If you have an ACS member number, please enter it here so we can link this account to your membership. (optional)

ACS values your privacy. By submitting your information, you are gaining access to C&EN and subscribing to our weekly newsletter. We use the information you provide to make your reading experience better, and we will never sell your data to third party members.


ACS News

C&EN Blogs ACS Meeting

by Rudy Baum, Editor-in-chief
April 3, 2006 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 84, Issue 14

C &EN reporters attending the ACS national meeting in Atlanta last week did more than file news stories on the fascinating chemistry being presented in formal talks at the meeting. They also filed a series of lively blog entries that appear exclusively on C&EN Online. C&EN's ACS meeting blog was coordinated from Atlanta by Assistant Managing Editor for ACS News & Special Features Linda Raber.

Senior Editor Steve Ritter filed the first entry at 1 AM on Sunday, March 26, as he was preparing to plunge into the technical sessions beginning later that morning. "I hope I speak for my C&EN colleagues when I say that we relish our roles in discovering the leading stories that unfold at national meetings and then conveying them to the rest of the chemical community," Ritter wrote. "I believe this filtering and sharing is important for those chemists who don't make it to the ACS meeting. It's even important for those chemists who are at the meeting, because there's no way to get around to see everything of interest."

I've been a colleague of Steve's for more than a decade, and I didn't know that he reads "the entire ACS meeting program cover to cover—every title of every talk or poster" because he doesn't want "to take a chance on missing anything. It's something I started doing as a graduate student, and I can't break the habit."

ACS meetings are organized around the science of chemistry, and the technical divisions do an unbelievable job developing the technical program. But we all know that we can probably communicate science more efficiently through publications than through talks. We really hold meetings to ... well, meet. It's the chance encounters, sharing a beer with an old colleague, having dinner with a group of friends, wandering through the cavernous convention center chatting with a stranger, that make meetings worthwhile.

Raber's blog entry on March 26 was on just such an encounter, an impromptu brunch with ACS Councilor Jack Stocker, a retired chemistry professor from the University of New Orleans who was pictured on the cover of the Nov. 21, 2005, issue of C&EN that dealt with the results of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Raber reported that Stocker is now happily ensconced in a small apartment in the French Quarter. Unfortunately, Stocker's house in New Orleans' lower 9th ward was gutted to the studs, and Stocker was unable to salvage anything from it.

Assistant Editor Linda Wang had a chance encounter of another kind on her way to the ACS Awards Banquet & Ceremony on Tuesday evening. She ran into ACS President Ann Nalley and her husband, Robert Mullican, who invited her to share a cab with them. "In the cab," Wang wrote, "I learned a few things about Ann: She gave 11 talks the day before, she has a deep appreciation for minority issues, and she is one heck of a nice lady. Plus, she looked radiant in her multicolored sequin jacket and turquoise dress." At the banquet, Wang shared a table with, among others, Nobel Medalist Richard Schrock—a woodworker in his spare time, Wang learned—and ACS Board of Directors Chair James Burke.

Senior Editor Ivan Amato shared the experience of a reporter sorting through the vast number of press releases in the ACS News Office. "In their different ways, these peddlers of stories are trying to make their constituents stand out amid what amounts to a cacophonous din at a vast cocktail party," Amato wrote. Assistant Editor Rachel Petkewich filed four blog entries, among them what is becoming a standard from conference blogs, the "tchotchke roundup." Petkewich's favorite tchotchke? Kenny Chemist.

Of course, C&EN reporters at the Atlanta meeting did much more than write blog entries. A half-dozen "Latest News" stories from Atlanta were posted on C&EN Online last week. Over the next three to four weeks, many more stories from the meeting will appear in C&EN's departments.

I hope you log on to C&EN Online and read our blog from the Atlanta meeting. I think you will come away with a feeling for this national meeting that you wouldn't get any other way except by being there.

Thanks for reading.


This article has been sent to the following recipient:

Chemistry matters. Join us to get the news you need.