discoveries at the frontiers of science and engineering - striving to protect the planet, promote prosperity, and enrich scholarship. Programming, projects and events actively engage audiences throughout the community, including but not limited to K-12, informal science educators, and others.

The Director has the unique opportunity to focus, develop and grow their own research program synergistically with CEBC personnel and collaboratively with a large and diverse network of researchers across KU. The Center is part of a rich network of collaborating research centers and academic units at the university, including the departments of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering, Chemistry, Molecular Biosciences, and Physics & Astronomy, among others.

Founded in 1865, KU is an R1-rated research university with more than 40 graduate programs ranked by U.S. News & World Report. As a premier international research university, the University of Kansas is committed to a culture of care focused on inclusion and belonging that nurtures the growth and development of all. KU holds steadfast in the belief that a variety of values, interests, experiences, and intellectual and cultural viewpoints enrich learning and our workplace.
Job DescriptionCenter for Environmentally Beneficial Catalysis - 50%
    Provides administrative and scientific leadership as well as oversight of the financial affairs, personnel and business practices of the CEBC.
  1. Develops and articulates the research mission and goals of the CEBC by fostering positive working relationships and cooperative research activity among university faculty and researchers affiliated with the Center.
  2. Provides effective intellectual leadership necessary to address challenging problems related to the development and deployment of catalysis and engineering solutions for the sustainable production and transformation of chemicals, energy and fuels.
  3. Develops and maintains an active program of research and scholarship in an area related to the Center’s research mission, is active in professional organization affairs, and is engaged in related regional, national and international activities.
  4. Leads a community of multidisciplinary scholars and educators assembled within the CEBC to foster and nurture a vibrant learning, discovery, innovation and engagement program.
  5. Fosters the intellectual growth and development of graduate students in the Center through cooperation with degree granting departments and enhanced support of graduate students.
  6. Stimulates the expansion and diversification of externally sponsored research funding by fostering and catalyzing the development of ideas, people, and infrastructure necessary for success at the state and national levels.
  7. Actively engages in strengthening the financial resources available to the CEBC through all available sources.
  8. Effectively interacts with the energy and chemicals industries and with government agencies, as appropriate, to promote and develop support for the Center’s mission.
  9. Seeks excellence in the recruitment and retention of the highest quality academic and research support staff and students from diverse backgrounds.
  10. Fosters and supports a culture of belonging where members feel included and safe, and where there is a high standard for ethical research practices, and compliance among all faculty, staff, affiliates, sponsored visitors, etc.
  11. Prepares reports, mission statements, key performance indicators, and other documents as requested by the Vice Chancellor for Research.
Full Professor of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering (50%)

The Director also serves as a tenured, full professor in the Department of Chemical & Petroleum Engineering with a 50% appointment. As a tenured faculty member, the director will be expected to meet satisfactory standards of performance in all three areas of responsibility: teaching/advising (40%), research (40%) and service (20%).

Teaching (40%): Develops and teaches undergraduate and graduate courses. Participates in undergraduate and graduate student advising as appropriate, mentors graduate students in research and serves as an advisor or participates on graduate student committees.

Research (40%): Establishes and directs a strong, independent research program in areas of expertise that overlap, support or expand the current research in the Center or department, leading to external grant support and publication in recognized refereed journals and conference proceedings. Collaborates with internal and external faculty and professional staff across campuses.

Service (20%): Performs department, school, university and professional service normally expected of university faculty, commensurate with rank. Participates in local, national and international professional conferences and other activities appropriate to the discipline. Fosters a positive relationship with industry and the community. Performs other duties as assigned by the departmental chair.

A joint or courtesy faculty appointment in collaborating units may be available based upon the individual’s education, research and credentials. Such appointments strengthen opportunities for collaboration and learning between organizations and research initiatives, providing a highly engaging and competitive learning environment for students, postdoctoral researchers and other research staff and scientists.
Required QualificationsEvaluation of the following requirements will be made through (1) description of work experience and educational experiences in CV and (2) record of accomplishments and productivity demonstrated in CV:
  1. Earned doctorate degree in related field, such as Chemical Engineering, Chemistry, or a closely related discipline.
  2. Eligible for a faculty appointment as a full professor with tenure.
  3. National recognition and scientific leadership in sustainability issues in the chemical processing industry as demonstrated by a record of refereed publications, professional service, and success in securing external sponsored project funding.
  4. Demonstrated administrative experience including financial management and development of personnel and programs.
  5. Evidence of teaching experience and effectiveness
  6. Excellent communication skills as demonstrated through application materials and interview.
  7. Experience working with multidisciplinary constituencies.
  8. Record of broad leadership skills and a commitment to investing in a continuous learning and growth environment, bringing different constituencies together.

Preferred Qualifications
    A broad background in working with multiple agencies (government, academic, and/or industrial) in the areas of environmentally sustainable fuels, methods and related fields.
  1. Demonstrated success in facilitating industry, university and government partnerships.
  2. Demonstrated record of innovation and entrepreneurial engagement.
  3. Demonstrated experience in advancing interactions between Industry and the Center.
  4. Demonstrated engagement and dedication to undergraduate and graduate teaching.
Additional Candidate InstructionsFor complete information and to apply online go to A complete online application will include the following PDF files: 1) letter of interest detailing your vision for the Center; 2) curriculum vitae; 3) a statement of research interests and plans on the order of two pages; 4) a statement of teaching interests on the order of two pages; and 5) contact information (including email addresses) for three individuals who can provide letters of recommendation.

Review of application materials begins May 17, 2024 and continues as long as needed to identify a qualified pool of candidates.Advertised Salary Rangecommensurate with experienceApplication Review BeginsFriday May 17, 2024Anticipated Start DateSunday August 18, 2024Apply to Job


Working at the University of Kansas 

Join the University of Kansas, and you’ll become part of a Jayhawk family that spans the globe. Wear your KU shirt in London, Istanbul, Buenos Aires, Nairobi or anywhere else, and you will likely hear a resounding “Rock Chalk!” from a stranger. Of course, the appropriate response is an enthusiastic “Jayhawk!” Because, after all, they’re not really strangers, they’re family.

The Jayhawk community is united by more than 150 years of tradition and by our commitment to pushing the boundaries of knowledge, transforming the academic experience, and creating solutions through innovative research. KU’s mission is to lift students and society by educating leaders, building healthy communities and making discoveries that change the world.  

The University of Kansas is the state’s flagship university and one of just 66 invited members of the prestigious Association of American Universities (AAU). We consistently earn high rankings for academics and recognition as a premier research university.

KU faculty and staff embrace our role as the state’s flagship university, AAU member and R1 institution that serves the state, nation and world. We celebrate the energy and compassion that infuse the Jayhawk spirit; and, we remain true to KU’s historic values: the elevating force of education, the transformative power of research and the healing power of service.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging 

The University of Kansas is committed to a learning and workplace environment that is representative of our nation and global society, accepts and values everyone, appreciates our common humanity and understands that our multiple differences are the cornerstone of academic preparation, professional excellence and distinction. KU must be a place where all people feel they belong and have access to resources and support that help them attain their educational and professional goals.

We recognize there are inequalities and privileges generated by historical and persistent intersecting differences by race, ethnicity, gender identities, gender expressions, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, age, abilities, religion, regional background, veteran status, citizenship status and nationality. And we hold ourselves accountable for policies, processes and programs that appreciate these and other differences and create more fair, safe and just learning, working and living environments for KU students, faculty and staff.


KU offers a broad array of undergraduate and graduate study programs, and we fulfill our mission through academic and research programs of international distinction, coupled with outstanding libraries, teaching museums and information technology. These resources enrich the academic experience for students from all 50 states and 112 countries, and provide enrichment resources for KU faculty and staff.


The university attains high levels of research productivity and recognizes that faculty are part of a network of scholars and academicians that shape a discipline as well as teach it. KU staff are integral to our research success, participating in and supporting discoveries that expand knowledge and improve lives.


The university and our employees serve society through research, teaching and the preservation and dissemination of knowledge. KU's academic programs, arts facilities and public programs provide cultural enrichment opportunities for the larger community. And, KU offers educational, research and service programs throughout the state. KU employees are encouraged to participate in and serve the campus and surrounding communities in a way that is meaningful to them.

International Dimension 

KU offers more than 100 programs of international study and cooperative research for KU students and faculty at sites around the world. The university offers teaching and research that draw upon and contribute to the most advanced developments throughout the United States and abroad. At the same time, KU's extensive international ties support economic development in Kansas.


The University of Kansas, our students and employees are committed to excellence. We foster a multicultural, inclusive environment in which the dignity and rights of individuals are respected. Intellectual diversity, integrity and disciplined inquiry in the search for knowledge are of paramount importance.

Our City and State 

KU sits atop Mt. Oread in the center of Lawrence, a town full of natural beauty and culture. In fact, Rolling Stone magazine named Lawrence one of the best college towns in the United States. Lawrence is home to more than 100,000 people, and has a charming, Midwestern friendliness that welcomes visitors and celebrates diversity. In addition to KU, Lawrence is home to Haskell Indian Nations University, the premiere tribal university in the United States.

Lawrence’s historic and thriving downtown features restaurants, nightlife and local shops offering unique finds that you won’t find anywhere else. The town has more than 50 parks, an encompassing mixed-use trail, and quick access to biking/hiking trails along the Kansas River and around Clinton Lake. A five-minute drive from Lawrence, Clinton Lake offers fishing, boating, beaches, camping and other outdoor activities.

Located just 40 minutes west of Kansas City, Lawrence offers the appeal of a mid-size, suburban town with quick access to the amenities of a large city, including an international airport. The Kansas City metro area is home to world-class museums and cultural activities, Jazz clubs and other nightlife venues, expansive shopping options, and exciting professional sports with the Kansas City Chiefs, Kansas City Royals and Sporting KC.

Kansas is in the center of the country, making it convenient and cost effective to fly or drive to destinations throughout the United States. Far from flat, the Flint Hills, just 90 minutes from Lawrence, offer panoramic vistas that showcase the breathtaking beauty of America.

Making KU Your Home 

Something about Lawrence is magnetic. Long-time residents are never surprised when a KU student or employee from out of state decides to make Lawrence their permanent home. And, even those who do leave often find themselves returning to “the nest” at some point in the future. In fact, Lawrence has been named by several publications as one of the best places to retire.

At the University of Kansas, you’ll join a global Jayhawk family and find a place to call home.

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