June 14, 2023: Appointment of Professor Gisele Azimi as co-Director of OCCAM

Dear faculty, staff, and students,

I am very pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Gisele Azimi as co-Director, Ontario Centre for the Characterisation of Advanced Materials (OCCAM) for a three-year term from July 1, 2023 to June 30, 2026.

Gisele joined the Department of Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry as a faculty member in 2014 with a cross-appointment to the Department of Materials Science & Engineering. She holds a Canada Research Chair (CRC Tier 2) in Urban Mining Innovations and has been recognized by CSChE with the Emerging Leaders of Chemical Engineering Award. Gisele is also the recipient of CSChE Innovation Award, McCharles Prize for Early Career Research Distinction, and TMS EPD Young Leaders Professional Development Award, to name a few. Gisele has published more than 80 high-impact papers, has two granted patents and 10 patent applications, and has delivered more than 40 invited, keynote, or plenary talks. Gisele is an accomplished teacher and mentor. She is the recipient of FASE Early Career Teaching Award and the Impact Teacher of the Year Award from MSE. She has mentored nearly 40 graduate students and 30 undergraduate thesis/summer students.

In her new role, Gisele will focus on expanding OCCAM partnership with industry, government agencies, NGOs, and research institutions, ensuring the efficient utilization of infrastructure and resources allocated to OCCAM by the Department, raising the profile of OCCAM both internally and externally by devising an effective communications and marketing plan, and collaborating with OCCAM’s co-Director at MSE on interdisciplinary initiatives to advance our research goals and renew OCCAM facilities, among others.

Please join me in congratulating Gisele on her new appointment.

I also wish to take this opportunity to thank Professor Emeritus Charles Mims who served as the co-Director of OCCAM (formerly SI Ontario) since 2002. Over the past two decades, Charles and the OCCAM team were instrumental in the formation and growth of this surface characterization facility in our Department in partnership with MSE. During that time, OCCAM has provided outstanding contributions to the characterization of materials with application to a wide range of disciplines along with the development of new methods for materials characterization. OCCAM has also provided exceptional hands-on training to countless students and researchers in the Department, U of T, and beyond. Please join me in thanking Charles for this exemplary service to our community.


Ramin Farnood
Professor & Chair, Department of Chemical Engineering & Applied Chemistry