WASHINGTON — Ingrid Montes, professor of chemistry at the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras, San Juan, has been elected director-at-large of the American Chemical Society (ACS), the world’s largest scientific society. She began her three-year term on the board January 1, 2013.
Montes graduated from the University of Puerto Rico with a B.S. in 1980 and a Ph.D. in 1985. She has been on the faculty there since 1987.
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Her many years of service to the ACS have included positions at the national and local levels, such as member of the ACS Committee on Education; chair of the Committee on Community Activities; editorial advisory board member for the Journal of Chemical Education and ChemMatters magazine; and chair, councillor and National Chemistry Week Coordinator for the Puerto Rico Section of the ACS. The latter position she has held for 20 years.
“Education has always been a priority for me,” says Montes. “ACS has demonstrated strong leadership at all levels in this area and has set very high standards of quality and excellence. Through high-quality journals and publications, mobile apps, access to online presentations at national meetings, selection of important topics on webinars, timely short courses, etc., ACS promotes scientific literacy and keeps the global scientific community informed of cutting-edge discoveries.”
Montes says that the ACS needs to sustain high standards for education at all levels, and it also needs to help improve teacher preparation in chemistry and educate the next generation in sustainability and green chemistry.
Montes, an ACS Fellow, has long been a champion of informal education as well, winning the ACS Volunteer Service Award for many of her outreach efforts in the community. Pointing to programs like National Chemistry Week, Chemists Celebrate Earth Day and Chemistry Ambassadors, she says, “I fully support these networks, and I cannot emphasize enough how important it is that every ACS member joins these efforts to increase our visibility in Congress and in the general community.”
She lives in San Juan with her son, Gerado José, her daughter, Mariana del Carmen, and her husband, José A. Prieto, who is also a chemist.
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The American Chemical Society is a nonprofit organization chartered by the U.S. Congress. With more than 163,000 members, ACS is the world’s largest scientific society and a global leader in providing access to chemistry-related research through its multiple databases, peer-reviewed journals and scientific conferences. Its main offices are in Washington, D.C., and Columbus, Ohio.