By Ted B. Kissell
Gillian Hayes (right), along with (left to right) Dean Hal Stern, Barbara and Bob Kleist at the June 3 Ingenuity event.
Gillian Hayes, associate professor of informatics in the Donald Bren School of Information & Computer Sciences, has been named the first holder of the Robert A. and Barbara L. Kleist Chair in Informatics. The Regents of the University of California established this endowed chair in April through a generous donation from the Kleists, longtime supporters of ICS and UC Irvine. The chair is intended to recognize and support the research, teaching and service activities of an informatics scholar of distinction focused on health and technology. Hayes has published extensive work in areas as diverse as autism, asthma, premature infancy and cancer. Using innovative research methods, she enlists community partners to ensure that her research results translate into real-world outcomes.
“I’m honored to have the support of such generous philanthropists as the Kleists,” Hayes said. “This gift, as well as the mentoring that Bob regularly provides, will enable us to engage with the community to produce research that addresses significant societal challenges.” She has also been a National Academy of Sciences Kavli Fellow; received a prestigious National Science Foundation CAREER Award; and garnered more than $1.5 million in grants and gifts from the NSF, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Autism Speaks and companies such as Google, Microsoft and Nokia. Nationally, Hayes serves on a variety of journals’ editorial boards and high-level conference organization committees. Locally, she’s director of technology research at the Center for Autism & Neurodevelopmental Disorders of Southern California and faculty director for civic & community engagement at UCI.