Webster Thomas J.
Thomas J. Webster
Thomas J. Webster’s (H index: 76, Google Scholar) degrees are in chemical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh (B.S., 1995) and in biomedical engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (M.S., 1997; Ph.D., 2000). Prof. Webster’s research explores the use of nanotechnology in numerous applications. Specifically, his research addresses the design, synthesis, and evaluation of nanophase materials (that is, materials with fundamental length scales less than 100 nm) as more effective biomedical materials. Prof. Webster is the current director of the Nanomedicine Laboratories (currently at 24 members) and has completed extensive studies on the use of nanophase materials to regenerate tissues. He was appointed Department Chair of Chemical Engineering at Northeastern University in 2012. In his 15 years in academics, Prof. Webster has graduated/supervised over 129 visiting faculty, clinical fellows, post-doctoral students, and thesis completing B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. students. To date, his lab group has generated over 9 textbooks, 48 book chapters, 306 invited presentations, at least 403 peer-reviewed literature articles (222) and/or conference proceedings (181), at least 567 conference presentations, and 32 provisional or full patents. Some of these patents led to the formation of 9 companies. His research on nanomedicine has received attention in recent media publications including MSNBC (October 10, 2005), NBC Nightly News (May 14, 2007), PBS DragonFly TV (covered across the US during the winter, 2008), ABC Nightly News via the Ivanhoe Medical Breakthrough Segment (covered across the US during the winters of 2008 and separate research segments in 2010 and 2011), Fox News (Dec. 5, 2014), the Weather Channel (March 18, 2014), NBC Today Show (2015), NBC Nightly News (2015), National Geographic TV series on the future of medicine (to appear 2017), and more. His work has been on display at the London and Boston Science Museums. He is the founding editor-in-chief of the International Journal of Nanomedicine (the first international journal in nanomedicine which in five years has achieved an impact factor of 4.97), has helped to organize 22 conferences emphasizing nanotechnology in medicine, and has organized over 53 symposia at numerous conferences emphasizing biological interactions with nanomaterials. He also recently chaired the 2011 Annual Biomedical Engineering Society Meeting and has organized numerous symposia for MRS, AIChE, and ASME conferences. Prof. Webster has received numerous honors including, but not limited to: 2002, Biomedical Engineering Society Rita Schaffer Young Investigator Award; 2003, Outstanding Young Investigator Award Purdue University College of Engineering; 2005, American Association of Nanomedicine Young Investigator Award; 2005, Coulter Foundation Young Investigator Award; 2006, Fellow, American Association of Nanomedicine; 2010, Distinguished Lecturer in Nanomedicine, University of South Florida; 2011, Oustanding Leadership Award for the Biomedical Engineering Society (BMES); 2012, Fellow, American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE, representing the top 2% of all medical and biological engineers); 2013, Fellow, Biomedical Engineering Society; 2014, Fellow, Ernst Strugmann; 2016, Fellow, College of Fellows of the International Union of Biomaterials Sciences and Engineering; 2016, Wenzhou 580 Award; 2016; Zeijiang 1000 Talent program; 2016, Hsun Chinese Academy of Sciences Award; and others. He has served as the director of the Indo-U.S. Center for Biomaterials for Healthcare whose objective was to catalyze research between the U.S. and India in the area of biomaterial science with over 20 participating universities and industries. He was also recently elected President of the U.S. Society For Biomaterials. He also serves as the co-Director for the Center for Natural and Tropical Biomaterials (located in Medellin, Colombia) and the Center for Nanomedicine and Picomedicine (located in Wenzhou, China).
In terms of accomplishments as Chair of the Department of Chemical Engineering at Northeastern, Prof. Webster has provided leadership to significantly grow faculty numbers (from 12 – 26), triple undergraduate student enrollments, triple graduate student enrollment, and increase research dollars 8X from 2012 to 2016. This has culminated in the Department ranking for Chemical Engineering graduate programs going from 97 in 2012 to 50 in 2016 which broke the record for the greatest increase in rankings among graduate programs over a 4 year period according to the U.S. News and World Report. Moreover, as a demonstration of Prof. Webster’s interest in diversity, the department faculty is now 38% female and 13% under-represented minorities. In 2012, the department had no under-represented minorities. We also hired during this time period an NAE member. Philanthropic donations to the department have increased 1200% since 2012 and there has been a increase of 4, 3, 2 and 2 times the number of presentations by faculty and students at AIChE, BMES, and SFB (key academic conferences our faculty attend). Awards to our faculty have also increased including 5 new fellows of societies, numerous young investigator awards, undergraduate students winning national design competitions as well as undergraduate and graduate students winning national awards. As a department, we currently now run an average of 6 conferences per year (up from 0 in 2012). THOMAS J. WEBSTER
EDUCATION Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Engineering Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY, 1995 to 2000. Dissertation: “Design, synthesis, and evaluation of nanophase ceramics for orthopaedic/dental applications.” Completed: Dec. 2000. Advisor: Dr. Rena Bizios, Department of Biomedical Engineering. Co-Advisor: Dr. Richard W. Siegel, Department of Materials Science and Engineering. Master of Science in Biomedical Engineering Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY, 1997. Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA, 1995.
RESEARCH, TEACHING, AND COMMERCIALIZATION EXPERIENCE
2012-present Department Chair and Art W. Zafiropoulo Professor of Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University, Boston, MA
2006-2012 Associate Professor, School of Engineering, Brown University, Providence, RI
2006-2012 Associate Professor, Department of Orthopaedics, Brown University, Providence, RI (by courtesy)
2007-present Adjunct Faculty, California Institute of Nanotechnology San Jose, CA
2007, 2009-2012 Director, Biomedical Engineering Graduate Program (Engineering), Brown University, Providence, RI
2008-2010 Co-director, Indo-U.S. Center for Biomaterials for Health Care
2015-present Co-director, Center for Natural and Tropical Biomaterials, Medellin, Colombia
2014-present Co-director, Center for Nanomedicine and Picomedicine, Wenzhou, China
2011-present Visiting Professor, VIT, India
2005-2006 Associate Professor, Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
2005-2006 Associate Professor, School of Materials Engineering, Purdue University West Lafayette, IN (by courtesy)
2000-2005 Assistant Professor, Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN
2004-2005 Assistant Professor, School of Materials Engineering, Purdue University West Lafayette, IN (by courtesy)