Local ACS Section Logo
Saint Louis Section
Younger Chemists Committee

YCC blocks logoThe Younger Chemists Committee of St Louis

The St Louis YCC is the voice of younger chemists in the St Louis area, providing opportunities to participate in community chemistry education and network with other chemists in the area. We put on regular seminars on career topics in our Career Management Seminar series. Our annual Chemistry Career Night highlights types of careers that chemists work in. We meet regularly to plan activities as well as network. Through these activities, we want to develop leadership skills in our members, develop soft skills which are beneficial in our professional careers, and make the ACS relevant and accessible to younger chemists. See what we are up to below in reports and on Facebook and/or contact us via email at ycc@stlacs.org. We love hearing from you.

We maintain a mailing list of Younger Chemists in the St Louis local section territory. It is an announce-only list used for events sponsored by the local YCC; rarely would we send out more than one message a month. Members of the section under 35 years old, identified in the national ACS roster, are automatically subscribed to the list, and we don’t automatically unsubscribe you when you “age out.’ You may subscribe or remove yourself from the list here.

National YCC logoAbout the national YCC organization

YCC officers

From left to right: Melanie Gray, Benjamin Barth, Bo Bi, Natalie LaFranzo, Kathleen Chaffee, Eric Bruton. Front: Kathleen McGee

The Younger Chemists Committee was chartered by the American Chemical Society to address the specific needs of younger and early-career chemists. The YCC’s vision is to lead younger chemists into successful careers and active roles in the ACS and the profession. To achieve this, the Committee relies on its strengths of diversity, influential involvement, and dedicated leadership. By leading the way in the use of technology and creating outreach opportunities for our constituency, we hope to change the face of the ACS and become the most influential Committee in the Society.

What does this mean to you? The National YCC serves as a resource for younger chemists to find awards, start local section YCCs, attend national meeting programs relevant to younger chemists, and find other information that is of importance to younger chemists, like resources on interviewing skills and grant proposal writing.

Is there something missing? Let the national YCC know what you think. Talk to them on Facebook, on Twitter, by email, or in person at ACS national meetings.



Natalie LaFranzo  


Benjamin Barth

Media coordinators

Kathleen Chaffee

Executive members

Bo Bi
Eric Bruton
Kathleen McGee

Meet your YCC-STL officers

Ben Barth photo Benjamin Barth (Treasurer)
Ben Barth received his PhD from Purdue University in August of 2011 after completing studies in synthetic organic chemistry. During his graduate work, his research focused on total synthesis of biologically important molecules and development of methods for their synthesis. He is currently employed as an Assistant Professor of Chemistry at the St Louis College of Pharmacy (STLCOP) where his future research goals include undergraduate laboratory development and employing active learning techniques in the undergraduate classroom. Ben enjoys spending time with friends and family, participating in bowling and softball leagues, and volunteering as a part-time assistant to the newly formed tennis program at STLCOP.
Bo Bi photo Bo Bi (Executive member)
Bo is a PhD candidate in the Department of Chemistry at Washington University in St Louis. His research focuses on building small molecule libraries and probing ligand-receptor interactions in real-time, using the libraries on a novel platform: microelectrode arrays. Bo’s scientific expertise and leadership skills are further established by advising and collaborating with biotechnology companies and serving in multiple professional and academic positions. He is expecting to get his PhD degree in 2012 and move on to some research or professional opportunities. Sports, time with family and friends, books and movies were, are, and will be stuff coloring his life.
Eric Bruton photo Eric Bruton (Executive member)
Eric A Bruton received his PhD from UM–St Louis before joining Crosslink in St Louis. As Senior Research Scientist he worked on new materials for uses in a variety of electronic devices, including SuperFlex, a flexible light-emitting device for military tents. Currently Eric is an R&D Research Principal at Jost Chemical, Inc, developing new food and pharmaceutical additives. He also teaches at Lindenwood University in the chemistry department. Eric enjoys interesting conversations with friends and colleagues in professional or social environments.
Kathleen Chaffee photo Kathleen Chaffee (Media coordinator)
Kathleen Chaffee is a Patent Agent at SNR Denton, LLC. Kathleen received her PhD in Chemistry from Southern Illinois University–Carbondale; her doctoral research involved the development of magnetic resonance (MR) techniques for studying molecular interactions. As a postdoctoral research associate with the Biomedical Magnetic Resonance Laboratory at Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, Kathleen developed animal models of human disease, including various cancer models, and developed various magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) techniques. As a Fulbright Advanced Student, Kathleen studied under world-class synthetic chemists at École Normale Supérieure de Lyon, where she synthesized novel cage molecules and studied the kinetic and energetic contributions in ligand binding. Kathleen’s interests include volunteer work with various organizations and outdoor activities such as whitewater kayaking and hiking.
Natalie LaFranzo photo Natalie LaFranzo (Chair)
Natalie received her BS from Bradley University in Peoria, IL. She is pursuing her PhD in Chemistry at Washington University in St Louis, where her research is focused on developing new surface chemistry to study problems in neurobiology and development. Following graduation in December, 2012, Natalie plans to pursue a job in industry. Natalie is also the head cheerleading coach at Wash U and enjoys spending time training and developing her team, food and wine tasting, reading, and walking her dogs.
Kathleen McGee photo Kathleen McGee (Executive member)
Kathleen (Kat) graduated from Ava High School in 2005 and Southeast Missouri State University in 2009 with a BA in Forensic Chemistry. She is now working at Steris Corporation. When she’s not at work, she enjoys participating in the St Louis Renaissance Faire and Girl Scouts.

Links and resources

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