The aims of the Organic Chemistry Community are to:
- Promote excellence, sustainability, and the exchange of knowledge in the areas of organic chemistry, including a focus on the next generation
- Support scientists across all sectors and career stages working in the field of organic chemistry in its broadest interpretation
- Foster and strengthen collaborations between organic chemistry and the wider scientific research community
- Support and promote all areas of inclusion and diversity across organic chemistry
- Influence policymakers on issues related to organic chemistry
Members of the Council are responsible for ensuring that the Community is fulfilling its purpose.
Find out about current Council vacancies.
Professor David O'Hagan
Professor David O'Hagan studied chemistry at the University of Glasgow (1982) and then Ph.D (1985) at the University of Southampton. He spent a postdoctoral year at the Ohio State University and in 1986 was appointed to teach Organic Chemistry at the University of Durham.
At Durham he progressed to Professor developing research interests in natural products biosynthesis and organo-fluorine chemistry. He remained at Durham until 2000 before moving to his current position at the School of Chemistry, and where he is also associated with the Biomedical Sciences Research Centre (BSRC). He was elected FRSE in 2004 and served as Head of School at St Andrews from 2014-2018.
Professor O’Hagan was a founding member and a past Chair of the RSC Fluorine Group and he has received a number of Awards including the IChemE, 'Judges Award' for fluorinase enzyme isolation in 2002, the RSC Malcolm Campbell Memorial Prize in Medicinal Chemistry in 2005, the RSC Tilden Medal in 2006/2007, the RSC 'Natural Product Reports Award' Lecturer in 2009, the American Chemical Society (ACS) Award for 'Creative Work in Fluorine Chemistry' in 2012 and the RSC Organic Stereochemistry Award in 2015.
In 2018 he was the recipient of the triennial Prix Moissan awarded by the Fondation de la Maison de la Chime in Paris for contributions to fluorine chemistry.
Dr Joëlle Prunet
Dr Joëlle Prunet attended the Ecole Normale Supérieure (Paris) as an undergraduate and worked under the supervision or Professor Marc Julia during her Master, then obtained her PhD in chemistry from Harvard University with Professor David A. Evans in 1993. Afterwards she joined the CNRS as Chargée de Recherche at the Ecole Polytechnique (Palaiseau).
In 2002 she was awarded the Bronze Medal from the CNRS, and the following year she was promoted to Directrice de Recherche and obtained a teaching position at the Ecole Polytechnique. In 2009, she was appointed to the University of Glasgow. Her research interests include the total synthesis of bioactive natural products and the development of new methodologies in organic chemistry. Recently, she has been developing new methods for the post-polymerisation functionalisation of polymers of very diverse natures.
Dr Matilda Bingham
Matilda Bingham is a medicinal chemist with over 15 years’ experience of working in the pharmaceutical R&D sector in ‘large pharma’ (Organon, Schering-Plough, Merck MSD), Biotech (Redx Pharma) and currently with a CRO (Concept Life Sciences).
Matilda’s early career was spent working in CNS therapeutic areas where her research focussed on design strategies for getting small molecule therapeutics across the blood brain barrier. More recently as Head of Research and Operations at Redx Pharma she was involved in the discovery and development of oncology and fibrosis clinical and pre-clinical candidates, including the porcupine inhibitor RXC004 and BTK inhibitor LOXO-305.
She is currently VP Medicinal Chemistry & Site Director at Concept Life Sciences overseeing multiple medicinal chemistry programmes in Hit-to-Lead and Lead Optimisation. Throughout her research Matilda has been an advocate for organic synthesis and its lynchpin role in the success of drug discovery programmes.
Matilda is a member of the SCI fine chemicals group and has authored over 40 papers, patents and publications including the RSC book “Drug Discovery for Psychiatric Disorders”.
Dr Will Unsworth
Will is originally from Coppull, near Chorley in Lancashire (UK). He studied chemistry at the University of Oxford and did his Ph.D. studies in the group of Prof. Jeremy Robertson.
He completed his Ph.D. in 2010 and then began work at the University of York, first as a postdoctoral research associate in the group of Prof. Richard Taylor, before being appointed to a Research and Teaching Fellowship in 2013. In 2015 Will was awarded a Leverhulme Trust Early Career Fellowship to develop new procedures to synthesise functionalised macrocycles and is now the holder of the inaugural Eleanor Dodson Fellowship at the University of York.
His current research interests include ring expansion approaches for the synthesis of medium-sized rings and macrocycles, the construction of diverse spirocyclic scaffolds and catalyst selective synthesis. Will won the 2018 RSC Hickinbottom Award for his work on spirocycles and macrocycles. Will now lives in York with his wife Hayley and two children Billy and Catherine.
Professor Hitendra M. Patel FRSC
Dr. Hitendrakumar M. Patel is a Professor of Chemistry at the Department of Chemistry of the Sardar Patel University, V. V. Nagar 388 120, Gujarat, India.
He acts as Review Editor in Organic Chemistry section, Frontiers in Chemistry Journal and Editorial board member of Frontiers in Chemistry and in Arkivoc journal. He was an Elected Member of the Organic Division Council, The Royal Society of Chemistry, London. He has 22 and 15 years of rich experience in Teaching and Research respectively. He has membership in many national and international professional organizations like RSC, ACS, ICS, ISCB etc.
His research group focuses on Organic Chemistry for the Development of Bioactive Heterocyclic Scaffolds via Multi-component reactions, utilizing a Sustainable Chemistry approach and results have been published in more than 30 research papers in reputed journals related to Organic Chemistry.
He has been granted two projects to a tune of rupees 51.81 lakh from National agencies like DST-SERB and UGC, New Delhi. He was selected as a Brand ambassador of Bentham Science Publisher for the Year of 2018-2019. He received International Travel Support from DST-SERB, New Delhi to attend RSC sponsored International Symposium on Green Chemistry ISGC-2019 at La Rochelle, France.
He had given many invited talks at the National and International level in Conferences and Universities. He has received the Outstanding Contribution Award for reviewing Journal from Elsevier, and also received Distinguished Faculty in Science Award-2017 by Venus International Foundation, Chennai, India. He also worked as an Expert reviewer in many high repute Journals with more than 90 reviewed papers and received Top 1% Peer Reviewer Award 2018-2019 in Chemistry from Publons.
Dr Dorcas Olufunke Moronkola
Dorcas O Moronkola is a researcher and teacher of organic chemistry at the University of Ibadan, Nigeria.
Dorcas received her PhD in organic chemistry from the University of Ibadan in 2001 where she is currently an Associate Professor of Organic Chemistry. Her research focuses on all aspects of organic chemistry and natural products research that can support anti-aging and immune boosting drives.
Dorcas is a member of a number of professional associations including RSC, the Chemical Society of Nigeria, and the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD).
Dr Louis C. Morrill
Dr Louis Morrill received his PhD from the University of St Andrews in 2014 under the direction of Prof. Andrew Smith and undertook postdoctoral research at UC Berkeley with Prof. Richmond Sarpong.
In June 2015, he initiated his independent research career at Cardiff University. Research in the group is focused on inventing new reactions in organic chemistry and developing sustainable catalytic methodologies for synthesis.
Dr Andrew Jamieson MRSC
Andrew is a Reader in Chemical Biology at the University of Glasgow.
He obtained his BSc(Hons) and PhD degrees in Chemistry from the University of Glasgow. He then took up a post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Montreal working with Prof. William Lubell. In 2008 Andrew joined the lab of Prof. Andrew Hamilton FRS at Yale University and then the University of Oxford. He then joined the faculty at the University of Leicester in 2010.
In 2016 Andrew moved to the University of Glasgow as a Senior lecturer and was promoted to Reader in 2019. He leads a research group focused on small molecules, peptides and peptidomimetics that can be used to probe the biological mechanisms underpinning disease.
Professor Beining Chen
Beining Chen (BC) is a Professor of Medicinal Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry at the University of Sheffield.
Since 2003, she has led prion chemical biology research at Sheffield, working on developing small molecule tools to understand the role of prion protein (PrPC) in stem cell biology (Stemistry) and in neurodegenerative diseases (Alzheimer’s disease and vCJD) and in cancer. She has been devoting herself to establish an integrated platform for early lead discovery involving computer-aided drug design, and modern synthetic techniques in conjunction with biological screening assay.
Beining obtained a BSc in 1984 and an MSc in 1987 from China Pharmaceutical University. She obtained a PhD in 1991 under the supervision of Professor Gordon Kirby at the University of Glasgow. She worked as a Research Fellow under Professor Sir Jack Baldwin.at the Dyson-Perrins Laboratory in the University of Oxford (1993-1995). In 1996, she moved to Cranfield University where she started her independent academic career as a lecturer. She moved to Sheffield in 2003 and was promoted to a professor in 2014.
Dr Nicole Hamblin
Nicole Hamblin is currently Head of Chemistry and DMPK in the Early Discovery division at Charles River, where she leads a team of over 200 scientists engaged in integrated drug discovery contract research.
Prior to joining Charles River in 2017, Nicole spent 20 years as a medicinal chemist and project leader at GlaxoSmithKline, where she led the discovery of multiple candidate compounds and the subsequent progression of inhaled asset nemiralisib into Phase IIa trials for respiratory indications. She is co-inventor on more than 25 patents and has co-authored over 15 peer reviewed publications.
In 2014 Nicole won the Royal Society of Chemistry Capps Green Zomaya Award for Medicinal Chemistry for her work on PI3Kinase and she was appointed a Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry in 2017. Nicole is a champion of organic chemistry as a fundamental component of drug discovery and has been involved in a number of academic collaborations in the field.
She served a four-year term as a member of the MRC DPFS grant funding panel and is the long-standing Chair of the organising committee for the RSC BMCS Symposium on Medicinal Chemistry in Eastern England. Nicole holds a first class degree and a PhD in Chemistry, both from Oxford University.
Professor Helen Sneddon
Helen is the Director of the Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence at the University of York. She carried out her MSci and PhD at University of Cambridge, where she studied the use of dithianes in organic synthesis in Professor Steve Ley’s group.
She then moved to University of California Irvine, to work with Professor Larry Overman exploring the catalytic asymmetric chemistry of palladium(II) as a Royal Commission for the Exhibition of 1851 research fellow.
Helen then worked at GSK for 15 years. She started in medicinal chemistry, but became increasingly involved in making synthetic processes and research operations as efficient and sustainable as possible, and led Green Chemistry for GSK for many years. She is on the Editorial Board of Green Chemistry, and on the Editorial Advisory Board of ACS Sustainable Chemistry and Engineering and in April 2022 she took up the position of Director of the Green Chemistry Centre of Excellence at the University of York.
Dr Gan Shermer
Dr Gan Shermer is a Senior Lecturer and Director of Teaching in Chemistry at the University of Bath. She is passionate about widening participation in Chemistry and providing students with authentic opportunities to develop the skills they need to succeed at university and in their future careers.
Dr Gan Shermer joined the University of Bath in 2008 and is now a Senior Lecturer and Director of Teaching in Chemistry. Since starting at Bath, Gan has been committed to widening participation in Chemistry through effective outreach and developing new ways to support the school to university transition. She is particularly interested in the development of skills in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) degrees and has led several cross-departmental projects which aim to provide students with creative and authentic learning experiences to develop relevant employability skills.
The Organic Division was established in 1972 following the amalgamation of a number of bodies and the establishment of a new organisational structure for the then Chemical Society and Royal Institute of Chemistry. Details are described in the publication “The Royal Society of Chemistry: The First 150 Years” by David H Whiffen.
The Chemical Society and the Royal Institute of Chemistry then merged in 1980 to become the Royal Society of Chemistry.
In 2022 the Organic Division transitioned to the Organic Chemistry Community to better reflect its purpose.
Past Presidents (1972 – present)
2019 - 2022 Professor Stuart J Conway
2016 - 2019 Professor Alison N Hulme
2013 - 2016 Professor Ray C F Jones
2010-2013 Dr David Rees
2007-2010 Professor Sue E Gibson
2004-2007 Professor Ray C F Jones
2001-2004 Professor Richard J K Taylor
1999-2001 Professor Philip Kocienski
1997-1999 Professor E Jim Thomas
1995-1997 Professor Gerry Pattenden
1993-1995 Professor Steven J Ley
1991-1993 Professor Bob Ramage
1989-1991 Professor Charles J M Stirling
1987-1989 Professor Cedric R Hassall
1985-1987 Professor Alan R Battersby
1983-1985 Professor W David Ollis
1981-1983 Professor Charles W Rees
1979-1981 Professor Ralph Raphael
1976-1979 Professor Leslie Crombie (3 year appointment due to then nominated Perkin President being nominated for RSC President)
1974-1976 Professor George W Kenner
1972-1974 Professor Maurice Stacey
D H R Barton appointed in 1972 but did not take office as a result of being nominated as RSC President-Elect on the death of Jack Linnett.
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