The American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) will spotlight the transformative societal contributions of chemical engineers — and the organizations that employ them — during the organization’s 2021 Doing a World of Good Gala on December 1. After presenting its 2020 Gala as a virtual event, the 2021 Gala is slated to return to a live venue in New York City at The Metropolitan Club, and will offer an online component for those who cannot attend the event in person.
At this year’s gala, AIChE is celebrating the world-altering contributions of Moderna, a U.S.-based pharmaceutical and biotechnology company. Moderna is known for its roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as its work with messenger RNA (mRNA), which significantly improves the way medicines are developed.
Moderna will be represented at the gala by Stéphane Bancel, the company’s Chief Executive Officer. Moderna and Bancel are being cited for “ unparalleled leadership towards the discovery and development of innovative solutions to save and improve people’s lives through healthcare.”
AIChE will also present its Doing a World of Good Medal to fellow founding partners of the Future of STEM Scholars Initiative (FOSSI) — which in its inaugural year of 2021 funded 151 $40,000 scholarships to students pursuing science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) degrees at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The medalists include FOSSI founding chair, Mark Vergnano, Chairman of the Board of the Chemours Company; founding partner, Chris Jahn, President and Chief Executive Officer at the American Chemistry Council; and Ashley Christopher, Founder and Chief Executive Officer at HBCU Week Foundation.
In announcing the honorees for this year’s AIChE Gala, AIChE Executive Director and CEO June Wispelwey expressed her gratitude to the honorees for their esteemed contributions to the advancement of society and stated “AIChE is honored to pay tribute to, and celebrate, the profound societal contributions made by our honoree organizations and their leaders. These groundbreaking leaders exemplify AIChE’s commitment to ‘Doing a World of Good’.” She also reflected on the legacy the honorees are building. “The lifesaving contribution by Moderna, through its COVID-19 vaccine has guaranteed a healthier future for countless people worldwide, while the visionary leaders of FOSSI are each individually invested in building a more diverse, equitable and dynamic future workforce. These are accomplishments we can all regard with pride and a renewed sense of optimism, both for the chemical engineering profession and for society as well.”
The gala is organized by the AIChE Foundation, and raises funds to underwrite AIChE’s Doing a World of Good campaign, which supports programs that bring chemical engineering expertise to bear for the benefit of all.
The dinner chairs for the 2021 Gala are (as of August 13): Bruce Chinn, Chief Executive Officer, Chevron Phillips Chemical; Jim Fitterling, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Dow; Karen McKee, President, ExxonMobil Chemical Company; Lori J. Ryerkerk, Chairman, Chief Executive Officer & President, Celanese Corporation; John Y. Televantos, Senior Partner, Arsenal Capital Partners; and Michael Thien, Senior Vice President, Merck & Co., Inc.
For the latest information about the AIChE Gala, visit www.aiche.org/gala.
About AIChE: AIChE is a professional society of more than 60,000 members in more than 110 countries. Its members work in corporations, universities and government using their knowledge of chemical processes to develop safe and useful products for the benefit of society. Through its varied programs, AIChE continues to be a focal point for information exchange on the frontier of chemical engineering research in such areas as nanotechnology, sustainability, hydrogen fuels, biological and environmental engineering, and chemical plant safety and security. More information about AIChE is available at www.aiche.org.