- Category: Faculty Advisor
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About Bruce Dale
Dr. Dale is Professor of Chemical Engineering and former Chair of the Department of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science at Michigan State University. He received his bachelors degree (summa cum laude) in chemical engineering from the University of Arizona (Tucson) in 1976 and the masters degree from that same university in 1976. Dr. Dale then studied under Professor George T. Tsao at Purdue University, receiving his Ph. D. degree in 1979. Dr. Dale’s first academic position was in the Department of Agricultural and Chemical Engineering at Colorado State University, where he rose to the rank of Professor in 1988. In that same year he joined Texas A&M University where he became Professor of Chemical Engineering and Professor of Agricultural Engineering. Dr. Dale also directed two large interdisciplinary research centers at Texas A&M: the Engineering Biosciences Research Center and the Food Protein Research and Development Center.
In 1996 Dr. Dale became Professor and Chair of the Department of Chemical Engineering at Michigan State University, where he also holds an appointment in the Michigan Agricultural Experiment Station. In 2001 he stepped down as Chair to return to full time research and teaching. In 1996 Professor Dale won the Charles D. Scott Award for the use of biotechnology to produce fuels and chemicals from plant material. In 2007 he won the Sterling Hendricks Award for contributions to agriculture. In 2008 he was named University Distinguished Faculty. In 2011 he was elected a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and in that same year he won the Award of Excellence from the Fuel Ethanol Workshop. Professor Dale is interested in developing sustainable systems to convert plant matter to fuels, food and animal feed.
In plain terms, Professor Dale is trying to figure out what we will do to provide environmentally-sustainable fuels and chemical products for our society once as the Age of Petroleum winds to its inevitable end sometime in this century; we may earnestly hope it ends with a whimper and not a bang. Dr. Dale has authored over 200 referreed journal papers, is an active consultant to industry and expert witness. He also holds twenty eight U. S. and foreign patents. He expects to devote the rest of his career at Michigan State to teaching and research aimed at developing a sustainable resource basis for modern society. His concern with sustainable resource utilization was formed by growing up in the copper mining town of Ruth in eastern Nevada—a vibrant and delightful small community that became a ghost town when the mine ran out of ore. Professor Dale has deeply distrusted mining societies—as our society mines petroleum—ever since.
In his personal life, Professor Dale is an avid but not very competent gardener, planter of trees and is very active in his church. He and his wife of 38 years, the former Regina Ruesch, live on seven mostly wooded acres just south of the MSU campus where he is free to plant almost anything—most recently a beautiful specimen of Metasequoia glyptostroboides. He and Gina delight in their eighteen grandchildren and are fixing up their home and property to be as attractive, interesting and fun as possible for all of these vigorous little minds and bodies. Dr. Dale is doing his best to make sure this world is still beautiful and productive for them when they become grandparents themselves.