September 2003 Meeting

Speaker:   Richard E. Bisbing
Vice President and Director of Research
McCrone Associates, Inc.
Westmont, Illinois
Topic:   Imaging in the Forensic Microscopy Laboratory
Date: Friday, September 19, 2003
Location:   Oak Brook Marriott
1401 West 22nd Street
Oak Brook, IL 60523

Abstract:     Forensic microscopy normally involves associating tool marks, broken wires, semen, hairs, fibers, paint, glass, soil and other microscopic particles with places or perpetrators of crime. Like real evidence, imaging of microscopic trace evidence conveys a relevant firsthand sense impression to the jury as compared to words or graphs which serve merely to report the secondhand sense impressions of others or instruments. Like all visualization, forensic imaging documents an object by recording its location and morphology using light, lens, detector, retina, and brain. Sometimes special attachments are necessary such as a spot light, Polaroid sun glasses and binoculars; and, sometimes, special recording devices are used like snapshot or video cameras. With a microscope, special techniques are also necessary to enhance contrast, magnify, detect, and record useful images. Some of these techniques require making use of optical properties and some require use of chemical properties to either image or map features useful for the identification and comparison of materials of forensic merit.

Biography:     Richard E. Bisbing is Vice President and Director of Research for McCrone Associates, Inc., Westmont, Illinois. Mr. Bisbing has responsibilities for managing: the scientific staff; industrial, governmental and forensic projects; contracts; quality; security, safety; and marketing. He also consults on a variety of projects in analytical light microscopy and the forensic sciences, while overseeing projects in chemistry and electron microscopy.

Prior to joining McCrone Associates, Bisbing worked for the State of Michigan for 18 years in the Departments of Public Health and State Police with assignments in the Lansing, East Lansing, and Bridgeport Forensic Science Laboratories. His duties included crime scene investigations, chemical analyses of drugs and fire debris, body fluid identifications, footwear identifications, microscopical comparison of trace evidence, research, teaching, expert court testimony, and supervision. At the Bridgeport Laboratory, he directed the scientific work of the trace evidence unit for nine years, overseeing the progress and completion of all cases including several hundred homicide cases. He received four citations for professional excellence from the Michigan State Police.

He has testified in over 500 trials in 21 states and Canada; authored several articles and book chapters on forensic science, microscopy, and archaeology; lectured at Michigan State University, The University of Michigan, University of Illinois, Northwestern University, and for the Associated Colleges of the Chicago Area, a consortium of Liberal Arts Colleges founded in 1966; and been a pundit for CNN News regarding the O.J. Simpson and JonBenet Ramsey cases, 850 KOA Radio in Denver regarding the Chandra Levy case, and CBC news in Toronto regarding the Guy Paul Morin case. He also consulted on CBS's show "C.S.I." Bisbing is internationally regarded as an expert in the forensic identification and comparison of hairs, fibers and soil. His trace evidence work has been featured on the Discovery Channel's "The New Detectives: Case Studies in Forensic Science" and A&E's "Cold Case Files." He serves on the FBI's Scientific Working Group for Materials and as Guest Reviewer for the Journal of Forensic Sciences, the American Journal of Physical Anthropology, and TheScientificWorld.

The two candidates for President-Elect of the National ACS will be our guests at this meeting.   They are William E. Carroll, Jr., Vice President of chlorovinyl issues at Occidental Chemical Corp., and Michael E. Strem, President, Strem Chemicals, Newburyport, Mass.   Both candidates will be available for discussions and questions during the evening.

A meeting of the Chicago Section JOB CLUB will be held at the Oak Brook Marriott at 5 PM. The JOB CLUB provides a continuing opportunity for unemployed members of the Section to meet one another, share their experiences and develop a network that may help in identifying employment opportunities. Bring plenty of resumes and business cards to distribute to your colleagues. A presentation of some of the primary resources that are useful for conducting a job search will be made.

Should you wish to attend the Section meeting following the JOB CLUB, the fee for unemployed members is only $14 and you can continue your networking activities over dinner.

Topical Group Presentation

A Tour of McCrone Associates

Topical Group Meeting (Tour): Anytime between 4:00 and 6:00 PM. Last tour starts at 5:30 PM.
Job Club: 5:00 PM
Social Hour: 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Dinner: 7:00 PM
Meeting: 8:00 PM

Cost:  $28.00 for members of ACS/ $30.00 for non-members/ $14.00 for students & unemployed members

Reservations:   (847)647-8405   
                    by noon, Tuesday, September 16

Please honor your reservations. We must pay for all dinners ordered. No-shows will be billed.
Map and Directions:

PARKING:   From the North:   Take 294 South to I-88 West.   Exit Cermak Rd.   (The exit is just past the toll booth.   Cermak and 22nd Street are the same road.)   Turn left at the first light.   Two lights on the left is the hotel.   It is across from the Oak Brook Mall.

From the South:   Take 294 North to I-88 West.   Exit Cermak Rd. (22nd St.   The exit is just past the toll booth.)   Turn left at the first light.   Two lights on the left is the hotel.   It is across from the Oak Brook Mall.

From the West:   Take I-88 East and exit at Midwest Rd.   Make a right onto Midwest.   The first stoplight is Cermak Rd.   Make a right and go three lights.   At the 4th light, make a right.   The hotel is on your left.

From Downtown: Take 290 West (Eisenhower) to I-88 West.   Exit Cermak Rd. (22nd St.)   Turn left at the first light.   Two lights on the left is the hotel.

Parking Free


  • Garden salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette and Peppercream Dressing
  • Vegetable soup with basil
  • Choice of Grilled Chicken Breast and Angel Hair Pasta, Baked Cod topped with a White Wine Sauce with potatoes, or Pasta tossed with Tomato Basil Sauce and Olive Oil
  • Seasonal vegetables
  • Vanilla ice cream on Vanilla Cake with Chocolate and Caramel Sauce

Updated 8/16/03