Dr. William Fahrenholtz, Curators’ Professor of ceramic engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology, has been named the director of the Materials Research Center at Missouri S&T. His appointment took effect Monday, March 21.
Fahrenholtz takes over for Dr. Matt O’Keefe, who became chair of materials science and engineering at Missouri S&T on March 1.
“Dr. Fahrenholtz’s work as a professor of ceramic engineering has been exemplary, and he is one of the leading researchers in his field, making him an excellent choice to lead the MRC,” says Dr. Mariesa Crow, vice provost for research at Missouri S&T. “His move from senior investigator to director will ensure that the MRC remains on the cutting edge, helping prepare our students to tackle the challenges of today — and beyond.”
Fahrenholtz’s recent research focuses on ultra-high temperature ceramics, rare-earth coatings for corrosion protection and low-temperature glass joining. His research expertise is processing and characterization of ceramics, which, he says, “is the common theme among those seemingly disparate areas.”
Besides leading the center’s research efforts and mentoring junior faculty, Fahrenholtz will continue working on his recent research and teaching one class per semester.
“Another goal is to raise the visibility of materials research on campus and nationally, which can range from marketing the accomplishments of the center to leading major research initiatives such as large, multidisciplinary research proposals,” Fahrenholtz says.
Fahrenholtz has been on the Missouri S&T faculty since 1999. He was named a full professor in 2008 and that year began serving as senior investigator in the Graduate Center for Materials Research.
He has been the lead author or co-author on more than 95 manuscripts published in peer-reviewed journals and has been the presenter or co-author on more than 200 presentations at international technical conferences.
While at Missouri S&T, Fahrenholtz has been the recipient of the Outstanding Teaching Award, the Faculty Excellence Award, Faculty Service and Faculty Research awards, the Miner Alumni Association Outstanding Student Advisor Award and the Academy of Mines and Metallurgy Senior Faculty Award.
Fahrenholtz is a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society, a member of the National Institute of Ceramic Engineers and a member and past president of the Ceramic Educational Council. He also is a member of the associate editorial board for Materials Letters, Keramos (ceramic engineering professional fraternity), Tau Beta Pi, the American Society for Engineering Education and Alpha Sigma Mu.
Fahrenholtz earned bachelor of science and master of science degrees in ceramic engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1987 and 1989, respectively. He earned a Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the University of New Mexico in 1992.