Christopher B. Martin, PhD.

Department: Chemistry and Biochemistry


Research Interests: Photochemistry, Computational

Appropriate Majors: Any Science or Engineering  


Dr. Christopher Martin is an Associate Professor of Chemistry at Lamar University. He is originally from Van Wert, OH, began his academic career at Malone College in Canton, OH when he was awarded an REU (Research Experience for Undergraduates) at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY under the supervision Dr. Mark Meier. This research experience was so transformative that he immediately transferred to the UK where he then performed additional research in the labs of Dr. Robert Grossman (organic synthesis) and Dr. Arthur Cammers (physical organic) where he eventually published two first-author papers as in high-ranking, peer-reviewed journals. After receiving his Bachelor degree in Chemistry from the University of Kentucky in 1999 he continued his education at The Ohio State University under the guidance of Dr. Matthew S. Platz. During this time at OSU, Dr. Martin elected to broaden his training and experience by earning his Master’s Degree in Chemistry by using primarily computer simulations (Computational Chemistry) on short-lived photochemical reactions and then shifting his training to using microbiological studies to quantify the photochemical effects of a new technology on the inactivation of pathogens in donated blood in collaboration with Navigant Biotechnologies. This work not only earned Martin his Ph.D. in 2004 but also landed his name on a US patent that was based on his doctoral work.

Immediately after earning his Ph.D., Dr. Martin began his teaching career at Lamar University as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry teaching Organic Chemistry where he has continued his multi-disciplinary efforts with a targeted focus on undergraduate research experiences. Dr. Martin was honored to serve as a co-PI on a research grant funded by the National Science Foundation of nearly $1,000,000 led by Dr. Peggy Doerschuk (CS) alongside Dr. C. Bahrim (PH), Dr. J. Daniel (MA), Dr. J. Kruger (ESS), and Dr. J. Mann (PSY). “Students Advancing through Involvement in Research Student Talent Expansion Program (STAIRSTEP)” began in 2009 and aims “to increase the number of talented at-risk undergraduate students receiving baccalaureate degrees in Computer Science (CS), Chemistry (CH), Physics (PH), Geology (GE), Earth Science (ES), and Mathematics (MA) at Lamar University (LU).” This highly successful program was recognized in 2013 by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board STAR award recognizing “programs that have made exceptional contributions to closing the gaps in student participation, student success, academic excellence, and/or research.” Dr. Martin has also actively collaborated with members of Chemical and Mechanical Engineering studying industrial flaring using a variety of computational simulations since 2007. He has mentored 40 different undergraduate students in research, presented this work at 5 national meetings, and published with undergraduate co-authors in peer-reviewed journals 7 times. His research students demonstrate great success both at Lamar and after graduation and include Beck Fellows, McNair Scholars, medical physicians, Ph.D. chemists, and Ph.D. biologists. His current research interests at Lamar include studying the unusual molecular rearrangements of a small class of molecules called furanones undergo upon exposure to light that may have implications for the pharmaceutical industry.