Diversity Awards

Here is the place to find out more about the Gender Equity in Chemical Sciences (GEICS) Inclusive Leadership Award, below, and a variety of awards on campus whose information will be coming soon .

Gender Equity in Chemical Sciences (GEICS) Inclusive Leadership Award

To recognize the community members that are models of Inclusive Excellence, the Department of Chemistry Office of Graduate Diversity and Program Climate in 2019 established the Illinois Gender Equity in Chemical Sciences Inclusive Leadership Award. The award is conferred to outstanding female graduate students or postdocs in the Department of Chemistry or the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. The award recognizes a commitment to promoting full and equal participation of women, people of color, persons with disabilities, persons of differing sexual orientations and gender identities in research and teaching.

Award Details

The recipient receives an engraved award, presented at the Annual Gender Equity in Chemical Sciences Conference held in August of every year, recognition on the chemistry website, and up to $1000 dispersed through the student's university account. Funds can be used to participate in conferences, procuring research materials, supplies, and books, and receive additional certifications, among other professional development activities.

The runner up awardee receives up to $500 sponsored by the Women Chemistry Committee disbursed similarly to the GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award. 


The nominations are due the last Friday in July of every year.

Selection Process

Awardees are selected each year by an ad hoc committee of diversity, equity and inclusion professionals, and faculty across the University, external to the department of chemistry.

Once the winner is chosen, the nominees and nominators will be notified. If not selected for the first year, nominations will be considered for the following year.


Past Recipients

Head shot of Lauren Hagler

Lauren Hagler — Recipient of the first annual GEICS (formerly called Women in Chemistry) Inclusive Leadership Award.
(Graduate student, chemistry professor Steven Zimmerman group).

News story – Inaugural Women in Chemistry Inclusive Leadership Award recognizes leaders in inclusive excellence


Head shot of Alison Wallum
Head shot of Hannah Toru

Alison Wallum (pictured, far left)  — 2020 GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award
(Graduate student, chemistry professor Martin Gruebele research group, and research group of Joseph Lyding, professor of electrical and computer engineering.)

Hannah Toru (left)  2020 GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award – Runner up
(Johnson group, geochemistry)

News story – Alison Wallum and Hannah Toru win Inclusive Leadership awards


Head shots, from left, of Aguilar-Romer, Krueger and Stawiasz
From left, Jazmin Aguilar-Romero, Sarah Krueger and Katie Stawiasz

Jazmin Aguilar-Romero and Sarah Krueger — Co-winners of 2021 GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award
(Both are graduate students in chemistry professor Steven Zimmerman's group)

Katie Stawiasz — 2021 GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award, Runner-up
(Graduate student in chemistry professor Jeffrey Moore's group)

News story — Three students recognized with Inclusive Leadership awards


Side by side head shots of Anita (left) and Claudia
Anita Wo (left) and Claudia Berdugo-Diaz


Anita Wo — Winner of 2022 GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award
(Graduate student in chemistry professor Catherine J. Murphy's group)

Claudia E. Berdugo-Díaz  — 2022 GEICS Inclusive Leadership Award, Runner-up
(Graduate student in ChBE professor David W. Flaherty's group)