Current Coblentz President’s Message

October 2023

In case you haven’t been reading my column for the past few months, SciX is this month.  A lot of planning and coordination has gone into what I believe will be an excellent meeting.  This 50th SciX/FACSS meeting has several memorable activities planned. 

A very special thank you to all the members who have donated time to help prepare for this meeting.  I want to thank all workshop instructors and session organizers who provided their time and energy on behalf of the Society.  A very special thank you to Ellen Miseo, who has coordinated the short courses, and Jim Rydzak, for continuing to organize the speed mentoring lunch.

I also want to thank all the award committees for their work selecting the winners.  I am looking forward to presenting the Lippincott Award to Peter Griffiths, the Craver Award to Ishan Barman, and (for the first time not at ISMS) the Coblentz Award to Wei Xiong.  I appreciate all the people who agreed to give talks in the associated award sessions to honor these deserving awardees.  

In addition to these national awards, I am excited to start what I hope will be a tradition to continue into future presidencies.  At the members’ breakfast on Monday, we will award two President’s Awards for extraordinary service on behalf of the Society.   I hope to keep these awards a surprise, but suffice it to say, we want our members to know we appreciate them and recognize these tremendous efforts. 

I look forward to spending time with our members at the Wednesday evening mixer.

SciX also marks the end of my presidency.  I will turn over the leadership of the Society to Luisa Profeta, who I am confident will continue to lead the Society forward.  I have thoroughly enjoyed leading the Society and believe I am passing on the leadership gavel with the Society in great shape. 

In my time as president, I am excited about activities that have been initiated and that I hope will continue going forward.  Michael George’s efforts to co-organize student activities across continents are exciting and important for incorporating younger members into our society.  I plan to continue to work with students at my university and throughout the Society to explore what student sections of Coblentz might look like. I look forward to continuing working with Ken Knappenberger on the board to explore and develop ideas for student groups. 

I am proud that the Board of Managers has approved the budget for the coming year; the Society remains in excellent financial health. By awarding the 2023 Coblentz Award at SciX we have brought the award presentations back onto schedule, overcoming the delay caused by the COVID pandemic.  I am also excited about the positive responses I have received regarding standing for the upcoming election to the Board of Managers.

As this is my last column, I want to say one last “Thank you” to all our members and encourage you to stay involved.  My goal was to be inclusive across backgrounds, career stage, and diverse expertise in vibrational spectroscopy.  I hope that members have felt welcome and will continue to grow the Coblentz Society.  

Zachary Schultz

President of the Coblentz Society