After graduating from Glenwood Springs High School in western Colorado, Prof. Zilm received his B.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Utah, and started his independent research career at the University of Utah Research Institute. Following postdoctoral study in chemical physics at U.C. Berkeley, and an appointment as a visiting scientist at the National Bureau of Standards in Gaithersburg, Prof. Zilm moved to Yale in the summer of 1983 where he has been ever since. A world recognized authority in the field of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy, Prof. Zilm is known for his work in diverse areas of chemistry including catalyst structure, organic geochemistry, matrix isolation spectroscopy, transition metal polyhydrides, main group multiple bonding, polymer structure and morphology by NMR, polymorphism in pharmaceuticals and the chemical physics of nanocrystalline proteins. His current research interests are development of solid state NMR methods for protein structure determination and protein dynamics, application of these methods to macromolecular complexes involved in Alzheimer’s and prion associated diseases, and microscale dynamic nuclear polarization. Prof. Zilm has authored over 110 papers and presented more than 200 invited lectures in his career. Well known in the chemical industry, Prof. Zilm has consulted for numerous firms including Exxon, DuPont and NOVA Chemicals, in addition to a variety of pharmaceutical companies. In 2006 Prof. Zilm was elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, being cited for his pioneering work in magnetic resonance as well as his dedication to undergraduate education and teaching. In 2014 he was elected to the Connecticut Academy of Sciences.
Currently Professor of Chemistry, Director of the Wm. M. Keck High Field Magnetic Resonance Laboratory, Chair of the Yale STARS Advisory Committee and host of Science Saturdays at Yale, Prof. Zilm and his wife Velma live in Hamden, Connecticut where they enjoy maple sugaring, hiking, fishing and boating on Long Island Sound.