Faculty Promotions

Leslie Sombers, Gavin Williams, and Alex Nevzorov

We are pleased to announce the promotion of three faculty members to the rank of Full Professor, in recognition of their extraordinary contributions and dedication to research and teaching.

Leslie SombersDr. Leslie Sombers is a Professor in Analytical Chemistry. In 2015, she was selected as an NCSU University Faculty Scholar in recognition of her outstanding achievement and academic leadership. Her research interests are in the development, characterization and application of electroanalytical techniques to study real-time neurochemical fluctuations in systems ranging from single cells in culture to the brain of an awake, behaving animal. The ability to directly monitor these chemical messengers provides insight into the kinetics with which information is conveyed between neurons in response to environmental stimuli, the mechanisms that regulate these signals, and the behavioral implications of this neurochemistry. Dr. Sombers also teaches courses in Quantitative Chemical Analysis and Electrochemistry.

Alex NevzorovDr. Alex Nevzorov is a Professor in Physical Chemistry. His main research contributions are in the field of solid-state Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) of uniaxially aligned membrane proteins, and the long-term goal of his research program is to create a comprehensive collection of solid-state NMR methodologies and experimental tools for structure determination of membrane proteins in their native-like environment via systematic multidirectional approaches. Dr. Nevzorov teaches courses in Introductory Physical Chemistry, Introduction to Quantum Chemistry, Chemical Thermodynamics, Physical Chemistry for Engineers, and Quantum Chemistry. He has also developed a graduate course in Advanced Physical Chemistry with Biological Applications on Macromolecular Structure covering modern structural methods for structure determination of proteins and nucleic acids.

Gavin Williams Profile PictureDr. Gavin Williams is a Professor in Chemical Biology and Organic Chemistry. He serves as Associate Department Head and is the Associate Director of the Chemistry of Life Program. He is a University Faculty Scholar who also was recently nominated LORD Corporation Distinguished Scholar. The main objective of his research is to devise new approaches to synthesize natural product analogues and other small molecules. His overall approach is to probe, interrogate, and ultimately manipulate the biosynthesis of natural products and other small molecules, using a combination of philosophies based on utilizing the power of organic chemistry (chemical biology) and the ability to build and test artificial pathways and microbes from the bottom-up (synthetic biology). He developed a new class, Introduction to Chemical Biology, and teaches Organic Chemistry and Physical Methods in Organic Chemistry.