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Mund-Lagowski Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry
Olin Hall 201
(309) 677-3030

Kolb Lecture Fund

The Doris and Kenneth Kolb Chemistry Lecture has been established to bring to Bradley University notable chemists who have distinguished themselves as outstanding members of the scientific community.

Doris and Kenneth Kolb are both graduates of the University of Louisville, with Ph.D. degrees in organic chemistry from the Ohio State University. At Standard Oil (Indiana), now BP-Amoco, Ken worked in the New Chemicals Division and Doris in Information Research. She was also part of a weekly PBS television series on chemical research. In Corning, New York, Ken headed a team at Corning Glass that investigated the bonding of glass to plastics and studied various composite materials. Doris was involved in many community activities, including election to the school board. It was also in Corning that they both formally began their careers in chemical education. In a carriage house at the fledgling Corning Community College, Doris initiated the general chemistry program and Ken taught organic chemistry. In 1965, with their three sons, they came to Peoria, Ill. Ken was a professor at Bradley University, serving for two decades as chair of the chemistry department. In 1991 Bradley recognized his accomplishments with the Samuel Rothberg Award for Professional Excellence. In 1967, Doris became one of the original members of the faculty at Illinois Central College. She received the college’s first award for teaching excellence as well as several national awards. In 2004 they were honored by the American Chemical Society, receiving the first Illinois Heartland Local Section Lifetime Achievement Award and the Division of Chemical Education’s Outstanding Service Award. Doris, who was also the co-author of a popular chemistry text, “Chemistry for Changing Times,” died in December 2005. Ken continues to teach a course on petrochemicals and lecture on glass.

Previous Lecturers in the Series

Derek A. Davenport
Purdue University
“Linus Pauling: Crusading Chemist”

Herbert C. Brown*
Purdue University
“The Discovery and Exploration of a New Continent of Chemistry”

William B. Jensen
University of Cincinnati
Captain Nemo's Battery:
“Chemistry and the Science Fiction of Jules Verne”

Derek H. R. Barton*
Texas A&M University
“How to Win a Nobel Prize: A Personal Case History”

Philip S. Skell
The Pennsylvania State University
“The Unfolding of Carbene Chemistry”


Joseph J. Lagowski
The University of Texas
“Things Your Chemistry Teachers Never Told You”

Gilbert Gordon
Miami University
“Ozone and Chlorine Dioxide for Water Treatment:
Similar Chemical Issues and Measurement Problems”

Joseph B. Lambert
Northwestern University
“Unraveling the Past through Chemistry”

Roald Hoffmann*
Cornell University
“Chemistry’s Essential Tension: The Same and Not the Same”

C. Marvin Lang and Donald L. Showalter
University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
“Chemistry Plays Well in Peoria!”

Bassam Z. Shakhashiri
University of Wisconsin-Madison
“Enlightenment and the Responsibilities of the Enlightened in Communicating Chemistry”

John W. Hill
University of Wisconsin-River Falls
“The Times They Are (Still) a-Changin”

Jerry A. Bell
Simmons College
“Life in the Greenhouse”

*Nobel Prize Winners