History of the Division

Founding

The ACS Organic Chemistry Division (ORGN) was officially established in 1910 (chaired by Edward Curtis Franklin).
A detailed history of the start of the division was written by H. L. Fisher in 1951 and is available here:
Ind. Eng. Chem., 1951 , 43 (2), pp 289-294

Historical Events of the Division

1908
On December 31, 1908, the division was given a temporary organization status by ACS with the election for one year of a chairman, Richard S. Curtiss, and a vice chairman and secretary, Ralph H. McKee

1909
The Division’s Bylaws were approved

1910
The ACS Division of Organic Chemistry was officially chartered

1925
The First National Symposium on Organic Chemistry (NOS) was held in Rochester, N. Y.

1927
The Second National Symposium on Organic Chemistry was held in Columbus, Ohio

1936
The Division sponsors the creation of the Journal of Organic Chemistry

1959
The Rogers Adams Award is established and Sir Derek H. R. Barton is the first recipient

1973
The first Arthur C. Cope Award was made to Roald Hoffmann and Robert B. Woodward

1981

1985
ORGN starts to distribute Organic Syntheses (with Vol. 62) free to its members

1986
The Arthur C. Cope Scholar Awards Program was initiated

1989
The Division partnered with Johnson & Johnson to start a travel awards program to support Outstanding Students and Faculty at Undergraduate Institutions to attend the ACS National and NOS meetings

1990
Received the ACS Award for Outstanding Performance by Divisions in recognition of its service to its members and its meritous contributions to the profession and the public understanding of chemistry.

1992
The Technical Achievement Award in Organic Chemistry (TAOC) Program was initiated

1994
With financial help from Bayer, the Gassman Award program was started and the first award was given to Nelson Leonard

1995
The Leete award was endowed and David N. Harpp is the first recipient

1999
Organic Letters debuts at the 36th NOS with Amos B. Smith, III as editor-in-chief

2007
The Gassman Award was endowed by Midwest Pharmaceuticals

2008
ORGN Holds Electronic Elections for the first time

2008
ORGN Celebrates its Centennial at the 236th National ACS Meeting with a Symposium Dedicated to the history of organic chemistry

2009
ORGN Awards Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships (SURF) for the first time

2009
ORGN forms a partnership with the Reaction Mechanisms Conference (RMC)

2009
43 members of the Division of Organic Chemistry, were selected as Inaugural ACS Fellows

2010
ORGN redesigns its website and adds a members only area

2010
ORGN holds its First Graduate Research Symposium (GRS) at Boston College

2013
ORGN partners with Jeff Seeman for second time to provide a second series of Eminent Organic Chemist Videos

2013
ORGN Creates the Undergraduate Award Program to recognize senior students

2016
ORGN Suspends the long running graduate fellowship program due to lack of financial support

2017
ORGN redesigns its website making it easier access the site on mobile devices and to utilize social media.

2018
ORGN hosts its first virtual symposium

Past Presidents of ACS who were affiliated with the Division

2016
Donna J. Nelson – ORGN Member

2005
William F. Carroll, Jr. – ORGN Member

2004
Chuck Casey – NOS Speaker 1985 and Cope Scholar in 1988

1999
Edel Wasserman – ORGN Councilor 1983-88

1997
Paul S. Anderson

1996
Ronald Breslow – NOS Speaker 1961, 1969, 1979, 1987, 2003 and Gassman Awardee in 2006

1992
Ernest L. Eliel – ORGN Chair 1974

1990
Paul G. Gassman – ORGN Councilor 1983-88, ORGN Chair 1981

1972
Max Tishler – NOS Speaker 1953

1971
Melvin Calvin – NOS Speaker 1955

1965
Charles C. Price – NOS Speaker 1947, 1957

1962
Karl A. Folkers – NOS Speaker 1941, 1949

1961
Arthur C. Cope – ORGN Secretary 1940-44, ORGN Chair 1947

1959
John C. Bailar, Jr. – NOS Speaker 1955

1957
Roger J. Williams – NOS Speaker 1941

1954
Harry L. Fisher – NOS Speaker 1925

1952
Edgar C. Britton – NOS Speaker 1933

1947
W. Albert Noyes, Jr.

1945
Carl S. Marvel – ORGN Chairman 1933

1944
Thomas Midgley, Jr. – NOS Speaker 1931

1941
William Lloyd Evans – ORGN Chair 1928

1938
Frank C. Whitmore – ORGN Secretary 1925-29, ORGN Chair 1930

1935
Roger Adams – ORGN Chair 1921

1931
Moses Gomberg – NOS Speaker 1929,1941

1926
James F. Norris – NOS Speaker 1925, 1927, 1933

1925
James F. Norris – NOS Speaker 1925, 1927, 1933

1923
Edward C. Franklin – Chair 1910 and 1929

1920
William A. Noyes

1910
Wilder E. Bancroft – NOS Speaker 1933

1908
Marston T. Bogert – NOS Speaker 1929, 1931, 1935

1907
Marston T. Bogert – NOS Speaker 1929, 1931, 1935

Chairs of the Division

1910
Edward C. Franklin

1911
George B. Frankforter

1912-13
Treat B. Johnson

1914-15
F.F. Allen

1916
C. G. Derick

1917
J. R. Bailey

1918
William J. Hale

1919
L. W. Jones

1920
E. Emmett Reid

1921
Roger Adams

1922
Hans T. Clarke

1923
Frank C. Whitmore

1924
R. R. Renshaw

1925
Julius A. Nieuwland

1926
Marston T. Bogert

1927
Frank B. Dains

1928
William Lloyd Evans

1929
Edward C. Franklin

1930
Frank C. Whitmore

1931
James B. Conant

1932
Homer Adkins

1933
Carl S. Marvel

1934
Claude S. Hudson

1935
Arthur J. Hill

1936
Henry Gilman

1937
L. Charles Raiford

1938
Lyndon F. Small

1939
Werner E. Bachmann

1940
Cliff S. Hamilton

1941
Nathan L. Drake

1942
Lee I. Smith

1943
Louis F. Fieser

1944
Ralph L. Shriner

1945-46
Samuel M. McElvain

1947
Arthur C. Cope

1948
Paul D. Bartlett

1949
William G. Young

1950
Ralph W. Bost

1951
William S. Johnson

1952
Robert C. Elderfield

1953
Walter N. Lauer

1954
Max Tishler

1955
A. Harold Blatt

1956
Nelson J. Leonard

1957
John D. Roberts

1958
Melvin S. Newman

1959
Karl A. Folkers

1960
John C. Sheehan

1961
William E. Parham

1962
Stanley J. Cristol

1963
William G. Dauben

1964
Delos F. De Tar

1965
Theodore L. Cairns

1966
Herbert O. House

1967
Gilbert J. Stork

1968
Harry H. Wasserman

1969
Jerrold Meinwald

1970
Frederick G. Bordwell

1971
Ronald Breslow

1972
Jerome A. Berson

1973
Andrew Streitwieser, Jr.

1974
Ernest L. Eliel

1975
Jeremiah P. Freeman

1976
Howard E. Simmons, Jr.

1977
E. C. Taylor

1978
Harold Hart

1979
Andrew Kende

1980
Robert Ireland

1981
Paul Gassman

1982
Al Meyers

1983
J. C. Martin

1984
Peter Beak

1985
Clayton Heathcock

1986
Albert Padwa

1987
Carl R. Johnson

1988
Martin Semmelhack

1989
Patrick Confalone

1990
Victor Snieckus

1991
Joseph Gajewski

1992
James Marshall

1993
Michael Doyle

1994
Frank Davis

1995
William Roush

1996
Amos Smith

1997
Cynthia Maryanoff

1998
Dale Poulter

1999
Ross Johnson

2000
Dennis Curran

2001
Robert Boeckman

2002
William Nugent

2003
Edwin Vedejs

2004
William Greenlee

2005
Huw Davies

2006
Kathy Parker

2007
Barry Snider

2008
Robert Volkmann

2009
Lisa McElwee-White

2010
P. Andrew Evans

2011
Gary Molander

2012
Robert Larsen

2013
Lawrence T. Scott

2014
Christopher J. Welch

2015
Donna M. Huryn

2016
Paige E Mahaney

2017
Mary K. Boyd

2018
Katherine L. Lee

Secretary-Treasurers of the Division

1909 – 10
R. H. McKee*

1911 – 13
William J. Hale*

1914 – 15
C. G. Derick*

1916 – 19
Harry L. Fisher*

1920
Roger Adams*

1921
H. T. Clarke*

1922
Frank C. Whitmore*

1923
R. R. Renshaw*

1924
J. A. Nieuwland*

1925 – 29
Frank C. Whitmore*

1930 – 34
Julian Hill*

1935 – 39
Ralph Shriner*

1940 – 44
Arthur C. Cope*

1945 – 49
Ralph Bost*

1950 – 54
Nelson J. Leonard*

1954 – 59
William Parham*

1960 – 64
Herbert O. House*

1965 – 69
Norman A. LeBel*

1970 – 73
Jeremiah Freeman*

1974 – 77
E. M. Burgess*

1978 – 81
Peter Beak*

1981 – 85
Walter Trahanovsky*

1986 – 89
Joseph Gajewski*

1990 – 93
William Roush

1994 – 96
Dennis Liotta

1997 – 01
Alan Marchand

2002 – 05
James Rigby

2006 – 09
Gary Molander

2010 – 13
Marisa Kozlowski

2014 – 16
Barry Snider

* Also served concurrently as Program Chair

Beginning in 2017 the position of Secretary-Treasurer was separated into two positions

Secretaries of the Division

2017 – 21
Scott Sieburth

Treasurers of the Division

2017
Barry Snider

2018 – 2021
Robert E. Maleczka, Jr.

Program Chairs of the Division

1988 – 91
Frank Davis

1992 – 95
Dan Pasto

1996 – 99
Stan Hall

2000 – 03
Lisa McElwee-White

2004 – 06
Rob Larsen

2007 – 08
William Greenlee

2009 – 10
Scott Sieburth

2011 – 12
Ahmed Abdel-Magid

2013
Bob Gawley

2013 – 14
Ahmed Abdel-Magid

2015 – 16
Matt McIntosh

2017 – 18
Richard Broene

Membership of the Division

Year
Members

1921
306

1936
397

1937
430

1938
444

1939
441

1940
555

1941
565

1942
673

1943
679

1944
756

1945
715

1946
787

1947
1,002

1948
1,014

1998
15,061

1999
15,749

2000
18,092

2001
18,815

2002
19,231

2003
19,103

2004
18,732

2005
18,540

2006
18,306

2007
17,731

2008
17,090

2009
16,127

2010
16,081

2011
15,681

2012
14,883

2013
13,697

2014
12,318

2015
11,649

Division Officers

A historical list of all the Division’s Officers since 1925 is now available as a MS Excel File . The current list of officers including their contact information is available on the Executive Committee Page .

ORGN Archives Available at the Chemical Heritage Foundation

The Division of Organic Chemistry (ORGN) archives have been transferred to the Science History Institute (formally called the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF)). These archives currently cover the period from 1935 until 1983. Highlights include scrap books containing forms, reports, memos and other divisional documents kept by six secretary-treasurers covering a 30 year period from 1934 to 1964: Ralph L. Shriner (1934-39), Arthur C. Cope (1939-1944), Ralph W. Bost (1944-1949), Nelson J. Leonard (1950-1954), William E. Parham (1954-1959) and Herbert O. House (1959-1964). The archives also contain records of the National Organic Symposium from 1937-1983 and many other documents related to the functioning of the division. A finding aid provides more details. Please contact the secretary-treasurer, if you have records or papers that you would like to transfer to the archives so they will be accessible to those interested in the activities of ORGN.