2019 Departmental Awards Ceremony

Posted on

19UCLAChemBiochem DeptAwards small

We celebrated the many accomplishments of our faculty, postdocs, students, staff, and alumni at our annual departmental awards ceremony on April 22, 2019.

Each year at this event we recognize our faculty, postdocs, and students for their accomplishments in research and teaching, two of the primary missions of our university. We also recognize staff members for their outstanding contributions to the department. Finally, we honor one of our distinguished Ph.D. graduates with the Alumni Legacy Award in recognition of his or her career achievements and support of and service to the university; this year the award was presented to Dr. Shyr-Jin Tsay (Ph.D. ’77).

The award recipients are listed below. Congratulations to all the winners!

A photo gallery from the event, which was held at the California Nanosystems Institute, can be viewed here and select photos can be viewed below. 

DA 1
DA 2
DA 3
DA 5
DA 4
DA 6
DA 7
DA 8
DA 10
DA 11


Presented by Prof. Benjamin Schwartz, Vice Chair for Undergraduate Education, and Dr. Heather Tienson

Alumni Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowships

Miles Savage, Bryan Yang, Roland Yu

Dr. Ravi and Aparna Bikkina Family Scholarship 

Oanh Huynh

Paul Boyer and Rich Cross Summer Undergraduate Fellowships

Wenzhe Chen, Clarissa Anne Pham, Xinran (Michelle) Tang, Melton Zheng

Department of Energy (DOE) Fellowships

Madeline Evans, Rachel McAllister, Julius I. Yevdash

Donors Summer Research Fellowships

Mohammad Jamal, Krista Yang

Daniel Kivelson Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowships

Matthew Hennefarth, Greg Schuette

Howard Reiss Memorial Fund Fellowship 

Zackary Ferrin 

General Chemistry Instructional Laboratory Faculty Fellowships

Hannah Eckvahl, Scarlett Huang, Sining Wang, Isabelle Winardi

Lorraine H. and Masuo Toji Summer Research Fellowships

Arthur Huang, Junho Kwon, Carolyn Wu

Whitcome Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowships

Andrew Gilmour, Miranda Kelly

Raymond & Dorothy Wilson Research Fellowships

Paul Ajodha, Fadi Al Sarhan, John Oliver Chapman, Anabel Cho Lopez, Stella Fors, Tanin Hooshmand, Morgan Hopp, Carolyn Hu, Sheng Qu, Alexander Umanzor


Presented by Prof. Hosea Nelson; Dr. Jane Strouse, former Director of the UCLA Molecular Instrumentation Center (MIC); Prof. Jorge Torres, Graduate Advisor for the Biochemistry, Molecular and Structural Biology (BMSB) Ph.D. program; Prof. Jose Rodriguez; and Prof. Ken Houk, Area Advisor for Organic Specialization.

Excellence in Second Year Academics and Research

Timothy Boit, Ruxi Dai, Arundhati Deshmukh, Daniel Estabrook, Amy Lai, Stasik Popov, Roselyn Rodrigues

Hanson-Dow Awards

Sarah Anthony, Erin Avery, Jason Chari, Anton El Khoury, Jack Fuller, Zachary Gvildys, Liv Heidenreich, Morgan Howe, Francesca Ippoliti, Ieva Liepuoniute, Jay McDaniel, Shreya Patel, Erick Velasquez 

Graduate Research Award for Interdisciplinary Research

Katherine Bay

George Gregory Research Award

Yung Kuo

Dafni Amirsakis Memorial Fellowship Award

Maly Cosco

Daniel E. Atkinson and Charles A. West Prize in Metabolic Biochemistry

Sue Tsui

John M. Jordan Memorial Award

Ivan Ramirez

Roberts A. Smith Research Award

Orlando Martinez

Ralph & Charlene Bauer Research Award

Wei Chen

Faculty Award for Innovation in Inorganic Chemistry

Dahee Jung

John Stauffer Fellowship

Marco Messina

Majeti-Alapati Fellowship

Andy Smaligo         

Ernest F. Hare, Jr., Memorial Scholarship

Alex Bagdasarian

Christopher S. Foote Fellows

Presented by Prof. Ken Houk

Senior Foote Fellows

Sarah Anthony, Kersti Caddell Haatveit, Daniel Estabrook, Stasik Popov

Foote Fellow

Angel Mendoza


Presented by Prof. Catherine Clarke, Department Chair

Evan Darzi, Zhaoyang Lin, Julia Stauber, Yaqiang Wang


Presented by Prof. Catherine Clarke, Department Chair

CHEM Honoree
Max Kopelevich

Key Element Awards

Carbon Award – Janette Kropat

Hydrogen Award – Stephanie Hotz

Oxygen Award – Graduate Office Staff: Justyna Glode, Nick Baerg, & Annie Carpenter

Technical Staff (Ts) Excellence Award – Ankur Gholkar


Hanson-Dow Award for Excellence in Teaching

Presented by Prof. Michael Jung, Teaching Committee Chair

Professor Alexander Spokoyny and Dr. Heather Tienson-Tseng

The Herbert Newby McCoy Awards

Presented by Prof. Ken Houk, Awards Committee Chair

Professor Hosea Nelson and Professor Jose Rodriquez


Presented by Prof. Catherine Clarke, Department Chair

Dr. Shyr-Jin “Jim” Tsay

The Department is extremely grateful to our generous donors and alumni whose support makes these many fellowship and award programs possible.

Photo captions:

1. Professor Catherine Clarke (left) with the 2019 Alumni Legacy Award recipient Dr. Shyr-Jin Tsay.

2. (Left) Professor Michael Jung presented the Hanson-Dow Award for Excellence in Teaching to Dr. Heather Tienson-Tseng and Professor Alex Spokoyny (not pictured). (Right) Professor Ken Houk presented the Herbert Newby McCoy Awards to Professors Jose Rodriguez (center) and Hosea Nelson (right).

3. (Left) Postdoctoral Awards were presented to Dr. Julia Stauber (Spokoyny group), Dr. Zhaoyang Lin (Duan group), Dr. Yaqiang Wang (Feigon group) and not pictured Dr. Evan Darzi (Garg group). (Right) Dr. Ankur Gholkar (Torres group) received the Technical Staff (Ts) Excellence Award.

4. (Left) Dr. Max Kopelevich received the Staff CHEM Honoree award and (right) Dr. Janette Kropat received the Carbon Award. 

5. (Left) Physical Chemistry Divisional Assistant Stephanie Hotz received the Hydrogen Award. (Right) Graduate Office staff Annie Carpenter, Nick Baerg, and Justyna Glode received the Oxygen Award.

6. (Left) Undergraduate student Oanh Huynh received the Dr. Ravi and Aparna Bikkina Family Scholarship.  (Right) Dr. Jane Strouse, the former director of the UCLA Molecular Instrumentation Center Director, presented the Dafni Amirsakis Memorial Fellowship Award to Maly Costco (not pictured).

7. (Left) Recipients of the inauguaral Paul Boyer and Rich Cross Summer Undergraduate Fellowships with Professor Ben Schwartz – Melton Zheng, Wenzhe Chen, Clarissa Pham (Xinran “Michele” Tang not pictured). (Right) Professor Jose Rodriguez and recipient of the Ralph & Charlene Bauer Research Award Wei Chen.

8. (Left) Professor Ken Houk with Andy Smaligo, recipient of the Majeti-Alapati Fellowship. (Right) Professor Jorge Torres and Sue Tsui, recipient of the Daniel E. Atkinson and Charles A. West Prize in Metabolic Biochemistry.

9. Family and friends helped award recipients celebrate at the reception following the ceremony – (left) award recipient Katherine Bay and her family and (right) award recipient Morgan Howe and her parents.

10. (Left) Award recipient Kersti Caddell Haatveit (far left) and her family.  (Right) CHEM Honoree Dr. Max Kopelvich and his wife Doreen Yeh.

Photos and article by Penny Jennings, UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry, penny@chem.ucla.edu.