North Jersey Section
American Chemical Society

2005 ACS Fall Meeting in Washington DC – Councilor Report

For the 2005 ACS Fall Meeting in Washington DC, North Jersey had full representation at the Council meeting. Representing the section were the following Councilors and Alternate Councilors: Anita Brandolini, Jeannette Brown, Maureen Chan, Alan Cooper, Jacqueline Erickson, Susan Fahrenholtz, Robert Goodnow, Stan Hall, George Heinze, Bettyann Howson, Anne Kelly, Diane Krone, Valerie Kuck, Les McQuire, and Stephen Waller.

While in Washington DC, many of the councilors participated in committee meetings and other governance activities, including the Town Hall Meetings and Mid-Atlantic Councilor Caucus. The Mid-Atlantic Councilor Caucus was chaired by Steve Waller.

Some of the Committees with North Jersey Councilors are Budget and Finance, Corporation Associates, Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs, Divisional Activities Committee, Local Section Activities Committee, Membership Affairs Committee, Nominations and Elections, SOCED, WCC and others. Below are a few highlights from some committee meetings and other activities.

Town Hall meetings were held by the Committee on Nominations and Elections. One meeting focused on election procedures and the results of a survey conducted by the committee. The other town hall meeting was a forum for candidates for the Director at Large position. These candidates include James Burke, Edwin Chandross, Gordon McCarty and Frankie Wood-Black.

Les McQuire, a member of the Local Section Activities Committee (LSAC), attended the LSAC meetings, and he chaired the subcommittee on Alliances and Partnerships. He is also a member of Corporation Associates (CA), and he chaired the Program Subcommittee, during that committee meeting. Les is also involved in a number of other governance activities, including the Regional Activities Coordination Team (ReACT), and he gave a presentation at the Mid-Atlantic Councilor Caucus. This presentation provided an overview of the recommendations for changing the role of regional meetings and regional meeting steering committees in the society.

Anne Kelly is a member of the Divisional Activities Committee (DAC). DAC discussed future plans to support the changes within the ACS: increasing multidisciplinarity and attracting members from fields outside the traditional definition of Chemistry. Ideas included possibly merging some divisions, having sessions of interest to multiple divisions located in the same geographical areas to facilitate attendance, and ideas to increase collaboration / multidivisional activities. This discussion will continue at the spring national meeting.

George Heinze and Jacqueline Erickson attended the Membership Affairs Committee (MAC) meeting and their respective subcommittee meetings. MAC has reorganized its subcommittee structure to have 3 subcommittees (Membership Categories and Dues, Recruitment and Retention, and Member Benefits), and a significant amount of time was spent on the committee’s strategic plan. The Categories and Dues subcommittee also spent time discussing possible recommendations for task force on ACS Governance Review, and the future of the ACS Council and Committee structure. Also, MAC adopted a resolution that expressed its concern that “the education requirements for an ACS-approved degree, and thus for immediate and welcoming eligibility for membership, should be revised to be more encompassing of the multidisciplinary and evolving nature of chemistry.”

At the Council meeting, reports were given by the President, President-Elect, Immediate Past President, Chair of the Board of Directors, and the Executive Director &CEO of the ACS. Reports were also given by committees.

The Committee on Nominations and Elections presented councilors as candidates for the elected committees which include the Committee on Committees, Council Policy Committee and Committee on Nominations and Elections. Valerie Kuck of this section was elected to the Council Policy Committee.

The Committee on Nominations and Elections withdrew its petition on election procedures prior to the spring national meeting. This action was to allow the committee to discuss further the issues raised by the Committee on Constitution and Bylaws and to solicit additional input from councilors and other members.

A report was also given by James Burke, chair of the ACS Board of Directors during the Council meeting. One of the main items in the report was the requests for the Society’s 2006 proposed budget, which include:

  • A two-year pilot program for ACS High School Chemistry Clubs
  • ACS activities in connection with the International Science and Engineering Fair
  • A Leadership Development Program that delivers a pool of capable, effective and motivated leaders for volunteer roles throughout the Society
  • Reauthorization of, and continued funding for the Green Chemistry Institute
  • A complete reinvention of the Society’s Web Presence

A special discussion item was also put on the Council agenda for this meeting. ACS President William F. Carroll described the process being used to develop a Society vision hypothesis (vision statement) that is to be tested with members, customers, governance and other interested parties. Dr. Carroll described the methods used to get member input at the national meeting. ACS national meeting attendees reported 15 common themes to be considered as important to the Society’s future. Dr. Carroll sought Council input on the most frequent themes: diversity, young people, governance, multidisciplinarity, globalization and outreach. Councilors then engaged in a thoughtful, yet lively exchange of their vision of the Society’s long-term future.

After the Council meeting, a special briefing on executive compensation was held. The purpose of this meeting was to describe the processes used to compensate executive staff positions within the ACS (e.g. Executive Director, Secretary, etc). Various professional societies and non-profit institutions were used as a benchmark for executive compensation, as were several for-profit institutions. It was noted that there are few non-profits similar to the ACS, and that the Publications division is much more similar to a for-profit institution, thus the inclusion of these organizations. Following the briefing, there was extensive discussion by the councilors on the process used.

If any North Jersey members would like more information on these topics or would like to provide feedback on this report, please contact the Chair at jacqueline.a.erickson@gsk.com.