The Power List 2017
Associate Professor, Analytical Chemistry, Department of Chemistry, Illinois State University, USA.
Why analytical science?
I’m very lucky to have had great research mentors in analytical chemistry, starting with Jon Carnahan at Northern Illinois University as an undergraduate. His passion for miniaturized optical devices for ICP-OES piqued my interest in chemical instrumentation.
It is has been very rewarding to see past students graduate and go on to establish successful careers in forensics and the chemical industry. Also, contributing to the recent JASMS issue honoring the election of my doctoral advisor R. Graham Cooks to the National Academy of Sciences, along with others in the Cooks’ academic family tree, was pretty special.
Working for others
My research team is focused on providing those who are tasked with keeping us safe (like law enforcement and first responders) with tools to help them perform their duties more effectively. By leveraging portable MS technologies and ambient ionization methods, we seek to provide these individuals with chemical information on-demand, but in a platform that is simple, reliable, economical and court-admissible.
Nominator comment: “Mulligan has dedicated his professional career to empower law enforcement agencies with the appropriate analytical instruments and methods to combat crime efficiently.”
Nominator comment: “Of note is that Mulligan conducts his research with undergraduate and Masters level students, training these future forensic scientists through rare and unique research experiences.”