Holden Thorp became Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at Washington University in St. Louis on July 1, 2013. He is Rita Levi-Montalcini Distinguished University Professor and holds appointments in both chemistry and medicine.
Thorp joined the university after spending three decades at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he served as the 10th chancellor from 2008 through 2013.
Thorp started at UNC as an undergraduate student and earned a bachelor of science degree in chemistry with highest honors in 1986. He earned a doctorate in chemistry in 1989 at the California Institute of Technology and completed post-doctoral work at Yale University. He holds an honorary Doctor of Laws from North Carolina Wesleyan College and is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors.
Thorp is the co-author with Buck Goldstein of two books about higher education: “Engines of Innovation” and the forthcoming “Our Higher Calling: Rebuilding the Partnership Between America and its Colleges and Universities,” which will be published by UNC Press in September 2018.
In his research career, Thorp developed technology for electronic DNA chips and co-founded Viamet Pharmaceuticals and Innocrin Pharmaceuticals, which are commercializing new drugs for fungal disease and cancer, respectively. Thorp is currently a member of the boards of Artizan Biosciences, the College Advising Corps, the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, and Barnes-Jewish Hospital.