Executive Council

Chad Mirkin

Director, International Institute for Nanotechnology & George B. Rathmann Professor of Chemistry

Chad A. Mirkin, Ph.D., is the Director of the International Institute for Nanotechnology and the George B. Rathmann Professor of Chemistry. Mirkin also is a professor of chemical and biological engineering, biomedical engineering, materials science & engineering, and medicine at Northwestern University.

Mirkin is a chemist and world-renowned nanoscience expert who is known for his discovery and development of spherical nucleic acids (SNAs), and the many medical diagnostic, therapeutic, and materials applications that have derived from them; Dip-Pen Nanolithography (recognized by National Geographic as one of the “top 100 scientific discoveries that changed the world”); and numerous other contributions to supramolecular chemistry. Mirkin is the author of more than 780 manuscripts and over 1,200 patent applications worldwide (over 355 issued), and the founder of multiple companies, including: AuraSense, Exicure, TERA-print and Azul 3D.

He is one of very few scientists elected into all three branches of the U.S. National Academies (Medicine, Science, and Engineering). He served for eight years a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology under President Barack Obama. He has been recognized for his accomplishments with more than 230 national and international awards, including: the SCI Perkin Medal, Friendship Award, the Nano Research Award, the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Prize in Convergence Research, the Dan David Prize, the Wilhelm Exner Medal, the RUSNANOPRIZE, the Dickson Prize in Science, the American Institute of Chemists Gold Medal, the $500,000 Lemelson-MIT Prize, and the AAAS Philip Hauge Abelson Award. He has served on the editorial advisory boards of more than 20 scholarly journals; is the current associate editor of the Journal of the American Chemical Society (JACS); and the founding editor of the journal Small, one of the premier international nanotechnology journals. Mirkin has co-edited multiple bestselling books.

Mirkin holds a B.S. degree from Dickinson College (1986, elected into Phi Beta Kappa) and a Ph.D.in chemistry from The Pennsylvania State University (1989). He was an NSF Postdoctoral Fellow at MIT prior to becoming a professor at Northwestern University in 1991.