Kelly Simmons-Potter

Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Optical Sciences, Materials Sciences and Engineering College of Engineering, College of Optical Sciences

Dr. Kelly Simmons-Potter is a Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Optical Sciences, and Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Arizona in Tucson, AZ. Dr. Simmons-Potter received her B.S. in Physics in 1986 from Florida State University and her M.S. and Ph.D. in 1990 and 1994 respectively in Optical Sciences from the University of Arizona. In addition, she served as a research associate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Universite de Rennes (France), and the Naval Research Laboratories between 1985 and 1990. Dr. Simmons-Potter spent nearly 10 years at Sandia National Laboratories, from 1994 to 2003, ending in the position of Principal Member of Technical Staff and Project Manager for Advanced Optical Technologies. In 2003, she left Sandia Labs to return to academia at the U.A. Dr. Simmons-Potter is a Fellow of the American Ceramic Society, Director of the Arizona Research Initiative for Solar Energy (AzRISE), and is the current Vice-Chair of the Hardened Electronics and Radiation Technology (HEART) Society. She is the co-author of three textbooks in the field of optics, has authored more than 100 peer-reviewed journal and conference publications, has delivered more than 150 scholarly presentations, and holds several patents. Her research focuses on radiation-hardened optics, photosensitive materials and devices, and sustainable energy systems.


  • Ph.D., Optical Physics, University of Arizona