Rochester Local Section (Chartered in 1912)

2016 Local Election Winners

2017-18 Chair: Amber Flynn Charlebois

2017-18 Vice-Chair:  Maryann Mendel

2017-2019 Councilor: D. Richard Cobb

2017-2019 Alternate Councilor: Dr. Amy Irwin

Member-at-Large, 2-Year Term (2017-2018)

Andrea Bills

Beth Burns

John Pochan

Member-at-Large, 1-Year Term (2017)

Siddhesh Pawar

Rochester Section  2016 Election--Candidates with Biographies and Position Statements

The following open positions will be filled in this fall’s election.  Candidates for each position are  listed along with their biographies and position statements.

 CHAIR (2 year term)

Amber Flynn Charlebois

PRESENT POSITION: Lecturer, SUNY Geneseo

HIGHEST PROFESSIONAL DEGREE: Ph.D.

INSTITUTION:  University of Buffalo 

ACS ACTIVITIES AND MEMBERSHIPS:

E. Emmet Reid Award (excellence in chemistry teaching) (2010)

Roc Section: Vice-Chair (2016-present)

NoJ Section:  Chair (2012), Councilor (2012-2014), Alternate Councilor (2006-2011), Co-Chair Metro Women Chemists Committee (2008-2012), and National Chemistry Week (2002-2014), Project SEED Mentor (2002-2006), and Undergraduate Chemical Education Program Chair for MARM (2005)

Division: Chemical Education, Organic, Biological Chemistry and Professional Relations

National: Women Chemists Committee (Member 2006-2013 and Chair 2014-present)

Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board (Member 2014-present)

Biography

Dr. Amber Flynn Charlebois is currently a Lecturer at SUNY Geneseo, after leaving a position as an Associate Professor of Chemistry at Fairleigh Dickinson University. She received her B.S. Degree from Syracuse University, her PhD from the University of Buffalo, and continued as a postdoctoral associate at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She has been teaching organic and biochemistry at the undergraduate level for the past 16 years where she has developed her research program to investigate the interaction of small dye molecules with nucleic acids and the synthesis of stercobilin a potential biomarker for childhood autism. During the past 16 years Dr. Charlebois has mentored more than 60 students in research projects, which has lead to numerous student presentations at local, regional and national chemistry meetings. Charlebois is active in the community where she does hands on demonstrations at local daycares, camps and primary schools. She is also chair of the Women Chemist’s Committee of the American Chemical Society.

Position Statement

I may not have met you personally yet because I have recently relocated to the Rochester Area from North Jersey. I grew up in Western NY and I am very happy to be home and to be part of the Rochester Local Section. As chair of the ACS National Women Chemists Committee and we have focused on being leaders in attracting, developing, promoting, and advocating for women in the chemical sciences in order to positively impact society and the profession. I personally have focused much of my energy on increasing the quality, quantity and diversity of ACS National Award nominations. I have also served on the Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board (to the ACS Board of Directors), which has increased my knowledge and comfort with the true spirit of diversity and inclusion. I have been teaching organic chemistry and biochemistry at the undergraduate level for 16 years and I have mentored over 60 young chemists in research projects and have guided them in presenting their results. In effort to inspire and excited young chemists, in 2012, I contributed a chapter to the Springer book, “Mom, the Chemistry Professor,” and am currently an editor for the second edition that is in the works.

As Chair of the Section, I will forge a stronger bond between industrial and academic chemists so that we can look for ways of better preparing future chemists. In addition, I will reach out to undergraduate student members at all Rochester area colleges and universities and make them aware of all the ACS has to offer. I am an enthusiastic chemist and an organized leader who would be excited and honored to serve you as Chair of the Rochester ACS.

 

Vice Chair (2 year term)

Maryann Mendel

Biography

Dr. Maryann Mendel is an active member of the Rochester Section of ACS where she is serving as a current member-at-large.  In this role she is contributing as co-Publicity Chair and Web Master for the section’s web site.  She also co-led our 2015 Recognition Dinner, and, in 2016, she led our Annual and Recognition dinners. As a member of NERM 2012, she contributed in many areas and worked with others to make it a very financially and technically successful event.

Her contributions to Chemistry were in the area of Photography at Eastman Kodak Company, where she worked as a Senior Development Manager in the Entertainment Imaging Business.  More recently, she filled the role of Business Development and Program Manager for digital products until her retirement in 2005.  In addition to her ACS membership, Mendel is a Research Fellow and Lifetime Member of the Research Scientific Council, Eastman Kodak Company and is currently a Fellow of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, Inc.

She is currently a resident of West Irondequoit, New York with her husband John and their 2 dogs (Teddy and Annie).

Position Statement

Over the last 2 years, I have worked on implementing some of our special dinner events. I continue to manage our website with the changes we implemented from our Strategic Planning Workshop. As Publicity co-chair, I use as many calendars open to posting Rochester information, our website, partners’ websites, college and university chairs, small businesses and word of mouth.

If elected, I would evaluate all our current events and balance our funds and staff with events that meet the needs of all our members.  At the same time, I would work on developing the next path for the future success of the Rochester Section of the American Chemical Society.

COUNCILOR (3-year term)

Dick Cobb

Employment:          Retired after 42 years of service with the Eastman Kodak Company as a Senior Research Technician and Division Health, Safety & Environmental Coordinator

Biography

1-National ACS Involvement

Member of the ACS Elected Committee on Committees (ConC) (2017-2019)
Chair of the ACS Elected Committee on Nominations & Elections (2013-2016)
Member of the ACS Elected Committee on Nominations & Elections
(2011-2013, 2013-2016)
Associate Member of the ACS Leadership Advisory Board (LAB) (2016)
Chair of the Northeast Region, ACS Board of Directors (2014 - 2016)
Vice Chair of the Northeast Region, ACS Board of Directors (2005 - 2014)
Instructor for three ACS Leadership Development Courses (2009-present)
Chair Succession of the ACS Division Business Development & Management
(BMGT)(2014, Chair-Elect / 2015, Chair / 2016, Immediate Past Chair)
Chair of the ACS Committee on Membership Affairs (MAC) (2008-2010)
Ex-Officio Member of the ACS Member Insurance Board of Trustees (2008 -2010)
Non-voting Member of the ACS Council Policy Committee (CPC) (2008 -2010)
Candidate for ACS District I Director (2009)
Councilor for the Division of Chemical Technicians (2007-2009)
Associate Member of the ACS Committee on Membership Affairs (MAC)  (2007)
Member of the National ACS Governance Review Taskforce (2005 - 2007)
Member of the National ACS Board Oversight Group on Leadership Development
(2005 – 2009)
Member of the Regional Activities Coordination Team (ReACT) (2004 – 2007)
Chair of the ACS Committee on Admissions (2003 - 2005)
Chair of the ACS Committee on Technician Activities (CTA) (2000-2002)
Co-Chair
of the National Visiting Committee for the NSF Grant to support
Chemistry-based Technician Education (2000 - 2004)
Member of a Presidential Task Force on AIChE / ACS Joint Membership (2004)
Chair of the Canvassing Committee for the ACS Award for Volunteer Service    (2003)
Member of a Presidential Task Force on Local Section/ Division Allotments      (2002)
Member of CTPAS (Sub-Committee D) for the Society Committee on
Education (SOCED) (1999-2002)
Member of the ACS Presidential Task Force on the Electronic Membership
Survey (2001)
Chair-Elect, Chair and Immediate Past Chair (1996-1998) of the Division of
Chemical Technicians (TECH)
Member of a task force for the Committee on Meetings and Expositions (1995-1996)

2-Local ACS involvement  

Councilor, Rochester Section ACS (1999 – 2003) (2008 – present)
Co-Chair for NERM 2020
Chair, Rochester Section (2007)
Chair-Elect, Rochester Section (2006)
Bylaws Committee Chair (1998 – present)
Secretary, Rochester Section (2005)
General Chair, NERM 2004 (1999 – 2005)
Alternate Councilor, Rochester Section ACS (1998 –1999, 2004)
Treasurer, Rochester Section, ACS) (1995 – 1997)
Member-at-Large, Treasurer, Chair-Elect, Chair, Past Chair and
Technician Symposium Chair for the Rochester Technician Affiliate Group (TAG)    

3-Awards                                  

2017 National ACS Volunteerism Award
Northeast Region, ACS Volunteerism Award (2006)
TECH “Special Recognition” Award (2002, 2005)
“Salutes to Excellence” Award recipient (2004)
“Rochester Section” Award recipient (2001, 2005)
Rochester Section, A.C.S. “Special Recognition” Award recipient (1997)

Position Statement 

I am honored to have served as YOUR Councilor for the Rochester Section since 2008.  In my latest term as Councilor, I have had the opportunity, and honor, to represent the members of the Rochester Section as Chair of the ACS Committee on Nominations & Elections (N&E).  This Committee is one of the three Council Elected Committees within the Society and is charged with locating and working with nominees and candidates for ACS President-Elect and Directors on the ACS Board of Directors.  In this effort, I was elected by the ACS Council each of the three last years to serve in this leadership role – which is indeed a major one and one that shows well upon our Local Section.

During the 2016 ACS Fall Meeting, I was elected to the ACS Committee on Committees (ConC) for the term 2017 – 2019.  I had reached the maximum allowed for serving on N&E at year end 2016.

Previous to serving on N&E, I served as Chair of the Membership Affairs Committee.  Nominees for National ACS Offices are asked to state which position they have held which meant the most to them.  I would have to admit it would be this one as it focused on member needs and benefits for membership paid.  I continue to be a watchdog in insuring that the members are not given benefits that mean little to them while dues continue to rise.  I am also strong in my opinion that the best solutions to ACS problems lie in the grassroots and not in a headquarters in Washington, DC.  I still champion the value of membership wherever I sit within ACS leadership.  

 Now, as Chair of the National Committee on Nominations & Elections, I have had a new opportunity to work hard to insure that we find the best-qualified people to run for ACS President-Elect, Directors for the Society and members of the two other Council elected Committees (Council Policy Committee and the Committee on Committees).  I take my principle of membership value and apply them to the many candidates we review for potential election as your Society leaders.   This position also enables me to work to locate local long-time members to run for key Society offices wherever possible.  My focus has been in identifying new and upcoming leaders so as to not constantly recycle present leadership over and over again.  In each of my slate Subcommittees, I set forth a goal of a minimum of 20% new names and enacted a rule that no one is to be nominated back onto an Elected Committee on which they had already served once. 

 With all of the work and effort I have put forth, I guess the most value to me is the feeling that I can answer your questions about the National ACS and that I have the opportunity to serve YOU.  Your opinions do mean a lot to me, and is the reason why I seek out member input on key Council votes BEFORE a National Meeting, and not just relay the results to the membership after the fact.  Yet, I do also insure that a report from each National Meeting and the business conducted at that meeting are sent to our Webmaster for all members to have access to.

 As I stated in the first paragraph, I was selected by the Council to Chair the ACS Nominations & Election Committee.  Being elected to one of the three ACS elected committees is no easy task.  Getting re-elected is harder – and then receiving the support to serve on a second such Committee is truly an accomplishment!  I was honored to have the trust of the almost 500 Councilors from across the country in each re-election effort – and it is indeed quite prestigious to stand before each Council Meeting, in my role, running all of the election portions of the meeting.

We are witnessing times that are different for the ACS and challenging to every member of the Society.  There is pressure in the area of membership expansion to reflect more closely the practice of science in today’s world.  Throughout our > 130-year history, we have gradually expanded our definition of the subject matter of chemical science to include chemical engineering and multi-disciplinary scientific approaches to chemistry.  Now, there is more pressure than ever to expand our vision of membership to many multi-disciplinary areas while we walk a fine line between that expansion and an effort to maintain the intent of the Society.   As Chair of the ACS Admissions Committee, I have been at the forefront of all of these efforts and will serve our Rochester members, and the whole Society, in a way that expands our inclusion without dilution.  One worry I have is that the Society is beginning to take on the image of the government – meaning that Washington thinks they know better than the grass-root members as to what is needed by members and the developing of programs that serve their needs.  I will continue to fight for the voice of the Local Section members at the National Office because, in my opinion, that is the voice that is the most important to listen to.

Quite bluntly, there are many things within the Society that need to change, and change does not come without a need for stamina.  I offer that stamina from my experience of working on Local Section and Division Bylaws for years and know what it takes to make things happen.  The Rochester Section needs to find a way to blend the experience and knowledge of its massive retired chemist population with the youth and energy of younger chemists and students.  Yet, Local Sections cannot acquire complete information on active Student Affiliates in their geographic area due to “different record keeping procedures”.  This is unacceptable and I will keep pushing for better communications within the ACS so that information like this is more readily available. We need this to help cultivate students, younger chemists, and technicians for the future of our own Section!  In 2016, as Chair of N&E, I established the “Vote 20/20 Taskforce” that will review all of the nomination and election processes within the ACS to bring it in line with today’s world and in tune to member needs.

Although there are times when serving as an ACS leader is frustrating and challenges ones patience, there are also the times when I can feel that I answered a question, solved a problem or helped someone locate a job through networking with people I have come to know.  Then those other times are paled in comparison.  That is what I have enjoyed being your Councilor for the Rochester Section and why I hope to be able to serve our members, their interests and their needs in the future.


Alternate Councilor (3 year term)

Amy Irwin

Biography

Amy E. Irwin received her BS in Chemistry and PhD in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati.  She then spent three years doing post-doctoral research with Gregory Choppin at Florida State University where she also had the opportunity to teach General Chemistry as an adjunct instructor.  After working at the Bettis Atomic Power Lab in Pittsburgh, Pa, she was approached by the Community College of Allegheny County to teach Radiochemistry and Organic Chemistry.  After teaching at CCAC for 5 years, Amy went to a small liberal arts college in eastern Kentucky, where she taught all levels of chemistry.  Amy arrived in Rochester to teach General Chemistry at Monroe Community College in July of 2011.  Amy shares a house with her son, Philip, and his rescue dog.

Position Statement

I am proud to be a candidate for Councilor in 2014.  I am very excited about the possibility of being such an integral part of the future of the Rochester Section of the American Chemical Society!  I have been a part of the local section for 3 years now and was able to attend the ACS National Meeting in August, 2014 as a part of my duties as Chair.  While at the meeting, I attended a Councilors meeting as well as other meetings.  I was impressed with the amount of business the ACS conducts that one doesn’t usually hear about.  So many volunteers work behind the scenes to make the ACS the great organization it is today.  I hope to be able to become more involved in making the ACS even better!

Member-At-Large (3-2 year terms and 1-1 year term)

Vote for Four (4)

Andrea Bills

Biography

Andrea Bills is an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at St. John Fisher College, where she teaches general and physical chemistry courses. Her research area focuses on correlating physical properties of pharmaceutical drugs with photosensitivity side effects observed in patients. She currently has four research students, and last year two of her students presented at the national ACS meeting in San Diego and at the Rochester section ACS meeting. She anticipates three of her current students will present at the national ACS meeting in San Francisco and at the Rochester section ACS meeting.

 

She received her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry with honors and a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. She attended Penn State University for her graduate work receiving a Master of Science in Chemistry under the direction of Paul Weiss and a Ph.D. in Chemistry under the direction of Ben Lear. During her last two years of her doctoral work, she participated in the CarbonEARTH program, which pairs graduate students with local elementary and middle school science teachers to enhance the science curriculum locally and to give the graduate a unique teaching experience. She worked with two 4th grade teachers and approximately 120 students over her time in the program and engaged students in projects involving weather, nutrition, chemistry, earth science, and renewable energy.

Position statement

            She is excited to get involved with the local ACS section as a member at large. She became an ACS member as an undergraduate student and is interested in increasing her involvement in ACS as she progresses through her career. She was part of the planning committee for the Rochester ACS meeting last spring that was hosted by St. John Fisher College. She has also joined the physical chemistry exam committee for a 4 year term to write the new versions of the ACS physical chemistry exams. She wants to start as a member at large to better understand the goals, events, and organization of the local section, but would eventually like to get involved with the younger chemists committee (YCC), as she feels passionately about giving young chemist the tools they need to succeed in their careers.

 

Beth Burns

Biography

I am currently teaching chemistry and forensic science at Fairport High School. I earned my Bachelors of Science Degree in Chemistry from LeMoyne College in 1994. I spent several years working in industry at Bristol Myers Squibb and Kodak before attending Nazareth College to earn my Masters Degree in Education in 2003. I started teaching at Fairport in 2001. I have taught all levels of chemistry: Local, Regents, Honors and Advanced Placement. I have taught the Syracuse University Project Advance (SUPA) Forensic Science course at Fairport since 2004 and the SUPA Chemistry course since 2015. I have been teaching the Forensic Science (CHE113) course at Syracuse University for the past four summers.

Position Statement

I served as the Rochester Local Section secretary from 2009 to 2014. I have been a Member at Large for the past two years. During my tenure with the Local Section, I chaired the High School Awards Nights and Teacher of the Year award. I am looking forward to continuing to serve the Local Section as a Member at Large and continuing my work as the Chair for the High School Awards.

 

        Siddhesh Pawar

Biography

I am currently working as a Senior Engineer at Xerox Corporation where I design toners for Xerox printing devices. I have been in my current role for over 2 years. Prior to this, I completed a 1-year postdoctoral research stint at NC State University in the Department of Forest Biomaterials. My research there was related to lignin, a byproduct of the pulp and paper industry. I completed my Ph.D. at Virginia Tech in 2013, where my dissertation involved the study of a natural polysaccharide called alginic acid. I earned my MS degree at RIT in 2009, where I studied thiol-ene polymerization reactions under the guidance of Prof. Thomas W. Smith. I completed my Bachelor degree in Coatings Technology at Institute of Chemical Technology in Mumbai, India. My expertise lies in polymer science with a special focus on renewable and sustainable biomaterials.

Position Statement

I have been a member of the ACS since 2008, when I was a graduate student at RIT. Over the course of my graduate career and beyond, I have stayed involved with the ACS. I have brought my expertise in renewable resource biomaterials to the table in an effort to contribute to the chemistry community.  In 2011, I co-organized a symposium on “Conversion to Biomass to Biomaterials and Bioenergy” at the 63rd Southeast Regional Meeting of the ACS in Richmond, VA. I also co-chaired a symposium on “Polysaccharide Based Hydrocolloids” at the 243rd ACS National Meeting in San Diego, CA. During my graduate career at Virginia Tech, I led the graduate student committee in organizing poster sessions to showcase the research activities of the polymer program. I also represented my program as delegate of the VT graduate student assembly. As Member-At-Large, I would like to serve the Chemistry community in Rochester as a proponent of sustainability. It is also my mission to bring the message of renewable materials and energy to our larger community.


        John Pochan

Biography

Education: BSChE - Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute;  M.S. & Ph.D. (Physical Chemistry), University of Illinois  Work experience:  present – Technical Director, Graphenx Development Inc., co-founder of the Avout Group ;Eastman Kodak Company; S. C. Johnson and Sons; XEROX Corporation; adjunct faculty, Universities of Florida and Rochester, Visiting Professor - University of Illinois   ACS interactions: Chair, M&E,  Chair, DAC, 2011-2012: Polymer Division of the ACS, Councilor, alternate councilor and program chair;  Cochairman, ACS Asilomar Conference on Ionomers and Polymer Interfaces, Program Chairman Specialty Polymers90; Co-Chairman, ACS symposium on Polymer Surfaces,  Member Board of Directors of the Engineering Properties and Structures Division of the SPE.  Treasurer, Chair Elect, and Chairman of EPSDIV.   Other: Fellow of American Chemical Society, Society of Plastics Engineers & POLY: Maurice Huggins Memorial Award in Polymers - Gordon Research Conferences ; Chairman, Polymers West and Dielectric Phenomena; Associate Editor - POLYMER Journal, Member- Canadian Chemistry granting agency (NSERC); ~150 publications & patents.

Position Statement

I am honored to have been asked to run for member at large of the local section.  I am presently chair of the ACS Board committee on Meetings and Exposition. My focus is in the area of alternate programming formats; both inter and intra society; and to finding venues for the national meetings that are cost effective and rewarding for ACS membership. As your member at large. I will bring local section focus to M&E and work with Local Section Activities Committee (LSAC) and the Divisional Activities Committee (DAC) to promote enhanced interaction between ACS divisions and local sections. The rapid change in innovation and information technology could mean a much different venue for future National, intersociety and local section meetings.  I was chair of the Divisional Activities Committee (DAC) of the ACS Council for the two years. I was also a member of the Multidisciplinary Program Planning subcommittee of DAC and its original chair. I have also been councilor for the POLY division of ACS for the past 12 years. 

 

Please vote

http://survey.constantcontact.com/survey/a07edbkrj7niu5p2z1b/start

Voting closes Friday, November 11 at midnight                                                  

2015 Election Winners

Vice-Chair – Mary Jane Pokora

Secretary - Kim Chichester

Treasurer -  Anand Sridhar

Councilor – Todd Pagano

Alternate Councilor – Amy Irwin

Member-at-Large - Mike Coleman

Member-at-Large -Alex Martin

Member-at-Large -  Steve Tajc

Rochester Section Nominations For The 2015 Local Section Elections


The following positions need to be filled in this fall’s Local Section election.  Candidates for each position are  listed along with their biographies and position statements.

VICE CHAIR (1 year term)*

Mary Jane Pokora

Biography

Mary Jane Pokora received her Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from St. John Fisher College and began her career at the University of Rochester with the Department of Environmental Health Sciences and Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy. During this time, she earned a Master of Science in Education from the University of Rochester and New York State certification for teaching Chemistry and General Science (7-12). After accepting a position with Greece Central Schools, she taught courses in Chemistry, Forensics, and Science Applications, serving as Building Leader for Science and developing curriculum for the district. At this time, Mary Jane contributing to the Physical Setting/Chemistry assessment as an Educational Specialist with the New York State Education Department. She has spent the past several years in the Boston area working as northeast Educational Consultant with Pearson Digital Education and as District Support Coordinator with Shore Educational Collaborative, providing professional development and educational support for districts in the region. Currently, Mary Jane is an adjunct instructor with the Chemistry and Geosciences Department at Monroe Community College and a Science Specialist with Monroe #1 BOCES. She lives in Fairport with her husband Jim.

Position Statement

Key roles of Vice Chair include leading the Strategic Planning Committee of the Section and the Membership Affairs Committee. My objective in the role of Vice Chair is to continue to develop the long-range plan strategic plan, focusing on promoting interest in science through collaborative programs. Strengthening existing partnerships and exploring new ones supports both the membership and serves the larger community by serving as a connector for industry, academics, and education.  The Rochester Section of the American Chemical Society has a vital role in promoting interest and enthusiasm for chemistry through its many programs. I will work towards the goal of making chemistry and science more accessible to the community, providing opportunities to advance learning, involvement, and collaborative partnerships.

 

SECRETARY (2-year term)

 Dr. Kimberly Chichester

Biography

I am currently an Associate Professor at St. John Fisher College and head of the Science Scholars Program, the science honors program.  I earned a bachelor’s of arts degree at Catawba College in North Carolina and a PhD in analytical chemistry at Wake Forest University.  I also conducted masters’ research in biophysics at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.   My current research involves both pharmaceutical and environmental chemistry and relies heavily on instrumentation. 

Position Statement

My service to the Rochester ACS section started after I co-hosted the undergraduate research symposium in 2009.  I served as a member at large for two years and learned a lot about how the local section worked.  In 2013, I served as the chair of the Rochester section and am currently the immediate past chair.  I would very much like to continue serving the section as the secretary, where I think I can continue to make a difference. 

 

TREASURER (2-year term)

Anand Sridhar, Ph. D.

Biography 

I am currently an Assistant Professor in the Pharmaceutical Sciences department, at the Wegmans School of Pharmacy, St. John Fisher College.  My educational background includes a baccalaureate degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from Mumbai University, Mumbai, India, and a Ph. D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Medicinal Chemistry emphasis, minor in Pharmacognosy) from the University of Mississippi, Oxford, MS.  After my doctoral degree, I continued my training as a post-doctoral associate at the University of Illinois (Chicago, IL) and Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH) in the synthesis of small molecules and isolation of alkaloids. A tenure-track assistant professor at St. John Fisher College, my research interests lie in the areas of medicinal chemistry, drug discovery and design, and natural products isolation.  Currently, I serve as a member-at-large with the Rochester Local ACS Section.

Position Statement

My experiences with the Rochester Local Section as a member-at-large in the last year have helped me gain a solid understanding of the goals of our section.  I am seeking election as the treasurer of the Rochester Local Section, given my interest in finance and accounting. As treasurer, my highest priority will be to ensure that our budget is realistic and meets the needs of the section membership. With the cooperation of the executive committee, I will work diligently to manage our section’s responsibilities in membership dues, subscriptions, grants and awards, reporting, and financial disbursements. I request your vote so that I may represent the Rochester Local Section and support the advancement of chemistry in the Rochester area. 

 

COUNCILOR (2-year term) *

Dr. Todd Pagano

Biography

Dr. Todd Pagano is an Associate Professor and Director of the Laboratory Science Technology program at Rochester Institute of Technology/National Technical Institute for the Deaf (RIT/NTID).  He has worked on several pedagogical and chemical research projects and has presented or co-authored over two hundred papers at regional, national, and international symposia.  He has been honored as a recipient of RIT’s Richard & Virginia Eisenhart Award for Excellence in Teaching, Albritton Faculty Humanitarian Award, and Faculty Mentoring Award- as well as the CASE/Carnegie U.S. Professor of the Year Award.  He was also awarded the ACS’s Stanley C. Israel Award for Advancing Diversity in the Chemical Sciences and the National Award for Encouraging Underrepresented Students into the Chemical Sciences.  Todd has been a member of the ACS for over 17 years and also serves on the ACS joint-Board Committee on Chemists with Disabilities. 

Position Statement 

As an Alternate Councilor and member of the Rochester ACS executive team, Todd plans to continue to work to provide opportunities for underrepresented individuals in the field, build alliances between academia and industry, and progress the general goals of the Local Section.

 

ALTERNATE COUNCILOR (1-year term) **

Dr. Amy Irwin

Biography

Amy E. Irwin received her BS in Chemistry and PhD in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati.  She then spent three years doing post-doctoral research with Gregory Choppin at Florida State University where she also had the opportunity to teach General Chemistry as an adjunct instructor.  After working at the Bettis Atomic Power Lab in Pittsburgh, Pa, she was approached by the Community College of Allegheny County to teach Radiochemistry and Organic Chemistry.  After teaching at CCAC for 5 years, Amy went to a small liberal arts college in eastern Kentucky, where she taught all levels of chemistry.  Amy arrived in Rochester to teach General Chemistry at Monroe Community College in July of 2011.  Amy shares a house with her son, Philip, and his rescue dog.

Position Statement 

I am pleased to run for the position of alternate councilor of the Rochester Section of the American Chemical Society.  During my position as section chair, I had the opportunity to attend some of the meetings of the councilors.  I was intrigued by all of the work that they have to do in the regular function of the Society as a whole, and was honored to be able to observe their work.  I feel that I can continue to be a part of the local section by occupying the position of alternate councilor.  I understand that I would be the representative of the local section if the councilor was unable to attend the national meeting. 

This position would also allow me to remain as a member of the executive committee of the local section.  This is an important position to me because the committee allows me to be of service to the local section.  I am a part of the activities and responsibilities of the local section and find that I am able to serve our members. 

I have been honored to be a part of the local section.  I am thankful for the great group of people that I work with on the executive committee of the Rochester section.  I am honored they chose me to be a temporary alternate councilor.  I plan to continue to be involved in the local section and hope that you will choose me to be an alternate councilor so that I might continue serving the local section membership.

 

THREE MEMBERS-AT-LARGE (2-year terms)

 

Dr. Michael G. Coleman

Biography

Michael G. Coleman, Ph.D. is a native of Rochester, New York.  He graduated from Benjamin Franklin High School in 1993 and received his B.S. in Chemistry from the University at Buffalo in 1998.  After serving four years as a research chemist at the Research and Development division of Praxair, Inc, he returned to the University at Buffalo and he received his Ph.D. in Synthetic Medicinal Chemistry.  In 2007, he held a brief appointment as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at South Carolina State University, and shortly thereafter, he joined the faculty at the Rochester Institute of Technology as a Visiting Assistant Professor (2008) and now serves as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry (2010).  In summers of 2010 and 2011, he occupied a joint position as a NSF Research Assistant at the Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory in central Long Island.  Last summer, he served as a Visiting Scholar at the University of Cincinnati’s Department of Chemistry where conducted research with RIT undergraduate students. He is a husband to Renee Coleman, Ph.D. Professor of Psychology at the Monroe Community College, and father of two.  His interests include undergraduate research mentoring, traveling, and golf.

Position Statement

As an underrepresented minority whose roots are in the City of Rochester, I have a personal and professional interest in broadening the pipeline of students in the chemical sciences.  I wish to achieve this through community activism and outreach activities that aim to connect students with the local industrial, academic, and government chemical community.  Currently, I am a faculty advisor for the RIT Science Technology Entry Program (RIT STEP), where we have partnered with the Alpha Chi Sigma (ΑΧΣ) a professional chemistry fraternity, to facilitate a Saturday NOVA academy to expose students to hands-on workshops, mentoring, college & career exploration, and leadership training.  The RIT STEP program serves selected schools within the Rochester City School District, Rush-Henrietta School District, and Greece Olympia high school. As a Member-at-Large, I wish to serve as a catalyst in the Rochester community to promote and attract high quality students into the chemical sciences by leveraging the common goals of the (1) local K-12 schools; (2) RIT STEM Education programs; and the (3) American Chemical Society through coordinated programing and the strategic use of resources.

Dr. Alex Martin

Biography

Alex was born in Flint, Michigan. He received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of Michigan. After earning his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from Virginia Commonwealth University, Alex and his wife (Laura) moved to Rochester, New York. He currently is a visiting assistant professor at Nazareth College.

Position statement

I am a recent grad that is new to the area and excited to join the local ACS section. I am a chemist with a passion for teaching, having taught at the high school and college level. I am eager to become more involved in the local chemistry community and work toward fostering connections between academia and the private sector.

 Dr. Steve Tajc

Biography

Stephen Tajc received his BS in Chemistry from Gannon University in Erie, Pa.  He received both his MS and PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Rochester under Benjamin Miller where he studied small molecule receptors for binding cations in aqueous solution.  Stephen’s post-doctoral research was with Ernesto Freire at Johns Hopkins University where he researched on the structural analysis of HIV-1 viral entry inhibitors.  In addition, Stephen taught general chemistry at the Community College of Baltimore County while he was a post-doctoral fellow.

Stephen is currently in his third year as an Assistant Professor at Nazareth College teaching organic chemistry, drug design, and research.  His research group has 14 students this semester, with many intending on presenting at both the Rochester Academy of Science and the ACS national meeting.  Stephen also served at a moderator for two organic chemistry sessions at NERM.

Stephen resides in Penfield, NY with his wife Jean, two-year old son George, and nine month old daughter Caroline.

Position Statement

Nazareth College sent sixteen students to the ACS national meeting in New Orleans this past spring, and the majority of these students are from the Rochester area.  I was delighted to have so many representatives of our small school presenting at such a high level.  It is very satisfying to see local students excited about research while having the chance to present to their peers.  I am eager to work with the local ACS section to further engage our students at our local colleges in research and chemical education.  My goal through the ACS is to increase the opportunities for young scientist and to keep our talented students in the Rochester area for years to come.

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(* The Vice Chair's position is a 1-year term to finish term of former Vice Chair Randy Sabatini.)

(**  This Councilor seat is our “academic” seat and is a 2-year term to finish out the term of former Councilor Rich Hartmann.)

(**  This Alternate Councilor seat is our “academic” seat and is a 1-year term to finish out the term of former Alternate Councilor Todd Pagano who was appointed to replace Rich Hartmann as Councilor this year.)

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2014 Election Winners

Chair – Glen Labenski

Vice-Chair – Randy Sabatini

Secretary - Kim Chichester

Councilor – Richard Hartmann

Alternate Councilor – James Reynolds

Member-at-Large - Elizabeth Burns

Member-at-Large - Maryann Mendel

Member-at-Large -  Anand Sridhar

Rochester Section Nominations For The 2014 Local Section Elections

The following positions need to be filled in this fall’s Local Section election.  Candidates for each position are  listed along with their biographies and position statements.

Chair (2-year term)

Glen Labenski

Biographical Information:

Glen Labenski is from Buffalo, New York.  He studied at Nazareth College in Rochester earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Biochemistry.  Glen continued with graduate studies at the Rochester Institute of Technology, where he earned his Master’s Degree in Chemistry.  He has been a member of the ACS for the past 9 years and has served as Member-At-Large (2012-2013) and Chair-Elect (2014) for the Rochester Section.  Glen currently works for Kelly Scientific Resources as a consulting chemist with Ortho-Clinical Diagnostics.  Outside of the laboratory, he is an avid distance runner.  He currently resides in Brighton with his wife, Emily.

Position Statement:

I started out with the American Chemical Society as a student member, attending national meetings and presenting research.  These events provided a fantastic opportunity for me as a young chemist to learn more about the research going on in the field of chemistry and a great way to network and make connections all over the country.  This invaluable experience kept me interested and involved in being a member of the ACS.  Over the years, I became more involved with leadership roles in the local section.  I wish to continue on my path of serving the Rochester Local ACS Section as Local Section Chair for 2015-2016.  After my experiences with the ACS in the past 10 years, I have come to believe you can grain a lot personally and professionally as an ACS member.  As Section Chair with the Rochester Local ACS section, I wish to share this perspective with current and potential members about the value of being an active ACS member.  The Local Section is involved with various volunteer activities in the Greater Rochester community and I hope to continue these activities and increase community awareness of the Local Section’s contributions to the community.  Finally, it is my goal to encouraging growth in membership in order to maintain a vibrant and active local section.  If you share such a vision for your Rochester Local ACS Section, please consider giving me your vote this year.

 

Vice Chair (2-year term)

Randy Sabatini

Biographical Information:

I am a graduate student at the University of Rochester, where I plan to obtain my PhD in Chemistry near the end of the year. I received my bachelor’s degree from the College at Brockport: State University of New York in 2009. My research area lies on the border of Physical and Inorganic Chemistry, developing and characterizing systems for the photochemical production of H2 from water.

Position Statement:

As Vice-Chair, the major goals of my term would be promoting awareness of the Rochester section to local colleges while also expanding the industrial presence in the section.

When I attended my first local mixer, I quickly realized the benefit of meeting with peers involved in all walks of the Chemistry life in Rochester. Whether it was fellow graduate students, retired chemists, professors, or those currently in industry, each person had a unique perspective to offer on how to succeed in the realm of Chemistry. The comradery was tangible, and it compelled me to become more involved in the local section. I believe that the biggest barrier for students, in joining the section, is simply that they never think about it. I will focus on ways to improve the presence of the local section to colleges within the Rochester area. Toward this end, the members who hold faculty positions will be of great help, as they already have a connection to the students in their respective colleges and universities.

While the large academic presence in the section is commendable, I do believe that industry is vastly underrepresented. I am currently examining the job market for myself, and I have a vested interest in becoming more connected to Rochester’s chemical industry. I believe this interest carries over to many graduating chemistry students, as the majority of them will end up in the private sector. I will try and leverage any connections I make toward increasing industrial participation in the section. With a strong balance of professional fields, the section can be even better at addressing the needs of the chemistry community.


Secretary (2-year term)

Kimberly Chichester

Biographical Information:

I am currently an Associate Professor at St. John Fisher College and head of the Science Scholars Program, the science honors program.  I earned a bachelor’s of arts degree at Catawba College in North Carolina and a PhD in analytical chemistry at Wake Forest University.  I also conducted masters’ research in biophysics at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.   My current research involves both pharmaceutical and environmental chemistry and relies heavily on instrumentation. 

Position Statement:

My service to the Rochester ACS section started after I co-hosted the undergraduate research symposium in 2009.  I served as a member at large for two years and learned a lot about how the local section worked.  In 2013, I served as the chair of the Rochester section and am currently the immediate past chair.  I would very much like to continue serving the section as the secretary, where I think I can continue to make a difference. 

 

Councilor (3-year term)

Richard Hartmann

Biographical Information:

I am currently a professor of chemistry and chair of the department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at Nazareth College.  I earned a bachelors of science in education (chemistry and physics) from the University of Wisconsin in 1988 and taught high school science in Illinois and Wisconsin until 1994.  I earned a PhD in inorganic chemistry (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee) in 2001 and began teaching at Nazareth College in the fall of 2001.  My research interests involve the transformation of high free fatty acid (FFA) waste cooking oil into high quality biodiesel and my students and I are currently investigating tin (II and IV) compounds as Lewis acid catalysts for the methylation of model FFA systems

Position Statement:

I joined the ACS shortly after moving to Rochester and my first encounter with the local section was volunteering to run the undergraduate awards ceremony and serving as a mentor in the “scientist in the classroom” outreach program.  Because this proved to be such a positive experience, I decided to run for an open member at large position.  During the three years of this term I learned a great deal about the workings of both the local and the national ACS and also got to know many interesting and dedicated individuals in the Rochester chemistry community.  Their passion and dedication convinced me to run successfully for chair and to continue serving as one of our two elected councilors.  It has been my honor to serve in this role for the past six years, representing the thoughts and concerns of the membership in council as well as the national committee (International Activities) on which I serve.  In this time I have also served as the general chair of NERM 2012 and more recently as the chair of our local ACS fellows committee.  While much has been accomplished, I believe there is still more that can be done both for the society as a whole, and the Rochester section.  I am excited about the many outreach opportunities that we are engaged in (monthly mixers, chemistry and art events, chemistry in emerging technologies) and look forward to promoting expanded partnerships on the national and international level.  There are also numerous national happenings that have the potential to shape the future of the ACS including selection of a new CEO, board chairperson, as well as ACS president, regional directors and elected committee members.  I believe the experience and insight I have gained over the past six years will allow me to continue to faithfully represent the Rochester section and I hope that you will entrust me with your vote.

Amy Irwin

Biographical Information:

Amy E. Irwin received her BS in Chemistry and PhD in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati.  She then spent three years doing post-doctoral research with Gregory Choppin at Florida State University where she also had the opportunity to teach General Chemistry as an adjunct instructor.  After working at the Bettis Atomic Power Lab in Pittsburgh, Pa, she was approached by the Community College of Allegheny County to teach Radiochemistry and Organic Chemistry.  After teaching at CCAC for 5 years, Amy went to a small liberal arts college in eastern Kentucky, where she taught all levels of chemistry.  Amy arrived in Rochester to teach General Chemistry at Monroe Community College in July of 2011.  Amy shares a house with her son, Philip, and his rescue dog.

Position Statement:

I am proud to be a candidate for Councilor in 2014.  I am very excited about the possibility of being such an integral part of the future of the Rochester Section of the American Chemical Society!  I have been a part of the local section for 3 years now and was able to attend the ACS National Meeting in August, 2014 as a part of my duties as Chair.  While at the meeting, I attended a Councilors meeting as well as other meetings.  I was impressed with the amount of business the ACS conducts that one doesn’t usually hear about.  So many volunteers work behind the scenes to make the ACS the great organization it is today.  I hope to be able to become more involved in making the ACS even better!

 

Alternate Councilor (3-year term)

James Reynolds

Biographical Information:

Jim Reynolds is a Research Associate at Eastman Kodak Company, where he has been employed since 1992. His current assignment is in the Materials Science group where he is developing new technologies for functional printing applications. He received his B.A. in chemistry from Colby College and a Ph.D. in physical-organic chemistry from Yale University. Jim lives in Brighton with his wife Ginny and his daughter Maya.

Rochester Section Activities: ACS Member since 1983. Rochester Section Alternate Councilor (2012-2014), Section Chair (2010), Councilor (2000-2008); Member-at-Large (1994-1995, 1998-1999); National Chemistry Week Chair (1998-2000); Section Webmaster (1996-2011), Audit Committee Chair (2002-2014), Section Awards Committee (2003-2005, Chair 2003); High School Awards Committee (2001-2011), NERM 2004 Committee; CHEMunicator Newsletter editor (2007-2011, 2014); Rochester Section Special Recognition Award, 1999; Rochester Section Award winner, 2002 and 2005 (with NERM Committee); Salutes to Excellence Award, 2008; Rochester Volunteerism Award, 2009.

National ACS Activities: Member of the Local Section Activities Committee and the LSAC sub-committee on Local Section Assistance and Development (2002-2008).

Position Statement:

I am delighted to have been asked to continue to serve the Rochester Section as Alternate Councilor. Through my 9 years as Councilor, I am well acquainted with the workings of the National ACS and could easily step in if necessary to add my voice to the Council.  I have been an active member of the Rochester Section for over 20 years, and I will continue to be a strong advocate for the Section's signature events including the Harrison Howe Award, the High School Chemistry Awards, and its educational outreach activities. I am also committed to continue working with my colleagues on the Executive Committee as together we learn how to "do more with less" and better serve our local ACS members.

 

Three Members-At-Large (2-year terms)

Elizabeth Burns

Biographical Information:

I am currently teaching chemistry and forensic science at Fairport High School. I earned my Bachelors of Science Degree in Chemistry from LeMoyne College in 1994. I spent several years working in industry at Bristol Myers Squibb and Kodak before attending Nazareth College to earn my Masters Degree in Education in 2003. I started teaching at Fairport in 2001. I have taught all levels of chemistry: Local, Regents, Honors and Advanced Placement. I have taught the Syracuse University Project Advance (SUPA) Forensic Science course at Fairport since 2004. I have also taught the Forensic Science course at Syracuse University the past two summers. Last Spring, I co-taught the Science Methods class for pre-service teachers at Nazareth College.

Position Statement:

I have served at the Rochester Local Section secretary for the past six years. During my tenure I have also chaired the High School Awards Nights and Teacher of the Year award. I am looking forward to continuing to serve the Local Section as a Member at Large, continuing my work as the Chair for the High School Awards.

Maryann Mendel

Biographical Information:

Dr. Maryann Mendel is an active member of the Rochester Section of ACS where she is serving as a current member at large.  In this role she is contributing as co-Publicity Chair and Web Master for the section’s web site. 

Her contributions to Chemistry were in the area of Photography at Eastman Kodak Company, where she worked as a Senior Development Manager in the Entertainment Imaging Business.  More recently, she filled the role of Business Development and Program Manager for digital products until her retirement in 2005.  In addition to her ACS membership, Mendel is a Research Fellow and Lifetime Member of the Research Scientific Council, Eastman Kodak Company and is currently a Fellow of the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers, Inc.

She is currently a resident of West Irondequoit, New York with her husband John and their 2 dogs (Teddy and Annie).

Position Statement:

Over the last 2 years, I have worked on implementing the plans from our Strategic Planning Workshop in November 2012 along with the other members of the Rochester Section Executive Committee.  Most of my efforts were focused on redesigning our local website by making items easier to find and having separate web pages for all activities.  We also had some success for improving ACS recognition in the community by partnering with the Rochester School District to highlight their students’ participation in Project Seed 2013.  If elected, I will continue these efforts and also seek to deliver further membership needs for 2015 and beyond. 

 Phil Rock

Biographical Information:

Phil Rock is a native son of Rochester, New York in addition to a lifelong devotee of science and the arts. Presently working as a research technician at the University of Rochester, he has applied his work and life experience to enriching the lives of those around him. His experience in industry has shown his aptitude for leadership, versatility and a zeal for learning. With a passion for chemical demonstrations and academia, he has applied his knowledge to improve the quality of the educational experience of students at many levels throughout the community. His recent employment at the clinical laboratory at the University of Rochester Medical Center has provided yet another opportunity to explore his scientific curiosity, and apply his experience and creativity to improve upon the many processes there. Most recently he has accepted a position as a research technician under Dr. Richard Burack, studying lymphoma and leukemia. Currently Phil resides in the City of Rochester with his wife Amy.

Position Statement:

I am a member of the American Chemistry Society and an advocate for chemical education and safety. My activities have made me known to the regional association and provided many opportunities to network with local, national and international members of the scientific community. Having nine years lab experience in industry, academia and clinical settings I intend to utilize my expertise to better the relationship between the ACS, academic institutions, local business and the general public. As member at large of the local section I plan on assisting in efforts to create a liaison position to the Younger Chemists Committee at regional colleges and universities for undergraduates to increase younger involvement and membership with the ACS. In addition I would like to provide additional forums for the scientific community in the Rochester area to share their knowledge and research.

Anand Sridhar

Biographical Information:

I am currently as Assistant Professor in the Pharmaceutical Sciences department, at the Wegmans School of Pharmacy, St. John Fisher College.  My educational background includes a baccalaureate degree in Pharmaceutical Sciences from Mumbai University, Mumbai, India, and a Ph. D. in Pharmaceutical Sciences (Medicinal Chemistry emphasis, minor in Pharmacognosy) from the University of Mississippi, Oxford, MS.  After my doctoral degree, I continued my training as a post-doctoral associate at the University of Illinois (Chicago, IL) and Case Western Reserve University (Cleveland, OH) in the synthesis of small molecules and isolation of alkaloids.

My research interests lie in the areas of medicinal chemistry, drug discovery and design, and natural products isolation.  Currently, my research project at the Wegmans School of Pharmacy includes the isolation of certain plant-derived neurotoxins towards the understanding of movement disorders like Parkinson’s Disease.

Position Statement:

I have been a member of the ACS since 2001 when I started out as a graduate student, and acknowledge its role in the development of my career as a chemist.  My connection with the Rochester Local ACS Section started with the family picnic that Glen Labenski organized at Coca-Cola Field along with the Buffalo Local Section. I have since attended the Rochester Local Section meetings at Nazareth College, which helped me gain a better understanding of the goals of our section.  I believe as a Member-at-Large I will be able to further the Section’s goals, and in particular, wish to contribute to the Adopt-A-School program. With the help of the ACS Local Section, I am keen to create opportunities that would expose high school students to the application of chemistry to health-care aspects, including drug discovery and small molecules synthesis.  I believe my faculty position in the Wegmans School of Pharmacy provides a suitable platform to develop these goals.  I request your vote so that I may represent the Local Section as a Member-at-Large and advance the interests of chemistry in the Rochester area.

2013 Rochester Section Election Results

Chair-Elect – Glen Labenski

Treasurer – Mark Heitz

Councilor – Richard Cobb

Alternate Councilor – Todd Pagano

Member-at-Large - Steve Tajc

Member-at-Large - Mary Jane Pokora

Member-at-Large - Michael Coleman

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2012 Election Winners

Kimberly Chichester--- Chair

Amy E. Irwin---Chair-Elect

Elizabeth C. Burns---Secretary

Heidi A. B. Asarese---Member-at-Large

Maryann Mendel---Member-at-Large

Phil Rock---Member-at-Large

 

2015 Chair Contacts

Need help finding information.  Check the attachment below to contact the right person.

2015 CHAIR CONTACTS

Rochester ACS Group

To facilitate networking, collaborate on ideas and exchange job information.

Jim Reynolds (coordinator)


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