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For Director-At-Large: Valerie J. Kuck

September 10, 2012 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 90, ISSUE 37

Credit: Courtesy of Valerie Kuck
Credit: Courtesy of Valerie Kuck

North Jersey Section. (Retired) Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies, Murray Hill, N.J.

Academic record: St. Mary-of-the-Woods College, B.S., 1961; Purdue University, M.S., 1965

Honors: Bert Belden Award for Distinguished Service to the North Jersey Section, ACS, 2008; ACS Award for Volunteer Service to the American Chemical Society, 2004; Harvey Russell Award for Supporting High School Chemistry Teachers, North Jersey Section, ACS, 2001; ACS Award for Encouraging Women into Careers in the Chemical Sciences, sponsored by the Camille & Henry Dreyfus Foundation, 2000; Shirley B. Radding Award, Santa Clara Valley Section, ACS, 1999; Purdue University, Department of Chemistry, Distinguished Alumnus Award, 2005; Sylvia Stoesser Lecturer at the University of Illinois, 2001; W. Lincoln Hawkins Award for Mentoring Excellence, Bell Labs, 2000; Lucent Technologies Gold Medal Team Award, 2000; Lucent Technologies Affirmative Action Award, 1999; Sigma Delta Epsilon, 1962

Professional positions (for past 10 years): College of St. Elizabeth, Chemistry Department, adjunct professor, 2008–09; Seton Hall University, Chemistry & Biochemistry Department, visiting professor, 2001–06, Women’s Study Program, 2001–06; Lucent Technologies (AT&T Bell Labs), staff member, 1967–2001

Service in ACS national offices: Board of Directors, director-at-large, 2007–12; Councilor ex officio, 2007–12; Committee on Professional & Member Relations, 2010–12; Committee on Grants & Awards, 2007–12, Program Review Advisory Group, 2007–12; ACS-AWIS Working Group, 2009–12, cochair, 2010–12; Committee on Public Affairs & Public Relations, 2007–10; Petroleum Research Foundation Steering Committee, 2007–08; Graduate Education Advisory Committee, 2007–11; Council Policy Committee, (voting), 2006–08, (nonvoting), 2004–05, 1996–2000, 1988–93; Committee on Nominations & Elections, 2000–05, chair, 2004–05; Committee on Economic & Professional Affairs, chair, 1999; career consultant, 1998–2012; Committee on Committees, 1994–98, chair, 1996–98; Committee on Local Section Activities, chair, 1991–93; Committee on Meetings & Expositions, 1985–90, chair, 1988–90, committee associate, 1984, program coordination adviser, 1993–99, 1988–90; Committee on Economic Status, 1980–87, chair, 1987; Professional Programs Planning & Coordinating Committee (PROPPACC), 1987; Committee on Professional Relations, committee associate, 1977–79; Women Chemists Committee, 1973–78, secretary, 1974–77; ACS Award for Team Innovation Canvassing Committee, 1994–95, chair, 1994–95; Garvan Medal Canvassing Committee, 1973–78; Task Force on Implementation of Electronic Balloting, cochair, 2005; Task Force on Technical Programming, 1998; Task Force on Industry Relations, 1995; Task Force on Continuing Education, 1992–93; Industrial-Academic Sabbatical Task Force, 1987

Service in ACS offices:North Jersey Section: councilor, 1975–2008; chair, 1992; chair-elect, 1991; National Chemistry Week, chair, 1994–2012; Project SEED, treasurer, 2011–12; career coordinator, 1998–2012; Professional Relations Committee, 1975–2012, chair, 1998–2008; Project Wonder Science Task Force, 1998; General Interest Program Chair, 1993, 1986–89; Nominating Committee, 1997–2011, 1994, 1989–92, 1985, 1983, 1980; Baekeland Award Committee, chair, 1991; Education Committee, 1993–2010; Indicator Advisory Committee, 2009, 1982–86; Long-Range Planning Committee, 1987–2011, chair, 1987–88; Women Chemists Committee, cochair, 1977; Metrochem Steering Committee, treasurer, 1982. Middle Atlantic Regional Meeting: Steering Committee, 2004–05, 1998–99. Division of Professional Relations: treasurer, 1982–88

Member: Member of ACS since 1965. ACS Division: Chemical Health & Safety

Related activities: Co-Originator of Sci-Mix and the Town Hall Meetings; organized and chaired Special ACS Symposia on High-Temperature Superconductors and Cold Fusion; published 44 papers; coeditor of two books and a textbook chapter; granted 21 U.S. patents


To serve ACS members as a director-at-large on the board of directors has truly been an honor. I am now asking for your support for another term.

The economic upheaval in 2008 has impacted all of us. This new environment requires the ACS to adapt its many programs, services, and products. I will continue to make this the focus of my efforts on the board.

My broad experience in the ACS coupled with my six years of service on the Program Review Advisory Group (PRAG) has given me a good understanding of the society’s programs and identified efforts that need to be improved. During my years on the board, I have pushed for changes in several areas.

Scientific Information

In today’s increasingly competitive marketplace, it is critical that the society’s publications and Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) continue to perform at the highest levels. I urged that these two units collaborate in developing new and better services for the membership. It was great to see that this effort resulted in the launch of several new programs this past year such as the ACS Reference Quick View that allows users to rapidly access multiple article abstracts and metadata for references published in ACS journal articles without having to leave the ACS Web Editions Platform.

The numbers of students attending our national meetings has continued to grow. I was involved in the inception of Sci-Mix and the Graduate Student and Postdoctoral Scholars Reception. It is imperative that we find a home in the society for the next generation of chemists!

Having talks given at our national meeting available online is a wonderful tool for individuals who cannot attend the meeting. I have supported these efforts and believe we should continue expanding access to these presentations.


The society must find new ways of addressing the needs of the unemployed. I have a strong commitment to helping scientists find jobs.

As a career counselor I have assisted hundreds of people in rewriting their résumés, developing their interviewing skills, and improving their job searching. I have given career talks in my local section and at regional meetings, national meetings, and universities and colleges.

Many unemployed ACS members told me how much they missed having access to SciFinder. I requested that CAS make an accommodation, and now the unemployed have access to SciFinder to allow them to stay up-to-date with the literature.


I have supported the society’s efforts to strengthen the relationship between the chemistry enterprise and legislators. In my meetings with policymakers I have found that members of Congress are influenced the most when they hear from their constituents.

You can count on me to continue my efforts and work to encourage more members to speak up for chemistry!

Laboratory Safety

For years I have been concerned about the safety of undergraduate and graduate students who might not know where to acquire accurate information. I will continue my efforts to have safety information made more readily available and support the society’s efforts to increase student safety awareness.


It is important for the society to recognize the outstanding achievements of the practitioners of chemistry. I have worked to improve ACS’s award process. Currently, efforts are under way to increase the nomination of individuals from groups or institutions that commonly do not have ACS award recipients.

In closing, I believe my efforts as director-at-large have had a positive impact on our members and ask that you cast one of your votes for director-at-large for me.

Please visit my webpage at



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