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DR. RICHARD A. VAIA

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Dr. Richard A. Vaia, a member of the scientific and professional cadre of senior executives, is the Chief Scientist for the Materials and Manufacturing Directorate, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. He serves as the principal scientific authority and primary authority for the technical content of the Science and Technology portfolio, ensuring the Directorate meets national, Department of Defense, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Space Force, Air Force Materiel Command, and AFRL objectives in core area technologies.

Dr. Vaia’s research has covered the chemistry, physics and processing of nanomaterials for multifunctional structures, coatings, inks, flexible electronics, optical devices and autonomous concepts. He has published more than 220 articles, is co-inventor on 16 patents and has given more than 150 plenary, keynote and invited talks at national and international scientific venues.

EDUCATION
1991 Bachelor of Science, Materials Science and Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.
1993 Master of Science, Materials Science and Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.
1995 Doctor of Philosophy, Materials Science and Engineering, Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.

CAREER CHRONOLOGY
1995–1999, U.S. Air Force, Captain, Polymer Branch, Air Force Materials Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio
1999–2004, Photonics Direction Lead, Polymer Branch, Air Force Research Laboratory, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
2004–2008, Research Team Leader, Polymer Branch, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
2008–2010, Technology Advisor, NanoStructured and Biological Materials Branch, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
2010–2012, Branch Chief, NanoStructured and Biological Materials Branch, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
2012–2018, Technical Director, Functional Materials Division, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
2018–2020, Senior Scientist, Emergent Materials Systems, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio
2020–present, Chief Scientist, Materials & Manufacturing Directorate, AFRL, Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio

AWARDS AND HONORS
Legion of Valor Bronze Cross for Achievement, Air Force ROTC
Tau Beta Pi Fellow
National Defense Science and Engineering Fellowship
U.S. Air Force Outstanding Scientist
Star Team, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Air Force Research Laboratory
Air Force Civilian Achievement Award
Air Force Exemplary Civil Service Award
Outstanding Engineers and Scientists Award, Affiliate Societies Council of Dayton
Directors Award, AFRL Materials and Manufacturing Directorate
Cleary Award for Research Excellence, AFRL Materials and Manufacturing Directorate
Doolittle Award, American Chemical Society
Fellow, AFRL
Fellow, American Chemical Society (Division of Polymeric Materials Science and Engineering)
Fellow, American Physical Society
Fellow, Materials Research Society
Arthur S. Flemming Award, U.S. Air Force Nominee
Distinguished Alumni Award, Cornell University
John McLucas Basic Research Award, U.S. Air Force
Fellow, American Chemical Society
Fellow, NextFlex, America’s Flexible Hybrid Electronics Manufacturing Institute
Member, National Academy of Engineering

OTHER ACHIEVEMENTS
2005-2010 Member at Large, Polymeric Materials Science and Engineering Division, American Chemical Society
2006 Materials Research Laboratory Visiting Professor at University of California, Santa Barbara
2006–2008 Chair, Nanoscience and Technology Strategic Technology Team, Air Force Research Laboratory, Dayton, Ohio
2006-2010 Board of Directors, Materials Research Society
2012-2015 Member at Large, Division of Polymer Physics, American Physics Society
2018 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency Service Chief Fellow

PROFESSIONAL MEMBERSHIPS AND ASSOCIATIONS
American Chemical Society
American Physics Society
Materials Research Society

(Current as of October 2020)

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