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Two Chemists Named LORD Distinguished Scholars

The NC State Belltower lit red against a night sky

The College of Sciences has named two faculty members in the Department of Chemistry as LORD Corporation Distinguished Scholars. The distinguished professorships were made possible thanks to a gift from LORD Corporation, a diversified technology and manufacturing company headquartered in Cary, N.C.

Joshua Pierce was named as the Hugh C. Lord, LORD Corporation Distinguished Scholar. Pierce joined the NC State faculty in 2012 and uses synthetic chemistry to build molecules that can be used to create new drugs to fight infectious diseases, cancer and chronic pain. He has gained acclaim for his creative approaches in heterocyclic synthesis, multistep natural products synthesis and the application of these areas in chemical biology and medicinal chemistry.

Gavin Williams, associate head of the department, was named as the Thomas Lord, LORD Corporation Distinguished Scholar. Williams joined the NC State faculty in 2009 and uses microbes as factories toward the development of potent, more effective antibiotics. He is well-known for his innovative work in polyketide biosynthesis, the development of enzymatic tools for protein engineering, and the development of novel biosensors to guide metabolic engineering and high-throughput synthetic biology.

The LORD Corporation endowments were established in the College of Sciences by the LORD Corporation to recognize outstanding scholarship and leadership in teaching and research. The awards are named for Hugh C. Lord, who founded the company in 1924, and his son, Thomas.

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