Notes from Virtual Fellows Council Meetings

Posted by Monica Mellinger on

Notes prepared by John O'Connell, Fellows Council Secretary

During the January 24, 2020 telecom, it was assumed that the Spring National Meeting would be live in Houston. The following were discussed:

  • Fellows Breakfast presentations to be brief and an exercise is to be done at the tables.
  • The Fellows Council meeting to include an Admissions Committee preread, attendance by
  •   The Executive Director, and an update from the Foundation about the Fellows initiative.
  • FC leadership of J. Rogers continuing as Chair until 7/1/20 when R. Ofoli will take over
  • The onboarding document for new FC members created by J. Rogers was very helpful.


In lieu of the cancelled live meeting in Houston, an FC telecom was held on April 1, 2020. The following were discussed:

  • Admissions Committee update; AdCom leadership participated to respond to increasing diversity of AdCom and Fellows and also provide feedback about current selection process.
    • Time from nomination to notification difficult to reduce because of scheduling and processes; main change now a limit tabling a nomination to two times before a decision
    • Nomination form to be made clearer about procedures and required information
    • BoD is to review all recommended rejections and communication to be done by BoD
    • Current criteria inadequate for judging nontraditional careers and internationals; to be reviewed with an AdCom report in late fall 2020. 
    • Common information lacking from nominations was described
    • Training of new AdCom members is to be emphasized
  • Executive Director proposal to hold Annual Business Meeting jointly with Fellows Breakfast
    • Annual Meeting Fellows Breakfast to be moved to Monday with program of ¾ hour of networking and eating; ¾ hour AIChE business and pin presentations to incoming and outgoing officers; ½ hour Fellows program.
    • Food to be buffet style
    • Spring Breakfast to include representatives of important entities (EBPC, CEOC, etc.)
    • Proposed change strongly supported by Fellows Council
  • AIChE Foundation considering Fellows Endowment to support projects chosen by FC from list provided by the Foundation and approved at next FC meeting.
  • Suggestions were made about revising communications to Fellows such as more frequent and shorter communications, news blasts and online town halls; implementation in 2021?
  • Short discussion on more complete alignment of FC initiatives with AIChE Strategic Plan

During the June 25, 2020 Zoom meeting, the following were discussed:

  • FC Chair transition and FC membership for 2020-2022; names mentioned of potential candidates for open FC positions. Contacts to be made and voting to occur in early fall.
  • Fellows Breakfast for virtual National Meeting in August:
    • A virtual gathering will be held at midday or afternoon CDT with usual, but shortened activities and breakouts for smaller group interactions
    • All Fellows to be invited to connect without charge or registering for the Meeting. A request will be made to donate to the Fellows Endowment.
    • Details to be established at next FC meeting and in coordination with AIChE staff (See National Fellows Gathering on page NN of this newsletter).
    • A working group of SIOC and Fellows to initiate collaboration on equity, diversity, and inclusion was presented (See SIOC/Fellows WG on page NN of this newsletter); the FC expressed support for this effort.   


During the July 8, 2020 Zoom meeting, the following were discussed:

  • Fellows Gathering at virtual National Meeting
    • Arrangements as suggested in June FC meeting, preferred time of one hour on Tuesday, beginning at noon, CDT, but, if necessary, at 5 PM.
    • Post photos of new and 25-year Fellows
    • Arrange another gathering within 30 days at a time more convenient for internationals
    • Four breakouts with focused discussion on supporting various underrepresented groups to be facilitated by appropriate SIOC and Fellow leaders (See National Fellows Gathering on page NN of this newsletter for full details)
  • FC members asked to volunteer to participate in Steering Committee to establish the Fellows Endowment and present information at Fellows Gathering in August