Dear Members of the North Jersey Section,

Mirlinda BibaIt is a great honor to serve as the 2021 Chair of the North Jersey Section. I would like to thank the officers, members, and volunteers of the North Jersey Section for giving me this opportunity to serve as the chair and for all they do to continue the impactful work of this section within our chemistry community. This year has been particularly challenging for all of us with the Covid-19 pandemic, but I am very proud of our members and volunteers who despite these challenges they continued to drive the mission of this section by organizing virtual events and Zoom meetings.

Our members and volunteers contribute to our section through many activities, such as topical groups and various outreach events. I encourage all our members to visit the section’s website to learn more and consider volunteering in the various topical groups, including Mass Spectrometry, Chromatography, NMR Spectroscopy, Organic Chemistry, Drug Metabolism, Minority Affairs, Women Chemists Committee, Senior Chemists, Younger Chemists and Teacher Affiliates. These groups organize meetings and symposia throughout the year which provide excellent opportunities for continued education and networking. This section will also host the Leo Hendrik Baekeland Award and symposium in late 2021.

The North Jersey Section will also continue its important mission through numerous outreach programs including Project SEED, National Chemistry Week, Chemistry Olympiad, Earth Day, Community Nights at Liberty Science Center, Science Cafes, and partnership with Students 2 Science. Through these outreach activities, the section strives to deliver on its mission for “advancing the broader chemistry enterprise and its practitioners by providing resources, programs, and outreach for the benefit of all communities.”

As Chair of the Section, I will continue to support and promote the various topical groups and public outreach activities. Some of my main goals are the following: I will focus on increasing membership and participation of chemists from industry and local chemical companies by connecting through the different topical groups, find ways to increase participation by local college chemistry groups and reach out to more students, and encourage increased participation for next generation of volunteers to continue the excellent work, service and dedication from our previous chairs and executive committee members.

As we look ahead into 2021, first and foremost I hope everyone stays safe and healthy! I encourage all our members to participate and become more involved in different activities of the North Jersey Section. I also encourage you all to contact me with any thoughts, ideas and suggestions. Thank you for your continued support and I look forward to connecting with you during the coming year.

2021 Chair, Mirlinda Biba

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