Johansen named interim chair

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Professor Kristen Johansen begins her new duties as interim chair Feb. 15. She succeeds Guru Rao, who served as department chair since 2009 and recently was named associate vice president in the university’s Office of the Vice President for Research.

Johansen joined Iowa State as a postdoctoral associate in 1989, and was named professor in 2001. She is widely recognized for her groundbreaking research on nuclear organization during the cell cycle as well as for her considerable contributions to teaching, student mentoring and leadership roles. Results from some of her research appears in the quintessential molecular genetics textbook, Genes IX.

She has won numerous professional awards, including the National Science Foundation CAREER Award with special recognition for student mentoring, the Iowa Board of Regents Award for Faculty Excellence and the ISU Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning Memorable Teacher Award.

Johansen earned a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry from the University of Pennsylvania, and received master’s and doctorate degrees in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University.

The Roy J. Carver Department of Biochemistry, Biophysics and Molecular Biology is administered by the colleges of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Liberal Arts and Sciences.