Trenton ACS Local Section


Trenton ACS Councilors Attend National ACS Meeting in SF!

Your Councilors represented the Trenton local section at the District III Caucus, Council meeting, and at Committee events, see Recent Events below for more details.  


2017 Trenton ACS Call for Scholarships!

See Awards and Scholarships page for details on how to apply. 


Trenton ACS Election Results!

Your votes have been counted and your 2017 elected officials for the Trenton ACS board have been determined. See the Elections page for results and the Officers page for the 2017 board of the Trenton ACS.   

Upcoming Events & Opportunities


Upcoming Events at the Franklin Institute (plus Discounted Tickets!)


(Please note: Robot Revolution tickets no longer available)




Mentoring Opportunities

We are seeking members who are interested in mentoring local high school students to pursue college degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics.  Through many of our programs at TCNJ and Rider, we have discovered the importance of mentoring, particularly for underrepresented minorities.  We are hoping the active mentoring will assist students to enter local and regional science competitions.  Students from Rider and TCNJ will assist in the mentoring.  We will offer a short training session before the mentoring activities.  Interested members should contact Benny Chan, 

Recent Events

 253rd ACS National Meeting & Expo: Trenton ACS Councilor Report

Matt Crowe & Benny Chan

Trenton ACS Councilors Matt Crowe and Benny Chan traveled to San Francisco to attend the 2017 Spring National Meeting of the American Chemical Society (ACS). The Councilors represented the Trenton local section of the ACS at the District III Caucus, at the ACS Council meeting, and at ACS Committee events. Matt is an associate member of the Committee on Chemical Safety (CCS) and participated in activities relevant to that committee. Benny is a member of the Committee on Minority Affairs (CMA) and participated in activities relevant to that committee. The following are highlights of the meeting from the perspective of the Trenton ACS Councilors.

District III Caucus

The 2017 Mid-Atlantic Regional Meeting (MARM) will be held June 4-6 at Hershey Park. Additional information can be found at:

The remainder of the District III Caucus covered many of the same topics captured in the Council Talking Points (below); those items will not be re-stated here.

MARM Board Meeting

The next few MARMs have been announced.  Hotel Registration for the 2017 MARM has opened, the Hershey lodge is a steal at $190/night (normally $400/night).  Register soon!  The 2018 MARM is questionable at this point and was to be hosted at UDel.  The 2019 MARM will be held at UMdBC.  The 2020 MARM was originally slated for the North Jersey Section but they have not made a final decision.

Committee on Chemical Safety (CCS)

Since the past ACS national meeting, progress has been made by the Committee on Chemical Safety on many fronts. Here is a list of the most significant accomplishments:

1.       Safety has been added to the list of core values of the ACS. The core value formerly described as “Professionalism”, now reads “Professionalism, Safety, and Ethics.” CCS and the Division of Chemical Safety (CHAS) have been working to improve safety culture in the chemical profession and applaud the ACS board for making this change. Safety is featured prominently in the 2017 ACS Strategic Plan.

2.       ACS journals have initiated a new safety reporting requirement due to research and efforts by CCS and several recent high profile safety incidents. Starting in 2017, authors must “address and emphasize any unexpected, new, and/or significant hazards or risks associated with reported work”. Reviewers are also now asked to comment on safety aspects of work being reviewed. Safety, which had been part of the “ethics” portion of many journals, has been moved to the author guidelines for ACS journals.

3.       The 8th edition of Safety in Academic Laboratories (SACL) has been published. This edition includes new sections on safety culture and incorporates changes in the OSHA Hazard Communication Standard to reflect the use of the Globally Harmonized System (GHS).

4.       CCS, CHAS, and ACS public policy have issued a public policy statement entitled Safety in the Chemical Enterprise. This statement is targeted at regulators and policymakers and addresses the ACS’s position on regarding laws and regulations impacting chemical safety. The full statement can be found at:

Committee on Minority Affairs (CMA).

The Committee on Minority Affairs met on Sunday of the ACS meeting. Councilor Chan is now a full member of the committee. The agenda was fully packed with several interested parties presenting to the CMA. CMA had discussions on the current strategic plan and how to weave diversity and inclusion more into the society. There was also had an update on the ACS Scholars program from the new program manager Racquel Jemison. CMA is preparing a diversity and inclusion statement to be adopted by The Society and the committee’s version is being forwarded to the directors. The Engagement and Professional Development Subcommittee is working with the Diversity and Inclusion Board to create a new diversity and inclusion module in the ACS Leadership Development System. CMA plans to pilot a module at the DC meeting. A significant amount of programming occurred at the 253rd meeting and more is planned for the 254th meeting in DC.

Council Meeting

The official Councilor Talking Points can be found at the end of the report. An additional topic which warrants further consideration is the topic of “bathroom bill” legislation, the ACS stance on this issue, and contributions to the discussion made by groups within the ACS. This legislation, recently repealed in North Carolina and currently being discussed in Texas, has the potential to infringe upon the civil rights of ACS members attending national meetings and violates the ACS core values of Diversity and Inclusion. The following was contributed by the Trenton local section.

During the Meetings and Exhibition report we made a stand on the bathroom bills around the country. The Division of Inorganic Chemistry made a statement first to boycott the San Antonio meeting. The Trenton local section made a statement. M&E is ready to pull the meeting if SB6 passes. SOCED in their earlier report included a statement on the trans issue from their meeting. Division of Fluorine chemistry announced the support of Division of Inorganic Chemistry on this matter. Talking to a bunch of people throughout the meeting on this issue, in the form of a policy and/or public statement (this part of is very nebulous right now), will be going through all the committees. So we will have more opportunities to offer important feedback on this policy/public statement. I am working Lee Penn with the Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Board to work on a bias workshop.  We are trying to push for an intersectionality and privilege model to respond to bias.   After council meeting, I received many glowing comments. I also received some major glares. We still have a lot of work to do on issues of inclusion and education. 

Statement prepared approved by the Trenton local section executive board. Actual oral statement varied a bit in an attempt to add information from the current discussions of that occurred.

“Benny Chan from the Trenton Local Section.  I want to thank all of the people, especially from SOCED and the Division of Inorganic Chemistry, for bringing this to council.  I am a cis gender male who recognizes my privileges and personal biases.  I use my privilege to fight for the rights of others and I constantly self reflect on my personal biases to create a more just society. This pending bathroom bill in Texas, SB6, is not just about bathrooms being used by chemists at the San Antonio ACS meeting. It’s about a part of our chemistry community to have the right to exist; to exist in an environment without fear of harassment and violence. This bill not only affects the trans chemists, but also affects anyone who does not follow binary gender expression. A cis gender man with feminine dress or features, or a cis gender woman with masculine dress or features could all be targets. These bills embolden the confrontation of anyone who does not fit traditional masculine and feminine expression. This results in a dehumanizing form of harassment that is completely against the Core Value of the ACS. We all deserve the right to exist and attend our meetings without harassment and violence. 

The "repeal" of the North Carolina law is not really a repeal at all and the parts being maintained to allow for significant discrimination to continue. The Texas bill may not pass in the end but that should not stop the ACS from being proactive on inclusivity. The specific recommendation I have for the ACS is that we should use our Diversity and Inclusion statement to create a policy to ensure that our meetings are held in places where our attendees can attend without harassment laws. The AAAS and the American Physical Society have moved their meetings when the local laws have changed. The ACS should do the same. I recommend that our future contracts with the host cities have an escape clause to relocate our meeting to a different city and/or state if nondiscrimination protections are withdrawn between the signing of the contract and the meeting. My final recommendation is to work with our membership; the STEM disciplines have ignored social identities and how our identities affect how we do science, which creates biases against marginalized populations. We need to change our culture to be more inclusive.”


Councilor Talking Points:

Summary of Governance Issues and Actions

The following summary is provided to help Councilors report to their Local Sections and Divisions on key actions of the ACS Council meeting held April 5, and Board of Directors meetings held March 31 – April 2, at the 2017 spring national meeting in San Francisco, California.

Actions of the Council

Election Results

Candidates for President-Elect, 2018

§  The Committee on Nominations and Elections presented to the Council the following nominees for selection as candidates for President-Elect, 2018: Bonnie A. Charpentier, Mark D. Frishberg, Anne M. Gaffney, and Willie E. May.  By electronic ballot, the Council selected Bonnie A. Charpentier and Willie E. May as candidates for 2018 President-Elect.  These two candidates, along with any candidates selected via petitions, will stand for election in the Fall National Election.


                                                President-Elect, 2018a


1st Round

2nd Round

3rd Round

*Bonnie A. Charpentier




Mark D. Frishberg




Anne M. Gaffney




*Willie E. May





a431 valid electronic ballots were cast, with 216 being the majority. The results of the first preference vote totals are shown in the 1st round column. No nominee attained a majority. Following the procedures approved by Council, second-preference votes were distributed in two subsequent rounds. Those marked with an * were declared elected as candidates.


Candidates for Districts III and VI

§  The Committee on Nominations and Elections announced the results of the election held prior to the San Francisco meeting to select candidates from the list of nominees for Directors from District III and District VI on the Board of Directors for the term 2018-2020.  By internet ballot, the Councilors from these districts selected Alan B. Cooper and Teri Quinn Gray as District III candidates; and Rita R. Boggs and Paul W. Jagodzinski as District VI candidates.  Ballots will be distributed on or before October 1 to all ACS members in District III and District VI for election of a Director from each District.




1st Round

2nd Round

3rd Round

Margaret A. Cavanaugh




*Alan B. Cooper




Anne S. DeMasi




*Teri Quinn Gray







1st Round

2nd Round

3rd Round

*Rita R. Boggs




Kevin P. Gable




*Paul W. Jagodzinski




Richard V. Williams





a The results of the first preference vote totals are shown in the 1st round column. No nominee attained a majority. Following the procedures approved by Council, second-preference votes were distributed in two subsequent rounds. Those marked with an asterisk (*) were declared elected as candidates.


Candidates for Directors-at-Large

§  The Committee on Nominations and Elections announced the selection of the following candidates for Directors-at-Large for 2018-2020 terms:  Kenneth P. Fivizzani, Wayne E. Jones, Bonnie A. Lawlor, and Barbara A. Sawrey.  The election of two Directors-at-Large from among those candidates and any selected via petition will be conducted in the fall.  Ballots will be distributed to the Council on or before October 1, 2017.


Other Council Actions

Amendments to the ACS Bylaws

§  A recommendation by the Council Policy Committee to approve the Petition for the Removal of Officers and Councilors (Bylaw III, Sec. 1, i; Bylaw VII, Sec. 1, c; Bylaw VIII, Sec. 4, d) failed.


§  The Council approved the Petition on the Rights of Affiliates (Bylaw II, Sec. 1, a, 2, a, 3, b, (3) and (4)).


Procedures for Removal of a Councilor or Alternate Councilor

§  The Council voted to approve the Procedures for Removal of a Councilor or Alternate Councilor, contingent upon approval of the Petition for the Removal of Officers and Councilors.  As the petition subsequently failed, given the interdependence of the petition and related procedures, the procedures will not take effect.


2018 Member Dues

§  The Council voted on the recommendation of the Committee on Budget and Finance to set the member dues for 2018 at the fully escalated rate of $171. This rate is established pursuant to an inflation-adjustment formula in the ACS Constitution and Bylaws.


Distribution Formula for Division Funding

§  On the recommendation of the Committee on Divisional Activities, the Council approved a formula for allocating dues funds to divisions, effective with allocations for 2017 division performance.


Extension of Market Data Collection Test: International Chemical Sciences Chapters

§  On the recommendation of the Committee on Membership Affairs, the Council voted to extend the provision of $15 commissions to International Chemical Sciences Chapters which recruit new members.


Continuation of Committees

§  The Council approved the recommendation of the Committee on Committees that the Committee on Project SEED be continued; and that the committees on Chemists with Disabilities, on Public Relations and Communications, and on Women Chemists be continued contingent on approval of the Board of Directors.


Change in Local Section Name

§  On the recommendation of the Committee on Local Section Activities, the Council approved a petition from the Santa Clara Valley Local Section in California to change the name of the section to the Silicon Valley Local Section.



§  The Council passed resolutions in memory of deceased Councilors; in gratitude for the officers and members of the California and Santa Clara Local Sections, hosts for the 253rd National Meeting; the divisional program chairs, symposium organizers, and ACS staff, for the planning and execution of the meeting.


Special Discussion

The Council conducted a special discussion, “ACS Yesterday and Today: Paving the Way to Tomorrow,” to gather input for the Joint Board-CPC Task Force on Governance Design.  Forty Councilors approached the floor microphones to share observations, comments, and suggestions to assist the task force in identifying opportunities and issues for governance improvement.  The task force offered three questions to guide the discussion:  What should the Society and its governance do differently to achieve its objects? If you could change one thing about ACS governance, what would it be?  What should the task force leave “as is”?  A poll conducted at the conclusion of the discussion revealed that 57% (222) of the Councilors disagreed that the current governance structure, processes and procedures are already optimal to achieving the objects of ACS in the 21st century, 16% (54) agreed, and 27% (104) needed more information.  Three-hundred and six (84%) said they would be willing to provide additional input and feedback to the task force.  They will be contacted by the task force in the coming weeks.

Highlights from Committee Reports

Online Preference Forms for Councilors

All Councilors, including new Councilors, were reminded to complete their online committee preference form for 2018 committee assignments, which is open from March 27 – June 9, 2017 at (log in required).

Nominations and Elections

The Committee on Nominations and Elections solicits Councilors’ input of qualified individuals for President-Elect and/or Directors for future consideration.  Suggestions may be sent to

Budget and Finance

In 2016, ACS generated a Net from Operations of $23.8 million, which was $7.2 million higher than 2015.  Total revenues were $526.8 million, increasing 2.9% or $15 million over 2015.  Expenses ended the year at $503 million, which was $7.8 million or 1.6% higher than prior year.  This was attributable to a continued emphasis on expense management across the organization.  The Society’s financial position strengthened in 2016, with Unrestricted Net Assets, or reserves, increasing from $163.3 million at December 31, 2015 to $206.5 million at year-end 2016.

Additional information can be found at  At bottom, click ‘About ACS’, then ‘ACS Financial Information’.  There you will find several years of the Society’s audited financial statements and IRS 990 filings.


As of December 31, 2016, the ACS membership was 156,129, which is 0.5% less than on the same date in 2015.  The number of new members who joined in 2016 is 23,700.  The Society’s overall retention rate is 83.5%.  The Committee on Membership Affairs also reported that the number of international members has increased to 27,388, exceeding the committee’s target by 5%.  Retention of graduate students increased by 2% to 76.2%.

San Francisco Meeting Attendance

As of Tuesday, April 4:

Attendees             9,797

Students                                6,914

Exhibitors              1,198 

Expo only                  475

Guest                        466

Total                    18,850



Petitions to Amend Constitution and Bylaws

New petitions to amend the Constitution or Bylaws must be received by the Executive Director no later than May 3 to be included in the Council agenda for consideration at the fall 2017 meeting in Washington, DC.  Contact C&B with any questions or requests for information at

Actions of the Board of Directors

The Board’s Executive Session

The ACS Board of Directors met March 31 – April 1, 2017, and considered a number of key strategic issues and responded with several actions.


The Board’s Committees

The Board of Directors received and discussed reports from its committees on Executive Compensation, Strategic Planning, Corporation Associates, Professional and Member Relations, and the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications.


§  The Board received an extensive briefing and approved several recommendations from its Committee on Executive Compensation.  The compensation of the Society’s executive staff receives regular review from the Board.


§  On the recommendation of the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications, the Board voted to approve the reappointments of Editors-in-Chief for several ACS journals.


§  On the recommendation of the Committee on Professional and Member Relations, the Board approved screened lists for the 2018 Priestley Medal and the ACS Award for Volunteer Service. From these lists, the Board will select the recipients of these awards.


The Executive Director/CEO Report

The Board received a report from the Executive Director and CEO on issues relating to the Information Technology area, the Executive Leadership Team retreat, ACS financials, and Board Regulations on the Governing Board for Publishing.  His direct reports updated the Board on the activities of Membership Division, Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) and the ACS Publications Division.



Other Society Business

The Board heard reports from the Presidential Succession on their current and planned activities for 2017.


As part of its ongoing commitment to consider the most important strategic issues facing the Society, the Board held a discussion and provided input to its Strategic Planning Committee on context setting and change drivers to be addressed during the strategic planning process.


The Board is developing a statement based on the Society’s Core Value of diversity and inclusion in response to the repeal of the North Carolina law known as House Bill 2 (‘bathroom bill’) and similar proposed legislation in Texas, and is assembling a representative group of stakeholders to advise it on actions relating to the location of Society meetings.


Board Retreat

The Board held a discussion on timing and topics of a possible facilitated retreat for all Board members during 2017.  The Board regularly holds these retreats to consider strategic issues in depth or for ongoing development.


Board Resolution

The Board passed a resolution expressing appreciation to Denise L. Creech for her 27 years of service in the Membership and Scientific Advancement Division, which she led as director for nearly 14 years.


The Board’s Regular (Open) Session

The Board held a well-attended open session which featured two “TED type” presentations.  Dr. Joseph M. DeSimone, CEO and Co-founder of Carbon, Inc.; Chancellor’s Eminent Professor of Chemistry, UNC-Chapel Hill; and William R. Kenan, Jr. Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering at NC State University and of Chemistry at UNC, spoke on  “Future Fabricated with Light: The Launching of Carbon.”

Anne Milasincic Andrews, Professor of Psychiatry and Chemistry & Biochemistry; Semel Institute for Neuroscience & Human Behavior, Hatos Center for Neuropharmacology, and California NanoSystems Institute; University of California, Los Angeles, spoke on how “The Brain is More Than a Computer.”

Prior to the presentations, members of the presidential succession and the Executive Director and CEO offered brief reports on their activities.  The officers provided more extensive reports on their activities and/or future plans as part of their written and oral reports to the Council.

Contact the Board


Your Board of Directors is elected by and acts in the best interests of the members of our Society.  Please contact them with your comments, concerns, ideas, and suggestions at




Fall 2016 National ACS Meeting Events

Science Behind Pixar EventCo-organized by the Younger Chemist Committee, Undergraduate Programming Advisory Board

When: Sunday, August 21, 2016 at 6:00 pm.

Location:  Franklin Institute, Philadelphia (parking usually available under the Franklin Institute)


LGBTQ Safe Zone Ally Training for STEM professionals

When: Monday afternoon, August 22, 2016

Location: To be determined


Trenton Local Section Members, The College of New Jersey Alumni, Rider University Alumni, and friends Happy Hour

When: Monday 5-7 pm, August 22, 2016

Location: Field House, first floor by the bar, 1150 Filbert Street


Hidden Gems in Philly:  Family and student friendly park gathering

When: Tuesday 10 am-12 pm, August 23, 2016

Location:  Franklin Square, Meet near the carousel.  200 6th Street.