- Guggenheim Fellow (1975)
Donald McQuarrie began his career at IU Bloomington as professor of chemistry in the College of Arts and Sciences in 1968. He was recruited by the University of California, Davis, and left IU in 1978 to accept a position there. McQuarrie received a B.S. in chemistry from the Lowell Technological Institute (1958), an M.A. in chemistry from Johns Hopkins University (1960), and a Ph.D. in physical chemistry from the University of Oregon (1962). His first academic position after obtaining his degree was at Michigan State University as an assistant professor of chemistry (1962-1963). He was then a research scientist at the North American Aviation Science Center (1964-1968) before moving to IU, where he was the youngest professor at the university at that time (1968-1978). He spent the rest of his career at UC Davis and retired in 1994 as emeritus professor of chemistry.
McQuarrie’s research interests were in theoretical chemistry, specifically in statistical thermodynamics of electrolyte systems and transport through membranes, stochastic differential equations, and nonlinear dynamical systems. He authored or co-authored 10 textbooks and 95 scientific papers, and his textbooks were world famous and had very long publication runs. His Statistical Mechanics and Statistical Thermodynamics books were in print for 40 years and are noted for their clarity in explaining the material. His honors include a National Science Foundation Fellowship, a Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship, and a Guest Research Fellowship of the Royal Society. He served on the editorial board for the Journal of Physical Chemistry and the Graduate Record Examination Committee.
McQuarrie passed away in Mendocino County, California, on July 6, 2009.