Timothy Cross, professor of chemistry and biochemistry, was honored at the 2019 spring graduation. Being named a Lawton professor is the highest honor given by FSU faculty members to one of their own.
“Tim Cross has been a dedicated and valued member of the FSU faculty for more than three decades,” said FSU President John Thrasher. “He is a tremendous researcher and teacher who has been a mentor to countless students. The faculty members have made an excellent choice in naming Tim this year’s Lawton Distinguished Professor.”
Cross said the honor would not have been possible without all of his students and colleagues both at FSU and around the world.
“My career at FSU has been and continues to be the result of so many talents from my chemistry and biochemistry and molecular biophysics graduate students; my postdocs and FSU colleagues in the Departments of Chemistry & Biochemistry, Biological Sciences, Physics and Mathematics, as well as my collaborators in a dozen countries,” he said. “And throughout my career, teaching in the laboratory and in the classroom was inspired by my colleague and friend, Professor Kitty Hoffman.”
Throughout his 34-year career at Florida State, Cross has built an impressive research portfolio by using sensitive magnetic spectroscopy to understand the function of proteins in the membranes of the influenza A virus and the bacterium that causes tuberculosis.
He has also been an integral part of the team at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory since working on the original proposal to bring the lab to FSU. He serves as the program director of the Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility.
Cross noted that many important milestones of his career have been marked by his work at the MagLab: “In the year I received tenure I worked on drafting the science justification for bringing the MagLab to FSU, which I saw as a unique opportunity to establish the first international user facility for Magnetic Resonance Imaging and its parent technology Nuclear Magnetic Resonance spectroscopy,” he said. “In 1990 I worked on designing the building for this novel facility. Today, with the support of the MagLab’s leadership and the superb scientific and technological skills of this facility’s staff as well as the spectacular efforts of the Magnet Science and Technology group, we attract hundreds of stellar researchers from dozens of countries to the NMR/MRI User facility and to FSU.”
Cross has authored 234-peer-reviewed articles and has brought in more than $41 million in research dollars to Florida State. He has mentored 44 undergraduates, 38 graduate students and 25 postdoctoral scholars while at FSU.
In addition, Cross has attracted major recognitions in his field. In 2008, he was named a fellow of the Biophysical Society, and in 2010, he received the Florida Award from the American Chemical Society as the state’s top chemist. In 2016, he was named a Fellow of the International Society for Magnetic Resonance.