Barbara Burger, PhD (PhD '87), president of technology ventures and vice president of innovation at Chevron, receives this award "for her long and extraordinary career as a business leader at Chevron, spanning roles in science and business, marketing, and investment; her contributions to advancements in the energy transition; and for her prominent role as a mentor and advocate for women in science and industry."
Burger joined Chevron as a research chemist in 1987, the year she graduated from the Institute. Through her career, Burger has held management positions across international marketing, chemicals, technology marketing, lubricants, and technology ventures. She holds board and advisory positions with several innovation and climate tech investment funds, incubators, and accelerators as well as the external advisory council for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Burger serves on the board of the Houston Symphony Society as well as the Board of Trustees for the University of Rochester.
Burger is committed to supporting the new generations of women who, like her, choose nontraditional pursuits. To that end, Burger recently endowed the Barbara J. Burger Fellowship at Caltech, which focuses on female doctoral students in chemistry who aim to build careers outside academia, as well as the Barbara J. Burger Women in Chemistry Annual Prize, which furnishes research-related support for female graduate students in chemistry at Caltech. In addition, she provided discretionary funds for Women in Chemistry (WIC), a Caltech student organization.
Burger earned a BS in chemistry from the University of Rochester, a PhD in chemistry from Caltech, and an MBA in finance, with academic honors, from UC Berkeley.