Cynthia Larive

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Cynthia Larive
11th Chancellor of the University of California, Santa Cruz
Assumed office
July 1, 2019 (2019-07-01)
Preceded byGeorge Blumenthal
Personal details
Born1957 (age 65–66)[1]
Alma materSouth Dakota State University (BS)
Purdue University (MS)
University of California, Riverside (PhD)
Scientific career
FieldsBioanalytical chemistry
ThesisNMR studies of neurohypophyseal peptide hormones (1992)
Doctoral advisorDallas L. Rabenstein

Cynthia Larive is an American scientist and academic administrator serving as the chancellor of University of California, Santa Cruz. Larive's research focuses on nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) and mass spectrometry. She was previously a professor of chemistry and provost and executive vice chancellor at the University of California, Riverside. She is a fellow of AAAS, IUPAC and ACS, associate editor for the ACS journal Analytical Chemistry and editor of the Analytical Sciences Digital Library.


Larive received her Bachelor of Science from South Dakota State University in 1980, and her Master of Science degree from Purdue University in 1982. In 1992, she was awarded a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of California, Riverside after working under the direction of Dallas L. Rabenstein.[2][3][4]


Larive began her career as a professor in the chemistry department at the University of Kansas, and later joined the faculty of the University of California, Riverside, in 2005.[3] Since 2004 she has served as the editor-in-chief of the Analytical Sciences Digital Library.[5]

In February 2017, Larive was appointed interim provost and executive vice chancellor for University of California, Riverside, and the appointment was made permanent in October.[6]

On May 16, 2019, Larive was announced as the new chancellor of University of California, Santa Cruz, succeeding George Blumenthal[7] effective July 1.[8]


Larive worked in the field of bioanalytical chemistry, applying analytical tools such as nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR) and mass spectrometry to the products of chemical separations. Much of her research focused on reducing the amount of sample needed for analysis, such as constructing microcoil NMR probes that can measure as little as 25 nL of sample and are usable as part of an capillary isotachophoresis apparatus. This has been applied to structure determination of heparin and heparan sulfate.[2][9] She developed NMR pulse sequences to study protein ligand interactions in complexes with multiple ligands.[2][10] She also researches analytical methods for metabolomics[2][11] and chemogenomics for the reaction of plants to pesticides and hypoxia using NMR and mass spectroscopy.[2]

NMR is often thought of as a low-sensitivity method, but Larive's laboratory has developed ways of increasing the sensitivity of their measurements to obtain precise chemical and structural information.[12] The techniques she has developed are relevant to understanding carbohydrate structure and biosynthesis, designing new drugs and measuring the purity of pharmaceuticals.[13] Her work in developing chemical profiles for substances also has relevance for the authentication of foodstuffs such as wine, olive oil, and pomegranate juice.[14]


Larive has received a number of awards, including the National Science Foundation CAREER Award in 1995.[15] She received the American Chemical Society Analytical Division's J. Calvin Giddings Award for Excellence in Education in 2007[16] and served as chair of the Analytical Division in 2013. In 2015, Larive received the Award for Volunteer Service to the American Chemical Society.[5] In 2018, the Analytical Chemistry Division of the American Chemical Society honored Larive with the Award for Distinguished Service to the Field of Analytical Chemistry.

Larive is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) (2008),[17] the International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) (2004) and the American Chemical Society (ACS) (2011).[18]

Cynthia's Raise[edit]

In April 2022, Student Organizers hosted a rally at Kerr Hall over Chancellor Larive's raise of $105,286. Both graduate and undergraduate students protested the Chancellor's raise because of the rising cost of housing, homelessness and graduate student workers not receiving a cost of living adjustment (COLA).[19]


  1. ^ Ibarra, Nick. "Talking times of tumult and triumph with UCSC Chancellor Cynthia Larive". Lookout Santa Cruz. Retrieved 18 May 2023.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Department of Chemistry: Faculty". Retrieved 2016-03-20.
  3. ^ a b Nemeh, Katherine H. (2008). "American Men & Women of Science". American Men and Women of Science: Physical and Biological Sciences. Farmington Hills, MI: Gale, Cengage Learning: 690. ISSN 0000-1287. OCLC 231724858.
  4. ^ Larive, Cynthia K. (1992). NMR studies of neurohypophyseal peptide hormones (Ph.D.). University of California, Riverside. OCLC 28833337. ProQuest 303984253.
  5. ^ a b Ainsworth, Susan J. "Volunteer Service Award To Cynthia Larive". Chemical & Engineering News. Retrieved 2016-03-20.
  6. ^ Warren, J.D. (October 24, 2017). "Cynthia K. Larive Named as UCR Provost". UCR Today.
  7. ^ "Introducing Cynthia K. Larive, UC Santa Cruz chancellor-designate". May 16, 2019.
  8. ^ "UC Riverside Provost Cynthia K. Larive to become UC Santa Cruz's 11th chancellor". University of California Office of the President (Press release). May 16, 2019.
  9. ^ Korir, AK; Larive, CK (August 2007). "On-line NMR detection of microgram quantities of heparin-derived oligosaccharides and their structure elucidation by microcoil NMR". Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry. 388 (8): 1707–16. doi:10.1007/s00216-007-1400-2. PMID 17607565. S2CID 42045793.
  10. ^ Otto, WH; Larive, CK (December 2001). "Improved spin-echo-edited NMR diffusion measurements". Journal of Magnetic Resonance. 153 (2): 273–6. Bibcode:2001JMagR.153..273O. doi:10.1006/jmre.2001.2444. PMID 11740906.
  11. ^ Larive, Cynthia K.; Barding, Gregory A.; Dinges, Meredith M. (6 January 2015). "NMR Spectroscopy for Metabolomics and Metabolic Profiling". Analytical Chemistry. 87 (1): 133–146. doi:10.1021/ac504075g. PMID 25375201.
  12. ^ Yan, Bing, ed. (2004). Analysis and purification methods in combinatorial chemistry. Hoboken (N.J.): Wiley-Interscience. p. 3. ISBN 978-0-471-26929-8. OCLC 54360519.
  13. ^ "Award Abstract #1213845 Enhancing the NMR Characterization of Amino Sugars". National Science Foundation. Archived from the original on 2 April 2016. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  14. ^ "Chemist Tests Pomegranate Juice Authenticity". Food Quality and Safety. December 30, 2010. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  15. ^ "IV. Accomplishments, Breakthroughs". EPSCoR Newsletter. 1 (2). 1995. Archived from the original on April 13, 2013. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  16. ^ "UCR Chemist Recognized by the American Chemical Society". UCR News. April 10, 2007. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  17. ^ "Thirteen UCR Faculty Members Recognized by the American Association for the Advancement of Science". University of California, Riverside. December 18, 2008. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  18. ^ "Cindy Larive receives Award for Volunteer Service to the American Chemical Society" (PDF). ACS - DAC Division Newsletter. February 2, 2016. p. 7. Retrieved 21 March 2016.
  19. ^ Hansen, Merri (2022-04-22). "Student Organizers Host Rally at Kerr Hall Over Chancellor Larive's Raise". City on a Hill Press. Retrieved 2022-10-27.
Academic offices
Preceded by 11th Chancellor of the University of California, Santa Cruz
2019 – present