Inaugural Mellichamp Emerging Leader Lecture

Thursday, October 27, 2016


Our Inaugural Mellichamp Emerging Leader Lecture, featuring Professor Jeffrey Rimer from the University of Houston, was a success! Thank you to Duncan and Suzanne Mellichamp for generously supporting this annual lectureship. More information about Professor Rimer and the talk he gave can be found here.

Duncan Mellichamp was a founding member of the UCSB Chemical Engineering Department faculty, starting the process dynamics and control programs in 1966-67. He earned his B.S. degree from Georgia Tech, and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Purdue. Mellichamp is author of more than 100 research publications. He co-wrote the award-winning undergraduate textbook, “Process Dynamics and Control” in 1989, now appearing in its 4th ed. He edited “Real-Time Computing with Applications to Data Acquisition and Control” in 1983. Still highly regarded as a teacher and lecturer, Mellichamp has mentored more than 50 graduate students to degree, including the first student to earn a Ph.D. granted at UCSB in Chemical Engineering and the first female student to earn a Ph.D. in the UCSB College of Engineering. He was elected chair of the UC Santa Barbara Academic Senate (1990-92) and of the UC system-wide Academic Senate (1995-97), where he also served as Faculty Representative on the Board of Regents. He served as special assistant to the Chancellor for long-range planning (half time) until 2003; was elected a trustee of the UC Santa Barbara Foundation in 2003; made an honorary alumnus of UCSB in 2009; and chaired the UCSB Trustees Advisory Committee on Isla Vista Strategies in 2014. Since his retirement from full-time faculty in 2003, Duncan has taught as a guest lecturer (pro bono) and continues to research and publish. December of this year marks both his 80th birthday, and 50 years at UCSB.

Suzanne Mellichamp (M.A. Education 1970) was an elementary teacher for nearly 30 years, working in special education. She and Duncan have endowed 13 academic chairs and an annual lectureship at UCSB, and are active in several Santa Barbara non-profits. Together they hold the Santa Barbara Medal, the highest honor conferred by the Chancellor, for contributions to UCSB (2006); and the Griswold Award from Santa Barbara Beautiful for contributions to the community (2012).