Chemistry Faculty: Kenneth Laali, Ph.D.

Presidential Professor of Chemistry


Office: Science & Engineering (Building 50), Room 3630

Lab: Science & Engineering (Building 50), Room 3634

Phone: (904) 620-1503


Education and Previous Positions

Bachelor of Science (Honors) - University of Tehran 1973

Ph.D. - University of Manchester 1977

Postdoctoral Research (1977-1985) - King's College London; University of Strasbourg; University of Amsterdam; ETH-Zurich; University of Southern California

Previous Faculty Appointment - Kent State University (1985-2009) 


Dr. Laali teaches organic chemistry lecture and laboratory, advanced organic chemistry and 4000 level electives focusing on structure and mechanism, problem solving, and organic spectroscopy.

Research Interests

Dr. Laali's research programs are currently focused on the following areas in organic chemistry:

  • Application of Ionic Liquids as novel solvents and catalysts for organic synthesis and green chemistry
  • Electrophilic and onium ion chemistry with emphasis on synthetic methods and application

Mechanistic and Synthetic Organic/Organometallic/Heteroatom Chemistry

Research in the Laali laboratory over the years has focused on multifaceted projects that combine synthetic, structural/mechanistic, spectroscopic, and theoretical approaches to solving diverse problems in organic chemistry. These broad-based projects encompass biological chemistry, green chemistry, and materials chemistry focus areas.

Research Group

Postdoctoral Fellows, Visiting Scientists, and Visiting Ph.D. Students

  • Dr. Aridoss Gopalakrishnan (2009-2011)
  • Dr. Rajesh Kalkhambkar (2009-2011)
  • Dr. GKS Narayana Kumar (2011-2012)
  • Dr. Ganesh C. Nandi (2012-2013)
  • Dr. A. Srinivas Reddy (2013-2014)
  • Dr. Takao Okazaki - Visiting Scientist on sabbatical from Mie-University – Spring 2013
  • Dr. Gabriela Borosky - Visiting Scientist from University of Cordoba, Argentina - 2014
  • Dr. Arezu Jamalian - Visiting Scientist from Azad University, Tehran - Fall 2013/Spring 2014
  • Rok Prebil - Visiting Ph.D. student from Josef Stefan Institute, Slovenia - Fall 2012
  • Daniel Insuasty Delgado - Visiting Ph.D. student from Cali-Colombia - Spring 2014

Undergraduate Research Students

  • Sebastian Correa-Smits (summer and fall 2016)
  • Benjamin Rathman (2013-2015) (recipient of Dreyfus 2015 and COAS 2014 summer research awards) (graduated)
  • Philip Azar (2014/2015 and summer 2016)
  • Nathan Whisman (2015)
  • Ali Zohaib (graduated)
  • Jonathan Jacoway (graduated)
  • Ashley Compaan (recipient of AIC Outstanding Student Spring 2011) (graduated)
  • Sarah Waters (recipient of the Moissan-SURF Award, Summer 2010) (graduated)
  • Jessica Crowe (graduated)
  • James Ponder (graduated)
  • Orlando Castro (graduated)

Publications and Citations

Please see Dr. Laali's extensive list of research publications and current citation history

Undergraduate Research Opportunity

Interested senior and junior students should contact Dr. Laali to discuss the prospects.

Recent Photos

Click here for recent research photos