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Richard named fellow of American Chemical Society

UB chemist John Richard standing in front of a chalkboard with chemistry symbols written on it.

John Richard’s research focuses on how enzymes make slow reactions fast. Photo: Douglas Levere

Release Date: August 6, 2014

“The American Chemical Society plays an important role in explaining the importance of chemistry to the public, and in advancing the careers of professional chemists.”
John Richard, UB Distinguished Professor of Chemistry
University at Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. – John Richard, PhD, UB Distinguished Professor in the University at Buffalo Department of Chemistry, was named a 2014 fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS).

On Aug. 11, the ACS will recognize Richard and the 98 other scientists named fellows at the society’s 248th national meeting in San Francisco.

Fellow status in the ACS, one of the world’s largest scientific societies, is among the highest honors a chemist can achieve, with fewer than 1 percent of members awarded the distinction. Recipients are selected for their outstanding contributions to chemistry and the society.

“The American Chemical Society plays an important role in explaining the importance of chemistry to the public, and in advancing the careers of professional chemists,” says Richard. “I am happy that the society has recognized my contribution to their mission.”

A UB faculty member since 1993, Richard studies how enzymes make slow reactions fast.  

He has studied a range of problems related to the mechanisms for organic reactions and for their catalysis by enzymes – proteins that enormously accelerate the rate of biological reactions, which are essential for sustaining life.

Richard has edited 15 books and authored more than 200 publications, with 84 appearing in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.  He has received numerous awards, including the 1988 First Award from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) 2007 Special Creativity Award.

A frequent contributor to the ACS, Richard served six years as secretary of the society’s Division of Biological Chemistry. The ACS Western New York chapter presented him the 2009 Jacob F. Schoellkopf Award for his service to the chemistry and chemical engineering fields. He also worked as editor and editorial board member for several scientific journals, and as a chair for numerous scientific conferences.

The NIH has continuously funded Richard’s work since 1988, and he has received additional funding from the NSF and the Petroleum Research Fund.

Richard received both his bachelor and doctoral degrees in chemistry from Ohio State University before completing postdoctoral work at Brandeis University.

He and his wife, Tina L. Amyes, UB adjunct associate professor in the Department of Chemistry, live in Williamsville.

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