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From the Chemistry Department

C. Grant Willson Retiring

willson grant digital 01The Department of Chemistry and the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin will sorely miss the science, leadership, wisdom, and humor from Professor C. Grant Willson after his official retirement in winter 2020. Professor Willson has been an inspiration to junior and senior faculty alike, often because of his balanced and insightful advice, and due to his no-nonsense attitude to faculty governance. His good-natured attitude is exemplified by his daily greeting – “Good morning young man” or “Good morning young lady." He is truly one of the sweetest gentlemen-colleagues that we have all had the good fortune to know and work with. 

Professor Willson’s scientific prowess is clear due to his national and international awards and recognition. During his career he was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering, and among his most prestigious prizes are the ACS Award in Polymer Chemistry and the Japan Prize. Professor Willson is perhaps best known for his role in the development of chemically amplified photoresists, which are the foundation for manufacturing almost all microelectronics. In addition, he helped pioneer new microelectronic fabrication techniques such as Step and Flash Imprint lithography and developed novel polymers for this and other applications. Beyond the laboratory, Professor Willson has mentored a large number of undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral scholars, many of which are now leaders in academia, industry, and government.

The faculty in both the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Chemistry congratulate Professor Willson on a career of successful mentorship, innovation, and impact on the semiconductor industry.


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