Sunday, September 06, 2009

Washington DC ACS Meeting

Sorry I dropped the ball on posting during the meeting. I was very busy with meetings so when it was time to write, I was tired.
I spent most of the meeting on Diversity topics. I am a member of the Joint Subcommittee on Diversity and we spent most of our meeting reorganizing. It had been a group where members of all Diversity groups met to coordinate activities. In effect this group will still do that but it will be a stronger group. It used to be that the chair's of all the diversity groups met separately from the committee and in DC under the leadership of Terry Quinn Grant, we all met together to thrash out what the group will do and how it will be organized in the future. It was a very productive meeting.
I am the historian on the Women Chemists Committee. The WCC talked about programing for the San Francisco meeting and I am organizing a symposium of all the outside Diversity groups such as NOBCChE, AISES, SACNAS and the Chinese Chemistry group. I envision this symposium to be panel discussions by each group in which they explain what they do, how they are organized and what would be the connection to the ACS in the future and now.
In effect this was done by each group at a reception during the DC meeting, but this will be for the west coast.
I am a member of the Committee on Minority Affairs and we discussed programing and action items. The committee wants to make sure that diversity is held to be important throughout the whole ACS and not just lodged in these committees. We are thinking of ways to diversify the Council. Stand by for that action item. The committee selected Dr. Marie Daly (the first African American women to receive a PhD in chemistry) to be highlighted by the society just as Dr. Percy Julian was. I will be the champion of this cause. I am going to the Board of Directors to ask them to set up a task force to see what can be done. Maybe there will be another NOVA production, that would be great it we can pull it off in this economy. But there are a lot of independent film makers who may want to produce a documentary about her life this remains to be seen.
Of course the highlight of the meeting for me was the Fellows award ceremony. Just as I suspected I was the only African American woman to be nominated in this class of Fellows. There are three African American men and two of them were at the ceremony. Dr. Jim Shoffner did not attend unfortunately after all the hard work he had done for the ACS.

At the Chem Luminary Awards the North Jersey section came up with two awards. The award for best local section and for Earth day. I was excited about that. I will post the photos on the website soon.

Last but not least I have a publisher for my book about African American Women Chemists. I have started a new blog about the book and the writing of it. I will probably be posting to this blog and to that one more often because writer needs to write just as a singer needs to sing every day and I am both. Here is the other blog
Jeannette Brown