Incompetent Blogger Unearths Emails from Ancient Reed Chemistry Civilizations

One of the great joys of my job is that I receive emails from alums and colleagues telling me about lovely changes in their lives: new jobs, marriages, babies, fellowships, and so on. Really delightful stuff. And, of course, because I also write for this blog, I hope that they will let me share their information here. Nearly everyone says ‘yes’ to my requests (thank you!) and my next step is usually to move their email into a special folder where it will patiently wait for a gap in my busy schedule. Ideally, this gap appears in the next few days, or perhaps a few weeks, and the post appears. Ideally. That is The Plan.

I decided earlier today to take a look at the folder to see what might have escaped my notice in the end-of-semester rush. Oh, woe! Buried at the “bottom” of this folder were emails that date back, well, if not to an ancient, lost civilization, at least to a time when iPads looked pretty new and cool. =(

Here, along with my apologies for overlooking your emails, are these antique notices of Reed Chemistry News for your enjoyment (from oldest to newest). I hope you will enjoy them as much as I did, then and now.

Oct, 2012. Casey Jones ’05 shared these photos of the “05 chemistry girls” (Sarah Griner ’05, Joy Wattawa ’05, Kitty Richards ’05) who had attended her wedding:


Jun, 2013. Arthur Glasfeld shared a rowing photo (for those who find this image disturbing, I recommend that you stay away from the Willamette and other other Northwest waterways, especially during the early morning hours – he still rows):

Oct, 2013 brought news lofty and tasty.

Mar, 2015. We received this joyous news from Emily Dykhuizen ’01 that she had given birth to a healthy baby, Theodore, the night before. Welcome to the world, Theodore. We are so happy to see you!

April, 2015. Trevor Lohrey ’14 wrote to say that he had been offered a Nuclear Energy University Programs (NEUP) graduate fellowship, funded by the DOE Office of Nuclear Energy. The main focus of the program is to support graduate students with an interest in some area of energy-related nuclear science. Trevor is currently a graduate student in the Arnold group at UC Berkeley, and he had previously received a two-year NSF-sponsored SAGE IGERT fellowship through the Berkeley Center for Green Chemistry.

Aug, 2015. When spring rolls around, some of us start making travel plans, and then, when summer rolls around, off we go! Little do we expect that those who stay behind might be making other plans for us. Here’s what greeted when Sarah Kliegman ’02 when she returned from a long summer trip and opened her office door: dozens of balloons. Once the door was opened, though, it turned out that the balloons had travel plans of their own!


Sep, 2015. We welcomed Dr. Alicia McGhee, our new department associate and director of the organic chemistry laboratories, by inviting her to the President’s start-of-the-semester dinner for staff and faculty and finding her a special hat to wear. She was such a good sport that she not only donned the hat, she even smiled when Wendy Breyer snapped this photo. The hat, it should be emphasized, is not considered as lab safety gear.

Mar, 2016. Joohee Bang ’16 (left) and Alyssa Harrison ’16 (right) were named as the 2016 Geselbracht scholars and traveled to the Spring 2016 national ACS meeting in San Diego to present results from their thesis research. This photo captured the pair wearing d-orbital earrings in front of the photo of Maggie on display in the Chemistry lobby.

Joohee presented work she had been doing with Dan Gerrity and Rebecca LaLonde: “Pulsed Nd:YAG laser Raman and infrared spectroscopic investigation of bismuth(III) chiral anion complexes”, while Alyssa Harrison presented her work on another collaboration with Rebecca LaLonde: “Design & Reactivity of Bismuth (III)-Chiral Anion Complexes”.

The Maggie Geselbracht Women in Chemistry scholarship fund was created in 2015 to support research by Reed’s women undergraduate chemists. The fund underwrites summer research for women chemistry students and provides money for traveling to conferences to present their research. The first women to receive the scholarships, Natalie Keehan ’15 and Eve Mozur ’15, used them to attend the national ACS meeting and exposition in Denver.

Apr, 2016. Two Olde Reede chemistry alumni wrote:

  • Michael Clark ’93 told us that he had recently started working at Vertex Pharmaceuticals in Boston.
  • Daniel Korenblum ’99 alerted us to a paper that he had recently published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, “Real-Time, Single Molecule Electronic DNA Sequencing by Synthesis Using Polymer Tagged Nucleotides on a Nanopore Array” PNAS, 113(19), 5233-8 (10 May 2016).

May, 2016. There was joy inside the department and out:

  • First, the Great Day finally arrived (and I don’t mean graduation). After spending a rainy winter and spring watching our department associate, Danielle Cass, ride her bicycle to work each day, we received most excellent news: daughter Edith had arrived to take her place alongside her 2 older sisters in the Cass family home. Edith made her appearance on a fair day in May at 7:41 AM, but she wasn’t riding a bike. On the other hand, she was no stranger to the bicycle either (let’s not even try to count all the bike trips she made inside Danielle during the preceding 9 months!) Welcome to the world, Edith. We have loved passing you from one set of arms to the next arms this past year.
  • Philip Wilk ’95 wrote to tell us that he had been keeping an eye on various Reed news blogs and wanted to 1) congratulate us on our newest hire, Prof. Miriam Bowring, 2) to correct my errant description of the new Periodic Table in the Student Lounge (“you said the lounge table ‘contains elements 1-103,’ yet clearly the photo shows elements up to 114. I had something to do with Lv and Fl and a few others so it caught my eye . . . ;“), and, maybe best of all, to share some family news (I really hope for a visit, but I have a growing family and my 20-month old is really keeping me busy. I fear I am stuck on this coast for a while.”) FYI – Phil’s email signature says “Heavy Element Chemistry Program Manager, Chemical Sciences, Geosciences and Biosciences Division, Basic Energy Sciences, Office of Science” at

Jun, 2016. Kate Stoll ’04 and John Caldwell ’96 announced to family and friends that there was a new Stoldwell: Ella. Welcome to the world, Ella! We are overjoyed to see you and the other happy Stoldwells who waited so patiently. Here is a picture of Ella with brother Luke (it seemed like just yesterday when we had announced his arrival):

Jan, 2017 update: Kate & John added this news right on time for the 2017 New Year: “2016 was an especially happy year for us as we welcomed the newest member of our family. Ella is almost 7 months old now and a real joy. She’s at a fun age when she’s exploring everything she can get her hands (and mouth) on. … Luke is 3 1/2 years old and started pre-school this year. He has wonderful teachers and learned all about what makes a strong story this term. He authored and illustrated his own book, “Harbor’s Adventure,” and presented it at the year-end showcase. … John and Kate both took parental leave to be with Ella this summer and fall, and continue to work for NASA and MIT respectively. We feel so lucky to have interesting work and our two beloved kiddos. … We send our best wishes to you and your families for a happy and healthy 2017!”

Alan’s note: I want to offer my apologies once again to all those who had contacted me in the past 5 (five!) years only to see … bupkis! I hope this blog entry will begin to make amends.

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