Alexander Spokoyny Named Fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry

By Penny Jennings

This article was originally published by UCLA Chemistry & Biochemistry

Department Chair Professor Alexander Spokoyny ’06 has been named a fellow of the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), the oldest chemical society in the world, whose mission is to “advance excellence in the chemical sciences.”

Members of the Royal Society of Chemistry are required to have made an outstanding contribution to the advancement of chemical sciences. Achieving fellow status denotes a high level of accomplishment as a professional in the field.

Spokoyny joined the UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry faculty in 2014 and built a world-class research program focused on the synthetic inorganic and organometallic chemistry. His group is particularly interested in applying fundamental discoveries in these areas towards solving problems in energy storage and biomedical applications such as selective labeling, recognition and imaging. Since 2023, Spokoyny has been serving as Chemistry & Biochemistry department Chair.

Spokoyny has received numerous awards for his educational contributions focusing on broader appreciation of chemistry by the general public, including the Research Corporation Cottrell Scholar Award (2018), the department’s prestigious Hanson-Dow Award for Teaching Excellence (2019), the Camille Dreyfus Teacher-Scholar Award (2020), the UCLA Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award (2021), and the Community Service and Praxis Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award (2022).

Through his outreach efforts, Spokoyny has shown his commitment to bringing chemistry to the community, especially those who are under-served. He has been teaching chemistry to incarcerated students in Southern California prisons as a part of the UCLA Prison Education Program and his group has done extensive outreach for K-12 students.

Additionally, he has garnered several awards and honors for his group’s research activities, such as the NSF Career Award (2019), NIH/NIGMS Maximizing Investigators’ Research Award (2017), Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship (2017). In 2016, Spokoyny was named one of Chemical and Engineering News (C&EN)’s “Talented 12”.