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New Science Faculty for 2004-2005

New Science Faculty at UC Riverside

New Science Faculty at UC Riverside

(October 28, 2004)

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — — Twelve new faculty members and a new associate dean welcomed students this academic year to the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences at the University of California, Riverside.

“This is an exciting year for the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences. The prominent scholars we have added to our faculty this year are the very best in the world and will move the college toward even greater distinction in several key areas of teaching and research” said Steven Angle, dean of the College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences. “Dr. Jory Yarmoff, a physicist, has been appointed associate dean for physical sciences and mathematics, a key position in the college leadership team.”

All together, UC Riverside hired 50 new faculty members for this academic year, and a total of 150 during the past three years, reflecting UCR’s plans for strong future growth.


Jory A. Yarmoff,
assoicate dean, physical and mathematical sciences and professor of physics. Appointed July 1, 2004.
Professor Yarmoff investigates the physical and chemical properties of solid surfaces, providing an atomic-scale picture of surface geometric, electronic and chemical structures. He studies the chemical reactions that occur at surfaces and the interaction of radiation with surfaces. Yarmoff’s work is part of the growing field of nanoscience and is relevant to the mission of UCR's Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering. He has been with UC Riverside since 1989.
Phone: (951) 827-5101

NEW FACULTY — Fall 2004
Five faculty members arrived on campus in September.

William “Ken” Rice, assistant professor of astrophysics, Department of Earth Sciences
Professor Rice comes to UC Riverside from the School of Physics & Astronomy, University of St. Andrews, Fife, Scotland. His areas of research include theoretical and plasma astrophysics, in particular the numerical modeling of astrophysical systems. Professor Rice studies some of the forces at work in star and star-system formation and the behavior of particles in astrophysical shockwaves.
Phone: (951) 827-7190

Hailing Jin, assistant professor of plant pathology, Department of Plant Pathology
Professor Jin arrived at UCR from UC Berkeley and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service. She received her Ph.D. in molecular genetics in 1996 from the Shanghai Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Her research focuses on the genetic signaling and regulation in plants that are susceptible and resistant to disease. A goal of her research is to understand the molecular communication that underlies plant disease reaction, plant cell development and cell death.
Phone: (951) 827-7995

Chun-Ning “Jeanie” Lau, assistant professor, Department of Physics
Professor Lau came to UC Riverside from the Hewlett-Packard Laboratories, Palo Alto, CA. Her research explores the fundamental limits of superconductivity in nanowires and has been reported in international magazines such as The Economist and Profil. Her research goal is to explore the electronic, magnetic and mechanical properties of nanoscale systems, such as nanotubes, nanowires and organic molecules, and then engineer devices based on these properties.
Phone: (951) 827-7197

Jacob Greenstein, assistant professor, Department of Mathematics
Dr. Greenstein came to UC Riverside from the University of Geneva, Switzerland where he was a visiting assistant professor. His research interest focuses on the area of representation theory of Kac-Moody Lie algebras and their quantum analogs. More specifically, he has worked on level zero representations of classical and quantum affine algebras and on their combinatorial properties including formal characters and crystal bases.
Phone: (951) 827-5001

Owen Long, assistant professor, Department of Physics
Professor Long comes to UCR from the University of California, Santa Barbara. His area of research is in high-energy physics. He is an authority in the experimental study of particle-antiparticle symmetry, which is responsible for the absence of antimatter in our universe.
Phone: (951) 827-6084

NEW FACULTY — Nov. 1, 2004

Michael Pirrung,
professor of chemistry, Department of Chemistry
Professor Pirrung comes to UCR from Duke University where he was director of the Duke University Program in Biological Chemistry. Pirrung is an organic chemist with research in the areas of chemical biology, synthesis, and nucleic acids. He is a pioneer in the field of microarrays, which have important biological applications in genomics. Recent interests have included combinatorial chemistry, focused on solid-phase synthesis and natural products.

NEW FACULTY — Winter 2005
Six faculty members hired this year are expected to arrive on campus in January 2005.

Christopher J. Bardeen, assistant professor, Department of Chemistry
Professor Bardeen comes to UCR from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. His research interests are at the boundary of physical and analytical chemistry and involve combining laser spectroscopy and microscopy to study dynamics in chemical systems relevant to both materials science and biology. He studies the complex mix of chemical activity in living cells to better understand processes such as how cells react to photochemical treatments such as those used to treat cancer. He also studies how best to use organic molecules as semiconducting materials.

James Dieterich, distinguished professor of geophysics, Department of Earth Sciences / Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics (IGPP)
Professor Dieterich comes to UC Riverside form the U.S. Geological Survey in Menlo Park, Calif. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2003 for his contributions to earthquake physics. He originated the “rate and state” friction law, which is a major advance in understanding friction and may be critical for the eventual development of earthquake prediction strategies. He investigates the properties of earthquake faults and does theoretical modeling of earthquakes in geometrically complex fault systems. His interest extends to evaluation of earthquake probabilities. Dieterich also conducts volcano research (mostly at Kilauea volcano in Hawaii) focusing on the interactions between earthquake faulting and magmatic activity within the volcano.

Cynthia K. Larive, professor, Department of Chemistry
Professor Larive comes to UCR from the University of Kansas, Lawrence. Her areas of research focus on the development of new methods and tools to measure the structure of molecules and how they interact, such as in the binding of a drug to protein. Another goal of her research is to use the tools developed in the study of molecular structures to investigate the complex and important chemical problems in biology and the environment. She is also active in curriculum development and reform and is editor of the Analytical Sciences Digital Library ( a web-based resource for students and teachers of analytical chemistry.

Timothy Lyons, professor of biogeochemistry, Department of Earth Sciences
Professor Lyons comes to UCR the Department of Geological Sciences at the University of Missouri. Much of his research focuses on the biogeochemistry of both modern and ancient oxygen-poor marine environments. These systems have generated some of the most economically important ancient rock deposits on Earth and were the settings in which life evolved on this planet. His research is also fundamental to the emerging field of astrobiology, which explores the origins of life on earth and possibility of life elsewhere. Lyons' highly interdisciplinary research has been in numerous publications such as Science, Nature and other high-impact journals. His extraordinary record of research funding within the Earth Sciences includes an NSF CAREER award.

Dino Moras, distinguished professor, Department of Biochemistry
Professor Moras comes to UC Riverside from the Institut de Génétique et de Biologie Moléculaire et Cellulaire, Strasbourg, France. His area of research involves X-ray crystallography of biological macromolecules.

Harley Smith, assistant professor of plant cell biology, Department of Botany and Plant Sciences
Dr. Smith comes to UC Riverside from the Department of Plant and Microbial Biology at UC Berkeley, where he was a post-doctoral researcher in the laboratory of Dr. Sarah Hake since 1998. Smith was awarded a three year post-doctoral fellowship from the National Institute of Health that involved developing a project to gain insight into the function of the cell differentiation genetic transcription factors in maize and the model plant, Arabidopsis.

The University of California, Riverside ( is a doctoral research university, a living laboratory for groundbreaking exploration of issues critical to Inland Southern California, the state and communities around the world. Reflecting California's diverse culture, UCR's enrollment has exceeded 21,000 students. The campus opened a medical school in 2013 and has reached the heart of the Coachella Valley by way of the UCR Palm Desert Center. The campus has an annual statewide economic impact of more than $1 billion.

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