Chemical Heritage Foundation, Photograph by Conrad Erb.
Dr. Robert H. Grubbs
Robert H. Grubbs is the Victor and Elizabeth Atkins Professor of Chemistry at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). Born and raised in Kentucky, Professor Grubbs began his academic education at the University of Florida where he received both his B.S. and M.S. degrees. He then continued his education at Columbia University where he completed his thesis studies in the labs of Professor Ronald Breslow. After Columbia, Professor Grubbs moved across the country to Stanford as a NIH Postdoctoral Fellow under the tutelage of Professor James Collman. Upon completing postdoctoral studies, Professor Grubbs started his independent academic career in 1969 at Michigan State University, where he began his work on olefin metathesis and quickly gained recognition. In 1973, Grubbs was promoted to the level of Associate Professor, and continued research at Michigan State University after which in 1978 he moved to the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena as a full professor in Chemistry. In 1990, Robert Grubbs was promoted to his current chair as the Victor and Elizabeth Atkins Professor of Chemistry at Caltech. Currently the Grubbs group at Caltech is focused on expanding the methods and techniques of olefin metathesis with the development of new catalysts and materials.
Robert Grubbs has been the recipient of many honors regarding his scientific achievements including: the Arthur C. Cope Award, the ACS Herbert C. Brown Award for Creative Research in Synthetic Methods, and the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 2005. In 2006, Grubbs was awarded the Tetrahedron Most Cited Paper 2002-2006 Award for “Olefin Metathesis.” Professor Grubbs is the author of over 700 scientific articles and at least 100 patents/patent applications. He is both a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Royal Society of Chemistry. Robert Grubbs serves on many advisory and editorial boards such as Journal of Polymer Science, Polymer Chemistry and the Journal of the American Chemical Society.