Dr. Karen K. Gleason is Associate Provost and the Alexander and I. Michael Kasser Professor of Chemical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She has been a member of the MIT faculty since 1987 and has served as Executive Officer of the Chemical Engineering Department, Associate Director for the Institute of Soldier Nanotechnologies, and as Associate Dean of Engineering for Research.
Professor Gleason’s research focuses on the near room-temperature synthesis of ultrathin, conformal organic films by chemical vapor deposition (CVD). Gleason has authored more than 250 publications and holds more than 20 issued US patents for CVD polymers and their applications in optoelectronic, sensing, microfluidic, energy storage, and biomedical devices, and for the surface modification of membranes.
Gleason is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineering (AIChE). She held the Donders Visiting Professorship Chair at Utrecht University, Netherlands. Her awards include the ID TechEx Printed Electronics Europe Best Technical Development Materials Award, the AIChE Process Development Research Award, the AIChE Stine Award, and Young Investigator Awards from both the National Science Foundation and the Office of Naval Research. She has delivered the Van Ness Award Lecture at the Rensselaer Polytechnic University and the Tis Lahiri Lecture at Vanderbuilt University.
In 2001, Professor Gleason co-founded GVD Corporation, which has successfully scaled-up and commercialized technology invented in her MIT lab. GVD is headquartered in Cambridge, MA, and has manufacturing facilities in Greenville, SC. She also co-founded Dropwise Corporation, Gold Winner at the 2014 MassChallenge.
Gleason received her PhD from the University of California at Berkeley. Her BS and MS degrees are from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she also won All-American honors in swimming.