Kenneth Fivizzani
Candidate for ACS Director-at-Large


Issues Facing Us Today

Ken photos

Ken and Jennifer Schomaker
Ken, Joe Francisco, and Amber
Ken and Margy
Ken and Maurice Brookhart
Ken with glass of wine
I appreciate the opportunity to be a candidate for election as Director-at-Large. The work of the Board of Directors is crucial to the mission of ACS. The Board deals with routine details that can be found in any professional organization. The Board also approves official ACS policy within the Society and official statements released to other organizations or groups. As a member of Council who has served in leadership positions in a local section, a technical division, and a governance committee, I appreciate the activities, accomplishments and challenges of these organizations within ACS. I would be honored to serve both the Council and the Society as Director-at Large. My experience is a starting point for what I would bring to this position. I am eager to contribute more to our Society and to learn about any unmet needs our members may have.

Members – Our first obligation is to our membership, both present and future members. Technical journals, C&EN, national and regional meetings, employment services and career counseling are some of our traditional tools to assist members in developing a successful and enjoyable life as a chemist. Employment trends are moving away from career positions with a single employer. We need to be vigilant in understanding the emerging needs of our membership. National research funding needs to be increased (at the least maintained) rather than used as a convenient target to solve budgetary problems. Our nation’s leading role as source of innovative technology is at risk! Too many young and midcareer members are searching for meaningful and satisfying jobs. These are talented and dedicated scientists. Can our continuing education programs provide technical updating about new opportunities and alternate careers in our profession? We could sponsor courses in new areas of science and technology. I would support funding Innovative Project Grants for employment projects. We must continue to publicize career counseling services and job networks available to our members. Local sections, technical divisions, and ACS committees should be active partners with respect to employment opportunities and concerns. Let’s share our successful strategies and employment programs. We should provide assistance to entrepreneurs who want to start new companies. Academic budgets for science programs must be maintained and increased wherever possible. The laboratory experience is an essential component of any chemistry curriculum; we must strongly resist any attempts to eliminate lab courses or rely entirely on electronic media to view lab experiments. Our world’s need for new science and technology is increasing; our colleges and universities provide the individuals who will help meet those needs. Some of these students will make up the future membership of the Society. Others will hold positions that may influence the funding and progress of science. Programs that encourage individuals from underrepresented groups to study chemistry must be supported enthusiastically.

Community – We should take every opportunity to explain to those around us who we are and what we do. Chemistry has made a profoundly positive impact on our world. For every perceived problem that results from an unexpected or unwanted reaction or a release of a hazardous material, there are hundreds, maybe thousands, of improvements in our world that are the result of new science and technology developed by chemists. Outreach programs such as National Chemistry Week, Chemists Celebrate Earth Week, and Chemistry Ambassadors inform and enlighten the public about our work. Governmental funding agencies and private foundations also need to appreciate our contributions. Act4Chemistry helps us advocate at state and federal levels.

Chemistry as the Central Science – Science and technology are becoming more interdisciplinary.  We understand how chemistry is fundamental to every broadly based development of technology.  We should take every opportunity to highlight the innovations in chemistry that lead to new materials, products, and processes.  The ACS has a history of providing concise descriptions of the uses of common chemicals (e.g., Molecule of the Week or What’s That Stuff?).  We could disseminate information about news-making materials used in breakthrough technology.  Such information could be used in chemistry classes to emphasize that the science of chemistry remains vital to making our lives better, safer, and happier (i.e., “Improving people’s lives through the transforming power of chemistry”).  Excellence in chemistry that solves problems and creates opportunity is the legacy we want to leave to future generations.  I look forward to doing whatever I can to contribute to that legacy.

Thank you for reading about me, and thank you for being a member of ACS.


6/25/17Webs by Wizardcraft