Gary S. May | AIChE

Gary S. May

University of California, Davis

Gary S. May is the seventh chancellor of UC Davis, one of the nation’s most academically and socially diverse universities. His vision is to lead the university to new heights in academic excellence, inclusion, public service, and upward mobility for students of all backgrounds.

He leads the most comprehensive campus in the University of California system, with four colleges and six professional schools. UC Davis enrolls more than 39,000 students, brings in nearly $850 million annually in sponsored research and contributes at least $8 billion annually to California’s economy. In 2019, UC Davis reached the Top 10 in four national rankings of universities, including fifth among public universities in the Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College Rankings.

Chancellor May came to UC Davis in 2017 after serving as dean of Georgia Tech’s College of Engineering, the nation’s largest and most diverse school of its kind. In 2015, President Obama honored him with the Presidential Award for Excellence in STEM Mentoring.

He also believes in the positive impact academia and industry have when they partner for the common good. He launched Aggie Square in April 2018 to spur economic growth in Sacramento and help create jobs at a variety of education levels. In November 2019, May and Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg were recognized with a Leadership Award from the Association of University Research Parks for creating a unique partnership for Aggie Square.

May earned his master’s and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering and computer science at UC Berkeley. He has won numerous awards for his research in computer-aided manufacturing of integrated circuits. He authored more than 200 technical publications, contributed to 15 books and holds a patent related to this work. 

In September 2018, May was inducted to the National Academy of Engineering for his success in attracting and retaining engineering students from underrepresented backgrounds and his innovations in semiconductor manufacturing.