George M. Whitesides is Woodford L. and Ann A. Flowers University Professor at Harvard University. He joined Harvard's Department of Chemistry in 1982 and served as Department Chairman from 1986 to 1989. His contributions have left an indelible impact on a number of research areas, including materials science, biophysics, surface science, polyvalency, microfluidics, optics, self-assembly, microfabrication, nanotechnology, and cell surface biochemistry. Whitesides has held advisory positions on the National Research Council, National Science Foundation, and the Department of Defense's Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. He is a co-founder of companies with a combined market capitalization of over $30 billion, including the leading biotechnology company, Genzyme.