Leadership & Staff


Suzie Pun

Director, Molecular Engineering & Sciences Institute;
Washington Research Foundation Endowed Professor of Bioengineering
spun@uw.edu | 206-685-8148

In addition to holding the WRF Professorship in Bioengineering, Pun is an Adjunct Professor of Chemical Engineering and an Associate Director of the Resuscitation Engineering Science Unit (RESCU) at the UW. She is a fellow of the U.S. National Academy of Inventors (NAI) and American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE) and has been recognized with MIT Technology Review’s “Top Young Innovators” designation, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, and as an AAAS-Lemelson Invention Ambassador. She was also recognized with the UW’s Marsha Landolt Distinguished Graduate Mentor Award for her dedicated mentoring of students. She currently serves as an Associate Editor for ACS Biomaterials Science and Engineering. Pun also served as the co-chair of the College’s strategic plan steering committee in 2020-21.  

Pun received her B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Stanford University and her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology. She also worked as a senior scientist at Insert Therapeutics/Calando Pharmaceuticals developing polymeric drug delivery systems before joining the Department of Bioengineering. Her current research focuses on biomaterial applications in drug delivery and gene and cell therapy. 

Alshakim Nelson

Director of Education, Molecular Engineering & Sciences Institute;
Associate Professor of Chemistry
alshakim@uw.edu | 206-543-2083

Alshakim (Al) Nelson received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles in 2004, where he worked with Sir J. Fraser Stoddart on carbohydrate-containing polymers and macrocycles. He was then an NIH postdoctoral fellow at the California Institute of Technology working for Professor Robert Grubbs on olefin metathesis catalysts for the formation of supramolecular ensembles. Dr. Nelson joined IBM Almaden Research Center in 2005 as a Research Staff Member where he focused on the synthesis of nanomaterial building blocks that enabled large area nanomanufacturing via self-assembly. In 2015, Dr. Nelson joined the faculty at the UW, where his research group focuses on the synthesis, characterization, and processing of stimuli-responsive materials for 3D printing. Dr. Nelson has over 60 publications and 12 issued patents. His honors and awards include: IBM Master Inventor, ACS PMSE Young Investigator, Kavli Foundation Fellow, NSF CAREER award, and 3M Non-Tenured Faculty Award.


Amanda McCracken-Roberts


Rachel Talney

Operations Manager

John Young

Building Manager
206 616-6627

Doug Ballard

Graduate Program Advisor

Corin Shelley-Reuss

Events & Communications Specialist

Kevin Benzing

Computer Support Analyst

Rebekka Coakley

Rebekka Coakley

Communications Manager