Chang-Lin Tien was University Professor Emeritus for the University of California system and NEC Distinguished Professor Emeritus in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at its Berkeley campus. From 1990 to 1997, he served as the seventh Chancellor of the University of California, Berkeley – the first Asian American to lead a major U.S. research university.
A world-renowned expert in heat transfer, Dr. Tien was a pioneer in thermal radiation and microscale thermophysical engineering. He authored one book, published more than 300 research articles and served as editor of three international journals. He guided more than 60 students to the doctorate. Among his numerous honors, Dr. Tien was a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He was recipient of the 2001 Founder’s Award from the National Academy of Engineering and held 12 honorary doctorates from universities in the United States and abroad.
A leader in both domestic and international arenas, Dr. Tien served as Chairman of the Asia Foundation, Chairman of the San Francisco Bay Area Economic Forum, and Chairman of the Chief Executive’s Commission on Innovation and Technology in Hong Kong. He was an active member of many organizations including the Council on Foreign Relations and the U.S. National Science Board. He also served on many corporate boards including Wells Fargo Bank and Kaiser Permanente.
Dr. Tien was born in Wuhan, China, July 24, 1935, and received his bachelor’s degree from the National Taiwan University. He came to the U.S. in 1956, earned a master’s degree at the University of Louisville in 1957 and then earned a M.A. and Ph.D. at Princeton University in 1959. He died October 29, 2002 at the age of 67. In his honor, the Chang-Lin Tien Center for East Asian Studies is being planned at U.C. Berkeley.