Dr. Troy D. Hammond became the 10th president of North Central College on January 1, 2013, at age 45. A scientist, business leader, entrepreneur and teacher, he was named to the post in October 2012 after a nationwide search.
Hammond holds a Ph.D. in experimental atomic physics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where he was mentored by thesis advisor Dr. David Pritchard and Nobel Laureate Dr. Wolfgang Ketterle. As a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, he studied atomic properties while leading a team of graduate and undergraduate researchers. Today, Hammond holds 47 worldwide patents and patent applications representing 11 unique inventions and has published extensively about physics, nanotechnology, polymer electronics, solar power and other energy technologies.
A native of Kokomo, Ind., Hammond graduated magna cum laude with a B.S. in mathematics from Milligan College in May 1989. He has said that his experience there “opened my eyes to what a quality education in the liberal arts can do for a person and what it did for me.”
He continued his education at Georgia Tech, where he earned a second undergraduate degree, a B.S. in physics in 1990. Earning a prestigious National Science Foundation fellowship paved his way to the doctoral program at MIT (1990-1996). There, Hammond met his wife Sharlene, who holds a chemistry degree from MIT and a master of science degree in nursing from Massachusetts General Hospital Institute of Health Professions. The couple served as resident assistants in an MIT residence hall.
Hammond’s first position after graduate school was with McKinsey & Company, a leading management consulting firm (1996-2004). As an associate principal, he worked in the company’s Pittsburgh and Auckland, New Zealand, offices, serving senior executives in a wide range of industries across the globe on critical business issues.
Hammond then joined Plextronics, Inc. (2004-2009), a small technology company in Pittsburgh, and helped build it into a global leader in printed electronics. While at Plextronics he served as an adjunct professor of business at Milligan College, where he developed and taught the course Quantitative Methods for Business for a newly established M.B.A. program.
Immediately prior to joining North Central College, Hammond was president of the energy services business at BlueStar Energy in Chicago (2010-2012). With his expertise in renewable energy technologies and sustainability, he provided commercial, industrial and institutional customers with energy efficiency services.
In 2013 Hammond was recognized as one of 60 outstanding alumni of the National Science Foundation’s highly competitive Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP). Hammond and a handful of other GRFP alumni, including U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke and University of Chicago President Robert Zimmer, were honored for their professional accomplishments from more than 46,500 Fellows named since the program’s inception in 1952.
Residents of Naperville since 2010, Troy and Sharlene Hammond are parents of four children—Adonay, Dillon, Karina and Gabrielle—all students in Naperville Community Unit School District 203.