Fuson Travel Award

Up to six Fuson Travel Awards are given annually to organic students to present their research at the ACS National Meetings or at other professional meetings such as Gordon Research Conferences. The awards are made to honor and celebrate the accomplishments of R.C. Fuson who was a distinguished faculty member at the University of Illinois for 35 years. The Fuson endowment also funds the annual R.C. Fuson lectureship series. Recent recipients of the Fuson travel awards and the lectures they gave or will give at ACS meetings are listed below.


Spring 2024 - New Orleans, LA (ACS Meeting)

Dinh Thanh Nguyen (van der Donk / Mitchell)
"Bioinformatic-guided discovery of a novel natural product biosynthesized by distinct classes of metalloenzymes"

Chelsea Swartchick (Chan)
"Activity-based Bioluminescence Probe Reveals Crosstalk Between the Inflammatory Tumor Microenvironment and the ALDH Cancer Stem Cell Biomarker"

Jacob D. Weaver (White)
"A preparative small-molecule mimic of liver CYP450 enzymes in the aliphatic C–H oxidation of carbocyclic N-heterocycles"



Fall 2023 - San Francisco, CA (ACS Meeting)

Jay Cournoyer (Mehta)
"Experimental Endosymbiotic Models to Investigate Molecular Drivers of Chloroplast Evolution"

Sydney A. McKee (Hergenrother)
"Reimagining Temozolomide: Harnessing the Untapped Potential of Imidazotetrazines to Target, Treat, and Image Glioblastoma Multiforme"

Zhenxiang Zhao (Chan)
"Development of Nitroreductase-activatable Quinolone-based Prodrugs"



Spring 2023 - Indianapolis, IN (ACS Meeting)

Amanda East (Chan)
"Synthesis of Silicon-substituted Hemicyanines for Multimodal SWIR Imaging"

David Ryffel (Sarlah)
"Total Synthesis of Darobactin A"

Yue Yu (van der Donk)
"Biosynthesis of 3-Thia-α-amino Acids on a Carrier Peptide"


Fall 2022 - Chicago, IL (ACS Meeting)

Kristen Muñoz (Hergenrother)
"Development of a Narrow-spectrum Antibiotic Selective for Gram-negative Bacteria"

Marko Nesic (Sarlah)
"Overcoming Undesired Atropisomerism Towards the Synthesis of Darobactin"

Yunyan Sun (Moore)
"Mechanically Triggered Carbon Monoxide Release with Turn-On Aggregation-Induced Emission: From Mechanism to Applications"


Spring 2022 - San Diego, CA (ACS Meeting)

Charlie Dixon (White)
"Late-stage Intermolecular Allylic C-H Amination"

Sarah Krueger (Zimmerman)
"Template-selected, Reversible Assembly of Therapeutic Agents for Myotonic Dystrophy Type 1"

Melissa Lucero (Chan)
"Photoacoustic Probe for Biopsy-Free Assessment of Copper Status in Murine Models of Wilson’s Disease and Liver Metastasis"

Ian Rinehart (Denmark)
"Predicting High-Yielding Conditions for Palladium Catalyzed Bond-Forming Reactions: Development of a Modeling Framework with Substrate Generalizability"


Fall 2021

No award given (canceled)


Spring 2021 - San Antonio, TX (ACS Meeting)

Zohaib Siddiqi (Sarlah)
"Dearomative Oxidation of Unactivated Arenes: Access to Arene-Oxides and Benzoxepins"


Fall 2020 - San Francisco, CA (ACS Meeting)

David Dennis (Sarlah)
"Synthesis of Idarubicinone via Global Functionalization of Tetracene"

Raundi Quevedo (White)
"Late-stage Oxidative C(sp3)-H Methylation"

Jiabao Zhang (Burke)
"Amphotericin Extracts Ergosterol Faster Than Fungi Can Make It"


Spring 2020 - Philadelphia, PA (ACS Meeting--Canceled)

Summer Laffoon (Moore)
"Efficient Synthesis of a Hückel Aromatic, Möbius Annulene via Alkyne Metathesis"

Chris Reinhardt (Chan)
"Photophysical Optimization of Activatable Photoacoustic Contrast Agents Enables Nitric Oxide Imaging in Cancer"

Aaron Roth (Denmark)
"Enantioselective, Lewis Base-Catalyzed, Intermolecular Functionalization of Alkenes"


Fall 2019 - San Diego, CA (ACS Meeting)

Yaroslav Boyko (Sarlah)
"The Total Synthesis of Isomalabaricanes and a Blueprint for Stereochemically Diverse Terpenoid Architectures"
(Organic Reactions & Processes - GRC)

Andrew Zahrt (Denmark)
"Prediction of Higher-Selectivity Catalysts by Computer-driven Workflow and Machine Learning"
(Organic Reactions & Processes - GRC)

Jinpeng Zhao (White)
"Chemoselective Methylene C—H Oxidation in Aromatic Molecules"
(Heterocyclic Compounds - GRC)


Spring 2019 - Orlando, FL (ACS Meeting)

Soumitra Athavale (Denmark)
"Demystifying the Soai Reaction"
(Solvay Workshop)

Rajeev Chorghade (Burke)
"Small Molecule Ion Channel Restores Host Defenses in Cystic Fibrosis Airway Epithelia"

Lauren Hagler (Zimmerman)
"Template-Assisted Click Chemistry as a Method for Developing Small Molecule Therapeutics for Myotonic Dystrophy Type 1 (DM1)"
(Bioorganic Chemistry - GRC)

Wei Liu (White)
"Asymmetric Allylic C–H Functionalization with Pd(II)/Sulfoxide-Oxazoline Catalysis"


Fall 2018 - New Orleans, LA (ACS Meeting)

Thomas Bearrood (Chan)
"Development and Application of an ALDH1A1-Selective Fluorescent Probe for Visualizing Cancer Stem-Like Cells"
(World Molecular Imaging Conference)

Mikiko Okumura (Sarlah)
"Palladium-Catalyzed Dearomative syn-1,4-Aminofunctionalizations"
(Stereochemistry - GRC)

Kevin Robb (Denmark)
"Enantioselective, Lewis Base-Catalyzed Transformations: Sulfenocyclization of Polyenes and Carbosulfenylation of Vinyl Boronates by 1,2-Boronate Migration"
(Stereochemistry - GRC)


Spring 2018 - New Orleans, LA (ACS Meeting)

Linna An (van der Donk)
"Substrate-Assisted Enzymatic Formation of Lysinoalanine in Duramycin"
(Natural Products and Bioactive Compounds - GRC)

Travis Buchanan (Hull)
"Cu-Catalyzed Three-Component Carboamination of Alkenes"
(Heterocyclic Compounds - GRC)

Hailey Knox (Chan)
"A Bioreducible N-Oxide-Based Probe for Photoacoustic Imaging of Hypoxia"

Fall 2017 - Washington, DC (ACS Meeting)

Kaibo Feng (White)
"Remote Oxidation of Aliphatic C–H Bonds in Nitrogen-Containing Molecules"
(Organic Reactions & Processes - GRC)

Lucas Hernandez (Sarlah)
"Total Synthesis of (+)-7-Deoxypancratistatin from Benzene"

Spring 2017 - San Francisco, CA (ACS Meeting)

Stephen Ammann (White)
"Enantioselective Allylic C–H Oxidation of Terminal Olefins to Isochromans via Pd(II)/Chiral Sulfoxide Catalysis"
(Organic Reactions & Processes - GRC)

Graham Hudson (Mitchell)
"Expanding Thiopeptide Chemical Space Through In Vitro Enzymatic Synthesis"
(Enzymes, Coenzymes & Metabolic Pathways - GRC)

Emma Southgate (Sarlah)
"Total Synthesis of Lycoricidine Through Chemical Dearomatization of Bromobenzene"

Fall 2016 - Philadelphia, PA (ACS Meeting)

Emily Ulrich (van der Donk)
"Structural Basis for the Mechanistic Divergence of 2-Hydroxyethylphosphonate Oxygenases"
(Enzymes, Coenzymes & Metabolic Pathways - GRC)

Zhao Wu (Hull)
"Rhodium-Catalyzed Dehydrogenative Amidation of Allylic Alcohols and Amines for the Synthesis of Beta-Chiral Amides"
(Organic Reactions & Processes - GRC)

Spring 2016 - San Diego, CA (ACS Meeting)

Long Luu (Zimmerman)
"On-Target Synthesis and Selection of Modular Therapeutic Agents for Myotonic Dystrophy"

Michelle Richter (Hergenrother)
"Defining the Physicochemical Features That Dictate Small-molecule Accumulation in Gram-negative Bacteria"
(New Antibacterial Discovery and Development - GRC)

Andy Thomas (Denmark)
"Unraveling the Transmetalation Event in the Suzuki-Miyaura Reaction"

Fall 2015 - Boston, MA (ACS Meeting)

Andrea Ambrosi (Denmark)
"The Mechanistic Significance of the Si-O-Pd Bond in the Palladium-Catalyzed Cross-Coupling of Alkenyl-and Arylsilanolates"

Andrew Ickes (Hull)
"Rhodium-Mediated Substrate Controlled Markovnikov Hydroamination"

Rob Hicklin (Hergenrother)
"Chemical Diversification of Pleuromutilin Leads to the Discovery of a Novel Anticancer Agent"

Spring 2015 - Denver, CO (ACS meeting)

Thomas Osberger (White)
"N-Boc Amines to Oxazolidinones via Pd(II) / Bis-sulfoxide / Brønsted Acid Co-Catalyzed Allylic C-H Oxidation"

Michael Lambrecht (Hergenrother)
"The Chemistry and Biology of Homogeneous ADP-Ribose Oligomers"

Hyung Min Chi (Denmark)
"Lewis Base Catalyzed, Enantioselective, Intramolecular Sulfenoamination of Olefins"

Fall 2014 - San Francisco, CA (ACS Meeting)

Patricia Blair (Mitchell)
"Investigation of the Mechanism of Action of a Species-Selective Antibacterial Compound"

Marshall Brennan (Fout)
"Ligand Effects in Enabling Two-Electron Redox on CO(I) Disilazide Complexes: Applications to Catalytic Cross-Coupling Reactions"

Tony Grillo (Burke)
"Restoring Growth in Protein Deficient Yeast with a Small Molecule"

Spring 2014 - Dallas, TX (ACS Meeting)

Lindsey Cullen (Denmark)
"Catalytic Conjugate Addition of Acyl Anion Equivalents Promoted by Fluorodesilyation"

Stephen Davis (Burke)
"Non-Toxic Amphotericin B Derivatization Guided by a Ligand-Selective Allosteric Effects Strategy"

Fall 2013 - Indianapolis, IN (ACS Meeting)

Jagadeeswaran Chandrasekar (Silverman)
"Catalytic DNA with Phosphatase Activity"

Scott Sisco (Moore)
"Dynamic Deracemization of BINOL-Based Arylene-Ethynylene Macrocycles"

Fall 2013 - Gordon Research Conference - (Colby-Sawyer College)

Elizabeth Parkinson (Hergenrother)
"Efficient NQ01 Substrates are Potent and Selective Anticancer Agents"

Spring 2013 - New Orleans, LA (ACS Meeting)

John Hung (van der Donk)
"Investigating the Mechanistic Role of Arg301 in Phosphite Dehydrogenase"

Claire Knezevic (Hergenrother)
"The Development of Selective Poly(ADP-Ribose) Glycohydrolase Inhibitors"

Tucker Maxson (Mitchell)
"Development of streptolysis S inhibitors as anti-virulence drugs"

Fall 2012 - Philadelphia, PA (ACS Meeting)

Paul Gormisky (White)
"Synthetic Versatility in C-H Oxidation"

Shauna Paradine (White)
"Iron-Catalyzed Intramolecular Allylic C-H Amination"

Yanxiang (Nancy) Shi (van der Donk)
"Heterologous Production of Actagardine in E. coli"

Spring 2012- San Diego, CA (ACS Meeting)

Noah Bindman (van der Donk)
"Flourescent Labeling of Lantipeptides"

Junqi Li (Burke)
"Pinene-Derived Iminodiacetic Acid (PIDA): A Powerful Ligand for Stereoselective Synthesis and Iterative Cross-Coupling of C(sp3)Boronate Building Blocks"

Karen Morrison (Hergenrother)
"Accessing Stereochemically Complex and Structurally Diverse Compounds through Chemical Modification of Gibberellic Acid, and their Activity in Biological Systems"

Fall 2011 - Denver, CO (ACS Meeting)

Marinus Bigi (White)
"Carboxylic acid-directed C-H oxidations using a non-heme iron catalyst: mixed oxygenase/desaturase activity"
(Natural Products GRC)

Seiko Fujii (Burke)
"Total Synthesis of Synechoxanthin via Umpolung Iterative Cross-Coupling"

Lawrence Wolf (Denmark)
"The Application of QSAR/QSSR Methods for Catalyst Evaluation and Development in Phase Transfer Catalysis"

Spring 2011 - Anaheim, CA (ACS Meeting)

Trent Oman (van der Donk)
"Sublancin is not a Lantibiotic but an S-linked Glycopeptide"

Eric Woerly (Burke)
"Stereocontrolled Total Synthesis of Peridinin and the Mechanism of Carotenoid Antilipoperoxidant Activity"

Chun-Ho Wong (Zimmerman)
"Binding Mode Studies of Small Molecule Inhibition for Myotonic Dystrophy"