Thomas Dunning, Ph.D.
Since December 2004, Thomas Dunning (Central High 1961) has served as the first director of the National Center for Supercomputing Applications and Distinguished Chair for Research Excellence in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Among his other posts and appointments are those at Oak Ridge, Argonne and Los Alamos national laboratories.
Dr. Dunning was instrumental in creating the U.S. Department of Energy’s scientific computing program, Scientific Discovery through Advanced Computing. At the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, he established a world-class research program in theoretical and computational molecular science and founded the Molecular Science Computing Facility.
He was the scientific leader of the DOE’s first Grand Challenge in computational chemistry, which led to the development of the only general computational chemistry code for massively parallel computers, and has dramatically extended the range and accuracy of molecular calculations. At the various DOE labs, he was the first to focus the rapidly advancing techniques of computational chemistry on real world problems.
Dunning currently resides in Champaign, IL..