Committee Reports

Report from the Council Meeting Held on March 16, 2016

The Council of the American Chemical Society met in San Diego, CA, on Wednesday, March 16, 2016, from 8:00am until approximately 11:30am in the Sapphire Ballroom of the Hilton San Diego Bayfront Hotel. The Council opened with the passing of resolutions in memory of deceased Councilors. Below is a summary of the meeting that followed.

Nominations and Elections

President-Elect: The Committee on Nominations & Elections (N&E) identified four nominees for the office of 2017 ACS President-Elect. They were as follows: Peter K. Dorhout, Thomas R. Gilbert, C. Bradley Moore, and Gregory H. Robinson. The four nominees answered questions at the Town Hall meeting held on Sunday, March 13, and made brief presentations to the Council. Council voted to select Peter K. Dorhout and Thomas R. Gilbert as the final two candidates whose names will appear on the fall ballot, along with any petition candidates who may arise.

Other Elections

The Committee on Nominations and Elections announced the results of the election held prior to the San Diego meeting to select candidates from the list of nominees to serve as Directors from District II and District IV on the Board of Directors for the term 2017-2019. By Internet ballot, the Councilors from these districts selected George M. Bodner and Christina C. Bodurow as District II candidates; and Rigoberto Hernandez and Larry K. Krannich as District IV candidates. Ballots will be distributed on September 29, 2016, to all ACS members in District II and District IV for election of a Director from each District.

N&E also announced the election of Directors-at-Large that will be conducted in the fall. The candidates for a 2017-2019 term are Joseph A. Heppert, Kristin M. Omberg, Dorothy J. Phillips, and Kathleen M. Schulz. Ballots for the election of two Directors-at-Large from among those candidates and any selected via petition will be distributed to the Council on September 29, 2016.

N&E has established the Vote 20/20 Task Force, charged with examining all aspects of nominations and elections for ACS national offices and designing an enhanced process to be in place by the year 2020. The committee welcomes ideas from all members as to how nominations and elections should be handled. Send comments to vote2020@acs.org.

ACS Dues for 2017

Council voted to accept the recommendation from the Committee on Budget and Finance with regard to the 2017 membership dues (an increase of $4.00 - from $162 to $166).

Petitions for Vote

Approval of the “Academic Professional Guidelines”

The Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs (CEPA) presented the revised “Academic Professional Guidelines” for consideration at the Council meeting in Boston on August 13, 2015. After approving an amendment to the proposed revised Academic Professional Guidelines (Council Agenda, pp. 75-89), the Council approved the revised guidelines, subject to approval by the Board of Directors. The guidelines apply to those members of the academic community whose job function impacts directly or indirectly on scientists practicing the profession of chemistry.

Budget and Finance

In 2015, ACS generated a Net from Operations of $16.6 million, which was $3.2 million favorable to budget. Total revenues were $511.7 million, essentially on budget. Expenses ended the year at $495.1 million, which was $3.1 million or 0.6% favorable to budget. This variance was attributable to a continued emphasis on expense management across the Society. The Society’s financial position strengthened in 2015, with Unrestricted Net Assets, or reserves, increasing from $144.7 million at December 31, 2014 to $163.3 million at year-end 2015, although this amount is still below the recommended financial guidelines.

Additional information can be found at www.acs.org, at bottom, click ‘About ACS’, then ‘ACS Financial Information’. There you will find several years of the Society’s audited financial statements and IRS 990 filings.

Meetings and Expositions

The Committee on Meetings and Expositions (M&E) reported that the 2017 registration fee for ACS national meetings will be $440 ($415 will be the early bird rate). The attendance at the San Diego national meeting, as of the morning of the Council meeting, was as follows:

  • Students: 5,979
  • Exhibitors: 1,094
  • Exhibition only: 473
  • Guests: 383
  • Regular: 8,398
  • Total: 16,327

Spring National meeting attendance since 2004 is as follows:

  • 2004: Anaheim, CA: 14,141
  • 2005: San Diego, CA: 15,385
  • 2006: Atlanta, GA: 12,546
  • 2007: Chicago. IL: 14,520
  • 2008: New Orleans, LA: 13,454
  • 2009: Salt Lake City, UT: 10,668
  • 2010: San Francisco, CA: 18,067
  • 2011: Anaheim, CA: 14,047
  • 2012: San Diego, CA: 16,864 (as of Tuesday evening, March 27, 2012)
  • 2013: New Orleans, LA: 15,596 (as of Tuesday evening, April 9, 2013)
  • 2014: Dallas, TX: 13,680 (as of Tuesday evening, March 18, 2014)
  • 2015: Denver, CO: 13,930 (as of Tuesday evening, March 24, 2015)
  • 2016: San Diego, CA: 16,327 (as of Tuesday evening, March 16, 2016)

The last National ACS meeting in San Diego was held in the spring of 2012 and attendance at that meeting totaled 16,864 for the same time period noted. San Francisco has had the highest attendance for ACS National Meetings, at least since 1997 (1997: 18,042; 2010: 18,067; and 2000: 18,336).

Membership Affairs Committee

The Committee on Membership Affairs (MAC) reported that ACS membership declined 1% in 2015 to slightly under 157,000, despite the fact that 25,000 new members were added. The overall membership retention rate is 84% and there has been a 3.85% growth in foreign new membership.

Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs

The Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs (CEPA) reported that the unemployment rate for newlygraduated chemists has increased from 12.4% to 13%. The overall unemployment rate for all ACS chemists is up from 2.9% to 3.91%. The overall U.S. unemployment rate is 5.5%.

Divisional Activities Committee

The Committee on Divisional Activities (DAC) reported that it will be providing more training for division chairs on member recruitment and retention. It will also be actively encouraging all divisions to develop business plans.

Committee on Constitution and Bylaws

The Committee on Constitution & Bylaws (C&B) certified twenty-nine unit bylaws in 2015. With regard to the Petition to Extend the Unemployment Members’ Dues from two to three years, C&B is concerned with the assumption in the explanation that, without the waiver extension, the Society would lose those members who would benefit from the waiver extension. The financial implications of this petition are still being assessed.

Petitions to Amend Constitution & Bylaws

New petitions to amend the Constitution or Bylaws must be received by the Executive Director no later than May 4 to be included in the Council agenda for consideration at the fall 2016 meeting in Philadelphia. Contact C&B with any questions or requests for information at bylaws@acs.org

Actions of the Board of Directors

The Board’s Executive Session
The ACS Board of Directors met March 11 - 12, 2016, and considered a number of key strategic issues and responded with several actions. These are as follows:

Board Development
ACS is a large, highly complex, global organization, with two major businesses – Chemical Abstracts Service and ACS Publications – and a significant professional membership organization component. The Board sets aside substantial discussion time at each meeting for the most important strategic issues facing the Society.

Strategic Issues and Retreat
The Board held a conversation focused on strengthening the process utilized for strategic issues discussions, and a discussion on timing and topics of a possible facilitated retreat for all Board members during 2016. Also, the Board is committed to development and discussed ways to continuously improve its effectiveness in the service of ACS as individual board members, and as a collective body.

The Board’s Committees
The Board received input and discussed reports from its Committees on Grants and Awards, Executive Compensation; and the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications. On the recommendation of the Committee on Grants and Awards, the Board voted to approve an endowment to support the E. Bright Wilson Award in Spectroscopy.

Also on the recommendation of the Committee on Grants and Awards, the Board voted to approve language to be included in the guiding documents for the National Awards and Fellows Program to allow for the rescission of national awards and the ACS Fellows designations where reasonable grounds exist.

The Board received an extensive briefing and approved several recommendations from its Committee on Executive Compensation. The compensation of the Society’s executive staff receives regular review from the Board. On the recommendation of the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications, the Board voted to approve the reappointments of Editors-in-Chief for two ACS journals.

The Executive Director/CEO Report
Executive Director and CEO Thomas M. Connelly, Jr. discussed ACS membership programs, reviewed the information technology area, and offered personal reflections on his first year as Executive Director and CEO. His direct reports updated the Board on the activities of Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS), the ACS Publications Division, the Office of the Treasurer and CFO, and the Society’s Secretary and General Counsel.

Presidential Succession
The members of the presidential succession briefed the Board on their current and planned activities for 2016. President Donna Nelson highlighted presidential programming at the San Diego meeting on employment and diversity in the chemical sciences and on organic chemistry education. Also, a special discussion topic on the U.S. employment of chemists will be conducted at the Council meeting.

The Board’s Open Session
The Board held a well-attended open session which featured Amy Harmon, a reporter for the New York Times, who covers the social implications of science and technology. Ms. Harmon’s topic was “Telling Science Stories: Dispatch from the Conflict Zone.”

Prior to the presentation, members of the presidential succession and the Executive Director and CEO offered brief reports on their activities. The officers provided more extensive reports on their activities and/or future plans as part of their written and oral reports to the Council.

Contact the Board
Your Board of Directors is elected by and acts in the best interests of the members of our Society. Please contact them with your comments, concerns, ideas, and suggestions at secretary@acs.org.

Additional Information

The following is a list of URLs or email addresses presented in reports or on slides at the Council meeting

Respectfully submitted March 28, 2016

CINF Councilors

Bonnie Lawlor
Andrea Twiss-Brooks
Svetlana Korolev

Note: The Council Agenda Book can be accessed at: http://www.acs.org/content/dam/acsorg/about/governance/councilors/council-agenda-3.16.pdf.

CINF Education Committee

The following are the minutes of the ACS CINF Education Committee Meeting, which occurred on March 12, 2016, at the San Diego Convention Center. Grace Baysinger (chair), Jeremy Garritano, Chuck Huber, Ye Li, Marion Peters, and Teri Vogel were in attendance.

Report on the Meeting and Activities of the Society Committee on Education (SOCED) – Jeremy Garritano

  • SOCED is planning to work on a graduate education Website, giving guidance on topics such as looking for and selecting graduate schools.
  • By the end of the year, they plan a big survey about online instruction (e.g. MOOCs and virtual labs). It is assumed that this will be distributed to department chairs.
  • They have been asked to look into recognizing chemistry programs in other countries (e.g. RSC programs)
  • A representative from the Committee on Chemical Safety spoke. CCS has plans for a ChemLuminary award for promoting chemical safety. The two-volume Safety in Academic Chemical Laboratories will be updated this year (last updated in 2003). CCS also plans to issue safety guidelines for demonstrations.
  • There was a soft launch of ChemIDP.org. One hundred people have already created independent development plans. ChemIDP.org is free to use but requires an ACS login. The “Explore Careers” module is the most popular; it is mostly geared towards graduate students, but undergraduates are also showing interest. The hope is to get more funding to further develop this.
  • The National Research Council just released “Effective Chemistry Communication in Informal Environments.” It includes a framework and guide.
  • There was discussion about a practitioner's statement regarding the importance of laboratory activity, but the committee opted not to develop one at this time. They are more interested in crafting something about effective learning and teaching techniques, perhaps one or more articles that can be written up in the Journal of Chemical Education (JCE).
  • SOCED is also looking at guidelines and performance expectations for general chemistry, a multi-year project. They want to make it cross-disciplinary, describing expectations of both chemistry majors and nonchemistry science and engineering majors.

XCITR Repository

  • XCITR is currently offline, due to security concerns from the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). RSC hosted it for a few years until their Drupal upgrade. The account creation site was heavily spammed, resulting in a moratorium on new accounts. Current account holders have added little content.
  • The site will be up long enough for Stanford University to archive it, and they will offer public access. Internet Archive has also archived some of it.
  • Ideas
    • Set up a Google custom search. Grace Baysinger has seen this done for government documents.
    • LibGuides links could be added to the Chemical Information Sources Wikibook (ChemWiki Book), and we could link to documents if the archive copy is available via URL.
  • Questions
    • What is the utility of the content currently in XCITR? (Out of date? Non-English language materials?)
    • How many people were searching and using the content, and who are they?
    • Are there communities (creators, depositors, and readers) to support the work?
    • The group decided that the ChemWiki Book should be the bigger priority, and they can add selected links from LibGuides, as well as archived, deposited documents. Chemical Information Sources Wikibook (ChemWiki Book)

Chemical Information Sources Wikibook (ChemWiki Book)

  • The committee will hold further discussions about the Wikibook at a virtual meeting later this spring.
  • The WikiBook is being read, and the Committee on Professional Training (CPT) points to it. The committee needs to review current chapters and determine whether additional ones are needed, reach out to past authors, and seek new editors.
  • The community needs "support" from the Education Committee to continue contributing. In particular, the committee should try to devise a way to give credit to editors (or authors). This includes reviewing the content and the level of accountability.
  • Recommendations:
    • Request that the Executive Committee adopt the Wikibook as a formal “publication of CINF.”
    • Identify rights, responsibilities, and roles for the editor-in-chief, editors, and authors.
    • Work with Martin Walker to add more functionality to the interface, which will also help contributors.
    • Develop a roadmap/to-do list.
  • Action Items
    • The entire Education Committee will review the organization, structure, and chapters of the Wikibook and send comments to Chuck.
    • By May 2, committee members should send Grace items that should go into the road map. This will be followed by a conference call later that week.
    • Ye will serve as interim technical editor so as to gain this level of expertise; eventually, a permanent technical editor will be appointed.
    • Submit a piece for the Fall CIB to Teri Vogel by mid-to-late July.

CINF Education Page

  • The page is completely out of date and needs an overhaul. Grace Baysinger has already revised the Chemical Information Literacy page in response to articles in the JCE special issue linking to the page.
  • The meeting minutes have been moved into the ACS network.
  • A question arose about whether someone on the committee can get access to edit the Web pages, or whether all changes must go through the Webmaster.
  • Action Item
    • Grace Baysinger will send out a charge for the committee to review and submit comments, as well as a draft of the updated page for comment.

Graduate Student Information Literacy Guidelines

  • The committee aims to complete this project by the fall meeting, focusing on learning objectives, not lists of links and resources.
  • The GradIDP mentions data/database management, but nothing else about database searching or other information literacy skills.
  • Grace brought up the issue of SciFinder certification with the new chair of the Joint Board-Council Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service. Ye Li mentioned digital badges.

ACS Style Guide

  • The committee is interested in having the References chapter updated so that the guidelines for citing online resources align more closely with the ways in which these sources are actually cited in articles.
  • Committee members were reminded that access to the ACS Style Guide is free with an ACS ChemWorx account.
  • Action Item
    • Marion Peters will check in with Michael Qiu, and perhaps this can be added to the agenda for the next Academic Roundtable Meeting.
Grace Baysinger
Stanford University
graceb@stanford.edu
Teri Vogel
University of California—San Diego
tmvogel@ucsd.edu

CINF Careers Committee

The CINF Careers Committee has the goal of promoting careers in chemical information and providing practitioners with information that will be beneficial to building their careers. They have sponsored symposia at national meetings and are in the process of developing useful, Web-based materials for new and seasoned chemical information professionals. The Careers Committee is always looking for interested individuals to join the team; geography is immaterial, and travel is not required; the committee meets virtually several times per year, with current members located across the United States. The following is a brief report of recent committee activities.

Preparing for ACS National Meetings

If you are new to the division or you know someone who is, please see our handout about “Preparing for the CINF Division of the ACS National Conference”

https://acscinf.org/PDF/Preparing_for_CINF_at_ACS.pdf

Career Resources

The committee is also in the process of reviewing and updating our “Resources in Careers in Chemical Information”.

http://www.acscinf.org/content/resources-careers-chemical-information#overlay-context=content/careers

We would welcome suggestions of recently published books and articles about careers in chemical information.

Upcoming Events

We are planning our next Careers program for the ACS meeting in San Francisco (April 2-6, 2017)
Information about the Careers Committee can be found at http://www.acscinf.org/content/careers.

Sue Cardinal
University of Rochester
scardinal@library.rochester.edu

Pamela Scott
Pfizer
pamela.j.scott@pfizer.com

Calling All Committee Members!

Do you belong to a CINF committee, an ACS national committee, or a committee of another ACS division that discusses issues related to chemical information or cheminformatics? Consider submitting a brief summary of your committee’s activities to the Chemical Information Bulletin, to be placed in the Committee Reports section. Submissions may be of any length and should be sent directly to the editor of the issue in which you wish them to appear; a list of editors appears in the CINF Officers section of this issue of the CIB. This is a great way to disseminate the news of your committee’s activities to the broader chemical information community!

ACS Committee on Ethics

The governance of the American Chemical Society is complex, as befits a large member institution, but nowhere is its complexity better exemplified than through its committee structure. There are five different types of committees, and the following is a brief description of their purpose and composition; for more information, please refer to the governing documents of the Society (http://www.acs.org/content/dam/acsorg/about/governance/ charter/bulletin-5.pdf?_ga=1.211259733.1512377879.1423839481).

  • Council Committees (Council Policy Committee, Committee on Nominations and Elections, Committee on Committees): elected committees of the Council, with members elected by and from the body of Councilors;
  • Standing Committees of the Council (Committee on Membership Affairs, Committee on Meetings and Expositions, Committee on Divisional Activities, Committee on Local Section Activities, Committee on Economic and Professional Affairs, Committee on Constitution and Bylaws): other Council committees, whose members are councilors appointed by the President of the Society, with input from the Committee on Committees;
  • Society Committees (Society Committee on Education, Society Committee on Budget and Finance): special committees whose members are councilors and non-councilors appointed by the president of the Society, with input from the Committee on Committees;
  • Joint Board-Council Committees (examples include the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications, the Joint Board-Council Committee on Chemical Abstracts, Service, and the Committee on Professional Training): committees developed to serve a specific purpose, whose members may be any member of the Society and are jointly appointed by the president of the Society and the chair of the Board, with input from the Committee on Committees;
  • Other Committees of the Council: These committees are also established to serve a particular purpose and are evaluated by the Committee on Committees. Their members, who may be any member of the Society, are appointed solely by the president of the Society, with input from the Committee on Committees.

The Committee on Ethics (ETHX) is an “Other Committee of the Council.” Its charge is as follows:

To coordinate the ethics-related activities of the Society, serve as an educational resource and clearinghouse, but not as an adjudication body, for ACS members seeking guidance on ethics issues; raise awareness of ethics issues through meeting programming and columns/editorials; review recognition opportunities for acknowledging ethical behavior; and to develop and oversee such other ethics-related activities as will serve ACS members and promote the Society's standards of ethical conduct within the profession of chemistry and its related disciplines. http://www.acs.org/content/acs/en/about/governance/committees/ethics/about.html

CINF enjoys dual representation on this committee; Leah McEwen is a full member, and Judith Currano is a new associate member. Much of the work of the committee is done in its subcommittees, and ETHX has three subcommittees, devoted to Communication and Awareness, Education and Materials, and Programming and Screening.

ETHX is particularly interested in cosponsoring programming at ACS National Meetings focused on ethical issues; as a result, it will be cosponsoring a symposium on the ethics of authorship and inventorship with CINF at the San Francisco meeting in the spring of 2017. While some of the talks will be invited, we will also post a general call for papers, so, please keep an eye open for it!

Judith N. Currano
University of Pennsylvania
currano@pobox.upenn.edu

ACS Joint Board-Council Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service (CCAS)

The Joint Board-Council Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service (also known as CCAS) met twice in 2015 and met again at the Spring National Meeting in San Diego. The Committee consists of members from academia, industry, and government, and continues to fulfill its charter by serving as a channel for the flow of information between CAS management, ACS members, and users of CAS products and services. At each CCAS meeting, committee members held open dialogue on a range of topics, including synthetic chemistry dissertations, junior college solution options, and the SciFinder Future Leaders in Chemistry program and provided input on new products and services.

At both 2015 meetings, CAS management provided the committee with an overview of financial performance as well as product and service news. At the fall meeting in Boston, committee members learned that CAS continues furthering its leadership position in the scientific community, exemplified by the registration of the 100 millionth chemical substance in CAS REGISTRY, in the 50th anniversary year of the world’s largest database of unique chemical substances. CAS is also becoming a robust solutions provider with exciting new products. Members were pleased to learn about MethodsNow, a new workflow solution for analytical, pharmaceutical, and biotech scientists that will provide access to the largest collection ever of analytical procedures, indexed and organized by CAS, and will save researchers time in the lab, as well as provide advancements for researchers in commercial, government, and academic organizations. This highly-innovative benchtop solution features the world’s largest collection of templated protocols in analytical chemistry and reaction science. MethodsNow will be offered as a “stand-alone” product, and selected capabilities will be offered as an add-on within the SciFinder experience.

CAS successfully launched three new products and services in 2015 including PatentPak, NCI Global, and CHEMCATS. These new offerings expanded CAS’s product portfolio with an innovative workflow improvement for scientists, a solution for regulatory professionals, and a new business model for chemical suppliers whose products are promoted to hundreds of thousands of scientists around the world via SciFinder. In 2016, CAS introduced PatentPak in STN for intellectual property professionals.

CAS databases continue to grow at record pace: a new record of more than 13.5 million new substances were added to the CAS REGISTRY in 2015, which now includes more than 105 million small molecules. This exceeds the prior record set in 2014, when 13.1 million new CAS RNs were assigned. As in recent years, growth in 2015 was driven by prophetic substances identified in patents, chemical supplier offerings in CHEMCATS, and organic growth for indexing of the literature.

The CCAS Committee met in Executive Session on March 11, 2016, where CAS management reported on highlights from 2015, including financial and strategic updates. CAS President, Manuel Guzman, reported that CAS’ sustained solutions performance continues to support ACS initiatives. The new products released in 2015 are being well-received by customers around the world as CAS continues to expand its global reach through support for the scientific enterprise, adding dedicated resources in the following seven countries: Japan, South Korea, Brazil, Mexico, Taiwan, Singapore, and Australia. Expansion efforts now total thirty new team members in eleven countries, bringing direct representation to nearly twenty countries.

I am pleased to report that the Committee on Chemical Abstracts Service continues to fulfill its responsibilities in a purposeful manner. Committee members provide important feedback, suggestions and questions regarding CAS solutions. We welcome input from ACS members and all CAS users through the ACS Member Network. I encourage you to stop by the CAS booth at the Convention Center to learn more about the numerous exciting initiatives underway at CAS.

Wendy Cornell Chair,
Joint Board-Council Committee
on Chemical Abstracts Service