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November 5, 2003 


    OSWEGO -- Dr. Ray O'Donnell, a member of the chemistry department at SUNY Oswego, was recently recognized at a dinner meeting of the Syracuse Section of the American Chemical Society for his 50-year members in the Society.

    For 39 of those years he has been very active in many local, regional and national American Chemical Society activities. During his 36 years as adviser, the SUNY Oswego Student Affiliate received many awards. He continues to serve as a member of the executive committee of the Syracuse Section.

    He was elected chairman of the Syracuse Section in 1974 and served as its councilor from 1985 to 1994. While serving as councilor, he was appointed to Project SEED (1986-95), where he chaired the finance and planning subcommittee (1988-95) and was appointed to the Committee on Professional Relations  (1986-94), where he chaired the professional and career assistance subcommittee (1989-94).

    While in governance with the American Chemical Society, O'Donnell participated in the formation of the Career Assistance Program and has been appointed and reappointed as a career consultant since 1990. He has provided local section career assistance since the beginning of the local section program in 1996. He developed the American Chemical Society workshop on academic jobs and has presented this workshop at every national meeting since 2001. He has been requested to conduct the "Managing an Effective Job Search" workshop over 40 times at locations all over the country.

    O'Donnell has received a number of awards during his career, including being named project director for two National Science Foundation-CCSS programs in 1970 and 1971, senior research fellow with U.S. Defense Department in 1985 and 1993, senior staff scientist for the Battelle/Saudi Arabian Research Institute in 1987, and visiting faculty at Rochester Institute of Technology (1983), University of Pittsburgh (1987) and University of Wisconsin (2000). He received the Syracuse Section Award in 1990.

    At SUNY Oswego he coordinated the chemistry department's graduate program for 31 years while guiding 14 master's students and a large number of undergraduates through various research projects in electrochemistry. For eight of his 18 years on the college's Graduate Council, he was elected its chairperson.

    During his remarks, O'Donnell referred to his many years as a church organist and choirmaster, which ended when he retired from St. Mary's in Oswego. He also thanked his children and his wife Marylou for their presence at the ceremony and for their cooperation over the years as he pursued so many activities.
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