Issue Date: October 5, 2009
Official Reports From The Washington, D.C., Meeting
Reports of Society Committees
Budget & Finance
The society Committee on Budget & Finance met on Saturday, Aug. 15, to review the society's probable financial results for 2009. The society is projected to end the year with a net contribution from operations of $11.2 million, or $528,000 favorable to the 2009 Approved Budget. The society is also projected to end the year in compliance with the board-established financial guidelines, with the exception of the fund balance ratio, a measure of reserve adequacy. The society was not in compliance with this ratio as of Dec. 31, 2008. The capital markets have recovered slightly in 2009, but it is unlikely that a significant recovery will occur before year-end 2009 to bring the ratio within the fund balance ratio range of 40–80%, the board-approved guideline. Year-end compliance will be highly dependent upon improvement in the capital markets.
The committee considered a new program funding request for the ACS Science Coaches program for 2010–12 and recommended that the ACS Board approve the proposal as requested. In addition, the committee considered a program funding reauthorization request for the ACS Green Chemistry Institute for 2010 and recommended that the ACS Board approve the reauthorization request for another year.
The committee received a report from the Program Review Advisory Group (PRAG) on its 2009 activities, which included a review of society programs in four areas: career self-management/employment, institutional and membership development, scientific advancement, and chemistry pipeline.—Dennis Chamot, Chair
The Society Committee on Education (SOCED) discussed the society's role in the preparation of high school chemistry teachers. SOCED approved a motion to explore the development of a program to create an interest group within the discipline focused on promoting the involvement of chemistry departments in the preparation of chemistry teachers and the support of in-service teachers. SOCED directed the Task Force on General Chemistry to develop a set of "core standards" that represent the foundational concepts of a general chemistry course. Each standard would be accompanied by examples of appropriate outcomes for what students should know and be able to do after completing a general chemistry course. SOCED reviewed the recommendations contained in the reports of the diversity workshops held in 2008 with Hispanic-serving and Native American-serving institutions and considered possible actions it could take in response to these recommendations. The chair of the Chemistry Olympiad Committee reported on the status of the program and performance of the U.S. team last month at the International Chemistry Olympiad in Cambridge, England. The U.S. team had its best performance since 2002, winning one gold and three silver medals. The U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad program is celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2009.—Bryan Balazs, Chair
Board Committee Reports
Grants & Awards
The ACS Board Committee on Grants & Awards (G&A) held a virtual meeting on Aug. 7 and was updated on the status of the Awards Review Committee (ARC). This spring, ARC reviewed 13 of the national awards. Of the 13 awards, nine were considered to be healthy. A secondary, more in-depth review was conducted for the other four awards. ARC voted to
• Retain the Charles Lathrop Parsons Award and conduct another review in three years.
• Retain the James T. Grady-James H. Stack Award for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public and conduct another review in three years.
• Retain the Earle B. Barnes Award for Leadership in Chemical Research Management, clarify the eligibility statement with the sponsor (Dow Chemical), and conduct another review in three years.
• Retain the ACS Award for Achievement in Research for the Teaching & Learning of Chemistry and conduct another review next year.
Acting under delegated authority, G&A voted to accept the new purpose statement for the ACS Award in Separation Science & Technology: To recognize the development of novel applications with major impacts and/or the practical implementations of modern advancements in the field of separation science and technology.
It was reported that during the G&A meeting in Salt Lake City, the committee discussed ways to improve the visibility of the awardees and their significant contributions to science and society as a whole. Staff members from the Awards Office, the Office of Public Affairs, and the Office of Member Research & Technology met in July to discuss how best to assess the impact of the awards program and its public visibility in support of ACS strategic goals. Staff recommends to G&A that a three stage exercise be implemented, consisting of an online survey to the 2010 award winners, 10 video interviews, and a follow-up survey.
Acting under delegated authority, G&A voted to accept the recommendations of the ACS Petroleum Research Fund Advisory Board (Undergraduate Panel Meeting, June 2009) for funding grants totaling $1.17 million.—Eric C. Bigham, Chair
Professional & Member Relations
The Committee on Professional & Member Relations (P&MR) has developed a new quarterly e-bulletin to keep P&MR members and ACS committee chairs informed of recent and pending issues related to P&MR. The e-bulletin can be accessed on www.acs.org/pmr.
The committee discussed several changes planned for the 2010 Membership Satisfaction Survey. The 2010 survey will include fewer questions to increase the response rate as well as parallel versions to ensure that sound input is received on all relevant matters. The survey also will be sent to a larger number of members.
The committee discussed whether to automatically include basic information on all members in the ACS Network, unless members chose to opt-out. This issue was submitted to the board, and the board subsequently approved the proposal on Aug. 16. The new policy calls for inclusion of basic member information after each member is informed, unless a member chooses not to participate.
P&MR discussed recent efforts to make national meeting content available online. A report is expected in November from the Divisional Activities Committee, which is managing this effort.
Updates were provided on society-wide preparations for 2011 International Year of Chemistry, as well as recent efforts to develop alliances with international organizations. A new alliance with the London-based society of Chemical Industry was officially approved in July. This alliance gives members of both societies more favorable access to one another's meetings and facilities, among other things.
P&MR also discussed issues regarding laboratory safety in academic institutions, prompted by the recent tragedy at a University of California, Los Angeles, chemistry laboratory. P&MR will communicate with the Committee on Chemical Safety about this issue, including CCS efforts to coordinate with other relevant committees and divisions on this matter.—Diane G. Schmidt, Chair
Public Affairs & Public Relations
The Committee on Public Affairs & Public Relations (PA&PR) held a virtual meeting on Aug. 10. The chair highlighted the "Snapshot of ACS Governance & Presidential Succession Advocacy" report on activities since the June meeting and also advised the committee of a letter sent to Anke Timmermann appointing her to the National Historic Chemical Landmark (NHCL) subcommittee. The chair also reviewed PA&PR and Office of Public Affairs activities planned for the August national meeting in Washington, D.C., and urged members to participate in them.
The committee reviewed and discussed a nomination received from the St. Joseph Valley Local Section for an NHCL to recognize the dipstick health testing technology first introduced by Al and Helen Free, and voted to approve the NHCL designation.
The committee then received a presentation from ACS Office of Public Affairs staff on the launch of the new Chemistry Ambassadors program (www.acs.org/chemistryambassadors) and the new all electronic annual report (www.acs.org/annualreport) and member resource guide "Now More Than Ever"www.acs.org/now.
The committee reviewed and discussed a draft health care position statement submitted by the Committee on Economic & Professional Affairs (CEPA), which would replace the existing position statement on Association Health Plans. The committee voted to adopt the CEPA-proposed health care statement.
PA&PR discussed the current ACS position development and approval process and whether there should be issues or topics ACS should not develop a position statement on. After significant discussion, the consensus was that it would not be constructive or practical to try to define areas in which ACS shouldn't engage. Committee members felt that the current system of policy development, review, and decision-making was working well and as intended but did agree that the position development and approval process could be enhanced by early notification to PA&PR by committees in the early stage of position statement drafting.
The committee agreed that increased efforts be undertaken to make sure committee chairs and staff liaisons know that they should alert PA&PR at the outset of position statement development. The committee then agreed to the following actions: The ACS Policy Statement Development & Approval document will be sent as a reminder to committee staff liaisons and will then be issued annually with committee chairs at the beginning of each year. The document will also be included in future "Committee News" newsletters and C&EN comments, and a similar document should be developed for use with state government affairs committees that are getting involved in policy issues under the state government affairs pilot program.
The chair updated the committee on efforts to begin the evaluation of ACS Bylaw XI and how it might be updated and brought into alignment with the current position statement approval process outlined in Board Regulation III, 16. The chair reviewed recent conversations held with the chair of the Constitution & Bylaws Committee as well as with the Office of the Secretary & General Counsel. The chair outlined a broadly inclusive plan to reach out to several ACS committees and divisions to solicit their input so that a consensus proposal could be recommended for implementation to council that would bring portions of the ACS governing documents (Bulletin V) dealing with position statement development and approval into agreement.—Bonnie A. Charpentier, Chair
Other Board Standing and Joint Board-Council Committees
Chemical Abstracts Service
The Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service (CCAS) met in Executive Session on Aug. 14 and in open session jointly with the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications and the Division of Chemical Information on Aug. 17. CAS management reported on a number of developments, including the addition of new features in SciFinder and the rapid growth of the CAS Registry.
CAS reported that it is on track to register the 50 millionth unique chemical substance on Sept. 7. CAS registered the 40 millionth substance nine months earlier; in contrast, it took 33 years for CAS to register the 10 millionth compound in 1990.
In mid-September, SciFinder will have new features that include analytical and collaboration tools to help synthetic chemists and other scientists increase productivity in their research process. The new features also will help scientists identify relevant reactions quickly, find similar reactions, and utilize solvent classifications. Other powerful new features allow scientists to refine and customize substance answer sets and share information with colleagues.
Committee members reviewed progress with CAS management regarding the escalating challenge of unauthorized use, or piracy, of SciFinder from U.S. universities. CAS management appreciates the resolution passed by the committee which supports their communications efforts with universities around the world. CAS continues to provide valuable feedback regarding this threat.—Patricia L. Dedert, Chair
In January, the Committee on Chemical Safety was confronted with the tragic death of research associate Sheri Sangji. For more information about this tragic accident please refer to the Aug. 3 issue of C&EN, particularly the electronic version where you can read statements relating to the investigation. The public, scientists, educators, and students have been contacting members of the committee demanding greater leadership from managers in the chemical workplace. That call has resonated with the committee which has reviewed the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) citations, the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health report (www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/ohb-face/Documents/09CA001.pdf, California FACE Report #09CA001) and the UCLA response (www.ovcr.ucla.edu/labsafety/july2009report.pdf, Report of the Chancellor on UCLA Laboratory Safety. July 2009) to the incident and discussed findings at its recent meeting in Washington, D.C.
The following is a summary of recommendations from the cited reports:
• Academic institutions should increase accountability and oversight, improve and expand safety outreach and training, and improve laboratory design, inventory, and recordkeeping.
• Laboratory personnel should follow proper procedures including wearing appropriate clothing and personal protective equipment when using pyrophoric chemicals.
• Whenever possible, alternative chemicals to pyrophoric compounds should be considered.
Clearly, academic institutions must demonstrate leadership in holding its faculty, from presidents to deans to professors, accountable for operating its programs safely and educating future graduates in how to conduct themselves in a safe manner. The committee welcomes suggestions from the ACS membership and the chemical community about providing information on management's role in health, safety, and environmental matters, which will be considered at the committee's next meeting.—Laurence J. Doemeny, Chair
Chemists With Disabilities
The Committee on Chemists with Disabilities (CWD) cosponsored and participated in a symposium at the national meeting entitled "Chemistry, Sustainability & Diversity: Global Imperatives."
CWD also hosted students with disabilities, their parents, and vocational counselors during its open meeting. Committee members shared their firsthand professional and disability related expertise to facilitate the start of careers in chemistry for this promising and drastically underrepresented group. The exchange was very beneficial and a long-term relationship will continue with CWD as the students work toward their career goals. Vocational counselors noted that ACS-CWD is unique in its ability to provide resources to persons with disabilities who are interested in pursuing/studying chemistry and commended ACS for its leadership role in this arena.
As part of CWD's continuing efforts, the committee held a dialogue with key ACS information technology staff at this meeting to enhance the accessibility of the ACS Network for persons with disabilities who are using assistive technology. CWD will serve in an advisory role as changes progress in the ACS network. The committee will also continue to provide its input to any other units of ACS upon request to facilitate accessibility of all ACS programs, products, and services to persons with disabilities. The Joint Subcommittee on Diversity serves as one vehicle to leverage such productive collaboration by CWD.
The committee will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2010 and began planning activities to mark the occasion at the upcoming San Francisco and Boston meetings.—Judith A. Summers-Gates, Chair
The Committee on Community Activities (CCA) reported that the theme for the 2010 Chemists Celebrate Earth Day (CCED) celebration will be "Plants—The Green Machines."
CCA reported on the national meeting presidential outreach events for residents of the District of Columbia. On Saturday, an outreach event for children featuring hands-on activities that highlighted the elements of the periodic table was held at the FBR Branch of the Boys & Girls Club. On Monday evening, CCA partnered with the Committee on Local Section Activities and President Lane to host a Science Café. Langley Spurlock, a chemist and artist, along with poet John Martin Tarrat, presented the elements in art form along with several haiku poems. The event was attended by more than 90 members of the general public.
Tuesday evening, CCA presented ChemLuminary Awards to local sections that demonstrated exemplary performance in the development and implementation of activities conducted safely in support of National Chemistry Week and Chemists Celebrate Earth Day.
National Chemistry Week will be celebrated on Oct. 18–24 with its theme, "Chemistry—It's Elemental." The theme will honor the 140th anniversary of the periodic table. "Celebrating Chemistry," a publication geared toward elementary school children, features hands-on activities and articles and is available in English and Spanish on the ACS website (www.acs.org/ncw). Merck & Co. is the national partner for National Chemistry Week.
CCA will provide resources for the 2011 International Year of Chemistry celebration, integrating Chemists Celebrate Earth Day and National Chemistry Week in the second and fourth quarter, respectively. Water will be the central thread connecting the quarterly themes: environment (first quarter); energy (second quarter); materials (third quarter); and, health (fourth quarter).—Ingrid Montes, Chair
The Committee on Corporation Associates (CCA) advises ACS to ensure that its products and services are of value to industrial members and their companies.
The Workforce Development & Educational Outreach Subcommittee requested volunteers to add their profile information to help build content to the ACS ChemClub website on the ACS Education website for individuals who work in industry. An update on the progress of the creation of a best practice database of Corporation Associates companies' internship and co-op programs was provided and additional feedback was solicited. The subcommittee is also working on hosting a networking reception for mid-level chemists at the ACS 2010 Spring Meeting in San Francisco.
The Awards/Finance & Grants Subcommittee reported that Corporation Associates received five funding proposals totaling $34,800. Funding was provided for the following: the Undergraduate Programs Office and the Society Committee on Education Task Force on Undergraduate Programming at $5,000, the Committee on Economic & Professional Affairs at $2,000, and the Festival de Quimica at the Hispanic Engineering, Science & Technology conference at $5,000.
The Membership Subcommittee identified and prioritized several concepts and goals to successfully recruit new members to Corporation Associates. They also generated a new flyer to use for recruitment purposes and distributed it throughout the meeting and at a reception hosted by the committee.
The Public Policy Subcommittee liaison from the Office of Public Affairs provided the committee with an update on activities and issues on research investment, global climate change, energy legislation, and new initiatives in automobile fuel standards.
Staff reported on Department of Industry Member Programs activities since the Salt Lake City meeting. The report covered Heroes of Chemistry, the debut of the Small Business Webinar series, an update on the new industry site boilthisdown.org, the sixth annual World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology & Bioprocessing, and the program review of the office. At the meeting, CA also provided insights to soliciting nominations for the Earle B. Barnes Award for Leadership in Chemical Research Management.—Roslyn L. White, Chair
The Committee on Environmental Improvement (CEI) has updated its strategic plan and adopted three overarching goals to advance its vision of "being the central site for sustainability information within ACS, and a leader in promoting sustainability for the society and society."
In support of the first goal, "equipping ACS with the knowledge, strategies, and tools it needs to deal with emerging and ongoing environmental issues, "CEI completed recommendations to the ACS Board of Directors on inherently safer technologies and on environmental research and education funding; continued work on the second half of the joint ACS-American Institute of Chemical Engineers position on energy policy; and began work on a new draft statement on chemicals management and regulatory policy.
CEI's second goal is to "be a resource and leader in facilitating communications and networking on sustainability and other environmental issues." In this area, CEI continued to be engaged with the Sustainability Stakeholders Steering Group (S3G) to increase ACS focus on sustainability issues.
The committee also is "promoting sustainability within ACS and society at large." CEI awarded the first grant to the Syracuse Local Section in the new CEI-Local Section Activities Committee effort to encourage local sustainability programming. In consultation with the society Committee on Education, CEI continues planning for a new program next year to recognize excellence in integrating sustainability concepts into the classroom.
CEI's main effort was to continue planning and coordination for the 2010 spring national meeting theme of chemistry for a sustainable world. The program for San Francisco will involve first-rate technical programs on alternative energy, biofuels, hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and other areas; a keynote and plenary to attach this science to broader societal concerns; and unique programming to engage more fully ACS members on these issues.—Martin A. Abraham, Chair
Leadership from the International Activities Committee (IAC) visited the U.S. State Department, convening with the Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Visa Services, the Science & Technology Adviser to the Secretary of State and regional desk officers to discuss the positive changes in the visa process, urge continued progress, and to sustain dialog between ACS and the State Department on broad global issues in chemistry as they relate to implementing the ACS strategic plan, the internationalization of the profession, and promoting the International Year of Chemistry.
IAC reviewed recommendations from the Program Review Advisory Group on the Office of International Activities and is developing an action plan and response around those recommendations.
IAC continues to take on an active leadership role in the IYC2011 planning, serving ACS as an inclusive point of contact for several committees and stakeholders for the society. IAC hosted a booth in the Expo to promote IYC2011 celebrations, including the signing of a petition to the U.S. Postmaster General for a commemorative stamp in 2011.
IAC cosponsored a meeting and reception with International Union of Pure & Applied Chemistry (IUPAC) and the National Academies to bring together ACS and IUPAC technical division leadership for cooperation discussions addressing global chemical challenges. This event culminated in networking dinners and workshops with the embassies of Germany, India, Japan, and the Netherlands, and their associated science and technology funding agencies.
More than 500 international chemists attended the IAC Reception and helped celebrate the accomplishments of 30 ACS/National Science Foundation International Research Experience for Undergraduates participants and the recipients of 10 young faculty travel grants.—Peter K. Dorhout, Chair
The Committee on Minority Affairs (CMA) continues to promote the participation of minority chemical scientists in the society, as well as the chemical enterprise. CMA will celebrate the 15th anniversary of the ACS Scholars program in 2010.
CMA joined forces with the Committee on Chemists with Disabilities, the Women Chemists Committee, the Younger Chemists Committee, the society Committee on Education, the Committee on Professional Training (CPT), and the Office of the President to offer a day of diversity-related programs on Monday as an initiative of the Joint Subcommittee on Diversity. The morning featured a symposium titled "Chemistry, Sustainability & Diversity: Global Imperatives." In addition, the CMA Luncheon was expanded to accommodate a presidential panel featuring industry best practices for diversity titled "Corporate Executives' Perspectives on Leading Diversity from the Top." Monday afternoon featured a symposium in the Chemical Education Division cosponsored with CPT titled "Revitalizing Chemistry Education To Increase Competitiveness and Diversity." Monday concluded with a Diversity Partners reception immediately before SciMix which included leaders from the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists & Chemical Engineers, the Society for the Advancement of Chicanos & Native Americans in Science, and the American Indian Science & Engineering Society. These initiatives are very important for the society's future as the U.S. population diversifies, and diverse viewpoints are also necessary for innovation and competitiveness within the U.S. chemical workforce.
CMA is working with CPT through the ACS Presidential Task Force on implementing CPT's Diversity Reports to put into action recommendations coming out of the reports on the needs of African Americans, Native Americans, and Hispanics in science education. Additionally, CMA has started a discussion group in the ACS Network focusing on diversity issues, and people are encouraged to join the discussion group to express their opinions freely as part of the group.
The committee has also started planning programming for regional meetings and local sections. The committee plans to use the local sections as part of a grassroots approach for regional and local diversity programming. The CMA starter minigrant application and a local section CMA starter kit are both available on the CMA website. The directory of local section CMAs has also been updated and will be posted along with the latest CMA Newsletter to the website immediately following the national meeting.—Allison Aldridge, Chair
Patents & Related Matters
The Committee on Patents & Related Matters (CPRM) focuses on three main areas. First, CPRM provides ACS members and the general public with information about patents and other intellectual property issues. Second, CPRM proposes nominations of notable inventors for external national awards recognizing the innovations and inventions of chemists. Finally, CPRM monitors legislative and regulatory developments influencing intellectual property in ways that impact the chemical enterprise.
Over the past year, CPRM has recommended a new policy statement on U.S. Patent Reform. Our statement incorporates compromise positions reflecting the diverse interests of the chemical enterprise. Among the committee's recommendations are improving funding for the Patent & Trademark Office by preventing patent fee diversion. Our statement also advocates adopting a first-to-file patent system. The ACS Board of Directors has adopted our recommended statement.
CPRM has recommended nominees for the National Inventors' Hall of Fame and the National Medal of Technology & Innovation. CPRM also engages in educational outreach to help chemists and others understand the patent system. CPRM has partnered with the Chemistry and the Law Division to provide patent-related programming at national and regional meetings. In addition, CPRM has created numerous educational materials, many of which provide guidance regarding second careers in the area of intellectual property. CPRM's materials are available on its website, membership.acs.org/C/CPRM.—Andrew G. Gilicinski, Chair
The Planning Committee met by conference call on Friday, July 17. It has developed a two-tiered approach to gathering society stakeholder input on the draft ACS Strategic Plan for 2010 & Beyond. Key committees affected by proposed changes have been asked to comment. Also, members and other stakeholders are invited to share their thoughts, suggestions and perspectives on the society's strategic directions. This fall, the Planning Committee will take into careful consideration all the input received. Stakeholders interested in participating in the open discussions are being urged to visit communities.acs.org/groups/acs-strategic-plan make their voices heard on the path the society is taking to advance our vision of "Improving people's lives through the transforming power of chemistry."—Judith L. Benham, Chair
At the August 2009 meeting, the Committee on Professional Training (CPT) evaluated 38 five-year reports from currently approved programs, and five updates and five site visit reports from schools applying for ACS approval. With the approval of two new schools, the total number of colleges and universities offering ACS-approved bachelor's degree programs in chemistry is now 654.
In support of 2008 ACS Guidelines, CPT continued the development of supplements, which can be accessed from the website www.acs.org/cpt. New supplements on program self-evaluation, student mentoring, and excellence in the training of undergraduates will be released shortly after the fall ACS meeting.
The committee completed a survey of master's degree programs, and the final report will be published in the fall CPT Newsletter. The committee is working on the results of a survey of enrollments in selected undergraduate courses and plans to release the final report in the spring of 2010. This fall the committee will conduct a survey on faculty status, which is designed to capture important information about the types of instructional staff (tenure-track, permanent, temporary, etc.), the courses taught by instructors in each category, and the percentage of women and underrepresented minorities in each type of position.
The 2009 print edition of the "ACS Directory of Graduate Research" and the searchable, online version, DGRweb, will be released later this year. For the first time, the directory will include listings from graduate research institutions in Mexico.—Cynthia K. Larive, Chair
Editorial monitoring reports for Analytical Chemistry, Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data, Macromolecules, and Organometallics were presented by staff and accepted by the committee. Editor reappointments were reviewed and recommendations submitted to the ACS Board of Directors for approval. The next publications to be monitored will be Energy & Fuels, Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research, and the Journal of the American Chemical Society.
The committee was provided with highlights of a C&EN strategic plan that was presented to the Governing Board for Publishing in July, and to the C&EN Editorial Board during its August meeting. The 2009 C&EN reader survey demonstrated that satisfaction with the print magazine and its editorial features remains high, and that usage of C&EN Online is growing.
The committee was briefed on changes to the production and dissemination of print journals effective 2009–10, and on product development efforts launched or under way, including the ACS Symposium Series online, full-text journal indexing by Google, and journal hyperlinking to CAS SciFinder. Two new journals, ACS Chemical Neuroscience and the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, will be launched online only in 2010.
A sales and marketing update summarized the 2010 pricing and sales incentives for customers, and presented recent Web and print journal user survey data that compared and contrasted the use of print and online formats, and identified desired enhancements to the society's Web journal delivery platform.
The Copyright Subcommittee presented an update of recent cases and legislation. Two cosponsored symposia on copyright and author rights were held at the ACS fall 2009 meeting. The committee voted to cosponsor a planned symposium on publishing ethics for the ACS spring 2010 national meeting.
The committee discussed means of communicating among its members using the ACS Network.—John N. Russell Jr., Chair
Public Relations & Communications
The Committee on Public Relations & Communications (CPRC) partnered with the ACS Office of Public Affairs to launch a new member engagement program at this meeting, called Chemistry Ambassadors. This program is the major deliverable for 2009 in the society's Communications Strategic Plan. It encourages our members to be compelling spokespersons for chemistry and to connect chemistry with teachers, students, policymakers, the news media, and others in the communities where they live.
The website www.acs.org/chemistryambassadors has tools, tips, suggestions, and messages to make it easy to make a difference, no matter how little time you have, or how much. Whether you need a simple way to explain what you do at a neighborhood barbeque, or you want to provide science news to your local newspaper, or you'd be willing to make classroom visits if you had a step-by-step guide, the tools are here. If your child is heading back to school, send his or her teacher a link to the many grade-appropriate resources ACS makes available. Or send the guidance councilor a link to ACS scholarship information. This program will help you connect the resources and messages with the people they can help!
The committee and the Office of Public Affairs continue to provide a free weekly podcast called Science Elements, available at www.acs.org/pressroom as well as at iTunes. The podcasts report on research featured in ACS journals and C&EN and are written to interest lay audiences as well as scientists.
At the Washington meeting, CPRC presented awards for excellence in public relations to the Pittsburgh Local Section, for best new efforts, and to the Chicago Local Section, for the best ongoing public relations program. David Katz received the committee's Helen Free Award in Public Outreach.—Russell W. Johnson, Chair
At this meeting in Washington, D.C., the Committee on Science (ComSci) intensified its focus on alternative energy systems (AES).
Prior to this meeting, three teams of ComSci members visited several government agencies to discuss issues related to alternative energy sources. Staff from the following agencies met with ComSci: The Department of Energy, the National Institute of Standards & Technology, the Department of Agriculture, the Department of Defense, and the National Science Foundation.
ComSci presented a full-day symposium that provided a detailed, multiperspective analysis of several alternative energy systems. These perspectives addressed the pros and cons of the different energy sources, including assessments regarding social, economic, educational, and environmental consequences. In addition, the symposium identified scientific research opportunities for chemists regarding each of these alternative energy sources.
In Washington, the committee hosted a luncheon for 75 people whose views were sought on the most important criteria our nation should use in evaluating alternative energy sources. Ultimately, this feedback will help representatives from ACS and the American Institute of Chemical Engineers draft a policy statement identifying the most essential criteria to use as the U.S. evaluates AES.
In the area of providing multiple stakeholders the information they need to better understand AES, ComSci members have reviewed dozens of websites to determine the most credible sources. By October, ComSci will create pages on acs.org that will provide links to these sites tailored for a number of different audiences, including scientists, the public, educators, and others.—Carolyn Ribes, Chair
The Women Chemists Committee (WCC) held its open meeting and local section reception on Saturday, Aug. 15, with the Chemical Society of Washington, which featured a panel discussion with women scientific leaders in the national security field. On Sunday, Aug. 16, WCC and the National Collegiate Inventors & Innovators Alliance cosponsored an outstanding workshop, "From Invention to Venture: Women and Technology Entrepreneurship."
WCC joined with all of the members of the Joint Subcommittee on Diversity to present a presidential event on Monday morning, Aug. 17. The "Chemistry, Sustainability, and Diversity: Global Imperatives" symposium featured five different talks on the importance of diversity to our chemical industry. Also on Monday, WCC hosted its Women in Industry Breakfast, which featured mini-mentoring and recognized the 2009 winners of the Merck Index Women in Chemistry Scholarship. The award winners presented their research at the Merck Index Women in Chemistry Award symposium and poster session on Monday in the convention center.
On Tuesday, Aug. 18, WCC honored the 20th anniversary of the Eli Lilly/WCC Travel Award program, which has helped more than 500 young women attend their first national meeting to present their scientific research. The 11 current recipients of the fall 2009 Eli Lilly Travel Award shared their research highlights during the WCC/Eli Lilly Poster Session and Reception, prior to the WCC Luncheon. The luncheon featured Michelle Buchanan from Oak Ridge National Laboratory, as the keynote speaker. The 2009 winner of the Overcoming Challenges Award, Stefanie Sacknoff, also provided remarks.
Fall Deadline Reminder (Dec. 2): The WCC Lectureship Award supports early and midcareer female chemists and chemical engineers to present invited technical talks at doctoral-degree-granting institutions. Find out more about WCC programs on our website and opt in for our electronic newsletter, membership.acs.org/W/WCC.—Dawn A. Brooks, Chair
The Younger Chemists Committee (YCC) continues to promote its vision to lead younger chemists into successful careers and active roles in the society. To this end, the committee recently rewrote its strategic plan. During this process, YCC also looked at how the current committee is organized. As a result, YCC has developed a new committee structure that makes the committee lean, more efficient, and more in line with other committees in the society. YCC looks forward to being better suited for its role as advocates for younger chemists, especially with the inclusion of students and technicians as full members.
YCC celebrated its 35th anniversary during the meeting by hosting a cruise for YCC alumni and friends along the Potomac River. The committee also sponsored our 7th Annual Fun Run on Monday, with all proceeds being donated to the ACS Scholars Program. YCC continues to develop programming of interest to younger chemists and sponsored the following symposia: "Science Policy," "The Art of Collaboration," and "The Science of War: Ammunition, Homeland Security & Forensics." YCC has committed to record all of the YCC-sponsored technical sessions as audio, synced with PowerPoint slides, so that the information can be available to our constituents at the YCC website. This process began in Salt Lake City and continued with recording the sessions during the Washington, D.C., meeting.
YCC is always looking for new ways to get younger chemists involved in ACS. Applications are now being accepted for the 2010 YCC Leadership Development Awards. YCC will select 15 winners and provide them with funding to participate in the annual ACS Leadership Institute, which will be held Jan. 22–24, in Fort Worth, Texas. Younger chemists are encouraged to apply by the Oct. 1 deadline using our new online form, which can be found at our website, www.acs.org/ycc.
YCC announces the establishment of the Ciba Young Scientist Leadership Development Endowment, which will provide travel grants of up to $1,000 to allow postdoctoral and early-career chemists to attend ACS national or regional meetings to exhibit research and for professional development purposes.
YCC also continues to work with the Joint Subcommittee on Diversity. Through the JSD, YCC finds tremendous benefit in the collaboration on programming, national meeting events, and discussion on diversity-related topics. In addition, YCC facilitated online communication with its members by using tools such as Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, Google groups, discussion threads, and blogs. More information can be found on the YCC website.—Michael Hurrey, Chair
Council Committee Reports
The Committee on Committees (ConC) announced that its annual training session for new committee chairs will be held as part of the ACS Leadership Institute, Jan. 22–24, 2010, in Fort Worth, Texas.
ConC received reports from its subcommittees or task forces on diversity, industrial chemists pipeline, leadership development, website, and senior chemists.
Performance reviews for several committees were completed this year. Council approved ConC's recommendation for continuation of the Council Other Committees on Analytical Reagents and Technician Affairs. Council also approved, subject to concurrence of the board of directors, continuation of the Joint Board-Council Committees on Chemical Abstracts Service, Chemical Safety, and Minority Affairs.
ConC will continue to review and offer suggestions to the recommendations contained in the final report of the Joint Board-Committee on Committees Action Enablement Team. To assist in developing its formal response, ConC will consult with all committee chairs, councilors, and interested members in the spring of 2010.
The committee has begun developing its recommendations for 2010 committee chairs, members, associates, and consultant appointments for consideration by the president-elect and the chair of the board.
Finally, on behalf of the council, ConC recognized 37 councilors who will have served the statutory limit or otherwise completed their service on ACS governance committees at the end of 2009; 12 committee chairs who will have served the statutory limit on the committee they chair; and 39 councilors observing 15, 20, 25, 30, or 35 years as a councilor.—Les W. McQuire, Chair
Nominations & Elections
At its fall meeting, the Committee on Nominations & Elections (N&E) developed guidelines to address concerns regarding campaigning and related activities at regional meetings. These guidelines will be posted on the committee website. The committee also discussed and agreed to ways for better communicating how slates of potential nominees are developed for president-elect, board of directors, and elected committees of the council.
Ballots for the 2009 fall national election will be mailed approximately Sept. 28 with a voting deadline seven weeks later, Nov. 13. Members will have the option to vote electronically or by the traditional paper method. Additionally, there will be an opt-in option for those who indicate that they prefer to cast ballots electronically for future electronic balloting. During the voting period, two e-mail reminders will be sent to all eligible voters who have not yet cast their votes.
N&E requested councilors to encourage fellow members to participate in the upcoming election. All ACS members will have the opportunity to vote for president-elect, councilors will vote for the directors-at-large, and members of certain districts will vote for their district directors.
During the council meeting, N&E conducted elections for the Committee on Committees, the Council Policy Committee, and the Committee on Nominations & Elections for a 2010–12 term.
In its executive session, N&E developed slates of potential nominees for president-elect 2011, an academic year; and directors for Districts II and IV for 2011–13; as well as a slate of potential candidates for directors-at-large for 2011–13. The pertinent biographical information will appear in the council agenda book for the 239th ACS national meeting in San Francisco.—Frank D. Blum, Chair
Constitution & Bylaws
The Committee (C&B) announced that the ACS governing documents (Bulletin 5) have been updated with the Committee on Membership Affairs petition changes. The July 1 edition is available online at www.acs.org/bulletin5. Also, certified bylaws for all units (divisions, local sections, and international chemical sciences chapters), are posted at the above URL (see left column), as well as information on petitions.
Council approved charter bylaws for new local sections and for new international chemical sciences chapters, and bylaws for divisions in probationary status.
C&B presented the "Petition on Candidate Selection by Member Petition." The request for urgent action was not approved, so this petition, which would allow members to nominate directly a candidate for election, will be up for action at the spring 2010 meeting in San Francisco.
The "Petition on Election Timelines and Procedures 2009" was up for action, but council approved a motion to recommit it to the Committee on Nominations & Elections.
The "Petition on Admissions Committee" was presented to council for consideration. C&B's final report will be included when the petition is presented for action in San Francisco. By Sept. 18, opponents may submit written arguments to N&E by e-mail via firstname.lastname@example.org.
New petitions to amend the constitution or the bylaws must be received by the executive director by Dec. 2 to be included in the spring council agenda.
C&B urges local sections and divisions to request a preliminary review of their proposed amendments prior to a vote by their members. Local sections and divisions planning to revise their bylaws should obtain a Word version of their current certified bylaws from the committee's staff liaison at email@example.com.—Alan M. Ehrlich, Chair
DAC solicited Innovative Project Grants (IPGs) in both spring and summer this year for the first time. At this meeting, the Divisional Enhancement Subcommittee funded 13 innovative project proposals from 11 divisions totaling almost $70,000.
This summer, DAC called a vote of the divisions formerly supporting the Materials Secretariat, and by a strong majority, they voted to disband the secretariat. DAC and staff will work with recent Materials Secretariat officers to return any remaining funds to sponsoring divisions. With respect to the Macromolecular Secretariat, its former leaders are meeting in Washington to decide whether to try to revive it, or call for its dissolution.
Members of the DAC Meetings subcommittee are working with other ACS governance and staff to conduct further experimentation on electronic delivery of meeting content. At this meeting, 160 talks are being recorded, as compared to 38 at the Salt Lake City meeting. Approximately 15 divisions recorded content in D.C.; in San Francisco, all divisions will be invited to participate. The content was accessible on www.acs.org beginning on Sept. 4.
The Division of Chemical Technicians (TECH) was formed 15 years ago to enhance the status of technicians in the American Chemical Society. The division leadership believes it has accomplished that mission, with technicians well-integrated into other technical divisions. After long and careful consideration and consultation with members, DAC, and ACS leadership, TECH leaders have concluded that the division should be disbanded. A poll of the TECH membership supported this decision. At the Salt Lake City meeting, DAC voted to accept TECH's recommendation, and at the Washington meeting, council accepted the recommendation from TECH's leaders and members and voted that the Division on Chemical Technicians be dissolved.—Kevin J. Edgar, Chair
Economic & Professional Affairs
To help ACS members in these challenging times, the Committee on Economic & Professional Affairs (CEPA) has made new resources available for job seekers, including self-study guides, career videos, video interviewing, and online manuals for the job search process. Also developed were a series of group discussion guides for job clubs that may be used within local sections or divisions. All of these resources may be found on the ACS Careers website (www.acs.org/careers).
In June, the committee piloted an online or "virtual" career fair which featured many of the same offerings found at our more traditional national meeting fairs. The virtual fair had a larger attendance than the career fair we hosted in Salt Lake City and the webinars presented during the virtual fair received favorable reviews from job seekers. A more robust version of the Virtual Career Fair will take place on Oct. 19.
The Board Committee on Public Affairs & Public Relations approved the new CEPA-generated health care statement at its most recent meeting. This ACS statement replaces—and goes beyond—the previous health care statement that advocated for association health care plans.
CEPA developed a new document which contains materials and resources for those contemplating retirement. Included is information on financial planning, legal/estate planning, health care, and lifestyles. The preretirement document will be posted on the ACS Careers website in the "Career Advice" section.
The CEPA Globalization Task Force created several products to inform and assist our members interested in international career opportunities. A special features page, collecting all articles related to globalization, will be available on C&EN Online before year's end. The task force has also assembled a resource list containing websites, webinars, and books about working internationally. Topics include "finding international job opportunities," "working overseas" and "cultural diversity and cross cultural etiquette." This resource list will be available on the ACS Careers website.
CEPA has initiated a continuing symposium series under the title "Career Opportunities for the Future." One session in San Francisco will cover future research and career opportunities in green chemistry. CEPA will also host a public policy forum during the San Francisco meeting aimed at identifying key public policy issues of concern. Representatives throughout the ACS membership will be invited to participate.
The ACS Career Fair continued to serve our members with 991 candidates, 327 available positions, and 43 employers. The relatively low turnout for employers and jobs seekers repeats what was observed at the ACS national meeting in Salt Lake City. The committee is concerned and will continue to monitor the situation.
CEPA organized or cosponsored several symposia, including one on nontraditional careers in chemistry. In addition, 38 workshops and hundreds of mock interviews and résumé reviews were conducted. CEPA and the Career Fair expect the programming to be just as active at the San Francisco national meeting.—Martin L. Gorbaty, Chair
Local Section Activities
During the Washington, D.C., national meeting, the Committee on Local Section Activities (LSAC) presented the 2008 local section ChemLuminary Awards.
Building on President Lane's successful partnership project, LSAC will host a new ChemLuminary Award in 2010 to encourage local sections to create alliances and partnerships that will assist them with carrying out their goals.
In support of National Chemistry Week 2009, LSAC is partnering with the ACS Development Office to distribute 10,000 donated copies of the Merck Index to high schools nationwide.
LSAC announced that its Content Delivery Working Group launched the "Online Speaker Directory" in June. With this new service, local section planners can review, select, and contact speakers directly to plan their section's programs, including single-event speaking engagements and tours.
"Bridging the Gap" grants were available to help local sections run events to welcome student members (undergraduates) into the local section. The deadline for grant submission was Sept. 15.
LSAC provided grants to 14 sections to host leadership development system courses locally in 2009. LSAC will continue to fund these grants in 2010. The 2010 ACS Leadership Institute will take place on Jan. 22–24 in Fort Worth, Texas. All incoming chair-elects are encouraged to attend this valuable conference. In a pilot program this fall, LSAC will offer a follow-up webinar to expand training opportunities for these new leaders. The goal is to provide additional information on resources and provide a forum for chairs-elect to ask questions prior to their transition to chair in 2010.—Wayne E. Jones Jr., Chair
Meetings & Expositions
The Committee on Meetings & Expositions (M&E) reports that the 238th ACS national meeting in Washington, D.C., hosted 14,023 attendees, including 8,439 full attendees, 3,133 students 1,425 exhibitors, 582 expo- only, and 444 guests. This was the largest attendance at a Washington, D.C., national meeting. The exposition had 453 booths with 306 companies and there were 16 exhibitor workshops. M&E thanks the attendees for their commitment to helping us fulfill our hotel-block obligations. As a result, ACS will once again have no financial penalties related to housing for this meeting.
On the basis of the success of the earlier start time of the exposition at the spring national meeting in Salt Lake City, M&E decided to open the exposition hall in Washington on Sunday from 6 to 8:30 PM, with a welcome reception open to all attendees. The event was a resounding success based on the attendance and the interaction with exhibitors.
After the spring national meeting in Salt Lake City, M&E conducted the fifth consecutive attendee satisfaction survey. Although the majority of respondents recommended Salt Lake City as a future site, the result of a 72% positive response was noticeably less than the 89% that recommended Philadelphia for a future site.
In accordance with the board-approved long-range financial plan for the national meeting, M&E's executive committee has recommended to the Board Committee on Budget & Finance that the 2010 registration fees be increased by $10. This amount is based on the increase of the consumer price index over the prior two years. In the future, M&E will address a registration fee increase during the spring national meeting.
M&E maintains its commitment to "greening" the national meeting. For example, we continue our practice of using only recyclable directional and technical session signage throughout the meeting, and recycling bins have been placed at each hotel property and at the convention center. M&E will continue to work with committees such as Committee on Environmental Improvement to initiate further greening efforts.
During the ChemLuminary Awards Banquet, M&E presented its award for the Outstanding Regional Meeting to both the Mid-Atlantic Regional Meeting and Southeastern Regional Meeting.—Willem R. Leenstra, Chair
This June, the "Petition on Membership Categories & Requirements" was implemented with the transfer of the former student affiliates to student member status, and associate members to regular member status. Simultaneously, ACS changed its new member application requirements as prescribed in the updated bylaws.
As of July 31, the society had 9,732 student members—6,500 of them former student affiliates and more than 3,000 of them new student members this year. To reach this new audience, MAC has launched a website (undergrad.acs.org) that features video testimonials from young members about why they joined ACS, news about Student Chapters, and information about the society's career management and other programs of specific interest to students.
Historically, local sections and divisions recruit 400 new members annually. Since ACS President Tom Lane issued his new member challenge in Salt Lake, 31 divisions and 102 local sections have collectively recruited 1,452 new members.
The Member-Get-a-Member program has brought in 802 members so far this year. As of July 31, the new member recruitment efforts are pacing ahead of last year, but the number of members in unpaid status is also greater than last year. A "Comment" in C&EN, additional dues renewal notifications, website banners and links are advertising the benefits available to unemployed members.
MAC and the Society Committee on Education have formed a joint task force to examine how ACS can better meet the needs of precollege teachers.—D. Richard Cobb, Chair
The ACS Ethics Committee had an extended discussion regarding the practice of making copies of scientific textbooks and monographs available on the Web. It was decided that the committee members would actively search out such instances and send notices of copyright violation to the site managers.
The committee continues to give its Ethics Workshop at regional meetings. Reports were heard from organizers at the Great Lakes Regional Meeting and a workshop at Northern Illinois University. An additional Ethics Workshop will be presented at the Southeast Regional Meeting in October. These workshops are sponsored by the Division of Professional Relations through Innovated Programming Fund grants.
The committee will be cosponsoring two symposia in San Francisco: One on the ethics involved in publication and a second on biofuels with an emphasis on the issue of food versus fuel. The committee heard an update on a symposium to be given at Pacifichem in 2010 titled "Cultural Influences on Professional Ethics."
The committee met with the CEPA Task Force on Standards & Ethics to explore avenues of collaboration and mutual interests. It was decided that close cooperation between S&E and the Ethics Committee was a desirable outcome and regular meetings are planned.
A representative from the Committee on Professional & Member Relations met with the committee to suggest collaboration on a symposium focused on work-based conflicts of interest.
Representatives from the Committee on Chemical Safety (CCS) came and discussed ethical matters in the realm of chemical safety. It was agreed that collaboration between CCS and the Ethics Committee would continue. An immediate goal is to investigate several well-known lab accidents with the intention of cosponsoring symposia on the ethics involved in following good lab practices.
The Ethics Awareness subcommittee finalized a letter to ACS local sections soliciting information on any events or efforts under way to address professional ethics at the local section level. A similar letter is being drafted to contact other ACS units, particularly governance committees, with the same solicitation. This will be an ongoing effort on the part of the Ethics Committee to collate the various initiatives under way within the society. The subcommittee discussed indexing established websites outside ACS to highlight those materials that are of particular interest to chemical scientists. Plans were made to have this index posted on the Ethics Committee website.
The Ethics Education subcommittee presented a brief video clip showing the potential of video for presenting ethical dilemmas. Although produced and acted entirely by amateurs, the committee was very impressed with the result and encouraged the subcommittee to continue development of such videos. The subcommittee also set a goal to process our existing case studies into Web-ready form at the rate of one per week until the San Francisco meeting. When published, these case studies will all have a chemistry emphasis, a common format, and be usable as teaching modules for classes and for individuals.—David J. Chesney, Chair
Nomenclature, Terminology & Symbols
The Committee on Nomenclature, Terminology & Symbols met and discussed the progress on the redefinition of the kilogram. Only one of the proposed definitions depends on an invariant of nature, the Planck constant. Discussion focused on the pedagogical aspects of this definition.
The open session of the committee attracted a few members with discussion on remembering our friend and colleague, Jack Stocker; the proposed name and element symbol for element 112; liaisons with non-ACS committees and resources for doing so; the presidential symposium in San Francisco; improvements to the committee's website, and International Year of Chemistry 2011 activities.—Peter F. Rusch, Chair
The committee reports another successful year for ACS Project SEED. This year, members of the Committee on Project SEED, local SEED coordinators, and mentors spent countless hours helping more than 420 underprivileged high school students gain scientific knowledge through chemistry research. This is by far the largest participation Project SEED has had in more than four decades of its very worthwhile program, making total summer research experiences available to more than 9,400 students. Project SEED has been steadily increasing its presence around the country in 36 states; Washington, D.C.; and Puerto Rico.
Thanks to generous donations from CIBA Foundation, other industrial partners, the ACS Petroleum Research Fund, and numerous individuals, Project SEED is making positive differences in many young people's lives around the country.
In Washington, D.C., approximately 75 Project SEED students presented their research posters at the Sci-Mix event.
Due to the struggling economy, the committee voted to maintain the current stipend level of $2,800 and $3,300 for SEED I and II, respectively.
At the ChemLuminary Awards event, the Committee on Project SEED recognized the Illinois Heartland Local Section as having the Outstanding Project SEED Program in 2008.
The committee encourages all members to continue using the dues check-off option on their ACS membership renewal to support this remarkable program.—Joshua J. Pak, Chair
The ACS Committee on Technician Affairs (CTA) serves as the voice of technician members in ACS governance. At the 238th ACS national meeting, CTA celebrated the past, present, and future of applied chemical technology professionals in ACS.
On Tuesday, Aug. 18, CTA held its 45th anniversary reception, which was attended by many leaders in ACS, including past and present ACS presidents, Division of Chemical Technicians (TECH) chairs, and CTA chairs. CTA also cosponsored programming and a luncheon commemorating the 15th anniversary of TECH and the 20th anniversary of the National Chemical Technician Award.
CTA also announced the winners of the fall 2009 Equipping the 2015 Chemical Technology Workforce minigrants. To date, this initiative has awarded 23 $500 minigrants to collaborative projects that support technician education and/or professional development. Recent winners include the following:
• Bellingham Technical College, in partnership with BP Cherry Point Refinery and Ferndale High School
• Cincinnati State College, in partnership with Peter Cremer North America
• Colorado Mountain College
• Delaware Technical & Community College
The deadline for the next round of minigrants is Thursday, Feb. 11, 2010.
CTA has been working with TECH to ensure continued support for TECH activities upon dissolution of the division. CTA will assume responsibility for the National Chemical Technician Award and other awards, continuing education, specialty technical programming at national meetings, and Technician Affiliate Group resources. CTA is proud of what TECH has accomplished in 15 years and plans to uphold the high standards TECH has set.
CTA has served the applied chemical technology community for 45 years and is committed to continued support and engagement of that community. Through collaboration and innovation, CTA will help fulfill the ACS mission to advance the broader chemistry enterprise and all of its practitioners.—V. Michael Mautino, Chair
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