Celebration to honor department Chair Catherine Clarke

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On June 12, 2019, faculty, staff, and students gathered for a celebration to honor Chemistry & Biochemistry department Chair Professor Catherine Clarke. 

Clarke made history when she became the first female Chair of the department on July 1, 2016. Her three-year term ends on June 30, 2019. Professor Neil Garg will serve as the next Chair starting on July 1, 2019.  

Select photos can be viewed below and an online gallery of all photos from the event can be viewed here.  

At the event, Garg presented Clarke with an engraved plaque and a framed montage of photos from her time as Chair, signed by faculty and staff. He then praised Clarke for the “countless new directions” she took the department in before leading the group in a toast to Clarke. Vice Chair for Academic Personnel Professor Jim Bowie then made remarks in which he expressed the debt the department owes to Clarke, reminding everyone of what an enormous job it is to run such a large complex department, and how much brighter the department’s future looks than when she started. Clarke then spoke to the group and expressed her gratitude to the faculty and staff of the department. 

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After presenting department Chair Prof. Catherine Clarke with an engraved plaque, Prof. Neil Garg led the group in a toast.

In an email to the department, Dean of Physical Sciences Professor Miguel Garcia-Garibay expressed his gratitude to Clarke for her “outstanding leadership and service to the Department and to UCLA during her term as Department Chair”. “Cathy has helped the Department move in directions that will increase its impact in both research and education as reflected by the hiring of outstanding new faculty and a large increase in the Department’s endowment, with several student fellowships and endowed faculty chairs,” he said. “Cathy is also responsible for improved educational facilities, unprecedented alumni engagement, and many other distinctions that are characteristic of one of the best departments at one of the top universities.”

Clarke with faculty, staff, and members of her research group. (Click on photo to see larger version.)
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(Left ) In his remarks, Vice Chair Prof. Jim Bowie thanked Clarke for her service. (Right) Faculty, staff, and students react to Bowie’s remarks.

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(Left) Previous department Chairs Profs. Ken Houk (left) and Emil Reisler (right) with Clarke and Garg. (Right) The framed and signed photo montage presented to Clarke. (Click on photo to see larger version of photo montage.)

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(Left) Teacher-Scholar Prof. Rachel Prado (holding son Santiago), Clarke, and UCLA Librarian Emeritus Marion Peters.  (Right) Chemistry & Biochemistry faculty Profs. Hosea Nelson, Zhao Li, and Sri Kosuri.

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(Left) Chair’s Office Manager Jin Lee with Prof. Joe Loo. (Right) Events Coordinator Nikki Erinakis, Organic Divisional Assistant Julio Gonzalez, and Administrative Assistant Hon Hoang.

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(Left) Profs. Sarah Tolbert and Ric Kaner with Assistant Dean of Physical Sciences Dr. Kathleen Micham and Budget Analyst for the Dean’s office Janet Phuong. (Right) 

Undergraduate Advisor Sarah Eguchi and Student Affairs Officer

Annie Carpenter.

Article and photos by Penny Jennings, UCLA Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, penny@chem.ucla.edu.