Message from the Chair

ImageDear Colleagues -- I hope everyone made it home safely from the drenching Boston meeting. The deluge did not stop us, however, from having a very productive and enjoyable conference. It was terrific to catch up with so many old friends and meet so many new colleagues as well.

In this issue you will find a summary of our activities in Boston. I will just highlight a few items here: As usual we had several excellent networking receptions, thanks to our generous sponsors. For the first time we cosponsored the Sunday reception with the COMP division. This lead to a lively and jam-packed event, as we celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Journal of Chemical Information and Modeling. The joint event was so successful we are going to try to do this regularly.

We also extended several awards throughout the week. On Sunday we honored Svetla Baykoucheva with the Val Metanomski Meritorious Service Award for her dedication and the constructive energy she has devoted as our bulletin editor. Over the Tuesday luncheon we gave out the Best Presentation Award to Susan Roberts of Vertex for her informative talk “Integrating chemical and biological data: Insights from 10 years of VERDI” during the Data-intensive Drug Design session. We also awarded the Lucille M. Wert Student Scholarship to Yuening Zhang of Indiana University. Later that Tuesday I had the honor of presenting the 2010 Herman Skolnik Award to Tony Hopfinger for his contributions to the QSAR field. Tony and Emilio Esposito co-organized the day-long symposium, “The Marriage, or at Least Dating, of Molecular Simulation and Modeling with QSAR Analysis.”

The Saturday Division business meetings were very productive. A significant amount of time was allotted to aspects of Division communications, from the website redesign, to managing division business, to engaging more participation in initiatives like the CINFlash sessions. We were fortunate to have Christine Schmidt and Mark O’Brien (ACS) join us for the morning, giving us an in-depth overview of the ACS Network followed by extensive Q&A. We have a tremendous amount of work ahead of us as we put in place a new communications strategy, and the good news is that the ACS network, with its ability to set up private and public areas, will allow us a framework through which we can communicate with the entire membership interactively, and manage committee activities all in one place. So once again I encourage all of our members to join the ACS network and the CINF Group so you can stay connected.

Speaking of CINFlash, I have some terrific late breaking news: we just received a $7,500 ACS innovation grant to expand the CINFlash concept, encouraging more virtual exchange of information and ideas through live blogging and tweeting, through the ACS Network, and via remote access that will engage participants not just for the session, but for days and weeks after the event itself is over.

Thanks again to all of you for your support during my year as CINF Chair. Greg Banik will be up next as Chair, with Rajarshi Guha moving to his new role as Chair Elect. All the best for the rest of 2010.

Carmen Nitsche, Chair, ACS Chemical Information Division