A Tribute to BTP Faculty Mentor, Professor Jennie Reed

BTP Faculty Mentor Jennifer L. Reed, Professor of Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering , passed away on July 5, 2020, after a long illness.  With great sorrow over the loss of a brilliant scientist, colleague, mentor and friend, we honor her memory and her scholarly work.

Photo of Jennifer ReedJennie joined the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering at University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2007, becoming just the second female professor in the history of the department. She established a thriving research program in computational systems biology with an emphasis on metabolic engineering. She worked closely with the Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center throughout her career, eventually taking on a leadership position. She was tenured and promoted to associate professor in 2013 and to full professor in 2018, and was recognized for her work by both the university and her field. She received both NSF and DOE early career awards, and was later awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering (PECASE). In 2016, she was named as a fellow to the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE), which recognizes the top 2% of biomedical scientists working in the United States. She published more than 70 papers and several book chapters over the course of her career.

Beyond her scientific accomplishments, Jennie was also a devoted teacher and mentor to her undergraduate and graduate students. As a research advisor, she gave her students independence to think and grow on their own, while still being there to guide them through challenges. She truly enjoyed teaching and was recognized with several awards. She had a gift for being able to explain complex concepts in ways that were easy to understand. She was always willing to spend extra time with students that needed it and found joy in seeing them succeed. Her campus service revolved around issues she was passionate about, with special interest in building a community for women students in engineering.

Jennie was a BTP Faculty Mentor to trainee, Dylan Courtney, a current fourth year student in Chemical and Biological Engineering.  Jennie will be greatly missed.


Grief counseling resources at UW-Madison

For faculty and staff, counseling is available through the Employee Assistance Office. The office also partners with LifeMatters, which provides 24/7 assistance.

For students, counseling is available through University Health Services.