Auburn Local Section

American Chemical Society

G. M. Kosolapoff

Gennady Michael (G.M.) Kosolapoff, B.S. in Chem. Eng. (Cooper Union; 1932); M.S. in Biochem. (U. Mich.; 1933); Sc.D. in Chem. (U. Mich.; 1936), was born in Viatka, Russia, 2 Sept. 1909. He fled with his family to eastern Asia soon after the Russian Revolution and lived there for several years, coming to the U.S.A. in 1924. After receiving his doctorate he served as Research Chemist for the Libby-Owens-Ford Glass Co. (1936-38), and then the Monsanto Chemical Co. (1938-48). He came to the Alabama Polytechnic Institute in 1948 rising through the ranks to Research Professor of Chemistry (1953-76). Among several positions as research consultant, he served in 1964 as Director of Chemical Research for the F.J. Seiler Research Laboratory; in the Office of Aerospace Research, Colorado; as Consultant to the Atomic Energy Commission; and as special lecturer on phosphorus (1949-54). He was a member of the ACS and Chairman of the Auburn Section 1957-58. He was also a member of the Chemical Society of London. For many years, he abstracted for Chemical Abstracts and was in charge of their Russian literature section. Author of several books on organic chemistry, he is best known for his title, “Organophosphorus Compounds,” which was considered one of the most comprehensive on the subject. He contributed to many papers on scientific subjects and held more than 40 personal patents. One of his hobbies was writing letters to the “Editor,” mostly to the Birmingham News, on a large spectrum of subjects. During part of his tenure, he drove a Cord automobile, which had been considered one of the most revolutionary automobiles ever built. Dr. Kosolapoff died on January 1, 1976.

George M. Hocking, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus, Pharmacognosy

2015 Edward I. Solomon

Professor Edward I. Solomon (born 1946) is the current Monroe E. Spaght Professor of Chemistry at Stanford University. He is an elected member of the United States National Academy of Sciences, a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

The Solomon Lab a wide range of spectroscopic methods coupled to calculations (density functional and ligand field theories) to understand the electronic structure of metal sites and its contribution to physical properties and reactivity.


2014 Daniel G. Nocera

Daniel George Nocera (born July 3, 1957) is an American chemist and university professor. His research has focused on the creation of an "artificial leaf" that mimics photosynthesis in plants for use in a decentralized energy system. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Time magazine included him in its 2009 list of the 100 most influential people.


2013 Ei-ichi Negishi

Professor Ei-ichi Negishi was awarded the 2010 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for developing palladium-catalyzed cross-coupling in the mid-1970s. Born in 1935, Negishi came to the United States in 1960 after graduating from the University of Tokyo.

In 1962, while studying for his doctorate at the University of Pennsylvania, he met Purdue chemistry professor Herbert C. Brown—a pioneer in synthetic organic chemistry. Negishi admired Brown’s research and predicted, “Brown will change the whole world of organic chemistry and that is why I came to Purdue.” With Brown as a mentor, Negishi arrived in West Lafayette as a postdoctoral researcher in 1966.

He then moved to Syracuse University where he served as an assistant professor (1972-76) and associate professor (1976-79).

Dr. Negishi joined the faculty at Purdue in 1979—the same year Brown was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry—and has been a researcher in this building for more than thirty years.

In 1999, he was named the Inaugural Herbert C. Brown Distinguished Professor of Chemistry. Dr. Negishi has won many awards, authored several books, and published more than 400 research papers.content

2012: Dr. Thomas J. Meyer

Energy research
Thomas J. Meyer rejoined the faculty of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as Arey Distinguished Professor of Chemistry on July 1, 2005. He is Director of the UNC Energy Frontier Research Center on Solar Fuels and Chief Scientist of the Research Triangle Solar Fuels Institute. In 2001 he was named Associate Director for Strategic Research at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.
After receiving a BS from Ohio University in 1963 Meyer received a Ph.D. from Stanford in 1966 with Henry Taube, who won the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1983, as his research mentor. He was a NATO postdoctoral fellow at University College, London in 1967 with Sir Ronald Nyholm, joined the faculty at UNC in 1968, was promoted to Associate Professor in 1972, Full Professor in 1975, Smith Professor in 1982 and Kenan Professor in 1987. He was the Head of Chemistry from 1985 to 1990, Chair of the Curriculum in Applied Sciences from 1994 to1997 and Vice Chancellor/Vice Provost for Graduate Studies and Research from 1994 to 1999. He was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine for service to the State of North Carolina in 1999.
Meyer is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and has won many prizes for chemical research. Some of his accomplishments include the first examples of: excited state electron transfer with implications for energy conversion (with D.G. Whitten, 1974), excited state electron transfer in a chromophore-quencher assembly (1978), polypyridyl Ru oxo complexes (1978), discovery of proton coupled electron transfer (PCET, 1981), molecular catalyst for water oxidation (1982), application of the energy gap law to metal complex excited states (1982), chemical approaches to artificial photosynthesis (1989), first interfacial catalyst for CO2 reduction (1989), Dye Sensitized Photoelectrosyntheis Cells (DSPEC, 1999), Modular Approach to Artificial Photosynthesis (2005), first characterized solution and interfacial single-site catalysts for water oxidation (2008-2010). He has published over 600 papers, holds three patents, and is one of the most highly cited chemists in the world.

2011: Eric N. Jacobsen

Selective Catalysis

Eric Jacobsen was born and raised in New York City. He attended NYU as an undergraduate, where he worked for Yorke Rhodes and received a B.S. degree in 1982. He did his graduate work at Berkeley, studying organometallic chemistry under the direction of Bob Bergman. After receiving his Ph.D. in 1986, he received an NIH postdoctoral fellowship to persue research under Barry Sharpless, who was then at MIT. In 1988, he began his independent career at the University of Illinios, where he published the first of several landmark papers on asymmetric olefin epoxidation. In 1993, he moved to Harvard as a full professor and was subsequently named the Sheldon Emery Professor of Organic Chemistry in 2001. He has continued to be a leader in the field of asymmetric catalysis and has published over 200 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals. He has been one of the editors for the "Comprehensive Asymmetric Catalysis" series of books and is currently the Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology at Harvard University.

His recent awards include the Janssen Pharmaceutica Prize for Creativity in Organic Synthesis, the Yamada-Koga Prize, the H.C. Brown Award for Synthetic Methods, and the Mitsui Catalysis Award. He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 2008.


Dr. Jacobsen with the AU Chemistry/Biochemistry Department Chair, Dr. Ortiz.



 Award Lecture by Dr. Jacobsen

2010: Robert H. Crabtree

Climate Change and our Energy Future

Robert Crabtree received his undergraduate education at New College, Oxford, where he studied under Malcolm Green, and completed his graduate studies at Sussex University under the supervision of Joseph Chatt. After a postdoctoral stint with Hugh Felkin at the CNRS, Prof. Crabtree joined Yale University's Chemistry Department in 1977. There, he has studied catalytic C-H bond activation, C-F bond activation, H2 complexes, metal hydride hydrogen bonding, and the complexation of halocarbons to metal centers. He is well known for developing a widely used homogeneous hydrogenation catalyst and has published over 450 manuscripts in peer-reviewed journals. In addition, Prof. Crabtree has authored a textbook on organometallic chemistry and currently serves as an editor-in-chief of both the Encyclopedia of Inorganic Chemistry and Comprehensive Organometallic Chemistry. He is a former chair of the Inorganic Division of the ACS.

His awards include: an A.P. Sloan Fellowship, a Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award, selections as an H.C. Brown Lecturer and a Sabatier Lecturer, the Mack Award, and the Bailar Medal, among other ACS and RSC awards for inorganic and organometallic chemistry.

2009: Koji Nakanishi

Science Research in US/Japan: Physiologically Active Compounds from Nature

Born in Hong Kong, and brought up in Lyon, London and Alexandria, he graduated from Nagoya University, 1947 with Fujio Egami. After 2 years of post-graduate work with Louis Fieser, Harvard University, he returned to Nagoya University where he completed his Ph.D. in 1954 with Yoshimasa Hirata. He was Assistant professor of Chemistry at Tokyo Kyoiku University. In 1963 he moved to Tohoku University Sendai, in 1969 joined Columbia University, becoming Centennial Professor in 1980.

He was founding member and research director of the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (ICIPE) in Kenya, 1969-1977, Director of Suntory Institute for Bioorganic Research, 1978-1991, and a director of Biosphere 2, Arizona, Columbia University, from April 2001, until its termination in December 2003.His research covers isolation and structural studies of natural products, vision and chiroptical spectroscopy. He discovered NMR NOE in structure determinations, determined structures of 200 natural products and published 800 papers. he has recieved awards from 12 countries. In 2007 he recieved the Order of Cultural Medal, the highest award in Japan. A Nakanishi Prize of the Am . Chem. Society and the Chem. Soc. Japan was established in 1996 and is awarded in alternate years in Japan and the United States.

2008: Barry Trost

Chemistry and Biology - Merging Sciences?

Professor Trost was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1941 where he began his university training at the University of Pennsylvania (BA, 1962), he obtained a Ph.D. degree in Chemistry just three years later at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1965). He directly moved to the University of Wisconsin where he was promoted to Professor of Chemistry in 1969 and subsequently became the Vilas Research Professor in 1982. He joined the faculty at Stanford as Professor of Chemistry in 1987 and became Tamaki Professor of Humanities and Sciences in 1990. In addition, he has been Visiting Professor of Chemistry in Germany (Universities of Marburg, Hamburg and Munich), Denmark (University of Copenhagen), France (Universities of Paris VI and Paris-Sud), Italy (University of Pisa) and Spain (University of Barcelona and Santiago de Compostela). In 1994 he was presented with a Docteur honoris causa of the Université Claude-Bernard (Lyon I), France, and in 1997 a Doctor Scientiarum Honoris Causa of the Technion, Haifa, Israel. In 2006, he was appointed an Honorary Professor of the Shanghai Institute of Organic Chemistry.

Professor Trost’s work has been characterized by a very high order of imagination, innovation and scholarship. He has ranged over the entire field of organic synthesis, particularly emphasizing extraordinarily novel methodology. In recognition of his many contributions, Professor Trost has received a numerous awards. He has held a Sloan Fellowship, a Camille and Henry Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar grant and an American-Swiss Foundation Fellowship as well as having been the Julius Stieglitz Memorial Lecturer of the ACS-Chicago section (1980-81) and Centenary Lecturer of the Royal Society of Chemistry (1981-82). Professor Trost has been elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Sciences (1982) and a member of the National Academy of Sciences (1980). He has served as editor and on the editorial board of many books and journals, including being Associate Editor of the Journal of the American Chemical Society (1974-80). He has served as a member of many panels and scientific delegations, and served as Chairman of the NIH Medicinal Chemistry Study Section. He has held over 100 special university lectureships and presented over 250 Plenary Lectures at national and international meetings. He has published two books and over 810 scientific articles. He edited a major compendium entitled Comprehensive Organic Synthesis consisting of nine volumes and serves as editor for ChemTracts/Organic Chemistry.

Past Recipients of the Award

2007 - Robert H. Grubbs, California Institute of Technology

2006 - Kyriacos C. Nicolaou, Scripps Research Institute

2005 – Ronald Breslow, Columbia University

2004 – Kenneth N. Raymond, University of California at Berkeley

2003 – John D. Roberts, California Institute of Technology

2002 – Ahmed H. Zewail, California Institute of Technology

2001 – Harry B. Gray, California Institute of Technology

2000 – Josef Michl, University of Colorado

1999 – Jacqueline K. Barton, California Institute of Technology

1998 – Richard N. Zare, Stanford University

1997 – Mario J. Molina, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

1996 – Rudolph A. Marcus, California Institute of Technology

1995 – William von Eggers Doering, Harvard University

1994 – Dudley R. Herschbach, Harvard University

1993 – Richard E. Smalley, Rice University

1992 – Allen J. Bard, University of Texas at Austin

1991 – Derek H. R. Barton, Texas A&M University

1990 – Henry Taube, Stanford University

1989 – Donald J. Cram, University of California at Los Angeles

1988 – Michael J. S. Dewar, University of Texas at Austin

1987 – Herbert C. Brown, Purdue University

1986 – William N. Lipscomb, Harvard University