About the American Chemical Society

The American Chemical Society (ACS) is the world’s largest scientific society and one of the world’s leading sources of authoritative scientific information. A nonprofit organization, chartered by Congress, ACS is at the forefront of the evolving worldwide chemical enterprise and the premier professional home for chemists, chemical engineers and related professions around the globe.

The Section is one of the oldest local sections in the American Chemical Society (ACS.) It was founded in 1899 by 83 chemists and today is one of the largest local sections in the ACS with over 5000 members.

The Section consists of ACS members who reside in Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties in Pennsylvania and Burlington and Camden counties in New Jersey. (All ACS members are automatically assigned to the local section of their preferred address; however a member can choose to join other local Sections.)

The Section activities are guided by officers (Chair, Chair-elect, Immediate Past Chair, Treasurer, and Secretary) and a Board of Directors. All officers and Board members are elected by the Section members. The Section also elects Councilors who attend the ACS National Meetings and represent the Section’s interests in voting on issues presented at the ACS National Meeting. The Section office is housed in the Chemistry Department of the University of Pennsylvania and is staffed Tuesday through Thursday. Several standing Committees work on Section Activities and ad hoc Committees are created as needed. The Section supports a variety of Topical Groups which plan activities and hold meetings.

The Section holds monthly meetings from September through June and participates in joint meetings with other Sections and professional societies. Meetings are free and open to the public. Topical Groups and Committees also provide meetings and other activities. The Catalyst is the Section’s newsletter which is published monthly except July, August, December. Oversight of The Catalyst is provided by the Publications Committee.

The Section sponsors several awards and lectureships. The Section participates in National Chemistry Week (NCW) each year. A standing Committee plans and implements numerous NCW events.

Become Involved with the Philadelphia Section

  • Volunteer for an activity – Check the volunteer page. Often there are opportunities to judge at Science Fairs, assist with Chemical Demonstrations as well as other activities.
  • Attend Section meetings – Meetings are announced on our web page and in The Catalyst and are open to non-members.
  • Run for office – Any full member of the Philadelphia Section is eligible to run for elected positions. Contact the chair of the Nominations Committee if you are interested in running for any of these offices.
  • Join a Topical Group or Committee


ACES (Activities for Community Education in Science)

Delaware Valley Mass Spectrometry Discussion Group

Chemical Consultants Network

PAGES (TM) Program

ACS Links

ACS Meetings

ACS Network

ACS Regional Meetings

ACS Local Section Meetings

ACS Careers

Find a Job

Get Involved, Stay Involved – a set of pages to help ACS Volunteers

Philadelphia Section Younger Chemists Committee (YCC)

ACS Matters (newsletter)

Branding Guidelines

National Chemistry Week

Chemists Celebrate Earth Day

ACS Publications