This past fall, over 200 people came together in Loveland, Colorado for the Rocky Mountain Regional Conference: Energy in the Rockies, hosted by the Colorado Section of the American Chemical Society (COACS). This conference brought together local sections from Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Wyoming, and Arizona. Special symposium and invited presenters came to discuss the application of chemistry to the production, management, evaluation, and study of energy. There were 236 presentations across ten symposium, six sessions with contributed presentations, six poster sessions, and the High School Teachers Symposium. The ACS also offered a Career Services Program, and several committees such as the Undergraduate Affiliates, Young Chemist, Women Chemists and the High School Association, led several additional programs. One of the most attended activities at the conference was the Young Chemist Committee, organized by Colorado State University chemistry graduate student, Christine Dunne.
At this event, several members from the Colorado Chapter and Colorado State University were honored for their outstanding work in chemistry at the awards banquet. Jordan Koehn, from the Crans Group, received a Top 5 Poster Awards in the organic division, which includes a one-year ACS membership Koehn presented a poster entitled “Synthesis and characterization of a simple lipoquinone analog: Ubiquinone-2 adopts a folded conformation in solution and within a reverse micelle AOT-water interface.” Another poster award as given to Jonathan Thielman , from the Williams Group, who received a poster prize (top 15 posters) for his work. Kimberly Klas, also of the Williams Group, was selected to presenter her poster at Sci-Mix – an honor bestowed on the top 5% of abstracts submitted to a national conference.
The P3 Award, Partners for Progress & Prosperity Award, was presented to three organizations in recognition of their successful partnership working to benefit chemistry students in Colorado. The collaboration between COACS and two high school organizations – Colorado Chemistry Teacher Association (CCTA) and the Colorado chapter for the American Association for Chemistry Teachers (AACT), were awarded this honor. Professor Debbie Crans accepted this award on their behalf for her role as the Chair of the COACS. This special collaboration works to bring regional chemistry programs to youth and includes National Chemistry Week, Annual High School and High School Teacher Award Recognition, and joint activities at ACS events and the Colorado Science Conference for High School teachers. The P3 was given for the first time and reflects the long-term work that the three organizations have been doing for chemistry and science in Colorado.