Dean Valerie Ashby

Dean Valerie AshbyValerie Ashby became dean of Trinity College of Arts & Sciences on July 1, 2015, and was recently reappointed for a second, five-year term. She received her B.A. and Ph.D. degrees in chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed her postdoctoral research at the Universitat Mainz, Germany. Dean Ashby came to Duke from UNC, where she chaired the chemistry department from 2012-15 and was a faculty member since 2003. She has served on UNC’s Arts & Sciences Foundation Board of Directors and Research Advisory Council and chaired the College of Arts & Sciences Faculty Diversity Task Force. Dean Ashby also directed the UNC National Science Foundation Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate, aimed at increasing the number of underrepresented students completing doctoral degrees and continuing into the professoriate in science, technology, engineering and math and social, behavioral and economics fields. As a researcher, she focused on synthetic polymer chemistry with a present emphasis on designing and synthesizing materials for biomedical applications such as X-ray contrast agents and drug delivery materials. She is the recipient of the National Science Foundation Career Development Award, the DuPont Young Faculty, and 3M Young Faculty Awards, as well as numerous teaching awards.


  • National Science Foundation Postdoctoral Fellow and NATO Postdoctoral Fellow, Universitat Mainz, Germany
  • Ph.D. Chemistry, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • B.A. Chemistry, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

Curriculum Vitae

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Dean Ashby: In the News