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Sir J. Fraser Stoddart Elected to the Royal Society of Edinburgh

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March 12, 2008 | by Megan Fellman
EVANSTON, Ill. --- Sir J. Fraser Stoddart, Board of Trustees Professor of Chemistry in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences at Northwestern University, has been elected an Honorary Fellow of The Royal Society of Edinburgh, joining other distinguished predecessors such as Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein and Sir Walter Scott.

Fellows of The Royal Society of Edinburgh, Scotland's national academy of arts and sciences, are elected in recognition of outstanding achievement in their fields and contribution to public service. Honorary Fellows are the top tier of membership in the society. Sir Fraser and other New Fellows will be inducted into The Royal Society of Edinburgh May 2.

The society is recognizing Stoddart, a native of Edinburgh, for his "creative fundamental research focused on the chemistry of the mechanical bond and employing it in nanotechnology for the building of operational molecular machinery. The impact of his seminal work on the mechanical bond has placed chemists at the forefront of the burgeoning fields of nanoscience and nanotechnology."

"I am naturally quite touched by the fact that I should receive this recognition from my native land and to have it associated with the city where I was born and educated, both at school and at university," said Stoddart, who joined Northwestern's faculty in January after 10 years at the University of California at Los Angeles.

Stoddart is a pioneer in the fields of nanoscience and organic chemistry. By introducing an additional type of bond (the mechanical bond) into chemical synthesis, Stoddart became one of the few chemists to have opened up a new field of chemistry during the past 25 years.

He was appointed by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as a Knight Bachelor in her 2007 New Year's Honours List for his services to chemistry and molecular nanotechnology. Stoddart has been recognized with numerous other awards, including the American Chemical Society's Arthur C. Cope Award (2008), the Tetrahedron Prize for Creativity in Organic Chemistry (2007), the Feynman Prize in Nanotechnology (2007), the King Faisal International Prize in Science (2007) and the Nagoya Gold Medal in Organic Chemistry (2004).

Stoddart is ranked by the Institute for Scientific Information as the second-most cited chemist in the world. He is a fellow of the Science Division of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (2006), the German Academy of Natural Sciences (1999) and the Royal Society (1994). Stoddart serves on the international advisory boards of numerous journals, including the Journal of Organic Chemistry, Angewandte Chemie and Chemistry – A European Journal. Stoddart has published more than 800 scientific papers and trained more than 300 graduate and postdoctoral students.

The Royal Society of Edinburgh was established in 1783 under a charter granted by King George III for the advancement of learning and useful knowledge in Scotland. It is an independent, non-party political body and is recognized as Scotland's national academy of science and letters by its sister academies in the United Kingdom. The men and women of the society's fellowship are peer-elected from the full spectrum of disciplines giving the society a multidisciplinary perspective that makes it unique amongst these academies.
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