Christina Bloebaum named interim department chair

College of Engineering Dean Sarah Rajala has named Christina Bloebaum, Dennis and Rebecca Muilenburg Professor of Aerospace Engineering, interim chair of the Department of Aerospace Engineering. Bloebaum will succeed Rich Wlezien on August 1, 2017. Wlezien accepted a position as Vice Provost and Dean of Engineering and Computing at Missouri S&T.

Bloebaum, who has been at Iowa State for 5 years, is currently conducting research in the design of large-scale complex engineered systems. Prior to joining Iowa State, Professor Bloebaum was the Program Director for the Engineering and Systems Design and Systems Science programs at the National Science Foundation from 2009-2012.

“Christina has made vital contributions to the department in both her research and leadership since joining in 2012,” said Sarah Rajala, dean of the College of Engineering. “We know she will continue the positive atmosphere and provide our students with the highest quality education.”

Bloebaum is a Fellow of the AIAA and the 2012 recipient of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) Multidisciplinary Design Optimization Award. She has graduated 15 Ph.D. students, 76 M.S. students, and has had over $8 million in research funding. During her time at Iowa State, she has served as Director of Graduate Educations as well as Associate Chair for Research.

Bloebaum will lead a department which boasts Iowa State’s 5th most popular major with 761 undergraduate students during the 2017 spring semester. She will continue in this role until a permanent chair has been chosen.