1998 Annual Report to ACS

The following is a summary of overall Montana Section Activities for 1998:

Initiative 137 on this year's Montana ballot posed the question: Should cyanide leaching be allowed in future open-pit mining operations in the state? Under the direction of Andrea Stierle and Douglas Coe, the section provided voters with an informational forum concerning the matter on October 21 at Carroll College in Helena. A forum notice is included in Appendix 3.

Gary Freebury kept members informed about ACS Federal Funding Network alerts. His efforts triggered one memo to MSU-Bozeman chemistry staff members suggesting that they assist in "building bridges between scientists and Congress" and sparked at least one letter to the Office of Management and Budget urging the current administration to support strong funding for scientific research in the proposed federal budget for fiscal year 2000.

The section continued its sponsorship of the Interstate 90 Spear Circuit, i.e., assisting chemical departments in Montana universities located on Interstate 90 with their seminar programs.

The section awarded CRC Handbooks of Chemistry and Physics to the following Montana high school students nominated for the 1998 U.S. National Chemistry Olympiad: Shannon Brantley (Havre High School), Elisabeth Bendo (Havre High School), Jonathan Hilmer (Helena High School), Jessie Meyer (Helena High School), Brian Blood (Fergus High School), Kevin Brown (Fergus High School), Beverly Plumb (Sentinel High School) and Bobby Kizer (C.M. Russell High School). Robbie Korin served as the USNCO Coordinator.

At the Northwest Regional Board meeting held at Columbia Basin College in Pasco, Washington on June 19, 1998, Howard Christiansen represented the Montana Section. He information the Board that the Montana Section is interested in hosting NORM 2003 probably in Butte. The section will submit a written proposal in due time.

MSU Professor Kenneth Emerson expressed to the section his willingness to sponsor a crystal growing contest for Montana high school students. The section agreed to support Emerson in this endeavor.

In keeping with National Chemistry Week (section activities in this area are guided by Andrea Stierle), Montana Tech's Chemistry Club gave five presentations at Butte schools. A Montana Standard news article reported that the demonstrations provided considerable enjoyment to youngsters and greatly stimulated their interest in chemistry