Title and Description Page
Early Years 1
Grows up in Tennessee and Minnesota, one of three children. Mother’s early death. Father’s and aunt’s influence. Emphasis on curiosity. Does well in school. Love for rocks and minerals. Anecdote about Thomas Cech.
First Job at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) 11
For several years, only female staff scientist in chemistry division. Men’s reactions to her. Establishes Career Conference, “Science Careers in Search of Women,” initially for college students and now held annually for high school students. Conference leads to formulation and launch, with ANL leadership, of Women in Science and Technology (WIST). WIST meant to continue outreach and to recruit, retain, and promote women’s careers. Surgery for breast cancer. Becomes WIST Program Initiator. Janet Osteryoung, Mildred Dresselhaus, Jean’ne Shreeve, Virginia Valian as role models. Diversity Award from Council for Chemical Research.
College, Graduate School, and Postdoctoral Years 30
University of Chicago for bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in chemistry. University’s rigorous reputation. Decision to pursue chemistry. Thesis research employed electron paramagnetic resonance spectroscopy. Few female chemistry students at Chicago, e.g. Jeannette Manello and Barbara Warren. Took postdoc with James Norris at ANL studying natural photosynthesis.
From Senior Chemist to Division Director 38
Continues to be involved with WIST. Evolution of understanding experiences of women in science: from outright discrimination against women to subtle biases. Return of same issues every generation. Becomes scientific Group Leader, then Division Director of Chemistry Division. Dealing with other Division Directors. Occasional dichotomy between duty to women and duty to ANL. Continuing lab work with colleagues such as Tijana Rajh, visiting chemist from Yugoslavia. Challenges maintaining division’s budget within DOE’s funding structures; analogy to skydiving. Using science to solve real-world problems, especially cleanup and storage of nuclear waste. Materials Sciences Division. Advanced Photon Source. Center for Nanoscale Materials.
Looking Back 55
Collaborations. Other women group leaders and division directors. Structural changes at ANL. Students of today versus students of twenty years ago. Importance of mentoring, building networks. Example of Lisa Utschig, first named postdoc award, Fermi Scholar. Having husband in her division. E-mentoring. Increase in number of women in sciences. Differences between same gender and mixed gender interactions.