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.



For District IV Director: Larry K. Krannich

September 11, 2016 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 94, Issue 36

Photograph of 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: ACS Fellow, 2014; E. Ann Nalley Regional Award for Volunteer Service to ACS, 2009; Alabama Academy of Science Fellow, 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– ; University of Alabama, Birmingham, professor emeritus, 2003– , Center for Community Outreach Development, interim director, 2004

Service in ACS national offices: Leadership Advisory Board, cochair, 2009– ; Board Planning Committee Working Group on Strategic Planning Process, chair, 2016; Board Planning Committee Working Group on Strategic Planning Management Process, chair, 2015; Planning Committee, 2015, 2013; Board of Directors, Executive Committee, 2013; Society Program Portfolio Management Goals & Metrics Team, chair, 2013; Board Working Group on Society Program Portfolio Management, 2012–13; Board of Directors, District IV, director, 2011–13; councilor, ex officio, 2011–13; Committee on Grants & Awards, 2011–13, National Awards Logistics & Processes Subcommittee, chair, 2013; Committee on Professional & Member Relations, 2011–13, chair, 2013; Award Review Committee, chair, 2012; Board Working Group on Web Strategy & Innovation, 2012; Board Operations & Technology Team, 2011–12; Committee on Committees, 2005–10; BOG Leadership Skills Implementation Working Group, chair, 2005–08; Governance Review Task Force, Action Team on Optimal & Appropriate Divisional Staff Support, chair, 2007; Governance Review Sub-Task Force on Disciplinary Organization, 2006; Committee on Membership Affairs, 2004–05; Board Presidential Task Force on Division & Local Section Funding Petition, 2002–03; Committee on Local Section Activities, 1996–2001, committee associate, 1995, consultant, 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, ACS Award in Organometallic Chemistry, 1993–96, chair, 1995–96

Service in ACS offices: Alabama Section: alternate councilor, 2016–18; councilor, 1994–2010; chair, 1982–83; chair-elect, 1981–82. Southeast Regional Meeting: secretary-treasurer, 1990–98

Member: Member of ACS since 1964. Alabama Academy of Science. ACS Divisions: Chemical Education, History of Chemistry

Related activities: Alabama Academy of Science, executive director, 2003– , treasurer, 1992–03; Vestavia Math Team Parents Association, president, 2010, vice president, 2009; IPC Foundation Board, 2005–10, president, 2010, vice president, 2009; University of Alabama, Birmingham, professor and department chair, 1977–2003, associate professor, 1972–76, assistant professor, 1969–72; Technische Hochschule Wien, visiting professor, 1969; University of Mississippi, assistant professor, 1968–69; published 54 journal articles, a study guide (11 editions) to general chemistry text, and a chapter in an inorganic encyclopedia

Krannich’s statement

Members are the society’s business. The 15 American Chemical Society directors have a crucial duty, in addition to their fiduciary responsibility, to support and empower our members professionally and scientifically. After all, a focus on members is one of ACS’s four core values, and it has been pervasive throughout our history.

Past. In 1876, 35 U.S. chemists formed ACS and achieved independence from prominent European chemical societies. That spark became a flame! Today, we have nearly 157,000 members, including 26,000 from other countries. Strength resides in our 185 local sections with professional and scientific exchange and community outreach and our 32 technical divisions (100,300 members) focused in field-specific areas. Our members enjoyed satisfying, steady employment throughout their professional careers. Fifty years ago, companies went to campuses offering jobs to seniors, and our Employment Clearing House had a registrant-to-job ratio of 1:4.

Present. While ACS is highly regarded worldwide as an effective force for the chemistry enterprise, we have many challenges. We provide vital information for our members through printed and electronic means and meetings to support their work. However, many members expect more. Our local sections experience low member engagement. Divisions thrive but compete for members with cross-divisional interests and lack a global focus. Although we sign up large numbers of new members, we lose them rapidly. Last year, we added nearly 23,000 new members but lost 22,000! Apparently, they did not find membership worthwhile, and they dropped out within five years.

Another issue is employment. Today, six months after graduation, 14.5% still do not have a job. At the 2016 ACS national meeting in San Diego, 739 members signed up to explore employment opportunities among 105 jobs posted by 30 employers. Although chemistry is an exciting and rewarding profession, having a job is critical.

Future. My vision is that the 21st-century ACS will be the first choice and professional home for all chemists and related scientists. Diverse challenges, each impacting member-value expectations, face us. Our future depends on retaining the thousands of new members by evolving our value proposition and onboarding processes. Fifty years ago, it was publications and meetings. Today, the internet instantly provides much of the desired information from your handheld device. Jobs of the past are disappearing through mergers and outsourcing. We cannot create jobs but can work on making the atmosphere more desirable for R&D, providing the resources to make members more competitive and improving how we prepare our graduates for tomorrow’s jobs and selling themselves in the marketplace.

What do I propose?

I have extensive professional experience, demonstrated commitment to advancing ACS, and proven leadership skills to address these near-term challenges while setting the long-term vision for ACS. I do not promise instant or simple solutions to our complex problems. However, if we possess the skills and resources to develop award-winning outreach programs and have the business acumen to make us the gold standard in scientific publishing, we can make significant progress. As District IV director, I commit to the following:

▸ Collaborating with you, the member, to address the challenges and prioritize these into member-generated strategic opportunity initiatives. The solutions to problems are rarely successful when they are generated from the top down. History shows that a grassroots approach can solve the most difficult problems. As a team member, member-value advocate, leadership course facilitator, and ACS leader, I have useful insights about ACS and its mission and challenges. I value inclusive decision-making.

▸ Collaborating annually with six committees/technical divisions/District IV local sections in the same manner. Let’s explore fostering partnerships between technical divisions and local sections to synergistically enhance the member-value proposition. What does research suggest about successful onboarding processes for new member retention?

▸ Working with the Board Planning Committee to clarify the ACS strategic planning and management process and promote member engagement in setting priorities.

I have the necessary background! With due modesty, but confidence, I believe I am a great fit for director, am well-prepared, and desire to focus my efforts in serving District IV members as director. I am regarded as a highly focused doer within ACS. I possess the time, energy, and expertise to do this. I have the leadership skills to listen to the ideas of others, work toward consensus, and collaborate to develop successful projects within established deadlines. I do this now with local sections, divisions, and national committees. When we work together, nothing is impossible.

Details? Please visit my website (­ for specifics. Most important, e-mail me ( your concerns, questions, and thoughts on your important issues.

Candidates will not be notified of comments left on this webpage. To contact this candidate directly, e-mail


This article has been sent to the following recipient:

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