Dr. Urmila M. Diwekar is the president and founder of the Vishwamitra Research Institute, a non-profit research organization. From 2002-2004, she was a full Professor in the Departments of Bio, Chemical, and Industrial Engineering at the Institute for Environmental Science and Policy, University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Dr. Diwekar was the first woman full professor in the history of UIC's department of chemical engineering.
Previously, she was on the faculty of the Carnegie Mellon University (CMU), with early promotions to both the Associate and Full Professor levels. In chemical engineering, she has worked extensively in the areas of simulation, design, optimization, control, stochastic modeling, and synthesis of chemical processes. Dr. Diwekar has made major contributions to research on batch distillation, including authoring the first book on batch distillation.
In 1999, Dr. Diwekar founded the Center for Uncertain Systems: Tools for Optimization and Uncertainty (CUSTOM) to foster interactions between various industries, national laboratories and various academic disciplines. She is the author of more than 120 peer-reviewed papers, and over 300 presentations and seminars. She has served as a member of the executive committee, and later as a Director of both the Computers and Systems Analysis (CAST) division and the Environmental division of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE). She was also the programming chair for the newly formed Sustainable Engineering Forum. In 2009, she was elected to fellow of American Institute of Chemical Engineers and also to fellow of American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering. This year Dr. Diwekar will be the first woman to receive the prestigious Cecil Award of Environmental division in the AIChE annual meeting.
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