The View from the Program Chair, Fall 2011

The season is changing as I compose this letter on the last day of spring, in the midpoint of the International Year of Chemistry (IYC). Semesters have ended, summer courses are underway, and thoughts of the fall meeting in Denver are much on my mind, even as memories of a great spring meeting in Anaheim linger.

Many thanks are due to the presenters, organizers, and co-chairs who made the Anaheim meeting a great success. Special thanks go out to MaryKay Orgill and her team of volunteers from UNLV. She and George Bodner crafted a compelling program that was well received by audiences at the Disney Grand Californian. The high school program, chaired by Judie Flint Baumwirt, was excellent and her effort was heroic, collecting and transporting the many educational resources that were distributed to the teachers who attended for the day.

The organizing is done and we’re very much looking forward to the upcoming meeting. Please express your appreciation to Joe March and Wayne Jones who have crafted an excellent program for our return to Denver. This meeting includes over 400 papers, in 35 sessions, offering many choices for folks attending the meeting. The meeting will include an IYC-themed symposium and a philatelic celebration, to be exhibited first at the Sunday evening General Poster session before heading over to the Expo. The high school program has come together beautifully with the guidance of our trio of organizers, Greta Glugoski-Sharp, Elisabeth Mansfield, and Angela Powers.

As always, there are a number of people behind the scenes who provide direct and indirect support for the programming at a national meeting. I’d personally like to thank my programming mentor, Julie Smist, as well as the ACS staff who are the ones who being it all together: Farai Tsokodayi, John Sophos, Nancy Bakowski, and Nikki Fisher are a great team. Thank you all for the attention to detail that makes these meetings run so smoothly.

 Meanwhile, in “programming-world” we are already deeply into the planning for the Spring 2012 meeting in San Diego. This venue typically draws very large crowds of participants. If you have an idea for a symposium you’d like to organize in San Diego, it’s not too late. Feel free to contact the meeting chairs, Bill Harwood or Amy Cannon, with your ideas. I look forward to working with you in the future whether it be as a symposium organizer, a meeting co-chair, or a member of the program committee. We are here to produce national meetings that serve your needs. Please do let us know what those needs are and do consider what role you might be able to play as a volunteer. My goal is to make it easy for you to say, “Yes, I’ll volunteer” by providing any support you might need. Drop me a note ( with your ideas or say hello in Denver!

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