Professor Mary Carroll ’86 announced as ACS President-Elect



Professor Mary Carroll ’86

Mary K. Carroll ’86, Dwane W. Crichton Professor of Chemistry at Union College, was elected president-elect in 2023 of the American Chemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society with 151,000 members in 140 countries.

Carroll, an analytical chemist, joined Union in 1992, the first alumnus hired as a tenured member of Union’s faculty.

She will be president of the company in 2024 and past president in 2025; she will also serve on the board of directors from 2023 to 2025.

“Professor Carroll has been a leader in research; student mentoring; promotion of women in STEM; and championing the teacher-scholar model in liberal arts, engineering, and computer science that is at the heart of Union College,” said President David R. Harris. “I am proud that the members of the AEC have elected Mary Carroll, professor and alumnus of Union College, as their next president.”

“Mary’s elevation to this high-profile position is entirely fitting and comes as no surprise to her Union colleagues and students,” said Michele Angrist, Dean of the Stephen J. and Diane K. Ciesinski Faculty and Vice – President of Academic Affairs. “For decades, Mary has been a dedicated and distinguished teacher-researcher, pushing the frontiers of knowledge while providing world-class learning experiences for students. All the while, she held a series of key leadership positions at Union during her career. We are delighted for her.

“I feel honored and truly happy,” Carroll said in the ACS announcement on October 26, 2022. “I look forward to promoting ACS activities that will produce maximum results for members and for society as a whole, and I also look forward to the opportunity to work with other AEC member volunteers at all levels.

“During this difficult time, it is extremely important that scientists contribute to society as a whole through research, education, advocacy and awareness-raising activities,” she said. “I am truly honored to be the President-elect of the AEC.”

Working on behalf of the ACS, Carroll said she intends to focus on supporting the dissemination of research, communicating science to the public, encouraging awareness and increasing the diversity.

See the ACS announcement on Professor Carroll’s election.

Carroll co-directs the College’s Airgel Lab, a highly productive interdisciplinary group of students and faculty in chemistry, mechanical engineering, and other STEM fields. The lab studies catalytic aerogels for automotive pollution mitigation and the use of aerogels for sustainable construction applications. The Aerogel Lab has been supported by a number of grants from the National Science Foundation. Carroll and his colleagues hold three patents, including two for their airgel manufacturing process. Since 2001, more than 160 undergraduate students have participated in airgel research at Union.

Carroll and Aerogel Lab Co-Director Ann Anderson, Agnes S. MacDonald Professor of Mechanical Engineering, received the 2021 Stillman Award for Faculty Excellence in Research.

Active in the ACS since 1998, she is an advisor to the Eastern New York chapter of the ACS. At the national level, she sits on the AEC Science Committee. She was recognized as an ACS Fellow in 2016.

At Union, she served as Chair of the Faculty Executive Committee and the College Planning and Priorities Committee.

Professor Carroll received her BA from Union College and her Ph.D. from Indiana University, Bloomington.

Among her other accolades, she was named one of INSIGHT into Diversity magazine’s 100 Inspirational Women in STEM. She received the Outstanding Service Award from the New York Chapter of the Society for Applied Spectroscopy; and the Union’s Stillman Award for Outstanding Teaching.

To learn more about Professor Carroll, visit her faculty webpage.

Founded in 1876 and chartered by the United States Congress, the mission of the ACS is to advance the broader chemical enterprise and its practitioners for the benefit of the Earth and all its inhabitants. The organization’s vision is to improve people’s lives through the transformative power of chemistry.

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