FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE | December 01, 2008

African-American chemist named president-elect of world’s largest scientific society

WASHINGTON, Dec. 1, 2008 — Joseph S. Francisco, Ph.D., a chemist and William E. Moore Distinguished Professor at Purdue University, has been named president-elect of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society. He will serve in this position beginning Jan. 1, 2009, becoming ACS president on Jan. 1, 2010. Francisco will become only the second African-American named as president of the Society, which was founded in 1876.

Francisco earned his B.S. in chemistry from The University of Texas, Austin, in 1977 and his Ph.D. from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1983. He and his wife, Priya, reside in Zionsville, Ind.

A member of ACS since 1991, Francisco has been active with the Society at the national and local levels, working on numerous committees. He is a member of the editorial advisory board of ACS’s Journal of Physical Chemistry. In addition, Francisco is former president of the National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE) and has served on more than a dozen national science councils.

Francisco has had published more than 400 journal articles, written nine book chapters, and co-authored the textbook, Chemical Kinetics and Dynamics.

“As ACS president, I will start a dialogue with community, educators and our members to address the question of what can be done to better prepare our students for a chemistry enterprise that requires global skills, “ Francisco said. “Now more than ever, we need to expose young people to the transforming power of chemistry and open their eyes to the opportunities within our science to improve people’s lives.”

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Charmayne Marsh