Hani El-Kaderi, left, and M. Samy El-Shall.
Hani El-Kaderi, left, and M. Samy El-Shall are recipients of awards from Virginia Section of the American Chemical Society.

Two professors honored for their contributions to the field of chemistry, research

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Two faculty members in the VCU Department of Chemistry in the College of Humanities and Sciences will receive awards from the Virginia Section of the American Chemical Society.

M. Samy El-Shall, Ph.D., chair of the department and the Mary Eugenia Kapp Chair in Chemistry, will receive the organization’s 2020 Distinguished Service Award, which recognizes a member who has provided outstanding service to the group and to the chemistry profession. Since its inception in 1949, only 68 people have received the award.

El-Shall, who is completing a term as chair of the Virginia Section, has been a member of the American Chemical Society for more than 37 years and has received numerous honors and awards. In 2018, he was named the Outstanding Scientist for Virginia. He received the University Award of Excellence from VCU in 2016 and was elected a fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science in 2013. He is also an elected fellow of the American Physical Society and a U.S. Department of State Jefferson Science Fellow. And in 1999, he received the Outstanding Faculty Award from the State Council of Higher Education of Virginia.

Hani El-Kaderi, Ph.D., an associate professor in the Department of Chemistry, is the recipient of the 2020 Distinguished Research Award, which recognizes the excellence of a member of the Virginia Section whose research in chemistry has made significant contributions in advancing knowledge in their field of research and been recognized through publications and presentations, both in national and international scientific communities.

El-Shall nominated El-Kaderi for the award. In his nomination, El-Shall called El-Kaderi one of the top researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University.

“He runs one of the largest and most productive groups in the chemistry department,” El-Shall wrote. “He has an impressive publication record and most of his papers are highly cited and have significant impact in materials chemistry. El-Kaderi’s research projects are novel and have the potential to produce important new technologies that address issues in energy and the environment. … He has made very significant contributions to the development of porous organic and inorganic materials for use in clean energy applications such as rechargeable batteries, supercapacitors, fuel cells and gas storage and separation.”

He added that El-Kaderi’s work has been cited over 7,500 times and 15 of his research papers have received more than 100 citations. He also has secured more than $2.5 million in funding from agencies such as the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, the ACS Petroleum Research Fund, and the Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund of Virginia. He was the recipient of the Excellence in Scholarship Award from the College of Humanities and Sciences in 2014 and recipient of the 2007 AAAS Newcomb Cleveland Prize, which recognizes an outstanding paper published in its journal Science.