Jim Tung, Webmaster

This page was last updated on 9/9/19.



Welcome to the homepage of the Virginia Blue Ridge Section of the American Chemical Society. The Section serves Alleghany, Amherst, Bedford, Botetourt, Campbell, Craig, Floyd, Franklin, Giles, Henry, Montgomery, Pittsylvania, Pulaski, Roanoke, and Rockbridge Counties in Virginia, as well as Mercer County in West Virginia. Section Meetings are held monthly during the academic year, September through May, with no meeting in December.

By-Laws Update

The American Chemical Society has asked all Local Sections to update and clarify certain portions of their bylaws, so that they are consistent with the broader ACS Bylaws and other ACS policies. ACS provided each Local Section with a set of Questions. The VBRS Executive Council met late in 2018 to discuss these Questions and then submitted its answers to ACS in January 2019. Using those answers, ACS prepared a fresh Bylaws document for us that incorporates our preferences as a Local Section.

The amended bylaws may be found at

The amended Bylaws will be ratified by VBRS at the Local Section meeting in Blacksburg in the third week of October. Ratification requires a quorum of twelve members and a twothird majority vote of those members present.

Next Meeting

Thursday, Sept 19, 2019

Dinner and Speaker: Chemist by Training - Hosted by Lynchburg University


6:00 PM — Social Time

6:30 PM — Dinner

7:30 PM — Keynote Presentation

All events will take place in Rooms 231 and 232 in Schewel Hall at Lynchburg University. The rooms are adjacent to one another.

The speaker will be Dr. Samantha Meiser Carpenter, Process Engineer, BASF. She will speak on “Chemist by Training.”

One year post-PhD and I have not touched a pipette or roundbottom flask since graduating. After nine years of schooling and training to become a bio-organic chemist, this is not necessarily how I thought my career would start. Though I am a “chemist by training,” so far in my brief professional career I am yet to be a chemist by job title. In this talk, I will briefly describe my graduate research in enzyme engineering and explain my transitions from pre-med student to bio-organic chemist to concrete formulation scientist to process engineer.

Dinner will be gourmet sandwiches. Included will be an apple, a bag of chips, an individual cookie, condiments, and bottled water. Options include:

  • Turkey and provolone croissant with lettuce, tomato & mayo
  • Vegetarian wrap with fresh vegetables and pepper jack cheese
  • Chicken Caesar wrap with lettuce, parmesan cheese, & dressing

To enable planning, an RSVP is requested by Monday, September 16, three days before the meeting by emailing Dr. Jason Crumpton, or calling him at (434) 544-8376. Please let Jason know which sandwich you prefer.

The Blue Ridge Chemist is our monthly newsletter. Information on joining the subscription list can be found at Blue Ridge Chemist. It may be of particular interest to those wishing to attend or looking for more details about our monthly Meetings.

Student Affiliate Chapters in the VBRS

Chemistry Departments Within the VBRS


  • I'm new to the area? How do I get information about the Blue Ridge Section?
    The easiest way to get a feel for our activities is to glance through back issues of our newsletter, the Blue Ridge Chemist. For a Newsletter subscription, send your request to Paul Deck, Dept. of Chemistry, Davidson Hall Room 480, Virginia Tech, 900 West Campus Drive, Blacksburg, VA 24061 or send an e-mail message to . Additionally, we use an email list to help us keep in better contact with you (we will not sell or otherwise distribute names from this list to any other parties). If you wish to be part of this list and have not yet been contacted via email regarding this list, please send an email message to Paul Deck with your name and email address.

  • Do I need to be an active member of the ACS to participate?
    No. Almost all our speaker presentations at our meetings are open to the public and free of charge. They are intended as an opportunity to gather together those with a mutual interest in chemistry in particular and issues in science, technology, and engineering in general. Our meetings attract a wide gamut of attendees from academia, industry, and passionate citizen-scientists. The cost of the optional social hour and dinners preceding the speaker's presentation are reduced for students and retired ACS members. Part of the national ACS membership dues are funnelled back to the local sections to support local activities, so we would ask that you consider a professional or affiliate membership if appropriate.

  • What is an affiliate membership?
    An affiliate membership to the VBRS is available for technicians, high school chemistry teachers, and others who deal with chemistry in some way, but do not wish to become regular members of the ACS. The dues are only $5 a year (January - December) and should be sent to Steve Smith,, Roanoke Valley Governor’s School, 2104 Grandin Rd SW, Roanoke, VA 24015.