Wednesday, February 13, 2013

African American Women Chemists

Dr. Marie Maynard Daly received her PhD in Chemistry from Columbia University in 1947. Although she was hardly the first of her race and gender to engage in the field, she was the first African American woman to receive a PhD in chemistry in the United States. In this book, Jeannette Brown, an African American woman chemist herself, will present a wide-ranging historical introduction to the relatively new presence of African American women in the field of chemistry. It will detail their struggles to obtain an education and their efforts to succeed in a field in which there were few African American men, much less African American women.

The book contains sketches of the lives of African America women chemists from the earliest pioneers up until the late 1960's when the Civil Rights Acts were passed and greater career opportunities began to emerge. In each sketch, Brown will explore women's motivation to study the field and detail their often quite significant accomplishments. Chapters focus on chemists in academia, industry, and government, as well as chemical engineers, whose career path is very different from that of the tradition chemist. The book concludes with a chapter on the future of African American women chemists, which will be of interest to all women interested in science.

About The Author:

Ms. Jeannette E. Brown is a former Faculty Associate in the department of Pre-College Programs at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. She previously held the position of Research Chemist and worked at Merck & Co. Inc for twenty-five years in that capacity. She started her industrial career at CIBA Pharmaceutical Co. as a junior chemist and worked there for eleven years. She has a research MS degree from the University of Minnesota and a BS degree in the Field of Chemistry from Hunter College. She was elected to the Hunter College Hall of Fame for her work as a mentor for young students . She is the 2004 Société de Chimie Industrielle (American Section) Fellow of the Chemical Heritage Foundation. She also received the Ullyott Fellowship from the Chemical Heritage Foundation to work on her book. She studied the History of African American women chemist and has lectured and written this book about her work. This fellowship was from May to July 2009.

She is a member of the first class of American Chemical Society Fellows 2009.

She is a member of the Oral History Association and will collect oral histories of contemporary African American women chemists to be included in a future book.

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