Current Beckman Center Staff and Fellows

2013 Fellows


Beckman Center Staff

The Beckman Center’s staff members direct and organize the fellowship program, as well as academic programming that supports the Beckman Center’s mission to foster independent historical research on science, medicine, technology, or industry.

Ashley Augustyniak, Fellowship Coordinator

Carin Berkowitz, Director of the Beckman Center

Ronald Brashear, Arnold Thackray Director of the Othmer Library

Rebecca Ortenberg, Program Assistant

James R. Voelkel, Curator of Rare Books and Beckman Center Resident Scholar

Beckman Center Fellows

The Chemical Heritage Foundation is pleased to announce the appointments of the Beckman Center fellows and Center for Contemporary History and Policy visiting fellows for the academic year 2013–2014.

Cain Distinguished Fellow

  • Robert Fox (University of Oxford, U.K.), “Savants and Patriots: Science and the National Interest in France, 1850–1940”

Long-Term Postdoctoral Fellows

  • Donna Bilak (Bard Graduate Center), Edelstein Fellow, “The Allegorical Laboratory: Michael Maier’s Alchemical Emblem Book Atalanta fugiens (1617)”
  • Alex Csiszar (Harvard University), Haas Fellow,“The Rise of the Scientific Journal in Britain and France”
  • Juan-Andres Leon (Harvard University), Cain Fellow, “Mathematical Models in Polymer Research, 1940s–1970s: An Industry-Driven Theoretical Science?”
  • Emily B. Stanback (CUNY Graduate Center), Haas Fellow,“Romantic Experimentation: Radical Science and the Politics of Disability”

Long-Term Dissertation Fellows

  • Elisabeth Berry Drago (University of Delaware), Allington Fellow, “Thomas Wijck’s Painted Alchemists at the Intersection of Art, Science, and Practice”
  • Nicholas Harris (University of Pennsylvania), Price Fellow, “Better Religion through Chemistry: Aydemir al-Jildakī and Alchemy under the Mamluks”
  • Evan Hepler-Smith (Princeton University), Herdegen Fellow, “Nominally Rational: Systematic Nomenclature and the Structures of Organic Chemistry, 1889–1935”
  • Iain Watts (Princeton University), Edelstein Fellow, “‘Current’ Investigations: Galvanism, the Birth of Electrochemistry, and the World of Scientific News, 1790–1820”

Short-Term Fellows

  • Juan Luis Delgado (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid, Spain), Doan Fellow (1 month), “Chemical Industry and Chemicals in the Spanish Gum-Resin Industry, 19th–20th Centuries”
  • Michelle DiMeo (College of Physicians of Philadelphia), Allington Fellow (2 months), “Katherine Jones, Lady Ranelagh (1615–1691): The Intellectual Life of Robert Boyle’s Older Sister”
  • Rebecca Guenard (Temple University), Société de Chimie Industrielle Fellow (3 months) “‘Lab Rats’: A Chemistry Television Variety Program”
  • Georgiana Della Hedesan (University of Oxford, U.K.), Allington Fellow (3 months), “The Pursuit of Universal Medicine: Alchemical Prolongation of Life and Christianity in 17th-Century Paracelsian and Helmontian Thought”
  • Leah McEwen (Cornell University), Otlet Fellow (2 months), “Researching the Future through the History of Chemical Information”
  • Jarmo Pulkkinen (University of Oulu, Finland), Allington Fellow (1 month), “A. I. Virtanen—A Finnish ‘System-Builder’ behind AIV Butter Salt and AIV Method”
  • Viviane Quirke (Oxford Brookes University, UK), Doan Fellow (1 month), “Chemistry and the History of Cancer Chemotherapy in the U.S., 1940s–1990s”
  • Linda Richards (Oregon State University), Doan Fellow (2 months), “Unraveling Radiation History”
  • Gildo M. Santos (University of São Paulo, Brazil), Ullyot Scholar (2 months), “Ida Noddack and the Universal Function of Matter”
  • Thibaut Serviant-Fine (Université Claude Bernard Lyon 1, France), Doan Fellow (2 months), “Drugs and Tools: Antimetabolites in the Early History of Cancer Chemotherapy (1940–1960)”
  • Nicholas Shapiro (University of Oxford, U.K.), Doan Fellow (2 months), “Chemical Freshness, Chemical Fetish: The Rise of the Synthetic ‘New Car Smell’ in Mid-20th-Century America”
  • Robert Slate (George Mason University), Doan Fellow (1 month), “Regulating Nanomaterials: Drawing Lessons from TSCA and REACH”
  • Heather Smith (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), Société de Chimie Industrielle Fellow (3 months), "The Food Detectives"
  • Peter Westin (Georgia Institute of Technology), Doan Fellow (1 month), “Synthetics of Speed: The Trajectory of Changes in Tire Compound Formulatin across Motorsports and Automobiles in the Latter Half of the 20th Century”


Hear It Firsthand

CHF’s Center for Oral History captures and preserves the stories of notable figures in chemistry and related fields. Many of the oral histories in the collection belong to winners of CHF’s awards, including

  • Arnold Beckman, winner of the Othmer Gold Medal (2000)
  • Robert Allington, winner of the Pittcon Heritage Award (2005)
  • Carl Djerassi, winner of the Othmer Gold Medal (2000), the AIC Gold Medal (2004), and the Ullyot Public Affairs Lecturer (1995)
  • Gordon Cain, winner of the Petrochemical Heritage Award (1997)

Listen to their extraordinary stories today!


Ship of Fellows

CHF’s fellowship program attracts researchers from all over the world. Read about their work and time in Philadelphia on the Periodic Tabloid.


Support CHF

Help us preserve and share the history of chemistry and related sciences. Make a tax-deductible donation online.