When I wrote my “Message from the Chair” in January I was full of hope and excitement for 2020. There were so many events I was looking forward to where I would gather with chemistry colleagues. I have always cherished these interactions. Instead we have all been confronted with a year of unforeseeable pain and challenges.
I have been so impressed with the resilience I have witnessed from the chemistry community during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic—professors quickly pivoting to online courses, virtual Ph.D. thesis defenses and online graduation ceremonies. I am thankful that our DOC Virtual Seminar Series has provided us with opportunities to stay connected and keep our spirits up during this time of physical distancing. This year’s EWOC conference will also be held virtually and I encourage you to attend this event focused on empowering women in organic chemistry.
This has also been a time to reflect on our professional journeys in science and its ability to enrich our lives through diversity of every kind. I know that my life is so much richer because of the unique organic chemists I have met from all over the world. The social injustices we have witnessed recently, and for far too many years, have no place in our world. We stand with the Black community. Racism and hate have no place in the DOC, in science, or anywhere. My hope is that everyone feels seen, heard and appreciated in the organic chemistry community. We know that we can always do better, and I hope that you’ll feel able to offer suggestions on how we can improve. Thank you for being a member of the DOC.
Dr. Lisa A. Marcaurelle
Chair, ACS Division of Organic Chemistry 2020