ACS Fellows Eligibility and Selection Criteria
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- Nominees for ACS Fellows must be current members (including retired and emeritus members) in good standing of the American Chemical Society.
- Current members of the Fellows Selection Committee, Fellows Oversight Committee, ACS Board of Directors, and current ACS staff are not eligible to be nominees.
- Former members or deceased members will not be considered as nominees for ACS Fellows. However, if a member dies after his/her name is submitted as a nominee and if that candidate is selected, he/she will be granted the Fellow designation posthumously.
- Nomination for other awards, including national, regional, or local ACS awards, does not disqualify a member from being nominated for ACS Fellow.
- Primary and secondary nominators must be current members (including retired and emeritus members) in good standing of the American Chemical Society.
- Current members of the Fellows Selection Committee, Fellows Oversight Committee, ACS Board of Directors, and current ACS staff are not eligible to be primary or secondary nominators.
- The primary nominator must be eligible to submit as an individual member or on behalf of a Committee, Local Section, or Technical Division. Refer to the Nomination Types page for specific eligibility requirements for primary nominators.
- No more than one of the nominators (primary or secondary) may be from the same work group at the nominee’s primary place of employment. If the nominee is retired, only one nominator (primary or secondary) may be from the nominee’s last place of employment prior to retirement.
- Refer to the Nomination Types page for guidelines about serving as a nominator for more than one nomination.
The selection of ACS Fellows is based on documented excellence and leadership in both of two areas: (1) science, the profession, education, and/or management, and (2) volunteer service in the ACS community. Nomination documents must address both of these areas.
(1) Excellence and leadership that have a lasting beneficial impact in science, the profession, education, and/or management. Appropriate activities might include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Outstanding and creative contributions to scientific research;
- Superior achievements in the teaching and learning of chemistry;
- Strong, effective leadership or managerial excellence in an organization within the chemical enterprise.
(2) Volunteer service in the ACS community resulting in significant enhancements to ACS programs, products, or services. Appropriate activities might include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Outstanding leadership, documented through specific results achieved, of a Division, Local Section, regional meeting, national meeting, and/or international conference;
- Exceptional assistance, as an unpaid volunteer, in the publication of scientific information (not including routine authorship or reviewing publications associated with one's own research);
- Organization of especially significant symposia, major presentations, or other programming at national/international meetings;
- Leadership or other outstanding contributions to public outreach activities, such as National Chemistry Week and Chemists Celebrate Earth Day;
- Effective communication to the public of the value of the chemical sciences or chemical professionals through the press, radio, TV, or other electronic media.
Documented evidence must be provided of exceptional accomplishments, professional attainment, and impact in both of the above two areas. Excellence in research, teaching, or management alone is not enough, nor is exceptional leadership of ACS activities; members selected as Fellows must have excelled in multiple areas. In assessing the qualifications of a nominee, the Selection Committee will weigh the depth, extent, and impact of the nominee’s activities as documented in the nomination submission.
Fellows are selected by a broadly representative Selection Committee appointed by the ACS Board Committee on Grants & Awards, which has governance oversight for the program.
The body of Fellows is expected to reach a steady state of 1 to 2% of the ACS membership and to reflect not only excellence, but also the diverse contributions made by ACS members.
A member who is nominated and not selected may be re-nominated in subsequent years by the same or different nominators. Nominations are not carried over from year to year.
Members retain the designation as an ACS Fellow, ACSF, for life.