Remembering Dr. Carlos Murillo


January 14, 2022

    Remembering Dr. Carlos Murillo (1951-2021)

On November 6, 2021, the Division of Chemistry at NSF (CHE) lost a dear colleague and a close friend, Dr. Carlos Murillo.

Dr. Murillo led the Chemistry Instrumentation program (including MRI) with dedication and effectiveness, having been an able advocate since his NSF arrival from Texas A&M (TAMU) in 2007. He also managed the ChemMatCARS award, supporting and growing a national synchrotron X-ray facility for chemistry and materials research at the Advanced Photon Source in Illinois. Throughout his years at NSF, he remained research-active via adjunct appointments at TAMU and U. Texas-El Paso. Among his notable research contributions were the development of methods for the synthesis of compounds with metal-metal bonds, and improved understanding of the structure and behavior of these interesting compounds.

Carlos was a founding member of the National Academy of Sciences of Costa Rica, an AAAS Fellow, and an author of more than 300 scientific publications and two books: Advanced Inorganic Chemistry (with co-authors F. Albert Cotton, Nobel Laureate Geoffrey Wilkinson, and Manfred Bochmann) and Multiple Bonds Between Metal Atoms (with co-authors F. Albert Cotton and Richard A. Walton). He is survived by his wife Debbie (Pflugerville, TX); brother Jorge Murillo (Irvine, California); and family in San Joaquín de Flores, Heredia, Costa Rica: sisters Haydee Murillo Barrantes, Clara Murillo Barrantes, Blanca Rosa Murillo Viquez, daughter Maria Gabriella (“Gaby”) Murillo, son-in-law Diego Alonso Arias Alfaro, and grandchildren Santiago Alonso Arias Murillo and Estefanía Arias Murillo. Carlos will be sorely missed by his family, friends, and colleagues throughout NSF and the chemistry community.

Please click on this link to see the full Tribute. 

The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2022 budget of $8.8 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

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