National Service Highlights

My national service to the ACS began in 1989, when, on behalf of Eli Lilly and Company, I worked with the WCC to establish the WCC-Lilly travel awards program. In the past 30 years, that program has provided the funds for nearly 700 young women scientists to travel to professional meetings to present the results of their research. I went on to Chair the WCC (1995-1997) and in partnership with a wonderful leadership team, completely transformed the vision, mission and goals of the committee, much of which still exist today. My employer Lilly also appointed me as representative to the Corporation Associates Committee during this period, as well. To this day, I continue to be closely involved with the important work of the WCC, and in my capacity as Board Liaison, have also supported the Corporation Associates Committee.

Diversity and inclusion

While my formative educational experiences did not flag concerns, as soon as I finished my Ph.D. and joined industry, I immediately learned about the challenges that industry, and the chemistry profession in general, had with recruiting, retaining and developing a diverse workforce. My company sincerely wanted to make changes, and I was appointed to a pan-research labs task force to improve the diversity in Lilly Research Labs. One of the outcomes of that work was the establishment of the WCC-Lilly Travel Awards. As Chair of the WCC, my commitment and passion about women in chemistry translated into a transformed committee. But beyond initiatives, I’ve strived to integrate diversity and inclusion into all roles I’ve had at the ACS, whether it was chairing the Local Section, working on committees for regional or national events, or simply supporting students through coaching and mentoring activities. Recognizing the diversification of the science community, and removing obstacles to participation in the ACS, is a core value to which I’ve been committed my entire career.

Local Section Service Highlights

My leadership roles in the ACS Indiana Section began in 1999, when I became the Chair Elect of the Section. With the excellent partnership of the leadership team, we developed a long-range plan for the Section that included securing Indianapolis as the site of a future National Meeting. It took nearly two years to accomplish this, but once it was set, the Indiana Section began to build strong capabilities to realize that dream. They hosted two regional meetings, in which I was involved. When it came time to start planning for the 2013 ACS National Meeting in Indianapolis, the Local Section leadership team once again rallied, and I had the honor of taking on the “chair” role of the host committee. We worked tirelessly for two years to ensure a successful meeting. Those who attended provided feedback that indeed Indianapolis provided an excellent experience for all. Indianapolis is happy and proud to have been awarded another National Meeting in 2023, and the leadership team is already planning for another successful ACS meeting.

Public Advocacy/Education Highlights

My career in chemistry has always had a strong thread of education running through it. Like many, I thoroughly enjoyed TA’ing in undergraduate and graduate labs, so much so that when I took my first professional role at Eli Lilly, I enlisted as an adjunct professor of chemistry for a number of years at two local universities: IUPUI and Butler. For many years, I’ve been actively involved in career workshops, science days, national chemistry week, and a local Indiana event called Celebrate Science Indiana. These all represent a passion to ensure that the general public know, understand, and embrace the central science of chemistry. Recently, as past-President Allison Campbell developed an Advocacy Workshop, I worked with Indiana Section leadership to bring it to the Section. Connecting with government, as well as the general public, will always be a key focus of my service.