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For District IV Director: Larry K. Krannich

by Larry K. Krannich
September 6, 2010 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 88, Issue 36


Larry K. Krannich

Alabama Section. University of Alabama, Birmingham

Academic record: Illinois State University, B.S., 1963, M.S., 1965; University of Florida, Ph.D., 1968

Honors: E. Ann Nalley Regional Award for Volunteer Service to ACS, 2009; fellow, Alabama Academy of Science, 2007; Salute to Excellence, ACS Local Section Activities Committee, 2001; Omicron Delta Kappa; Phi Kappa Phi

Professional positions (for past 10 years): Alabama Academy of Science, executive director, 2003 to date; University of Alabama, Birmingham, interim director of the Center for Community OutReach Development, 2004, professor emeritus, 2003 to date, professor and chemistry department chair, 1977–2003

Service in ACS national offices: Committee on Committees, 2005–10; Committee on Membership Affairs, 2004–05; Committee on Local Section Activities, 1996–2001, committee associate, 1995, consultant, 2002–03; Leadership Advisory Board, 2009; Governance Review Task Force, Action Team on Optimal & Appropriate Divisional Staff Support, chair, 2007; Governance Review Sub-Task Force on Disciplinary Organization, 2006; Board Oversight Group Leadership Skills Implementation Working Group, chair, 2005–08; Board Presidential Task Force on Division & Local Section Funding Petition, 2002–03; Task Force on Bylaw Changes for Local Section & Division Support, 2001–02; Task Force on Electronic Mailing Lists, chair, 1996–97; Canvassing Committee for ACS Award in Organometallic Chemistry, 1993–96, chair, 1995–96

Service in ACS offices: Member of ACS since 1964. Alabama Section: councilor, 1994–2012; chair, 1982–83; chair-elect, 1981–82. Southeast Regional Meeting: secretary-treasurer, 1990–98

Member: Alabama Academy of Science. ACS Divisions: Chemical Education, History of Chemistry

Related activities: Related activities: Alabama Academy of Science, executive director, 2003 to date, treasurer, 1992–2003; IPC Foundation Board, 2005–10, president, 2010, vice president, 2009; Vestavia Math Team Parents Association, president, 2010, vice president, 2009; University of Alabama, Birmingham, associate professor, 1972–76, assistant professor, 1969–72; Vienna University of Technology, visiting professor, 1969; University of Mississippi, assistant professor, 1968–69; published 54 journal articles, a study guide (eight editions) for a general chemistry text, and a chapter in an inorganic chemistry encyclopedia

Krannich’s Statement


A district director is one of the 15 members of the ACS Board of Directors, which has the fiduciary responsibility for our society. The board has a crucial duty to assist our members economically, professionally, and scientifically. We created a powerful and promising strategic plan, but it is only a piece of paper until it is put to practical use. We must translate it into a concrete action plan to realize its potential.

CHALLENGES. The society faces numerous challenges associated with the following:

  • Advocacy with legislative bodies to ensure proper support for basic and industrial research
  • Education for every student to be scientifically literate regardless of what profession will be pursued
  • Employment to help everyone—from graduating students to midcareer chemists to early retirees—with professional employment and career development opportunities
  • Membership value to retain thousands of members who unfortunately leave the society a few years after joining
  • Scientific information to provide our members—students, the employed, and the retired—with easily accessible and affordable publications to meet their needs


WHAT CAN WE DO? We face critical times, but I do not offer an instant, overnight solution. Doing so would imitate politicians who promise us “pie in the sky” just to get elected. The critical problem is that chemistry is often not recognized for the hundreds of benefits it contributes to our everyday lives. Unfortunately, it often makes the headlines only when something bad can be attributed to it. We must counteract this and do more to restore chemistry’s positive image in the minds of the general population. Next year is the International Year of Chemistry. We should be fully involved in publicizing the achievements of chemistry and its positive impact on our lives.

While focusing on the four core values—passion for chemistry in the broadest sense, a focus on members, professionalism, and diversity and inclusion—with visionary leadership, we must now explore how to best align the organization with this strategic plan to collaboratively lead change. To ensure engagement and ultimate success, we are obligated to engage the members and leadership of ACS’s local sections and divisions in our work and to support expanded collaboration between them. We are a member-driven organization, which requires participation from the grass roots up to the executive level to raise issues, propose ideas, develop programs, and work to benefit members and society.

Today’s ACS is a vibrant organization with a strong, broad, and highly professional volunteer base and extremely dedicated staff. Our leaders within the organization come from this volunteer base, and investing in our volunteers’ leadership skills is critical for our future. We now have a cutting-edge leadership skill development program in our ACS Leadership Development System. It is available to every member (from students to retirees) to help create the ACS leaders of tomorrow and to influence the many companies, universities, and organizations that employ our members. This is a unique membership value and can positively affect employment. No comparable system exists in the not-for-profit sector. We must support the continued emphasis on leadership and the integration of the system with the infrastructure that staffs the ACS committees.

HOW CAN I HELP? A director should possess deep experience in the profession, a demonstrated commitment to advancing the society, and the leadership skills necessary to handle near-term challenges while setting the long-term vision for the organization. I submit to you that I have these qualities. I have the experience within ACS, a major university, and a statewide scientific organization to be an effective board member. By participating in the society over many years in the roles of team member, advocate, and leader, I have gained valuable insights about ACS, its mission, and its challenges. I have the time, energy, and determination to interact with the members in District IV, and I will visit local sections to interact with you.

MOST IMPORTANT, I have honed my skills at listening to the ideas of others, working toward consensus, and collaborating to develop successful projects within established deadlines. With due modesty, but confidence, I believe I am a great fit for director, and as a director, I will use my expertise to continue tackling tough challenges facing the society and advancing key issues in outreach and leadership. It would be an honor and a privilege to continue to serve ACS in a new role as District IV director.

Visit my website ( and Facebook page for further information. Please e-mail me ( with your concerns, questions, and thoughts on issues of importance to you.


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