Zhenan Bao joined Stanford University in 2004. She is currently a K.K. Lee Professor in Chemical Engineering, and with courtesy appointments in Chemistry and Material Science and Engineering. She was the Department Chair of Chemical Engineering from 2018-2022. She founded the Stanford Wearable Electronics Initiative (eWEAR) and is the current faculty director. She is also an affiliated faculty member of Precourt Institute, Woods Institute, ChEM-H and Bio-X. Professor Bao received her Ph.D. degree in Chemistry from The University of Chicago in 1995 and joined the Materials Research Department of Bell Labs, Lucent Technologies. She became a Distinguished Member of Technical Staff in 2001. Professor Bao currently has close to 700 refereed publications and more than 80 US patents with a Google Scholar H-index 201.
Bao is a member of the US National Academy of Engineering, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Inventors. Bao was elected a foreign member of the Chinese Academy of Science in 2021. She is a Fellow of AAAS, ACS, MRS, SPIE, ACS POLY and ACS PMSE.
Bao is a member of the Board of Directors for the Camille and Dreyfus Foundation from 2022. She served as a member of Executive Board of Directors for the Materials Research Society and Executive Committee Member for the Polymer Materials Science and Engineering division of the American Chemical Society. She was an Associate Editor for the Royal Society of Chemistry journal Chemical Science, Polymer Reviews and Synthetic Metals. She serves on the international advisory board for Advanced Materials, Advanced Energy Materials, ACS Nano, Accounts of Chemical Reviews, Advanced Functional Materials, Chemistry of Materials, Chemical Communications, Journal of American Chemical Society, Nature Asian Materials, Materials Horizon and Materials Today. She is one of the Founders and currently sits on the Board of Directors of C3 Nano Co. and PyrAmes, both are silicon valley venture funded companies.
Bao was a recipient of the VinFuture Prize Female Innovator 2022, ACS Award of Chemistry of Materials 2022, MRS Mid-Career Award in 2021, AICHE Alpha Chi Sigma Award 2021, ACS Central Science Disruptor and Innovator Prize in 2020, ACS Gibbs Medal in 2020, the Wilhelm Exner Medal from the Austrian Federal Minister of Science in 2018, the L'Oreal UNESCO Women in Science Award North America Laureate in 2017. She was awarded the ACS Applied Polymer Science Award in 2017, ACS Creative Polymer Chemistry Award in 2013 ACS Cope Scholar Award in 2011. She is a recipient of the Royal Society of Chemistry Beilby Medal and Prize in 2009, IUPAC Creativity in Applied Polymer Science Prize in 2008, American Chemical Society Team Innovation Award 2001, R&D 100 Award, and R&D Magazine Editors Choice Best of the Best new technology for 2001.