Three UW-Madison researchers elected to National Academy of Sciences

Three University of Wisconsin-Madison professors have been elected to the National Academy of Sciences, one of the highest honors conferred on American scientists and engineers, the organization announced Tuesday.

James Dumesic, professor of chemical engineering, Samuel Gellman, professor of chemistry, and Margaret McFall-Ngai, professor of medical microbiology and immunology, are among 84 new members elected to the 151-year-old academy. Fellows are elected in recognition of their distinguished and continuing achievements in original research.

The academy is a private organization founded through an act of Congress signed by President Abraham Lincoln.

Dumesic, who joined the UW-Madison faculty in 1976, is the Steenbock and Michel Boudart Professor of Chemical and Biological Engineering. Widely recognized as a leading researcher in the fields of catalysis and chemical engineering, Dumesic co-founded two companies and pioneered new processes for creating bio-derived fuels and chemicals. In 2013, he and colleagues at the Wisconsin Energy Institute created an efficient, scalable process for producing sugars that can then be converted into biofuels, according to a UW-Madison news release.