Guidelines for Selecting ACA Fellows

As of August 8, 2013. REVISED 05/25/14 / REVISED 8/2019

The ACA Council has established a Fellows program. It serves to recognize a high level of excellence in scientific research, teaching, and professional duties, but also service, leadership, and personal engagement in the ACA and the broader world of crystallography and science. Our Fellows program celebrates the excellence of our own members from within the ACA and promotes their recognition worldwide to constituencies outside of the ACA, such as their employers, other scientific societies, and the government. ACA Fellows serve as scientific ambassadors to the broader scientific community and the general public to advance science education, research, knowledge, interaction, and collaboration. This program allows us to significantly recognize and honor a broader cross-section of the membership than was previously possible with other, more specific awards. We envision that eventually about 5% of the membership will be recognized as Fellows, and the ACA will announce new inductees and honor all ACA Fellows at the annual Awards Banquet.



A Fellow is defined as "a Member whose efforts on behalf of the advancement of crystallography or its applications that are scientifically or socially distinguished." Examples of areas in which nominees may have made significant contributions are research; teaching; technology; services to professional societies; administration in academia, industry, and government; and communicating and interpreting science to the public. Fellows are elected annually by the current group of Fellows.



The procedure for nominating and selecting Fellows is as follows:

  • Candidates for ACA Fellow must be a current ACA member, meaning that the candidate must have paid ACA dues for the year they are nominated.
  • A nomination package must be completed by the nominator, who must also be an current ACA member. In a cover letter, a case should be made for how the proposed Fellow meets the above criteria. A brief CV must also be provided, as well as two letters from at least other current ACA members supporting the nomination.
  • Nominations are due each year by April 1st . All nominations will be collected at ACA Headquarters and distributed to the current Fellows for review. A score sheet shall be provided.
  • Nominations for ACA Fellows shall roll over twice, without any additional submissions from the nominator (i.e., candidates for Fellow who are nominated but not elected in one year will be automatically reviewed during each of the following two years), provided that the candidate remains as current ACA.
  • Current Fellows shall provide a yes/no/abstain vote on each nominee. Fellows will submit their recommendations to ACA Headquarters within 3 weeks of receipt of the nomination packet. For a candidate to be approved as a Fellow, greater than 50% of the votes actually cast for that candidate must be “yes,” AND the number of yes votes must be greater than or equal to 25% of the total number of current Fellows. An abstention does not count as a vote.


Class of 2019

Craig M. Brown is Team Leader for Structure and Dynamics of Materials in the Center for Neutron Research (NCNR) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). He manages a vibrant team that supports a suite of 7 cutting-edge, neutron instruments, 2 diffraction related and 5 spectroscopy oriented. As well as maintenance, this team continues to design, develop and improve this unique neutron instrumentation. Craig is also responsible for the well-known diffraction mail-in program at the NCNR, user support that makes the NCNR one of the most popular neutron facilities in the world. Craig is a skilled scientist who has focused on the structure and dynamics of novel materials using mainly neutron radiation. He is at the forefront of understanding how structure correlates to properties in functional materials. Besides being a noteworthy scientist in his own right, Craig also maintains an extensive collaborative network through which some of his most important work has been carried out. For instance, Craig and his close collaborator from UC Berkeley, Jeff Long, were recognized by the DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program with its Hydrogen Storage Award “for their decades of dedication and achievements in adsorbent-based hydrogen storage materials development and characterization.” He has used the infrastructure he has developed for in-situ neutron diffraction measurements to study the atomic nature of industrially important gases for adsorption and separation technologies. As a collaborator, Craig brings not just expertise but broad knowledge in inorganic chemistry that allows him to contribute to material design. Training, mentoring and motivating future scientists is very important to Craig. He holds an appointment as Affiliated Assistant Professor in the Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department at the University of Delaware and also mentors graduate students and post-docs who go to the NCNR to collect data. He is an excellent and patient teacher who has taught hands-on approaches to analysis of powder diffraction data at a number of workshops. He has been the president of the Powder Diffraction SIG and was a session organizer for the Philadelphia ACA meeting as well as co-organizing several international symposia. He is currently a Guest Editor of the journal Powder Diffraction for a series of publications entitled “Crystallography and properties of metal organic framework (MOF) compounds.” Craig’s publication record, his excellent technical ability, and his deep interest in educating the scientific community, current and future, in the power of neutron diffraction and crystallographic methods have made a significant contribution to the crystallographic community.


Susan K. Byram has been integral to many of the developments that have shaped modern x-ray diffractometers. She has always been an overachiever earning undergraduate degrees in Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry from the University of Toronto and, upon graduating, being recognized by the Chemical Institute of Canada as top chemistry graduate in Canada. While an undergraduate, Sue was drawn to crystallography because of its capability to give definitive information about materials. This fascination led to her earning a Master of Science degree, also at the University of Toronto, which emphasized x-ray crystallography. Her natural affinity was for the software side of crystallographic research. Sue’s career really began when she took a position at Syntex doing software development. (Ask her about getting this job.) She was reporting to Bob Sparks and together they automated single crystal diffractometers and wrote the first commercial, minicomputer-based structure solution and refinement suite called XTL. After several years at Syntex, she became a co-founder (with Bob Sparks and others) and Operations Manager of a company that provided advanced software and automation for powder diffraction systems. This company was acquired by Nicolet and Sue became Product Manager for Powder Diffraction and then Product and Applications Manager for X-Ray Diffraction at Nicolet. Subsequently she was Product and Applications Manager of Single Crystal Diffraction at Siemens Analytical X-ray Systems, Inc. and then at Bruker AXS. In 2001 she became Business Manager of Crystallographic Systems. This position put her in control of Bruker’s crystallography sales force in the USA and Canada. She also coordinated global sales activities and managed the crystallographic application laboratories and Application Scientists for activities such as demonstrations, new product testing and application courses. Throughout her career she has continued to aid all the crystallographers she encounters. Besides all the worthwhile scientific work she has done, Sue is known for her deep interest in helping members of the crystallographic community. She is a great resource since she knows so many in the community and what they are doing. She is always – and to everyone – a welcoming presence at ACA meetings. She is known for even greeting new participants at ACA meetings who work for competitor companies. She has been a stalwart at ACA meetings since 1970 and has been an invaluable support for the ACA throughout this time. She has both presented her work and volunteered her time, most recently as Treasurer of the ACA. She taught for ten years at ACA Summer Schools. Sue truly embodies the spirit of an ACA Fellow: great science and insight, exceptional service to the ACA and passionate outreach to the scientific community.


Charles W. Carter, Jr., Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill (UNC), has made contributions to science in a number of diverse fields including structural biology, experimental design, mechanistic enzymology, and the origin of genetic coding. He earned his PhD at the University of California at San Diego (UCSD) under the mentorship of Joe Kraut. During this time, he was part of the team that determined the structure of high-potential iron protein (HiPIP), one of the first protein structures to be deposited in the PDB. After post-doctoral stints at UCSD and at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology at Cambridge under the mentorship of Aaron Klug, Charlie established his own laboratory in which he uses protein engineering as well as mathematical and myriad biophysical techniques to pursue his goals. Charlie’s development and study of “urzymes” – ur meaning earliest or primitive - and their role in evolution of the genetic code has challenged the “RNA World” hypothesis that posits that RNA alone triggered the rise of life from a sea of molecules. His work pointed out what small primordial proteins can do in the evolution of the genetic code. He was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science on this basis of this work. In addition to his significant research program, Charlie has been an exemplary contributor to the American Crystallographic Association (ACA) and also to its parent organization, the American Institute of Physics (AIP). In 2002 Charlie served as President of the ACA and from 2003-2012 he was an associate editor for Acta Crystallographica A. He served two terms on the US National Committee for Crystallography. Since 2004 he has held various roles in the AIP including as a member of its Board of Directors and, most recently, on the Publishing Partners Advisory Committee. His work on AIP committees has been particularly important since the AIP is the publisher of the ACA’s journal Structural Dynamics. In 2003 Charlie proved himself to be one of the most artistic of the members of the ACA; his past-president’s talk took the form of a modern dance performance. No one who saw it will ever question his creativity. Charlie’s influential and forward-looking research, his on-going service to the ACA and his creativity in communication show him to be a talented contributor to the greater crystallographic community.


Elspeth F. Garman, Professor of Molecular Biophysics at Oxford University, is an acclaimed figure for both her high-level scientific achievements and her willingness and ability to communicate science. She has made invaluable contributions to the field of macromolecular crystallographic methods by developing tools and methods for improving the quality of diffraction data. Her pioneering efforts in developing methods to cryo-preserve macromolecular crystals have had a profound effect on the field. This is evidenced by the fact that around 90% of the more than 131,000 macromolecular x-ray structure determinations in the Protein Data Bank use these methods. Her methods are now routinely used beyond the field of macromolecular crystallography and with both laboratory and synchrotron sources. Another of her significant accomplishments that has affected the entire protein crystallography community is her development of methods for both monitoring and mitigating radiation damage of crystals. As an acknowledgement of the importance of this work, the radiation dose limit of a cryo-cooled protein crystal is called the “Garman limit.” She has received several awards for her work on improving the quality of diffraction data, including the I. Fankuchen Award of the ACA and the Max Perutz Prize of the European Crystallographic Association. Elspeth’s science has included the elucidation of many important biological structures, among others, the structures of neuraminidases linked to pandemic influenza viruses and bacteria. In addition to her influential scientific contributions, Elspeth is internationally known for her role in communicating science both to the next generation of structural scientists and to the public. Besides the teaching she does at Oxford, she is a much sought-after speaker for workshops, conferences, and distinguished lectures. She has also played a major role in the public communication of science. She is a knowledgeable, ever-willing and engaging media presence who has been interviewed on topics both specific, e.g. like avian flu, and general, e.g. The Life Scientific. To ensure the spread of knowledge, she has organized numerous conferences and meetings and is willing to lecture anywhere - in schools, in pubs, in museums. Her editorial roles have been another way she has given her time in service to the communication of science. Among them are the co-editorship of Acta Crystallographica D since 2008 and the co-editorship of the Journal of Applied Crystallography from 2008 – 2013. Elspeth’s extensive engagement in communicating crystallography, and science more generally; her excellent mentorship of the next generation of scientists; and her work that has dramatically changed the way macromolecular crystallographic data is collected show her to be a significant contributor to the crystallographic community.


Xiaoping Wang is Senior Scientist in the Neutron Scattering Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory ORNL. He was originally an inorganic chemist, earning his PhD and holding a postdoctoral appointment with F.A. Cotton. In his book, My Life in the Golden Age of Chemistry, Cotton applauds him as making critical contributions to the most difficult structures. As a complement to his inorganic work, he took a postdoctoral position at the Intense Pulsed Neutron Source at Argonne National Laboratory with Arthur Schultz. He started his career as Director of Crystallographic Computing at Texas A&M University and, subsequently, as Director of the X-ray Diffraction Laboratory at the University of North Texas becoming an experienced chemical crystallographer who used both x-ray and neutron diffraction. While working as Director of the X-ray Diffraction Laboratory, he became a member of the Instrument Development Team for the SNS-single-crystal neutron diffractometer TOPAZ. In 2008 Xiaoping took a position as Senior Scientist at the Spallation Neutron Source (SNS) at ORNL, becoming the SNS TOPAZ Point of Contact. The commissioning of TOPAZ was difficult but Xiaoping played an essential role in making the SNS TOPAZ single-crystal instrument the leading facility of its kind in the US and one of the premier facilities in the world. As Point of Contact for TOPAZ, he has done a superb job of working with the community to leverage TOPAZ’s unique capabilities, e.g. of neutron time-of-flight single-crystal diffraction. Xiaoping is an active volunteer. He was Chair of the Small Molecule SIG and is currently a member of the Editorial Board of Acta Crystallographica C, Structural Chemistry. He is an enthusiastic and informative speaker and is frequently invited to lecture. He has given numerous workshop presentations on the use of TOPAZ and has organized sessions at the ACA. Xiaoping has demonstrated a high level of excellence in neutron chemical crystallography research and has taken a leading role in making it accessible and understandable to other scientists. His professional service has expanded the neutron user community both among senior and junior researchers.




Andrew Allen | Class of 2018
James Britten | Class of 2018
Majed Chergui | Class of 2018
Wladek Minor | Class of 2018
Thomas Proffen | Class of 2018
Janet Smith | Class of 2018
Robert VonDreele | Class of 2018
Marilyn Olmstead | Class of 2017
Brian Toby | Class of 2017
Gerard Bricogne | Class of 2016
I. David Brown | Class of 2016
Charles Campana | Class of 2016
Bryan Chakoumakos | Class of 2016
Yu-Sheng Chen | Class of 2016
Frank Fronczek | Class of 2016
Michael James | Class of 2016
Brian Matthews | Class of 2016
Arnold Rheingold | Class of 2016
Zbigniew Dauter | Class of 2015
David Eisenberg | Class of 2015
John Helliwell | Class of 2015
Hakon Hope | Class of 2015
Thomas Koetzle | Class of 2015
Paul Langan | Class of 2015
David Rose | Class of 2015
Eddie Arnold | Class of 2014
Abe Clearfield | Class of 2014
Larry Dahl | Class of 2014
George Phillips | Class of 2014
Ned Seeman | Class of 2014
John Spence | Class of 2014
Ron Stenkamp | Class of 2014
Winnie Wong-Ng | Class of 2014
Sidney Abrahams | Class of 2013
Wim Hol | Class of 2013
Jim Ibers | Class of 2013
Alex McPherson | Class of 2013
Keith Moffat | Class of 2013
Alex Wlodawer | Class of 2013
Donald Caspar | Class of 2012
Dick Marsh | Class of 2012
Virginia Pett | Class of 2012
Jane Richardson | Class of 2012
Thomas Terwilliger | Class of 2012
Helen Berman | Class of 2011
Philip Coppens | Class of 2011
Johann Deisenhofer | Class of 2011
Bill Duax | Class of 2011
Judy Flippen-Anderson | Class of 2011
Jenny Glusker | Class of 2011
Herbert Hauptman | Class of 2011
Wayne Hendrickson | Class of 2011
Carroll Johnson | Class of 2011
Isabella Karle | Class of 2011
Jerry Karle | Class of 2011
Connie Rajnak | Class of 2011
Narasinga Rao | Class of 2011
Michael Rossmann | Class of 2011
George Sheldrick | Class of 2011
B.C. Wang | Class of 2011