Sara Skrabalak received her B.A. in chemistry from Washington University in St. Louis in 2002. She then attended the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, joining Professor Ken Suslick's laboratory. She received her Ph.D. in chemistry, with an emphasis on materials, from UIUC in the fall of 2006 and was the recipient of the T. S. Piper Thesis Research Award for her dissertation entitled: Porous Materials Prepared by Ultrasonic Spray Pyrolysis. She then did postdoctoral work at the University of Washington-Seattle beginning in 2007 with Professors Younan Xia and Xingde Li. She was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 2014 and Professor in 2017.
Her research group is developing new synthetic methods to solid materials with defined shapes and architecture then studying the structure-function relationships of prepared materials as they are applied to energy applications. Professor Skrabalak has been recognized as a Cottrell Scholar, Sloan Fellow, Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar and as the 2014 recipient of the ACS Award in Pure Chemistry. In 2017, she was named a Fulbright Fellow and Guggenheim Fellow. Professor Skrabalak is also an Associate Editor at Nanoscale (RSC).