Robin Selinger Elected to APS Board of Directors

On Nov. 15, Physics Professor Robin Selinger, Ph.D., a member of the Advanced Materials and Liquid Crystal Institute in the College of Arts and Sciences at Kent State University was elected to the American Physical Society (APS) Board of Directors. Her three-year term begins on Jan. 1, 2020.

Robin Selinger
The American Physical Society is a nonprofit membership organization working to advance and diffuse the knowledge of physics through its research journals, scientific meetings, and education, outreach, advocacy, and international activities. APS has over 55,000 members, including physicists in academia, national laboratories, and industry in the United States and throughout the world.

The Board of Directors is a group of nine who oversee management of the Society including overall strategy, finance, and corporate governance. In this new role, Selinger will have a voice in addressing major policy issues facing the physics community. She will also serve as a member of the APS Council of Representatives which oversees operations including publishing, conferences, prizes and fellowships, education/outreach, and public advocacy.

Elected a Fellow of the APS in 2016, Selinger also served as Secretary/Treasurer of the APS Topical Group on Statistical and Nonlinear Physics (GSNP) from 2013 to 2016, as a member of the GSNP Fellowship committee in 2017, and as a member of the APS Soft Matter Physics Working Group in 2013. She also frequently lends her singing talents to perform comic tunes at the annual March Meeting Rock-n-Roll Physics Sing-Along.

She served as Founding President of The Northeast Ohio STEM Alliance, a nonprofit that organizes extracurricular science activities for K-12 students; and serves as a consultant to the Educational Testing Service for the Physics GRE and Praxis General Science Examination programs. She was named an “Outstanding Referee” by the Physical Review in 2014 and received the Kent State President’s Faculty Excellence Award in 2017.

Selinger completed both undergraduate and graduate studies at Harvard University (A.B. ’84, A.M. ’86, Ph.D. ’89,) then did postdoctoral work at UCLA, University of Maryland, and NIST. She joined the Physics faculty at the Catholic University of America in 1995, spent a sabbatical at the Naval Research Laboratory in 2002-3, then moved to Kent State University as a full professor in 2005.

She is a computational theorist whose research focuses on fundamental pattern formation mechanisms that control microstructure and morphology in soft matter. Recently she has modeled dynamic shape transformations of liquid crystal elastomers, a class of stimuli-responsive programmable materials; studied the interaction of topological defects with curvature in lipid membranes; and modeled the formation of skyrmion defect arrays in liquid crystals in confined geometries.

Selinger has been an innovator in developing outreach and mentoring programs to attract students to science majors and promote diversity in the STEM workforce. She started a high school STEM internship program at Kent State that has provided hands-on research opportunities to over 170 students since 2011. She also started Kent State’s science fair and hosts it annually, serving 200+ students in grades 4-12 each year. She helped Kent State students create new Scientista chapters for undergraduate/graduate women in science, and serves as faculty advisor to both groups. Together with colleagues, she brought over $1 million of scholarship funds to Kent State undergraduate STEM majors through the NSF S-STEM program, and has helped organize monthly mentoring programs for scholarship recipients for the last twelve years.

Selinger chaired Kent State’s 2017 Research Seed funding competition, serves on the University Research Council, and works one-on-one to coach junior faculty writing their first research proposals.

For more information about Kent State’s Department of Physics, visit:

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Media Contacts:
Jim Maxwell,, (330) 672-8028
Emily Vincent,, (330) 672-8595

POSTED: Tuesday, December 10, 2019 - 12:21pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, December 10, 2019 - 12:30pm
Jim Maxwell