Cary F. Chabalowski

Cary Chabalowski


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Professor & Chair, Chemistry

  • PhD, Theoretical Chemistry, University of Kansas (1980)
  • BS, Chemistry, University of Wisconsin–Madison (1973)


Chair of the Department of Chemistry at Michigan Tech since July 2013, Chabalowski in addition to his administrative duties is re-engaging in materials research through the use of computational models.

Career Highlights

Following two years of post-doctoral research at the University of Bonn, Germany, Professor Chabalowski and wife Molly returned to the US. A year on the research faculty at John Hopkins University was followed by work as a research pharmaceutical chemist at Abbott Laboratories. There he helped establish the Computer Aided Drug Design team, focused in part on neurotransmission research.

In 1986 Chabalowski joined the US Army Ballistic Research Laboratory as a research chemist. Shortly after formation of the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) he assumed duties of Team Leader of the Theoretical Chemistry Team.

In 2003 he was chosen as manager for the Defense Science & Technology Reliance program and as served as Executive Staff Chair for the Defense Science and Technology Advisory group; his duties included coordinating, promoting and documenting Joint S&T investments across the U.S. Department of Defense.

From 2005–2007 he served as Acting Deputy Director for Research in the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Research and Technology, assisting the Army’s Director for Research and Laboratory Management.

From 2007–2009 Chabalowski served as Associate Director for Plans and Programs at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL), assisting in planning and executing strategic research programs. These efforts led to establishment of eight new Strategic Research Areas.

In 2009 he became Director for Science & Technology Integration in the office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army/Research and Technology. In his following role as acting Director for Research and Laboratory Management within ODASA/R&T he developed and managed the Army’s more than $600 million annual research budget.

In 2011 he returned to ARL as Chief Strategy Officer and Associate Director for Plans & Programs, retiring from federal service in September 2012.

Research Interests

  • Development of methods for modeling chemical properties and reactions
  • Modeling drug activity
  • The study of molecular spectroscopy
  • Detection of chemical warfare agents
  • Modeling gas-phase combustion reactions associated with energetic materials
  • Studying reactions of small, organic compounds on metal surfaces.