Rio Tinto Alcan Award

Sponsored by Rio Tinto Alcan, the Rio Tinto Alcan Award is presented to a scientist who has made a distinguished contribution to the fields of inorganic chemistry or electrochemistry while working in Canada.

The 2014 winner of the Rio Tinto Alcan Award is:

Martin Stillman, FCIC
Western University

Martin Stillman was born in London, UK. He received his BSc and PhD from the University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK supervised by Andrew Thomson, FRS. His PhD research focused on the application of magnetic circular dichroism spectroscopy to porphyrins, phthalocyanines and the protein myoglobin. He was a PDF at the University of Alberta studying the optical properties of phthalocyanines and the heme enzyme horseradish peroxidase. In 1975, he moved to the University of Western Ontario (now Western University) as an assistant professor, and has since 1986 been professor of bioinorganic chemistry. From 1994–2000 he was director of the Centre for Interdisciplinary Studies in Chemical Physics at the University of Western Ontario. In 2011 he was appointed associate chair, chemistry, and in 2012 he was cross-appointed to the department of biology. He chaired CanBIC-2007 in Parry Sound, Ont. He was a member of the organizing committee for ICBIC-15 held in Vancouver in August 2011.  He is actively involved in planning symposia in the International Conference on Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines held every two years. The focus in Stillman’s laboratory includes the metal binding mechanism and structural properties in the protein metallothionein, the electronic properties of tetrapyrroles and interpreting the mechanism of action of heme binding proteins.

The 2013 winner of the Rio Tinto Alcan Award was:

Pierre Harvey, FCIC
Université de Sherbrooke

Pierre Harvey obtained his PhD at McGill University in 1986 in the field of organometallic chemistry under the supervison of I.S. Butler enjoying NSERC (Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council) and FCAR (Fonds pour la formation de chercheurs et l'aide à la recherche) postgraduate scholarships. He then moved to Caltech as an NSERC postdoctoral fellow to explore the photochemistry of polynuclear coordination complexes under the guidance of H. B. Gray.

In 1988, prior to going to Université de Sherbrooke as an assistant professor, he broadened his postdoctoral experience at MIT in the field of microelectrochemistry with M.S. Wrighton. His independent career at Université de Sherbrooke started in early 1989, where he immediately secured a “Bourse Nouveau Chercheur” of the FCAR. He has developed several fields of research, including photonic polymeric materials built upon coordination and organometallic assembling linkers, photophysical energy flow in porphyrin assemblies for biomimicry purposes, electrochemistry and electrocatalysis of highly reactive Pd species, and studies of the catalytic properties of various polyphosphinated Rh complexes of calix[4]arene scaffolds.


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