South Texas Section

Local Section of the American Chemical Society

Councilor's Reports

Councilor's Report- Fall meeting 2011

Posted by Ludivina on October 12, 2011 at 12:20 AM

Councilor’s report for the ACS Fall National Meeting

The Council of the American Chemical Society met in Denver on August 31, 2011. The following report includes a summary of items which most directly affect the South Texas Section and its members.

The two candidates for President-Elect, who will be on the ballots sent to all members in this fall’s elections, are Dennis Chamot, National Research Council of the National Academy of Science, and Marinda Wu, founder and President of Science is Fun!. Members are encouraged to read the information which the candidates will provide and to vote accordingly.

The Council voted to approve a change in the national by-laws which clarifies the rules for the issuing of position statements by units of the American Chemical Society. If you are planning on asking the local section to issue a position statement on a local issue, please refer to the revised by-laws.

In a related matter, our local section needs to examine our constitution and by-laws to ensure that our election policies are consistent with the national rules. While we don’t have to allow electronic voting, we would probably have to amend our local section rules to allow it. In addition, it has been almost 20 since the South Texas Section constitution and by-laws were last updated. Something for the Executive Committee to consider for 2012 is to begin the process of revising our guiding documents.

Attendance at the meeting was much lower than usual, with only 10,076 registrants. This is the lowest total at a national meeting since I have been councilor. The main reasons for the low attendance were the impact of Hurricane Irene on the East Coast, the fact that the meeting was held just after most colleges and universities had started the new semester, and that it was the middle of three successive western meetings (Anaheim, Denver, San Diego). The facilities were great for a meeting, so it is hoped that (with better scheduling) future national meetings will be held in Denver and will be better attended.

Several steps have been taken by ACS to assist members. The Denver meeting had the first-ever on-line career fair (in conjunction with the on-site fair), allowing recruiters and job-seekers the opportunity to participate without having to travel to Denver. The Presidential Task Force on Innovation and Job Creation released its report, “Innovation, Chemistry and Jobs”, which is accessible at the ACS website. The Chemical Entrepreneurship Council has been formed to help ACS members pursue entrepreneurial activities. Other employment-related activities are also being pursued by ACS for and with its members.

ACS finances continue to improve. The only financial target not currently being met is for reserves for retirement accounts, but that is largely due to the way the reserve requirement is calculated.

There were several reports on various aspects of ACS participation in the International Year of Chemistry (IYC). Go to the ACS website for more information.

The next national meeting will be March 25th to 29th, 2012, in San Diego (California). Check the ACS website and C&E News for further information.

Thomas R. Hays

Councilor, South Texas Section

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