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  • "Chemical Challenges for the 21st Century" (Celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the Loker Hydrocarbon Research Institute and the 80th birthday of Professor George A. Olah) will be held on October 4-5, 2007 at USC Davidson Conference Center, Embassy Room.

For Registration and Information: E-mail:, Phone: (213) 740-5974; Fax: (213) 740-5087

See full program


Hotel Information
Millenium Biltmore Hotel is located at 506 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles, CA 90071
For Reservation: (213) 612-1575; USC Rate: $149
Sgl/Dbl (+ 14% tax); Mention Code: Loker

Radisson Hotel is located at 3540 South Figueroa St., Los Angeles, CA 90007.
For Reservation call (213) 748-4141. USC Rates: $120/Sgl; $130/Dbl (+ 14% tax).
Mention Code: USC Loker/Olah Symposium

  • 2007 commencement images
  • The Richard C. Tolman Award Dinner and Address
    “Ubiquitous FLurine and Its Multifaceted Role in Chemistry”
    Professor G.K. Surya Prakash, 2006 Tolman Medal Award Recipient
    Tuesday, April 24, 2007, USC University Club

View images

The Richard C. Tolman Medal was named after a man who was a distinguished scientist and profound scholar.  His career properly reflects the qualities sought in the recipients of the medal named after him.  Early in his career, Tolman demonstrated that the electron was the charge-carrying particle in metals and determined its mass.  Later in his career, he was known primarily as a theorist.  He was remembered as an organized and thoughtful lecturer at Caltech.  In addition, he served his nation well.  During WW II, Tolman was Chief Science Advisor to General Leslie Groves, who supervised the Manhattan Project.  After the war, he worked on the peaceful uses of atomic energy and control of nuclear weapons as Chief Advisor to Bernard Baruch, the U.S. representative to the UN’s Atomic Energy Commission.

The Richard C. Tolman Medal is awarded each year by the Southern California Section of the American Chemical Society in recognition of outstanding contributions to chemistry in Southern California.  The Tolman Medal recognizes achievement in fundamental studies, achievements, of broad impact in chemical technology, significant contributions to chemical education, and/or outstanding leadership in science on a national level.  To be eligible for the Medal, the recipient must have accomplished a major portion of his or her work while a resident of Southern California.

Anton Burg, 1904-2003

Anton Burg, distinguished emeritus professor, died on November 18 at the age of 99 at his home near USC. A leading expert in the study of boron compounds, Anton is credited as being the “father of chemistry at USC”. He came to the university as an assistant professor in 1939, joining what was then an undistinguished department that had not performed significant research. Within a year he was promoted to chairman, and he used his position to turn the department into a major research department by hiring top faculty and acquiring research funding. Among those he hired were Sidney Benson and Arthur Adamson, who went on to become world-renown leaders in their fields.

Anton Burg’s real passion, however, was studying boron compounds, a field in which he was a pioneer and a leader. He synthesized many boron compounds that eventually found wide use in organic chemistry as tools for creating more complex molecules. Among his many graduate students was Herbert C. Brown, who went on to win the Nobel Prize. Burg remained active in research long after he had officially retired and maintained a productive lab until he was in his nineties. A bicyclist who never drove a car, Burg was both a scholar and a nationally ranked track star as a student at the University of Chicago. Burg never married, and the department and the university were his home for many years. His 90th birthday celebration was a festive occasion for colleagues and former students to celebrate his life in science. As always, he entertained his audience by reading some of his limericks, which were gathered by his colleagues in book format. An article for the USC Chronicle written by Eric Mankin in 1994 for this occasion describes in lively detail Burg’s colorful life and quotes colleagues who knew him well.

A memorial service will take place at USC on November 26, at 7:00 p.m. at the United University Church, 817 West 34th Street. Los Angeles, CA 90007. For more information, please contact Michele Dea,

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Departmenal Events

  • Pictures from the September 14, 2003 faculty party
  • Prof. Arthur Adamson Memorial Service
    Arthur Adamson, distinguished emeritus professor, died on July 22 at age 83.
    A memorial service will be held on Saturday, September 13 at 2:30 p.m. at:
    St. Timothy's Episcopal Church
    10125 Azuaga Street
    San Diego, CA 92129
  • The 31st John Stauffer Lecture in the Sciences (April 09-10 2003)
    Prof. Rudolph A. Marcus - California Institute of Technology
    Evolution and History of Theories of Unimolecular Reactions, 1920 - Present 
  • SCience Day at USC
    March 15th, 2003 8:30am-2pm
    USC Campus, Seeley G. Mudd Building 1st Floor
    A Free Event aimed towards presenting science in an exciting and accessible way to High School Students and their teachers.
    The objectives are to experience "hands on" science ,to explore cutting edge scientific discoveries , to discover the newest fields of science and to gain exposure to the college experience

  • Consortium for Technology in Teaching Chemistry (CTTC)
    The Consortium was founded in 1999 and partners USC with chemistry and physical sciences teachers in over 50 high schools throughout Southern California. Members are educators with an interest in implementing computer technologies into the science curriculum with approaches that work in their classroom environment. The consortium organizes workshops, provides free on-line tools and a database of shared and peer-reviewed resources, and is a forum to share ideas, develop strategies, and bring chemistry teachers together. 

  • Pictures from the 2002 Ph.D Hooding and Commencement Ceremonies (May 09-10)

  • The 30th John Stauffer Lecture in the Sciences (April 16-17 2002)

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