2017 ChemLuminary Award Winners

Congratulations to the 2017 ChemLuminary Award winners!

American Chemical Society

Award for Volunteer Service to the American Chemical Society

D. Richard Cobb

D. Richard Cobb is being recognized for his exemplary service to the ACS as a leader at the local, regional, and national levels, which has had a wide-ranging impact on the Society.

Committee on Public Relations and Communications

Helen M. Free Award for Public Outreach

Mark Griep

Mark Griep researches and promotes interest in Rachel Lloyd, the first American woman to receive a chemistry Ph.D. In addition, Mark’s “Chemistry in the Movies” projects boost students’ interest in chemistry by exploring chemical concepts in movies.

Outstanding Continuing Public Relations Program of a Local Section

Puerto Rico Local Section

The Puerto Rico Local Section’s “Island Road Tour” science cafés include cultural and social aspects of local towns in the program. For example, the agriculture science café featured local entrepreneurs showing how to prepare compost and organic fertilizer.

Best New Public Relations Program of a Local Section

Nashville Local Section

The Nashville Local Section’s outreach included a lecture about cave bacteria as a source of cancer therapeutics, and a science café and public forum (during the Zika virus outbreak) on whether scientists should genetically engineer the mosquito.

Women Chemists Committee

Best Overall WCC Local Section

East Central Illinois Local Section

The Women Chemists Committee of the East Central Illinois Local Section organized a day camp for middle school girls, filled with hands-on experiments and liquid nitrogen ice cream. Detailed instructions and explanations were provided, so the girls can try the experiments again at home.

Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs

Outstanding Technical Division Career Program

Division of Inorganic Chemistry (INOR)

A symposium at the 2016 Fall ACS National Meeting & Exposition involved 13 past Division of Inorganic Chemistry Young Investigator Awardees from the past 10 years showcasing diverse career paths since they originally received the Young Investigator Award.

Outstanding Local Section Career Program

Colorado Local Section

The Colorado Local Section planned a symposium "Young Talent in Colorado and Beyond" which gave 110 young scientists in Colorado the opportunity to present their work and network with other researchers in the region.

Younger Chemists Committee

Outstanding Local Section Younger Chemists Committee

Savannah River Local Section

The Savannah River Local Section Younger Chemists Committee had a wonderful year filled with exciting activities and events, whose main goals were to increase membership and volunteer participation. As a result, membership increased 22% from the previous year.

Outstanding New Local Section Younger Chemists Committee

East Central Illinois Local Section

The East Central Illinois Local Section Younger Chemists Committee held many events that included a hands-on workshop for Big Brothers Big Sisters with their Encouraging Tomorrow's Chemists graduate group, a networking social with their Women Chemists Committee, and a workshop for the transition from undergraduate to graduate school with their undergraduate student chapter.

Outstanding or Creative Local Section Younger Chemists Committee Event 

Colorado Local Section

The Colorado Local Section had a symposium, “Young Talent in Colorado and Beyond,” with the objective to give young scientists the opportunity to present their work and network with other scientists in Colorado.  There were 19 oral presentations, 41 posters, and about 110 people participated. The participants were from Colorado, Wyoming and Kansas and half were ACS members.

Committee on Divisional Activities

Recognition of Innovation and Outstanding Service to Members of a Division

Division of Small Chemical Business (SCHB)

The Division of Small Chemical Business participated in four ACS Regional Meetings, organizing activities including technical programming, expo booths, and networking events, as well as creating brand new business and entrepreneurial tracks within the regional meetings.

Most Unique Project as Funded by a Division Innovative Project Grant

Division of Professional Relations (PROF)

The Division of Professional Relations held a symposium series on Women in Innovation.  Each session hosted four women panelists, and topics included Business & Commerce, Science & Technology, and Science Policy & Government.

Joint LSAC & DAC Award

Division of Cellulose and Renewable Materials (CELL) & Louisiana Local Section

The Division of Cellulose and Renewable Materials and Louisiana Local Section, along with the Division of Carbohydrate Chemistry, staged the 2016 International Carbohydrate Symposium offering 500 attendees from 39 countries awards symposia, plenary and keynote lectures, oral presentations, posters, and local sightseeing. This collaboration served as an outstanding example of how a local section and multiple divisions can work together to produce successful programs.

Society Committee on Education

Fostering Interactions Between Local Sections & Student Chapters

East Central Illinois Local Section

The East Central Illinois Local Section and Student Chapter hosted many activities together including a Chemists Celebrate Earth Day Quad Booth in conjunction with their Younger Chemists Committee, U.S. Chemistry Olympiad events, a high school outreach program, National Chemistry Week celebrations, and an undergrad to graduate workshop.

Outstanding U. S. National Chemistry Olympiad

Georgia Local Section

The Georgia Local Section increased student participation in their Chemistry Olympiad program by more than 250% over the past six-years. In 2016, thirteen finalists of 937 students from 29 high schools took the national exam, one received High Honors, and another two received Honors for their outstanding performance.

Outstanding High School Student Program Award

North Jersey Local Section

In 2016, the North Jersey Local Section conducted engaging activities spanning from Chemists Celebrate Earth Day to National Chemistry Week. Thousands of high school students and teachers were reached through extensive efforts of hundreds of volunteers.

Outstanding Kids & Chemistry Award

Midland Local Section

The Midland Local Section deployed high impact programs that engaged more than 15,000 participants. In addition to this, the Midland Local Section connected outreach related strategic planning goals to each of their workshops and student-serving activities.

Committee on Project SEED

Outstanding Project SEED Program Award

Puerto Rico Local Section

Fourteen students from diverse backgrounds selected from 100 applicants participated in the Puerto Rico Local Section’s Project SEED program. Students presented their research, participated in safety training, workshops, and other academic and social activities, which introduced them to college life. Five received SEED scholarships.

Committee on Chemistry and Public Affairs

ACS President’s Award for Local Section Government Affairs

Chicago Local Section

The Chicago Local Section coordinated a multi-event program exploring the chemistry of municipal water systems. Three events attracted 230 attendees, and communicated chemistry’s role in addressing the world’s challenges to the public and policymakers.

Committee on Environmental Improvement

Outstanding Sustainability Activities

Northeastern Local Section

The Northeastern Local Section hosted an event in partnership with Pfizer, UMass-Boston, and their Younger Chemists Committee which featured talks from Research Chemists at Pfizer who implement green chemistry principles and green chemistry educators who provided lesson plans and strategies. Northeastern received a Local Section Sustainability Programming Grant in 2016 which made the event possible.

Leadership Advisory Board

Outstanding Leadership Development Program Award

Lehigh Valley Local Section

The Lehigh Valley Local Section hosted the ACS Leadership Development System course, Developing Communication Strategies. Participants learned and practiced applying new skills to become better communicators in their role as ACS leaders and as leaders in the work place and in their community.

Corporation Associates

Outstanding Local Section Industry Event

East Central Illinois Local Section

The East Central Illinois Local Section Younger Chemists Committee organized and hosted an industry tour event. 27 undergraduate, graduate, and post-doctoral students carpooled to Indianapolis on July 8th to attend a tour either at Eli Lilly or the Indiana State Toxicology and Police Laboratories.

Committee on Technician Affairs

Best Event or Activity Organized by, or Benefiting, the Applied Chemical Technology Professional Community

Midland Local Section

The Midland Local Section’s Mid-Michigan Technicians Group organized a symposium celebrating its 25th anniversary. A networking reception showcasing their members who had won local or national ACS technicians awards followed an afternoon keynote address.

Committee on Minority Affairs

Best Overall Local Section Minority Affairs Committee

Orange County Local Section

The Orange County Local Section’s National Chemistry Week celebration, Science at the Zoo, was held on October 16, at the Santa Ana Zoo. By using “student power” to staff the exhibits and help the attendees with the hands-on experiments, the Section had more than 150 volunteers from the college and university groups.

Committee on International Activities

Global Engagement Award for International Chemical Sciences Chapters

JingJinJi International Chemical Sciences Chapter

Through the engagement of school children, parents, and teachers, the "Chemistry in the Community: Health Sciences" event put on by the JingJinJi International Chemical Sciences Chapter is a wonderful example of how to open up the world of chemistry to new generations.

Global Engagement Award for Local Sections

Midland Local Section

With their work on “Science Education for Teachers in Guatemala”, the Midland Local Section demonstrated how a $1000 Global Innovation Grant can be used to promote science education abroad through workshops designed to engage local educators.

Global Engagement Award for Technical Divisions

Division of Agricultural & Food Chemistry (AGFD)

By organizing the first “International Student Chapter Symposium”, the Division of Agriculture & Food Chemistry demonstrated the positive impact of bringing international students together to share their research and network at National Meetings.

Senior Chemists Committee

Most Innovative Activity in a Local Section for Senior Chemists

Midland Local Section

Two events were planned for Senior Chemists to celebrate summer and promote fall-related activities.  There was a summer luncheon, with an ice cream-related webinar, an experiment, and a tour of the ACS garden/greenhouse. The second event was a Hayride and tour at Leaman's Applebarn, along with dining and live music.

Committee on Meetings & Expositions

Outstanding Regional Meeting

2015 Western Regional Meeting

The Orange County Local Section hosted the 2015 Western Regional Meeting in San Marcos, California, where over 500 attendees participated.  There were 151 oral presentations, 122 poster presentations, 4 workshops, an Industry Forum, and a seminar on Intellectual Property for Chemists that were presented during the meeting.

Committee on Community Activities

Best NCW Event Organized by a Student Group

Kentucky Lake Local Section

The Kentucky Lake Local Section hosted a National Chemistry Week event showcasing forensic chemistry with hands-on activities and demonstrations coordinated by 30 volunteers for 150 community members. The event has been hosted by members of the University of Tennessee at Martin Student Chapter for nearly 30 years and it pushes local Student Members to think creatively and to present original demonstrations.

Creative & Innovative Use of the CCED Theme

Midland Local Section

The Midland Local Section co-sponsored a community expo for Chemists Celebrate Earth Day around “green” themes that featured interactive activities that explored the efficiency of insulation against heat and sound, and the differences between different types of packing peanuts.

Most Creative NCW Celebration Using the Yearly Theme

Midland Local Section 

The Midland Local Section’s National Chemistry Week celebration featured outreach events at the Great Lakes Bay Science and Engineering Festival that included fingerprinting and plastic identification. By teaming up with the festival, Midland was able to reach 18,700 attendees.

Outstanding Community Involvement in CCED

Puerto Rico Local Section

The Puerto Rico Local Section celebrated Chemists Celebrate Earth Day in 2016 with its Festival de Quimica. Joined with student chapters and Chem Clubs, more than 200 volunteers collaborated to impact more than 1,500 people with hands-on activities, lecture series, and public exhibits.

Outstanding Community Involvement in NCW

Virginia Local Section

The Virginia Local Section hosted two National Chemistry Week events during Halloween weekend that resulted in attendees carving the elements of the periodic table into pumpkins and setting up a forensic laboratory that taught students how chemistry is an interdisciplinary science.

Outstanding NCW Event for a Specific Audience

Orange County Local Section

The Orange County Local Section, along with more than 150 volunteers, conducted hands-on science activities at the Santa Ana Zoo, which has been continuously cooperating with the Local Section for National Chemistry Week events since the late 1990s.

Outstanding On-going NCW Event

Pittsburgh Local Section 

The Pittsburgh Local Section participated in National Chemistry Week for its 18th consecutive year. The Local Section’s two-day event had an attendance of nearly 5,800 participants – the second highest attendance in the event’s history.

Outstanding Public Outreach Event Organized by a Student Group

Kentucky Lake Local Section 

The Kentucky Lake Local Section and the University of Tennessee at Martin Student Chapter co-hosted a mini-symposium on current drinking water issues. The panel discussion covered the detection of contaminants and how the public can be better caretakers their water system.

Committee on Local Section Activities

Best Activity or Program in a Local Section Stimulating Membership Involvement

Binghamton Local Section

The Binghamton Local Section celebrated its 75th anniversary through several events, most notably at the 2016 Northeast Regional Meeting. As a result of these efforts, the number of members increased 4%, and the number of participants in 2016 Section events grew significantly.

Local Section Partnership Award

Illinois Heartland Local Section

The Illinois Heartland Section hosted science demos at the Peoria Riverfront Museum with a dozen member volunteers that served 1500 members of the community. This activity, made possible through Innovative Project Grant funding, increased awareness of ACS and AACT programs.

Most Innovative New Activity or Program

Kanawha Valley Local Section

In spring 2016, the Kanawha Valley Local Section spearheaded the relief and rebuilding of science laboratories throughout its flooded regions. Industry and academic partners donated over $100,000 in funds and equipment to support affected area schools.

Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Small Size Category Award

Binghamton Local Section

The Binghamton Local Section achieved all of its 2016 goals, hosted the Northeast Regional Meeting, and celebrated its 75th anniversary. Their events involved more than 2,000 students and community members and received extensive coverage by newspaper and television outlets.

Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Medium Small Size Category Award

Kentucky Lake Local Section

The Kentucky Lake Local Section created Science Centers for children ages 0 to 14 to explore science, while the adults listen to a monthly meeting speaker. As a result, attendance by new members and families has steadily increased.

Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Medium Size Category Award

Midland Local Section

The Midland Local Section hosted over 75 events and continued its tradition of excellence. Networking opportunities connected students with professionals, and a Local Section Women Chemists Committee event with Dow Chemical’s organization for gays, lesbians, and allies promoted professional diversity.

Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Medium Large Size Category Award

Nashville Local Section

In addition to its annual activities, the Nashville Local Section innovated and grew meeting attendance by using a central online event calendar to streamline planning. An ACS grant made the live streaming of activities and secure electronic elections possible.

Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Large Size Category Award

Indiana Local Section

The Indiana Local Section was inspired to sponsor 27 events last year and collaborate with diverse groups and organizations that enabled them to accomplish much more than they could have done on their own.

Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Very Large Size Category Award

Chicago Local Section

The Chicago Local Section addressed distance and rush hour obstacles to meeting attendance by live streaming monthly programs to two additional sites thanks to Innovative Project Grant funding. Box lunches have also replaced more expensive traditional dinner meetings.