Sara Catingan (she/her) is a PhD student in chemistry at McGill University supervised by Prof. Audrey Moores. Her research focuses on using plasmonic nanomaterials to harness light more efficiently in pharma-relevant photocatalytic reactions. Prior to her graduate studies, Sara completed a 12-month internship at Environment and Climate Change Canada, where she studied the levels of aquatic contaminants in communities across the country. As a Graduate Student Liaison for Beyond Benign, she is passionate about supporting the development of green chemistry education and spreading awareness in the community about the importance of sustainability.
Jasmine Hong (she/her) is a Ph.D. Student in chemistry at McGill University co-supervised by Prof. Audrey Moores and Prof. Subhasis Ghoshal. Her research is centered around plastic waste, with focuses on artificially weathered microplastics and on mechanocatalytic plastic recycling as an alternative to traditional chemical recycling. Besides being a Graduate Student Liaison, Jasmine is involved as an executive member of Green Chemistry McGill, a student group which strives to spread awareness locally and implement actionable changes in line with green chemistry within the chemistry department at McGill.
Mollie Enright received her Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Toledo in 2023 where she researched the use of earth-abundant transition metals as catalysts for organic coupling reactions. Prior to starting graduate school, Mollie served as a program manager at Beyond Benign, working with classroom and informal educators to create resources, lead professional development, and spearhead community engagement events on the local and national level, with an emphasis on green chemistry and sustainability. Mollie is now pursuing a law degree at Boston College and continues to support Beyond Benign educational activities.
Cloë Di Flumeri (they/she) is a graduate from Widener University, where she received her BA in political science, international relations, and English in Spring 2023. At Widener, Cloë became increasingly aware of environmental justice issues through her involvement in Amnesty International. In the summer of 2023, she worked as an intern at Spec Matters— an organization dedicated to promoting healthier and more sustainable building practices and materials selection. There she learned the deep connections between chemistry, health, and equity. These experiences drove them toward a career and life dedicated to the study and conservation of climate and public health.
Cloë is incredibly excited to be working with Beyond Benign as communications and events coordinator. Outside of work, Cloë is a poet— serving as founding co-editor and creative director at a digital literary magazine. As an undergraduate student researcher, Cloë contributed to faculty-advised scholarly research on topics ranging from gender and conflict studies to Victorian British literature. She is an avid fitness lover, and can most frequently be found at the gym, watering her plants, or writing in her free time.
Michelle Ernst Modera is a Merrimack College Winston School of Education and Social Policy Fellow working with Beyond Benign in development. Michelle is a M.Ed candidate in the Community Engagement program. She has a NYS teaching certification in elementary and special education and a background in sociology. Michelle also works for the National Center for Race Amity, an organization focused on racial justice, education, and community building.
Juliana Vidal (she/her) earned her Ph.D. in the Green Chemistry and Catalysis Group at Memorial University of Newfoundland (St. John’s, NL, Canada), supervised by Prof. Francesca Kerton (Memorial University of Newfoundland) and co-supervised by Prof. Stephanie MacQuarrie (Cape Breton University). During her Ph.D., Juliana investigated new applications for a sustainable material obtained from wood waste called biochar. As a Postdoctoral Researcher supervised by Prof. Audrey Moores at McGill University, she worked on developing greener methods for the implementation of a biorefinery using crustacean shell waste.
Besides being the Higher Education Program Manager at Beyond Benign, Juliana is also involved with the Global Conversation on Sustainability (GCS) project created by the International Younger Chemists Network (IYCN) and IUPAC, and the Chemicals and Waste Platform of the UNEP Major Group for Children and Youth. Juliana was also in the Executive Board of the Network of Early-Career Sustainable Scientists and Engineers (NESSE), in the Governance Task Force of the Chemical Institute of Canada (CIC), and has been selected as a Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Future Leader in 2020.
Jonathon (he/him) is a passionate scientific researcher and professional with a keen interest in chemistry education and advancing sustainability and green chemistry across all levels of pedagogy and learning. He received his B.Sc.H. from Queen’s University in 2010 and his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto in 2016 in Inorganic Chemistry with a focus on Nanomaterials and Electrochemistry.
During his doctoral studies, Jonathon was a founding member of the Green Chemistry Initiative (GCI), a group of graduate students dedicated to promoting green chemistry principles and practices within the Department of Chemistry at the University of Toronto. In addition to co-leading the GCI’s regular green chemistry seminar series and its 2015 annual symposium, Jonathon redeveloped a third-year undergraduate organic chemistry lab in collaboration with Professor Andy Dicks to include more concepts related to green chemistry, and later attended the ACS Green Chemistry Summer School in 2016. Following graduate school, Jonathon transitioned to the not-for-profit sector, where he has helped manage and support the development of international, interdisciplinary research programs, scientific projects, workshops and symposia as well as a national scholarship program in Canada for graduate students and postdoctoral fellows pursuing research in Canada’s Arctic and northern regions.
Jonathon is excited to be working together with Beyond Benign and the ACS GCI to lead the development of the Green Chemistry Teaching and Learning Community set to launch in 2023. Jonathon currently lives in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada and enjoys sports of all kinds including swimming, skiing, rowing, cycling and weightlifting.
Nimrat Kaur Obhi (they/them) is from Ottawa, Canada and obtained their HBSc in Biomedical Sciences (Medicinal Chemistry) at the University of Ottawa in 2014. They completed their PhD in chemistry at the University of Toronto in 2020, where their research focused on the synthesis and investigation of carbon-based semiconducting polymers with complex architectures for electronic applications. During this time, Nimrat also completed a Chemistry Teaching Fellowship Award to design and implement a green chemistry course module into an upper-year chemistry course at the University of Toronto. They are committed to justice, equity, and diversity and have worked on advocacy and policy initiatives since 2014 with local and national Canadian teams (WICTO, CWIC Network, CSC WIDE) in addition to current work with Beyond Benign. Nimrat joined Beyond Benign as a Program Manager in early 2021 where they bring their combined passion for green chemistry advocacy, social justice, open-access science, and sustainability to their work. They currently live in Ottawa, Ontario, where outside of work they are an avid skier, cook, outdoor sports enthusiast, swimmer, stationery lover, and bookbinder.
Feel free to reach out and chat with Nim! At Beyond Benign, they work on:
– the Minority-Serving Institution Initiative within the Green Chemistry Commitment Program;
– Diversity, Equity, Belonging, and Respect for Beyond Benign and the GCTLC online platform; and
– the Toxicology for Chemists curriculum (past work).
Natalie earned her Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University at Albany in 2017 after graduating with her Bachelor’s degree in Forensic Chemistry from Western New England University.
During her graduate studies, she felt that the topics of sustainability, toxicology, and environmental hazards were missing from the traditional graduate chemistry curriculum. Therefore, she pursued a one-year certification in Green Chemistry and Chemical Stewardship, attended the American Chemical Society (ACS) Green Chemistry & Sustainable Energy Summer School, and became actively involved in the Network of Early-Career Sustainable Scientists and Engineers (NESSE) a global movement of young professionals working on or interested in solutions to today’s most pressing sustainability challenges. She served at Utica College as both an adjunct and Assistant Professor of Chemistry from 2015-2019, introducing green chemistry to both major and non-major courses. She is passionate about teaching and empowering the next generation of scientists to use sustainable approaches through green chemistry.
Amy received the world’s first Ph.D. in Green Chemistry. Holding an undergraduate degree in chemistry from Saint Anselm College (1997), Amy sought to use her chemistry degree within the field of sustainability. At the University of Massachusetts Boston, she met Dr. John Warner, who introduced her to green chemistry, a blossoming movement in the late 1990’s. It was there where they created a Ph.D. concentration in Green Chemistry, addressing the education gap in chemistry education – chemists were not being properly prepared with skills to design and create solutions to support the development and implementation of sustainable chemical products. After working in industry (Rohm and Haas, and Gillette Company) and academia (University of Massachusetts Lowell), Amy remained passionate about Green Chemistry education, recognizing the growing need for education systems to change to prepare scientists with Green Chemistry skills to address sustainability through chemistry. In 2007, Amy co-founded, Beyond Benign, a non-profit solely dedicated to advancing Green Chemistry education. Since inception, this organization has been leading Green Chemistry education initiatives in K-12 through higher education, focusing on empowering educators to make transformative change in their teaching and practice.
Amy has been recognized for her work in research (Kenneth G. Hancock Memorial Award in Green Chemistry in 2004, for titanium dioxide semiconductors and their application in dye-sensitized solar cells) and also for her leadership in driving green chemistry education (2012 EPA New England Environmental Merit award). Beyond Benign’s work has also been recognized through the ACS NERM Partners for Progress and Prosperity (P3) Region Award (2016), and as a semi-finalist in the Buckminster Fuller Challenge (2013).
Hear directly from Amy:
- On the central role that chemistry and chemistry education plays in addressing global sustainability challenges: Sustainable Innovation Through Green Chemistry Podcast (Innovation+ Talks hosted by Paul Heller)
- On the power of community to create transformative change in education
- “Women in Green Chemistry and Engineering: Agents of Change Toward the Achievement of a Sustainable Future”, ACS Sustainable Chem. Eng., 2022, 10, 9, 2859-2865.
- “Safe and Sustainable Chemistry Activities: Fostering a Culture of Safety in K-12 and Community Outreach Programs”, Cannon, A.S., Keirstead, A.E., Hudson, R., Levy, I.J., MacKellar, J., Enright, M., Anderson, K.R., Howson, E.M., J. Chem. Educ., 2021, 98, 1, 71-77.
- “A Systems Thinking Department: Fostering a Culture of Green Chemistry Practice among Students”, Dicks, A.P., D’eon, J.C., Morra, B., Chisu, C.K., Quinlan, K.B., Cannon, A.S., J. Chem. Educ., In Press, 2019. [DOI: 10.1021/acs.jchemed.9b00287]
- “Models for integrating toxicology concepts into chemistry courses and programs”, Cannon, Amy S., Finster, David, Raynie, Douglas, and Warner, John C., Green Chemistry Letters and Reviews, 10:4, 2017, 436-443.
- “The Green Chemistry Commitment: Transforming chemistry education in higher education” Cannon, Amy S. and Levy, Irvin J. in The Promise of Chemical Education: Addressing our Students’ Needs, ACS Symposium Series, Vol. 1193, 2015, pp. 115-125.