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Paul Dayton, Kenan Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering, has served as interim chair since the fall of 2019.

Paul Dayton, PhD, the William R. Kenan Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering, has been named chair of the Joint UNC-NCSU Department of Biomedical Engineering. He had served as interim chair for more than two years.

The announcement was made by Louis Martin-Vega, PhD, dean of the College of Engineering at NC State, Blossom Damania, PhD, vice dean for research at the UNC School of Medicine, and Terry Rhodes, PhD, dean of the UNC College of Arts & Sciences.

“This appointment represents a strong affirmation of the outstanding job that he has done in this position during the last two years,” the three wrote in a letter to BME faculty and staff.

Dayton, who is also a member of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, has focused his research interests on areas of biomedical ultrasound imaging, ultrasound mediated targeted therapies, and industrial ultrasound applications. In particular, his research involves developing new technologies for imaging blood flow, microvasculature, and molecular markers using ultrasound and microbubble contrast agents. Several of his contributions to the field include techniques to improve the sensitivity and consistency of ultrasound imaging through optimization of contrast agent size distribution; the demonstration of high-resolution, high-SNR ultra-broadband imaging; and techniques for real-time molecular imaging.

Dayton’s work has been primarily supported by the National Institutes of Health and various other federal funding agencies and industrial organizations.

Dayton is also the co-founder of three startup companies, two of which are now successfully based in Research Triangle Park. An outstanding scholar and researcher, Dayton was named a Senior Member of the National Academy of Inventors in 2021 and a Fellow at the Institute in Electrical and Electronics Engineers in 2022. He will continue to hold the William R. Kenan Distinguished Professorship in BME in addition to his leadership and administrative responsibilities as chair of BME.

Dayton received his BS in Physics and Comprehensive Science (pre-med) from Villanova University, his ME in Electrical Engineering from the University of Virginia, and his PhD in

Biomedical Engineering also from the University of Virginia. He pursued postdoctoral research and was later on the research faculty at UC-Davis. Paul joined the Joint UNC-NCSU Department of Biomedical Engineering in 2007 as an untenured associate professor and was appointed as associate department chair in 2012, a position he served in until 2019 when he assumed the position of interim chair.

Kathryn Meurs, PhD, at NC State and Kathleen Caron, PhD, at UNC-Chapel Hill served as co-chairs of the search committee, which interviewed top candidates from around the country.