H. Kim Bottomly, Wellesley’s 13th president, is the first scientist to lead the College and, taking the helm in 2007, the first president inaugurated in the 21st century.
Bottomly is a native of Montana, and earned her bachelor's degree and Ph.D. at the University of Washington.
A respected educator, Bottomly served on the Yale University faculty for 27 years. In her role as deputy provost for science, technology, and faculty development at Yale, she oversaw academic, administrative, and budgetary activities for a range of departments and divisions. She initiated efforts to enhance faculty career development and spearheaded Yale’s efforts to recruit and retain women in the sciences and underrepresented minorities in all fields. An advocate for women in science, Bottomly has chaired the Committee on Status of Women of the American Association of Immunologists and the Women’s Committee of the Federation of American Societies of Experimental Biologists. She served on the steering committee for Yale’s Women Faculty Forum.
A lifelong scientist and educator, Bottomly’s research has focused on the molecular and cellular factors that influence the initiation of immune responses. She pioneered studies defining cellular changes associated with allergic and asthmatic responses. Her research investigated how people respond to allergens and why inhaled allergens lead to lung injury. She has published more than 170 peer-reviewed articles and has lectured widely at universities in the United States and around the world.