Choong Hoon Cho Chair and Professor of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, Michael Kassner has been announced as the new Interim Chair of the Mork Family Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science, starting July 1 2019.
USC Viterbi Dean Yannis C. Yortsos welcomed Kassner to the role, saying that current Chair, Professor Richard Roberts was leaving the position in order to lead the new Center for Peptide and Protein Engineering (CPPE), starting August 16 2019.
Kassner graduated with a B.S. in Engineering from Northwestern University in 1972, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Stanford University in 1979 and 1981. He joined Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory until 1990, during which period he rose to the rank of Head of the Physical Metallurgy and Welding Section.
He was then appointed as faculty of the Mechanical Engineering Department at Oregon State University as Northwest Aluminum Professor of Mechanical Engineering and received the College of Engineering Outstanding Sustained Research Award in 1995. Kassner joined USC in 2003 to serve as Department Chair for the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering. From October 2009 through October 2012, he was assigned to Washington, D.C. as the Director of Research at the Office of Naval Research (ONR), where he oversaw the nearly one-billion dollar basic-research budget for the US Navy. In recognition of his service at ONR, he was awarded the Navy’s Meritorious Public Service Medal.
Kassner has authored or co-authored over 220 published articles and three books in the areas of fundamentals of creep plasticity in metals, the hot deformation of aluminum and aluminum alloys, and phase diagrams. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Metals (ASM), a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
Yortsos congratulated Kassner on the new role and thanked Roberts for his work as chair of the department.
“Professor Michael Kassner succeeds Professor Richard Roberts, who served MFD and the Viterbi School diligently and capably over the past five years. Rich’s commitment to the growth of the Department in students, faculty and programs has been steady, effective and unwavering. We are indebted to him for his service,” Yortsos said.