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Current Issue of The Crucible – December 2015

December 2015

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Congratulations to 2015 Pittsburgh Award Winner – Dr. Kay Brummond, University of Pittsburgh

Kay grew up on a farm in eastern Nebraska where her family raised corn and soybeans. She attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and received her B.S. degree from UNL in 1985. She carried out her graduate work at the Pennsylvania State University and was awarded a Ph.D. in organic chemistry in 1991. Her postdoctoral research was performed at the University of Rochester and her first faculty appointment was in the Department of Chemistry at West Virginia University in 1993; she was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure in 1999 and held an adjunct Associate Professor position in the Department of Basic Pharmaceutical Sciences at WVU. She was honored with the Departmental Outstanding Faculty Award in 1999.

In 2001, she moved her labs to the Department of Chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh where she was promoted to Professor in 2006 and as of January in 2015 is serving as the Chair of the Department. While at the University of Pittsburgh, Brummond has been the recipient of the Chancellor’s Distinguished Research Award, the ACS Akron Section Award, the Carnegie Science Center Emerging Female Scientist Award, and the Johnson & Johnson Focused Giving Award. She is currently an American Chemical Society Fellow. She served as the Chair of the Gordon Research Conference, Organic Reactions and Processes. Brummond was elected by the DOC Executive Committee of the ACS to serve as the Chair of the 45th National Organic Symposium, 2017. She has served as a co-organizer of the annual workshop, “Accelerated Reaction Discovery” in Telluride, Colorado since 2010. She has also been appointed as a Member of the Committee on Publications, a Joint Committee of the American Chemical Society Council and Board of Directors, 2014-2017. Brummond just completed her eight-year term on the Board of Editors for the Corporation of Organic Synthesis, Inc. and is the editor of Volume 91. She served as the Vice-Chair of the NIH Center of Excellence for Chemical Methodologies and Library Synthesis at the University of Pittsburgh for ten years, where she was also a project leader. She has served as a permanent member of the NIH Synthetic and Biological Chemistry Study Section A and the University of Pittsburgh Drug Discovery Institute. Brummond has also been honored with positions as a Visiting Fellow at the University of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia in the Fall of 2011; a Visiting Professor at the Université Pierre et Marie Curie-Paris 6, Paris, France in the Fall of 2010; and a Visiting Professor in the Department of Chemistry, MIT, Boston, MA in the Spring of 2008.

Brummond’s research program focuses mainly on the development of new synthetic methods to expedite the preparation of, and to expand on Nature’s toolbox of biologically relevant compounds. She and her group have published over 60 journal articles, 15 reviews and book chapters, and she has delivered over 160 invited lectures and symposia. The students and postdocs in her group have presented 56 conference posters and presentations. Twenty-two graduate students have obtained Ph.D. and M.S. degrees under her direction; Jamie McCabe and Jennifer Loyer-Drew were recipients of a Pfizer Diversity Fellowship Award. Branko Mitasev and Laura Kocsis were recipients of the Mellon Fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh. Thirty-three undergraduates have worked in her laboratory from 1993-2015.

Congratulations to 2015 Distinguished Service Award Winner – Dr. Paul Johnson, Duquesne University

Paul received a B.A. degree in chemistry from Slippery Rock State College (now called SRU) in 1966.He moved on to Duquesne University where he received his Ph.D. in chemistry before spending three years doing post-doctoral research at Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. He returned to Pittsburgh in 1975 where he began a teaching career at various community colleges before receiving a faculty position at Duquesne. He is currently on the Advisory Board of the Chemistry Department at SRU and also sponsors scholarships for deserving undergraduate chemistry majors at the University. He has been active in the ACS Pittsburgh section for 25 years, principally as the chair of the High School Chemistry Contest since 1997. He has been co-advisor of the Duquesne University Student Affiliate Chapter from 1984 to the present. In 2013 he was recognized by the national organization as an ACS Chemistry Ambassador for promoting the value of chemists and chemistry in the community.

Congratulations to the NCW 2015 Illustrated Poetry Contest Winners

The Pittsburgh Section of the American Chemical Society’s (ACS) sponsored an illustrated poem contest for students in grades K-12 in support of the 2015 National Chemistry Week (NCW) program. Students could pick topics related to the 2015 NCW theme “Chemistry Colors Our World!” First and second place winners were selected from four grade categories: K-2nd, 3rd-5th, 6th-8th, and 9th-12th. Poems could be any style (free verse, limerick, haiku, etc.). Entries were judged based upon relevance to and incorporation of the theme, word choice and imagery, colorful artwork, adherence to poem style, originality and creativity, and overall presentation. There were 164 entries submitted from 15 schools. Each 1st place winner will receive a check for $50 and their winning poem entered into the national poem contest sponsored by the ACS’s Committee on Community Activities. Each 2nd place winner will receive a check for $25.   And the winners of the Pittsburgh Section ACS’s NCW 2015 illustrated poem contest:
K-2nd Grade No entries received.
3rd-5th Grade 1st Place: Shaun F., Franklin Elementary School
2nd Place: Jillian F., Boyce Middle School
6th-8th Grade 1st Place: Brittany W., Hopewell Memorial Jr. High School 2nd Place: Ed M., Hopewell Memorial Jr. High School
9th-12th Grade 1st Place: David O., Mt. Lebanon High School 2nd Place: Megan W., Ringgold High School

Congratulations to all our local winners and good luck in the national contest!

Pittsburgh Section Wins ChemLuminary Awards

The Pittsburgh Section ACS was awarded two prestigious ChemLuminary Awards on August 18, 2015, during the ACS’s 17th Annual ChemLuminary Awards event, held in Boston, MA as part of the ACS’s 250th National Meeting. The Pittsburgh Section ACS’s National Chemistry Week (NCW) program was awarded “Outstanding Community Involvement in NCW”, recognizing the 42 organizations that participated in the Section’s 2014 NCW program. The Pittsburgh Section ACS was also the recipient of the “Outstanding Performance by a Local Section – Large Size Category”. This award recognized the many outstanding programs and activities the Pittsburgh Section provides members each year, along with recognizing the successful Central Regional Meeting held in Pittsburgh in October 2014. The Pittsburgh Section wishes to thank all of its officers, committee members, and volunteers who continue to help the Section serve the needs of its members.  Check out the C&E News article

Pittsburgh Section Offers Travel Grants for Student Members

The Pittsburgh Section of the American Chemical Society has budgeted funds to help encourage undergraduate/graduate student participation in national and regional ACS meetings. The awards are intended to help defray meeting registration and travel-related expenses (lodging, transportation, per diem) for eligible students.  Click for the application.

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