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David T. Allen

Dave is the Gertz Regents Professor of Chemical Engineering, and the Director of the Center for Energy and Environmental Resources, at the University of Texas at Austin. He leads a group of approximately 100 professional research staff and graduate students working at the intersection of energy and environment. He has written a widely used engineering textbook, Green Engineering, and has developed a year-long high school engineering curriculum that is now being offered at more than 100 high schools nationwide. He has served on a variety of governmental advisory panels addressing environmental issues and currently chairs the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board.

Dave was raised in Pittsburgh, and at Cornell majored in Chemical Engineering. He ran track and cross country for the Big Red in his freshman year, and participated in the engineering co-op program, working for Chevron, beginning in his sophomore year. After graduation, Dave attended graduate school at the California Institute of Technology, in the Los Angeles area. On his first day in Los Angeles, air quality officials declared a third stage smog alert (the most severe type of episode). For Dave, this event sparked a decades-long interest in understanding the causes of air pollution and identifying ways to improve air quality.

After finishing his PhD at Caltech in 1983, Dave stayed in southern California, joining the faculty at UCLA. He spent 12 years at UCLA, eventually becoming Chair of the Department of Chemical Engineering. In 1995 he moved to the University of Texas at Austin, where in addition to his professional responsibilities, he enjoys racing his bicycle.

Dave has been married to Ling Allen since 1986. She works in the international program of St. Stephen’s Episcopal School. Their two children, Jennifer (MIT, 2010) and Daniel (University of Colorado, 2013) are both engineers, designing spacecraft and bicycles.