Dr. Thoma joined the University of Wisconsin-Madison as the inaugural Director of the Grainger Institute for Engineering (GIE). The GIE was an accelerator within the College of Engineering to mature scientific and technical areas with significant societal impact. Currently, he is a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering. Prior to UW, he was the Deputy Division Leader for the Materials Science and Technology (MST) Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). This division focused on advanced manufacturing and novel materials research. His technical efforts have been devoted to new manufacturing methods and materials by design, with a particular focus on property response as a function of microstructural evolution during phase transformations. Dr. Thoma has been active within materials professional societies, where he was the president of The Minerals, Metals, Materials Society (TMS) in 2003, the American Institute of Mining, Metallurgical, and Petroleum Engineers (AIME) in 2008, and the Federation of Materials Societies (FMS) in 2009-2010. His expertise in materials and manufacturing was recognized in 2008 by being elected as a Fellow of ASM International. In 2019, he was elected Fellow of TMS. Dr. Thoma was awarded the AIME Honorary Member recognition in 2021, the highest award from the 150+ year old Founder Engineering Society.