President Nicholas A. Peppas Heads up New Sigma Xi Leadership

July 11, 2022

Nicholas Peppas

With this month's start of Fiscal Year 2023, Sigma Xi welcomes a new cohort of elected leaders, highlighted by Nicholas A. Peppas, ScD, who takes over the role of president from Robert T. Pennock, PhD. Dr. Peppas spent the first year of his three-year term serving in the president-elect role, preparing his vision for advancing the Society through the upcoming year, including the launch of Sigma Xi's new annual conference, the International Forum on Research Excellence (IFoRE).

Additionally, eleven other newly elected or re-elected leaders will begin new three-year terms this month. The new leaders are listed below and include president-elect Marija Strojnik, treasurer David W. Baker, and nine regional directors and associate directors. Thank you to these members for volunteering their time, energy, and expertise to Sigma Xi's mission of enhancing the research enterprise, fostering integrity in research, and promoting the public understanding of science. 

Dr. Peppas is an international leader in the fields of medical devices, biomaterials, advanced controlled drug delivery, biosensors and bionanotechnology. He is the Cockrell Family Regents Chair in Engineering with joint appointments in the Departments of Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering and Pediatrics, and courtesy appointments in the Departments of Surgery and Perioperative Care, and Molecular Pharmaceutics and Drug Delivery at the University of Texas at Austin. After receiving a Dipl. Eng. from the National Technical University of Athens in 1971, he came to the United States in August 1971 and studied biomedical and chemical engineering, receiving his doctor of science (ScD) from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in October 1973.

As the leading researcher, inventor and pacesetter in the field of drug delivery and controlled release, Dr. Peppas' contributions have had significant impact on scientific discovery and its subsequent benefits to human health. His multidisciplinary research approach in bionanotechnology and biomolecular engineering has generated next-generation systems and devices, including bioMEMS with enhanced applicability, reliability, functionality, and longevity. It was recently determined that 800 million patients worldwide have benefited from his therapeutic products.

Dr. Peppas is an elected member of 12 U.S. and international academies and the recipient of over 170 international awards. Most recently, he was honored among the 2022 recipients of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, one of the nation's most prestigious awards. The Ellis Island Honors Society heralds the importance of immigration to America’s prosperity and celebrates the contributions immigrants and their progeny have made to the nation. Throughout the years, honorees have included multiple U.S. Presidents, Nobel Prize laureates, world-class athletes, business moguls, and media icons. Other notable awards include the highest recognitions from the National Academy of Engineering (2012 Founders Award), and the National Academy of Medicine (2018 Adam Yarmolinsky Award).

To learn more about Dr. Peppas' upcoming plans for bringing new levels of convergence and DEI to Sigma Xi and the research enterprise, read his first letter to members, "A Whole New World of Opportunities," on the Sigma Xi Keyed In blog.

Fiscal Year 2023 Elected Officers


Nicholas A. Peppas
Affiliation: University of Texas at Austin


Marija Strojnik
Affiliation: Membership-at-large


David W. Baker
Affiliation: Colorado School of Mines

Director, Southwest Region

Laura Montier
Affiliation: Rice University-Texas Medical Center

Director, North Central Region

Brad Swanson
Affiliation: Central Michigan University

Director: Comprehensive Colleges and Universities Constituency Group

Tieli Wang 
Affiliation: California State University Dominguez Hills

Director: Area Groups, Industry, State and Federal Laboratories Constituency Group

Mary Bliss
Affiliation: Tri-Cities Washington

Associate Director: Baccalaureate Colleges Constituency Group

Joseph Reczek
Affiliation: Denison University

Associate Director: Canadian/International Constituency Group

Kelly Monteleone
Affiliation: Calgary Chapter

Associate Director: Mid-Atlantic Region

René Fuanta
Affiliation: East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania

Associate Director: Northeast Region

Theodora Pinou
Affiliation: Western Connecticut State University

Associate Director: Research and Doctoral University Constituency Group

Allison C. Augustus-Wallace
Affiliation: Louisiana State University

More About Sigma Xi: Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society is the world’s largest multidisciplinary honor society for scientists and engineers. Its mission is to enhance the health of the research enterprise, foster integrity in science and engineering, and promote the public understanding of science for the purpose of improving the human condition. Sigma Xi chapters can be found at colleges and universities, government laboratories, and industry research centers around the world. More than 200 Nobel Prize winners have been members. The Society is based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. On Twitter: @SigmaXiSociety