About Chemical Innovation - Subscription Information
May 2001
Vol. 31, No. 5, p 1.
Chemist at Large

Table of Contents

Marc C. Fitzgerald

A time to move on

Loel Barr
Loel Barr
Tick tock…tick tock. The time has arrived for this baby bird to take flight. After nearly 7 years, it’s time to turn another chapter in my life. My tenure at ACS has been mostly positive. I have truly enjoyed working here, especially because of the people. I am excited, enthusiastic, and a little scared to leave my safety zone. I thought I would take this opportunity to tell you where I have been and where I have gone.

It was in August 1994, while attending the ACS national meeting in Washington, DC, that I first became aware of the awesomeness of ACS. I was part of the ACS Student Affiliates chapter at the University of Maryland, College Park, but I admit I wasn’t that involved. I was really doing myself an injustice in that respect. I was supposed to be attending the meeting for the sole purpose of going to sessions and meeting other chemists in the personal care industry (I was working at Gillette Research in Gaithersburg, MD). While attending the meeting, I decided to visit the ACS Employment Clearinghouse. I interviewed with about five employers. Three of the five interviews led to employment offers, but ACS was the only one in the Washington area. Not ready to leave the area, I accepted the ACS position.

I started out working in the ACS Books Department, charged with managing the peer-review process. The job grew to include some production and eventually acquisition responsibilities. I was with Books for about 2 years.

From Books, I went to work in the Education Division. I administered two programs: the College Chemistry Consulting Program and the Chemical Technology Approval Service. I also shared administration of the Student Affiliates (SA) program. Working in the SA program was truly an enjoyable experience. It gave me an opportunity to interact with undergraduates. They weren’t exactly little kids, but they expressed such a genuine love for the chemistry discipline and were always enthusiastic about lending a hand in hosting the SA events at national meetings. Working in Education gave me a better sense of how much we were a service- and member-oriented organization.

After 2 ½ years in Education, it was time to move on and get some different experiences under my belt. I returned to Publications as an assistant editor for CHEMTECH magazine in Special Publications. I traveled extensively: I went to France twice, just about every major city up and down the East Coast, and a few cities on the West Coast. Unearthing potential stories, particularly in biotech, became my expertise. Little did I know I was honing a skill that would later afford me another acquisition opportunity.

The other thing that I enjoyed about working on the magazine was the redesign. Chemical Innovation rose like a phoenix from the ashes of CHEMTECH. I became the resident historian, because as new editors joined the CHEMTECH team, I became the person with the most experience with the magazine. Working on CI also afforded me the opportunity to write about the hot topics affecting the chemical industry. I was finally able to use both sides of my brain.

What an exciting career I’ve had at ACS! I want to thank Marcia Dresner, who gave me the opportunity to be an editor, and Lynn Willis, who shared a lot of her experience in working with CHEMTECH. Special thanks go to the current CI staff and Publications management. I will miss all of you.

So where have I gone? My new job is the acquisition of books and electronic products for the entire chemistry division at CRC Press—a challenging task. The exciting part is the opportunity to build and develop the list from ground zero. Many of you are familiar with the Handbook of Chemistry and Physics and other products CRC publishes. It will be my responsibility to continue to bring you handbooks, resource materials, and electronic products in that light. You can reach me at mfitzgerald@crcpress.com for further details. Thank you all for playing a role in my career at ACS.


As Marc said, he’s been with the magazine longer than anyone else on the CI editorial staff. We’ll miss him a lot. He was always cheerful and enthusiastic and often provided us with creative story and graphics ideas. His new position is ideal for him because it will give him many opportunities to interact with people, which is his great strength. All of us wish him continued success in his career. —Ed.

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