Comments From the Chair

January 2022 Issue

Happy New Year! I hope everyone had a chance to get a little rest and all of you are energized for the new year full of activities! I would like to begin this issue by thanking all the members of the Philadelphia Local Section for putting your trust in me and letting me serve as your 2022 Chair. I am both honored and excited for this position. This is my first time serving in this role and I will do my best to lead the members through the new year.

As a Section, we experienced two challenging years back-to-back. We planned events that got postponed, other traditional events had to go fully virtual and therefore had to change. Some events we cancelled completely in order not to subject our members to more Zoom fatigue.
I plan to build upon the goals of the previous chair and make the transition as smooth as possible. One of my goals for 2022 will be to host some of the great events that were planned for 2021, but got cancelled, like the mini-leadership institute. I plan to proceed with caution on the journey back to in-person events. At this time, I plan to have the teaching awards ceremony be the first Section in-person event of 2022. I look forward to the ceremony in April and I will ad-just my plan accordingly based on the outcomes of the event. Safety of the members is my priority, and I will make sure that the program for this year reflects that.

The Philadelphia Local Section is one of the larger local sections of ACS. Our location is most likely the main reason for that since the Greater Philadelphia area has many different universities along with industries that employ chemists. This year I would like to highlight some of the local schools and businesses that are founded on chemistry. I plan to incorporate that goal into both the event program and the contents of the Catalyst.

The final goal I have for 2022 is to host a Strategic Planning Retreat (SPR). The Section has experienced a lot of changes recently. At the beginning of pandemic, we thought that virtual meetings would be temporary, but almost two years later they became a new normal. In addition, there were changes introduced to ACS at the national level, like different membership packages. Taking into consideration all these events, I think next year is the perfect time to host SPR. This will be a weekend for the Local Section and all the governance groups to meet and, with the guidance of ACS facilitators, we will revisit our mission and develop goals for the future of the Section. Planning is something I enjoy doing and I would like to take this opportunity as the Chair to host SPR and be part of the team that creates an actionable strategic plan for the future of the Section.

As your Chair this year, I want to make sure all the members are benefiting from our events. If you have any suggestions about future events, don’t hesitate to reach out! If you have free time and would like to volunteer, also reach out! We always have something going on and we love our volunteers for both in-person and virtual tasks!

I am looking forward to this year and this new role for me as part of ACS. Talk to you next month!