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Name: Suresh, Subra
Current Position: Previous Director

Most recently the dean of the engineering school at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Subra Suresh has been nominated by President Barack Obama to run the National Science Foundation, which supports fundamental research and education in science and engineering with an annual budget of $7 billion. Obama announced his choice of Suresh on June 2, 2010.

Born in Bombay (Mumbai) India, Suresh completed his undergraduate studies in his home country, receiving his Bachelor of Technology degree with distinction from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (Chennai) in 1977. Relocating to the United States at the age of 21, he earned his Master of Science from Iowa State University in 1979, and his ScD from MIT in 1981.
After working in India, he returned to the United States to do postdoctoral research from 1981 to 1983 at UC Berkeley and the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. Suresh then joined Brown University as an assistant professor of engineering in December 1983. Six years later he was promoted to full professor.
In 1993, Suresh joined MIT as the R. P. Simmons Professor of Materials Science and Engineering. He later became the Vannevar Bush Professor of Engineering. Suresh holds joint faculty appointments in Materials Science and Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Biological Engineering, and Health Sciences and Technology at MIT, and served as head of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering from January 2000 to January 2006. He began his tenure as dean of the School of Engineering in July 2007.
At MIT, Suresh heads the Suresh Research Group, whose current research projects include “studies of nanostructured materials as well as exploring connections between biological cell mechanics and human disease states.” Suresh states that his own research in the areas of:
    * Nanomechanics of biological cells and molecules, and human disease states
    * Structure-Mechanical Property-Disease connections in the context of P. falciparum malaria, hereditary blood cell disorders and cancer
    * Computational simulations of cellular and molecular deformation and shape thermodynamics
    * High force optical tweezers studies of biological cells and human disease states
    * Nanostructured materials
    * Nanoindentation and microindentation.
His prior and ongoing work has led to contributions in the area of nano- and micro-scale mechanical properties of engineered materials. He has been a proponent of the fusion of engineering and biology and has studied how malaria works in blood cells.
Suresh has authored more than 200 research articles in international journals, co-edited five books, authored or coauthored three books and co-invented 14 U.S. and international patents.
He is the founding chair of the Singapore-MIT Alliance (SMA) Programme on Advanced Materials and also the founding director of the Global Enterprise for Micromechanics and Molecular Medicine (GEM4).
Elected to a number of major science and engineering academies, Suresh belongs to the U.S. National Academy of Engineering (2002), American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2004), and Indian National Academy of Engineering (2004, foreign member).
Suresh and his wife, Mary, who met during his stint at Brown University, have two daughters, Nina and Meera.
Subra Suresh Biography (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Subra Suresh Research (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
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