Report of Council Meeting Held on April 4, 2001 at the San Diego Marriott
By Barbara Moriarty...
You will remember that in past years Bob Buntrock wrote the report by council. Since Bob resigned his councilor position at the end of 2000, he is no longer able to write the report on the activities of the Council meeting for the Chicago Section. I feel that it is very important that you, the members of the Chicago section, know what transpired at Council, the ACS equivalent of the US House of Representatives.
The national meeting this spring was held in San Diego, CA. Although many of us expected to be warmer in San Diego, it was actually warmer in Chicago. The meeting was attended by over 18,000 people, which meant that this meeting was the second largest National ACS meeting ever held. There were 252 exhibiting companies and > 2000 undergraduate and graduate students at this meeting.
The council meeting was begun by the now customary trumpet fanfare by John Verkade. All 13 councilors from the Chicago section were present at the meeting. The councilors for the section are: Dr. Roy H. Bible Jr. (1964-2002), Dr. Cherlyn Bradley (1993-2001), Dr. Charles E. Cannon (2001-2002), Dr. David S. Crumrine (2001-2003), Mr. Nathaniel L. Gilham (1988-2002), Dr. Russell W. Johnson (2001-2001), Ms. Fran K. Kravitz (1992-2003), Dr. Thomas J. Kucera (1970-2002). Dr. Claude A. Lucchesi (1974-2003), Dr. Barbara E. Moriarty (1996-2001), Dr. Seymour H. Patinkin (1978-2001), Ms. Marsha Anne Phillips (1998-2003) and Mr. Stephen Sichak (1980-2003). Jim Shoffner was present at the meeting as a Director-at-Large, while Ellis Fields was present as a past president of the society. Both Jim and Ellis are ex officio councilors.
Two long-term members of the society and the section, James Doheny and Lloyd M. Cooke were remembered by a moment of silence. Both had served the section well as councilor, as well as in other capacities.
Besides reports from the officers and committee chairs of the Society, at the spring meeting, two decisions that have an impact on all members are made by Council. The first is the selection of the candidates for president-elect. The candidates on the ballot for President-elect will be William F. Carroll, Jr. (Vice President at Occidental Chemical Corporation) and Elsa Reichmanis (Director of Polymer and Organic Materials Research at Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technology). The second decision is whether to raise dues based on changes in the Consumer Price Index. The council voted to increase dues from $108 to $112 for 2002. Note that society dues pay for only about 25% of member benefits. The rest of member benefits are paid for by contributions from ACS reserves.
President Attila Pavlath discussed in his report his attempts to find committee assignments for all councilors who wanted to serve on a committee. He formed a number of task forces to quickly meet the needs of the Society, while utilizing the talents of those councilors who were not on a committee. One of the task forces formed was on K-12 Education. Our District Director, E. Ann Nalley, heads this task force, while Marsha Phillips serves on the task force. In action later during the meeting, the council voted to increase the size of standing committees so that each committee will have a minimum of 12 members and a maximum of 20 members. This only affects the standing committees, not all the committees of the Society.
President Pavlath also discussed his celebration of the 125th anniversary of the American Chemical Society. At the August meeting, here in Chicago, there will be a special exhibit on the most important advancements in the last 125 years. After the Chicago meeting, the exhibit will travel around the country for display at science museums. Congratulations were extended, via video, from Congresswomen Ellen Tauschert (D-California) and Congressman Mike Rogers (R-Michigan), who represent President Pavlath and Board Chair Nina McClelland, respectively. In addition, US President Bush sent a congratulatory letter. Finally, 28 chemical society presidents from around the world presented their congratulations and gifts. Some of the gifts were quite impressive.
President-elect Eli M. Pearce discussed the new 3-year strategic plan that defines ten strategic thrusts, which focus on the three I's: the Individual needs of members, using the Internet, and International collaboration. If you would like to see a copy of the strategic plan contact one of the councilors. Dr. Pearce also discussed improving the interaction between local sections and divisions, and the increased stature of regional meetings.
The Society Committee on Education (SOCED) talked about a symposium they will sponsor at the Chicago meeting entitled, “Ensuring a Helpful and Safe Food Chain.” In addition, they reported that > 700 undergraduate students presented posters at the San Diego meeting. Increased meeting registration fees, instituted two years ago, have not seemed to affect the number of undergraduate or graduate students who attend the national ACS meetings.
The Committee on Membership Affairs reported that the ACS had achieved all the goals of the ACS 2000 Membership Campaign. The society had a total of 163,016 members at the end of 2000, with a retention rate of nearly 94%. In addition, the campaign attracted approximately 20,000 younger members. Of the 163,000 members there are approximately 115,000 voluntary memberships in divisions. Approximately 47% of society members belong to at least one division.
The Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs (CEPA) reported that there were 208 employers at the clearinghouse interviewing for 1,429 potential hires; there were 897 candidates. This is the first time in recent years that there has been such a good potential hires/candidates ratio. Four reports based on the year 2000 census of ACS members have been written or are in preparation. These reports include ChemCensus 2000, Women Chemist 2000, Industrial Chemist 2000 and Academic Chemist 2000 (to be completed). These are available from the ACS. The 3rd edition of the Academic Professional Guidelines was adopted. Copies of this are also available from the ACS. The ACS is planning to release a new online employment service entitled JobSpectrum.org, which is expected to compete with current online employment services such as Monster.com. The planned launch date is June 1, 2001.
The Committee on Local Section Activities reported that the theme of the 2001 National Chemistry Week celebration will be Chemistry and Art. There have also been requests to change the dates of National Chemistry Week from early November to late October (so there are no conflicts with Election Day), or to sometime in the spring. Finally, a new section, the 189th, was chartered in Middle Georgia.
The Younger Chemists Committee (YCC) reported that there are now 26 local sections with YCC Chapters. They presented programs at 7 of the 8 regional meetings held in 2000.
Project Seed reported that they have selected 348 Seed I students at 101 institutions and 81 Seed II students at 35 institutions. They also have selected 2001-2002 Project Seed scholarship winners. A survey will be sent to Project SEED coordinators and local section chairs to obtain information on local institutions that participate in the program as well as those that are unable to participate. The survey will also determine the needs of institutions and their mentors so that the national office can support the institutions to meet their needs and in turn help to grow Project SEED with the assistance of the local section coordinators. All are urged to consider becoming Project Seed mentors. The meeting was closed with a reaffirmation of the founding statements of the ACS provided in 1876 in New York, during the term of US President Ulysses S. Grant, to improve the health and welfare of its citizens by advancing chemistry and related professions and its practitioners.
If you have any questions and/or comments about the above actions, please contact me or one of the other councilors.