Bailar Lecturer 2012-13 - Marcetta Y. Darensbourg

Marcetta DarensbourgMarcetta Y. Darensbourg received her BS in Chemistry from Union College in Barbourville, KY in 1963 and her PhD in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 1967. After an Assistant Professorship at Vassar College (1967-1969), she moved to Tulane University and progressed to Full Professor (1971-1982). In 1982, Professor Darensbourg joined Texas A&M University, where she has been a Distinguished Professor of Chemistry since 2010.

Professor Darensbourg has contributed pioneering efforts in understanding the influence of structural and electronic factors on the mechanistic details of the active site of diiron hydrogenases. Her work
has resulted in better synthetic models of the active site, including water-soluble diiron complexes and a “rotated” mixed valent (FeIIFeI) model of the Fe2S2 core. Darensbourg’s investigations may lead to a
deeper mechanistic understanding of hydrogenases, as well as superior catalysts for energy storage and utilization via protons and electrons.

Professor Darensbourg has published more than 200 papers and has served on the editorial boards of multiple journals. Darensbourg has received many awards and honors, including the Texas A&M Association of Former Students Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching (1986), the TAMU AFS Faculty Distinguished Achievement Award in Research (1995), the ACS Award for Distinguished Service in the Advancement of Inorganic Chemistry (1995), the ACS Southwest Region Award (1998), the TAMU AFS Faculty Distinguished Achievement Award in Teaching (2006), the Robert A. Welch Lectureship (2007- 2008), ACS Fellow (2009), the TAMU Chapter of Sigma Xi Distinguished Scientist Award (2011), American Academy of Arts and Sciences Fellow (2011), and the TAMU ASF Award for Graduate Mentoring (2012).