brightly colored chairs in front of a lake

New Badger Chemists!

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Bachelor's Degree Recipients

FALL 2020

• Jake Ryan Alexander
• Sammy Ausman * ** ***
• Jacqueline Alyce Biernat
• Nicole Ann Fossum
• Tessa Rose Hellenbrand
• Austin Mitchell Hunt
• Eunyoung Jang
• Taylor Ann Klungness
• Alexander Jake Knopf
• Andrew Lee
• Weiting Lyu
• Virginia Baker Mathu ***
• Shawn Patrick McLaughlin
• McKayla Marie Olig
• Ian Radspinner
• Thomas Clifford Rollo
• Muhammad Isha Faizin
Bin Saifullizam
• Morgan Schmitz
• Chance Lee Wilkinson-Johnson
• Andy Yan
• Zinan Yu ***
• Keer Zhao * ***
• Yuchen Zhao


• Cristina Joan Bahaveolos
• Brenna Bartels ***
• Emily Grace Benson *
• Grace Carlson ***
• Erin Chen
• Jingxiang Cheng
• Jacob M. Dahl
• Maja Isabella Eaton
• Owen Erpelding ***
• Benjamin Ryan Feingold * **
• Stephanie Frost
• Yuanzuo Gao ***
• Han Geng ***
• Anna Gerosolina
• Morgan Kate Gugger ***
• Lydia Jean Hoffman
• Derek Holik
• Ismael Ali Jaffri
• Mason Alexander Job
• Bridget Kaiser
• Madeline Kakacek
• Jared Alexander Klein
• Jack Gordon Knoke
• Rachel Ann Knutson **
• Rebecca Christine Kressuk
• Michael Richard Kuehne Jr.
• Maija Lee
• Ethan Leung
• John Michael Lilek
• Yueai Lin *
• Marina Minic
• Jonah Charles Nelson
• Edward M. Paulsen
• Corey Nathaniel Pedersen ** ***
• James Pfister
• Morgan Leah Richter
• Anuchit Rupanya * ***
• Dylan Monroe Snider ***
• Chester M. Sosnowski
• Jingxuan Tang *
• Marko Tupanjac **
• Blake Palmer, Waples
• Linnea Elizabeth Wust


• Sheila Ngoc Anh Duong
• Zachary James Ehmer
• Zachariah Georgakakis
• Dave Kaiman ***
• Turner Michael Luke
• Robert Sapienza
• Brendan Ivar Steinmetz
• Alfred Shiergetya

* Honors in the Major

** Honors in the Liberal Arts

*** Graduation with Distinction

Names missing from the list may appear in the 2020 or 2022 issues of Badger Chemist.

Master's Degree Recipients

• Alina Dao (Nathanson)
• Anthony DiBernardo (Tang)
• Xiao Dong (Yoon)
• Froylan Omar Fernandez
Candelaria (Burstyn)
• Gillian Good (Martell)
• Jiabao Guo (Li)
• Connor Huntwork (Hermans)
• Joshua Kreisel (Martell)
• Ethan Licht (Schomaker)
• Victoria Longley (Weix)
• Brandon Mehlenbacher
• Matthew Rossler (Yoon)
• Correy Vigil (Bertram)
• Keyu Zeng (Fredrickson)

Doctoral Degree Recipients

  • Manar Alherech (Stahl) Valorization of an Oxidative Lignin Depolymerization Stream with Centrifugal Partition Chromatography
  • Jaya Borgatta (Hamers) Understanding the influence of Cu-based nanoparticle properties on interactions with plant systems and disease suppression
  • Brian Cary (Gellman) Functional and structural studies of family B G protein-coupled receptors
  • Melissa Cendejas (Hermans) Investigation of Active Site Structure and Formation on Boron-Based Oxidative Dehydrogenation Catalysts
  • Sijie Chen (Stahl) Copper-Catalyzed Benzylic C(sp3)–H Cross Couplings: Methodology Development and Applications in Medicinal Chemistry
  • Yusi Cui (Li) Development and Application of Isobaric Labeling, ERLIC Separation, and Chemoproteomics Methods for Bioanalytical Research
  • Rebeca Fernandez (Brunold) Structural, Spectroscopic, and Kinetic Investigation of Cysteamine Dioxygenase
  • Alex Foote (Goldsmith) Time-resolved Multirotational Fluorescence Anisotropy Measurements of Single Molecules to Characterize Conformational Subpopulations of Solution-Phase Intrinsically Disordered Proteins
  • Isabel Foreman-Ortiz (Pedersen) Nanoparticle impact on membrane properties and embedded ion channels
  • Kevin Garcia (Weix) Greener Approaches to Cross-Coupling
  • Christopher Gravatt (Yoon) New Strategies for [2+2] Photocycloadditions of Aliphatic Alkenes
  • Elizabeth Greenhalgh (Brunold) Spectroscopic and Computational Investigations of Cobalamin Containing Enzymes
  • Matthew Hautzinger (Jin) Structure-Property Relationships of Halide Perovskite Semiconductors
  • Austin Henke (Hamers) Redox Reactions at Solid-Liquid Interfaces and Implications for Sustainability
  • Casey Howdieshell (Garand) Linear Digital Ion Trap Mass Spectrometry and its Application for Cryogenic Ion Spectroscopy
  • Aurora Janes (Schmidt) Computational Modeling for Heterogeneous Catalysis of Aerobic Oxidation and Electrocatalytic Oxygen Reduction
  • Zachary Jones (Hamers) Optical Characterization of Fluorescent Diamond Nanoparticles in Complex Environments
  • Adam Klemen (Gellman) Potential Foldamers Based on an ortho-Terphenyl Amino Acid
  • Samantha Knott (Ge) Development of Mass Spectrometry Based Proteomic Approaches for the Study of Diseased Tissues
  • Caitlin Kozack (Stahl) Method Development and Mechanistic Investigation of Palladium-Catalyzed Allylic Oxidation Reactions of Terminal Alkenes
  • Kate Kurgan (Gellman) Towards Crystallization of Single-Pass Transmembrane Domains
  • Xinyi Li (Schmidt) Simulate the nucleation of electrolytes with explicit solvents via two approaches
  • Zihui Li (Li) Advancing Quantitative Proteomics and Protein Post-translational Modification Analyses by Multi-Dimensional Mass Spectrometric Approaches
  • Dongyue Liang (Cui) Computational Studies at Nanomaterial-Biological Interfaces
  • Ann Lindberg (Choi) Development of Electrode Materials for (Photo)electrochemical Reactions
  • Lei Liu (Gellman) Exploration of Activity Profiles for Nylon-3 Polymers as Antimicrobial Peptide Mimics
  • Ann Lindberg (Choi) Development of Electrode Materials for (Photo)electrochemical Reactions
  • Erdong Lu (Fredrickson) Atomic Packing in Action: Chemical Pressure Directed Intergrowth in Chimney Ladders, Ternary Phosphides and Polar Intermetallics
  • Brock Lynde (Boydston) Challenges, Successes, and Opportunities in Investigating Novel Strategies for Polymer Synthesis
  • William McDermott (Hermans) Development of Boron-based Catalysts for the Selective Oxidation of Light Alkanes to Olefins
  • Robert Millikin (Smith) Algorithms for the Interpretation of Mass Spectra in Quantitative and Qualitative Proteomics
  • Jordan Nutting (Stahl) Overpotential in Organic Synthesis: Implications in Electrochemical Synthesis and Aerobic Catalysis
  • Vanessa Orr (McMahon and Woods) Rotational and Vibrational Spectroscopy and Structure Determination of Organic Molecules of Astrochemical Relevance
  • Marshall Padilla (Mecozzi) New Liquid Biomaterials for Nanoemulsion-mediated Drug Delivery
  • Sungho Park (Berry) Tailoring Metal-Based SOMOs for Pnictogen Reactivity
  • Andjela Radmilovic (Choi) Development of New Ternary Metal Oxide Photoelectrodes for Use in a Photoelectrochemical Cell
  • Jessica Roberts (Schomaker) Computational Modeling to Explore the Influence of Sterics, Electronics, and Non-Covalent Interactions on Reactivity
  • Zachary Rolfs (Smith) Novel Strategies for Identifying Endogenous Peptides and Determining Protein Turn-over Rates
  • Chase Salazar (Stahl) Mechanistic Insights Support Efficient Pd Catalysts for Oxidative C–H Arylation with O2
  • Daniel SantaLucia (Berry) Investigations of the Electronic Structures of Multimetallic Iron-Chalcogenide Clusters and Five-Coordinate Cobalt Complexes
  • Matthew Styles (Blackwell) Towards a mechanistic understanding quorum sensing agonism and antagonism: biophysical and biochemical investigations of LuxR-type receptor:ligand complexes
  • Aristidis Vasilopoulos (Stahl) Transition Metal-Catalyzed Oxidative Cross Coupling for Synthesis and Functionalization of Diverse Molecules
  • Michael Vermeuel (Bertram) The Influence of Complex Meteorology and Surface Heterogeneity on Oxidation in the Troposphere
  • Tingting Weng (Schmidt) Computational Modeling of the Stability and Reactivity of Zeolitic Imidazolate Frameworks
  • Korbin West (Blackwell) The development of chemical tools to study cell-cell communication and virulence in Gram-positive bacteria
  • Yuzhou Zhao (Jin) Stacking and Twisting of Layered Materials Enabled by Screw Dislocations and Non-Euclidean Surfaces
  • Yanyu Zhu (Weisshaar) Single-Cell Detection of Antimicrobial Peptide’s Attack on Live E. coli by Super-Resolution Fluorescence Microscopy

New Faculty & Staff

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Welcome New Faculty & Staff

  • Christina Bahaveolos, Laboratory Technician
  • Amber Bartz, Electronics Technician
  • Amanda Buchberger, Analytical Assistant Lab Director
  • Luke Carroll, Financial Specialist
  • Farzaneh Chalyavi (Zanni) Editor & Lab Manager
  • Tzu-Ling Chen (Goldsmith) Scientist
  • Gustavo Cruz Diaz (Widicus Weaver) Assistant Scientist
  • Irena Garic, Administrative Assistant
  • Erin Grunewald, Undergraduate Chemistry Specialist
  • Caleb Harris (Berry) Assistant Scientist
  • Xuhui Huang, Professor
  • James (Jim) Leu, IT Manager
  • Kent Meyer (Wright), Assistant Scientist
  • Tristan Rholl, Research Store Manager
  • Aaron Smith, Inventory Control Coordinator, Shipping/Receiving
  • Jackie Trate, Instructional Innovator
  • Alicia Walker, Administrative Assistant
  • Jeremy Weaver, Instructor & Curriculum Coordinator
  • Josef Wilkinson, Laboratory Technician
  • Jia Zhou, Instructor & Resource Specialist

In Memoriam

Please click here to visit our tribute page for Badger Chemists who have died. If you find that someone is missing, please let us know by emailing

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From the 2021 Badger Chemist magazine

  • chalkboard with General Chemistry for the Virtual Classroom. Desks arranged in a cirle with different molecules on top.

    Graduate Student Creates Free Library of 3D Chemistry Teaching Tools

    When the COVID-19 pandemic forced UW–Madison’s in-person instruction online in 2020, undergraduate and graduate research students encountered a massive obstacle in their learning: How would they perform their research if they were unable to go into their labs? Michael Aristov, a 5th-year graduate student in the Berry lab in the Department of Chemistry, pivoted to another one of his interests when the pandemic impeded his research. He decided to build augmented reality models to aid chemistry education.

  • Photos of people at a virtual meeting, all smiling, one wearing a mask.

    Chemistry graduate students use virtual zine to bridge gap between arts and science

    Although art and science are often viewed as unrelated ventures, over the years their coexistence has been realized as more compatible than immiscible. Graduate students from the Department of Chemistry, through their recently established art and literary magazine, are advocating for this interdisciplinary approach and the benefits it renders. The Benzine, besides being a great pun, is a platform for the Chemistry community to share their art, build a sense of community and alleviate stress.

  • Randall Goldsmith

    Single-molecule measurements give insight into how pacemaker ion channels interact with cAMP

    If you’ve ever been on an amusement park ride, been scared suddenly, or maybe even had to address a large crowd when you were nervous; you’ve likely felt your heart start to thump faster even though you weren’t exerting a lot of energy. What happened was a certain chemical compound called cyclic adenosine monophosphate (cAMP) activated pacemaker ion channels, which caused an increase in electrical activity that led to your heart beating faster.

  • plane wing flying over the ocean

    Bertram group finds ocean life helps produce clouds, but existing clouds keep new ones at bay

    Stand on the ocean’s shore and take a big whiff of the salt spray and you’ll smell the unmistakably pungent scent of the sea. That ripe, almost rotting smell? That’s sulfur. Marine plankton breathe more than 20 million tons of sulfur into the air every year, mostly in the form of dimethyl sulfide (DMS). In the air, this chemical can transform into sulfuric acid, which helps produce clouds by giving a site for water droplets to form. Over the scale of the world’s oceans, this process affects the entire climate.

  • Prof. Larry Dahl at the Chemistry Symposium Celebrating his 80th birthday.

    Prof. Emeritus Lawrence F. Dahl: Department remembers brilliant researcher and thoughtful advisor

    Lawrence F. Dahl, Professor Emeritus of Chemistry at UW–Madison, passed away unexpectedly on March 20, 2021, at the age of 91. He was preceded in death by his son, Chris Dahl and is survived by his wife of 63 years, Prof. Emerita June Lomnes Dahl and two sons, Lawrence Dahl and Eric Dahl, all of Madison, and grandson Lawrence Samuel Hendon-Dahl.

  • Ashley Ogorek, a graduate student in the Martell Lab, recently won a National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate fellowship.

    Graduate students win Department of Defense Fellowship

    Chemistry graduate students Christopher Dade (Forest) and Ashley Ogorek (Martell) have been selected for the Department of Defense’s National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate (ND- SEG) fellowships, which for three years offer a monthly stipend, travel budget, health insurance and pay tuition and fees.

  • Christian Gomez attends the ACS Meeting & Expo in Atlanta, GA, by winning an ACS Bridge Travel and Career/Professional Development Award

    Undergrad researcher earns award to attend ACS Atlanta

    Christian Gomez, an undergraduate researcher with the Martell group, received an ACS Bridge Travel and Career/Professional Development Award, which helped him attend his first scientific conference – the ACS Meeting & Expo in Atlanta. The award supports underrepresented undergraduate and graduate students by funding conference attendance and career and professional development.

  • Dr. Pam Doolittle headshot

    Doolittle earns Distinguished Faculty Associate promotion

    Dr. Pam Doolittle has been promoted to Distinguished Faculty Associate by performing at a level of proficiency, gaining extensive experience, knowledge, and skills, and providing guidance and training to peers and other staff.

  • Bucky

    Bertram, Bain receive Taylor Excellence in Teaching Awards

    The Department of Chemistry chose two recipients for the James W. Taylor Excellence Teaching Award – Prof. Timothy Bertram and senior instructional technology specialist Dr. Rachel Bain.

  • Stephanie Santos-Diaz STEMpowerment artwork

    Postdoc uses social media to share STEM resources

    Stephanie Santos-Diaz, an advocate for diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education, and a postdoc at the Department of Chemistry, recently started an Instagram account that is intended to be an empowering resource for underrepresented populations in the STEM field. Six months after her first post in October 2020, the STEMpowerment Instagram page has gained more than 200 followers, and has shared over 40 posts. Santos-Diaz explained that the Instagram page is a way to acknowledge her community and help them to overcome potential barriers.

  • The UW–Madison Department of Chemistry’s new tower is scheduled to open in time for the Spring 2022 semester.

    New building scheduled to open for Spring

    The new Department of Chemistry tower, which was supposed to open in the Fall of 2021, is now scheduled to open for classes in the Spring of 2022, according to the Facilities Committee. As part of a $133 million upgrade to the building complex, the tower is poised to serve the rapidly increasing number of undergraduate students at UW–Madison.

  • Graduate researcher Edward Pimentel showed that changing the conformation of the DNA scaffold, thereby increasing the distance between the co-catalysts, and inhibiting their interaction, resulted in the reaction completely shutting off.

    Lab makes 3-D enzyme mimicking architectures using full pallet of synthetic chemistry

    The Martell group’s research focuses on making artificial enzymes and artificial receptors by combining biomolecules with synthetic molecules. “We synthetically modify individual DNA arms by using functional groups that are not found in naturally occur- ring amino acids and cofactors, therefore broadening the scope of our reactivity,” said Prof. Jeffrey Martell. “We then rely on complementary base-pairing for the arms to self-assemble into a 3-D cage, such that the attached functional groups are displayed into a central cavity.”

  • Prof. Susanna Widicus Weaver

    Widicus Weaver Lab finds new methods for prebiotic chemistry

    Over the past year, the Widicus Weaver group kept busy under the constraints of COVID-19, by finding new ways to approach research on prebiotic astrochemistry. The group focused on calculations, modeling, and computational work while evaluating the setup of their laboratory experiments.

  • Electrochemical aziridination reaction

    Wickens Lab explores new method to make aziridines

    The Wickens lab primarily focuses on developing novel strategies for combating long-standing synthesis challenges in organic chemistry. This past year, they took the challenge of developing a new method to synthesize aziridines by leveraging electrochemistry.

  • person smiling

    Q&A with Chemistry Education Professor Ryan Stowe

    Professor Ryan Stowe joined the Department of Chemistry as part of the Chemistry Education path. As professors John Moore and Bassam Shakhashiri retire, Stowe reflects on his reason for joining the department and on the …

  • Headshots of Prof. Stowe and Prod. Pazicni

    Retiring faculty legacies set stage for ChemEd colleagues

    For many years, the Department of Chemistry at UW–Madison has been a key place for Chemistry Education, with teaching, outreach, and dissemination of Chemistry Education materials second to none.

  • person smiling

    Q&A with Chemistry Education Professor Sam Pazicni

    Professor Sam Pazicni joined the Department of Chemistry as part of the Chemistry Education path. As professors Bassam Shakhashiri and John Moore retire, Pazicni reflects on his reason for joining the department and on the …

  • Lydia Perkins (Buller group), Prof. Judith Burstyn, Prof. Andrew Buller and Brian Weaver (Burstyn group) collaborated on a project through which they learned that bacterial cells could survive by putting cobalt into their proteins.

    Exciting discovery made from incorrect hypothesis

    A hypothesis can be a scientist’s best-educated guess about how an experiment might turn out or why they got specific results. Some- times, they’re not far off from the truth. Other times, they’re wrong. Being wrong isn’t always a bad thing. Often, it means that the researchers get to discover something new and exciting. This exact scenario happened when the Burstyn and Buller labs decided to work together on a project.

  • Headshots of Barta, Boydston and Pease.

    Department launches Faculty Research Mentorship Program

    Community is an important aspect of any Department, especially in an age of virtual interactions. Recently, the Department of Chemistry took strides to strengthen mentorship relationships, engage in conversations, and initiate peer learning with a new mentor training program.

  • Bassam Shakhashiri enjoys Mole Day with students through the annual American Chemical Society celebration.

    Annual Mole Day created by Badger Chemist

    Almost any student who has taken a chemistry course – whether it be in high school, college, or elsewhere – will have a story about how they celebrated Mole Day with their class. Few know, however, that the creation of the day has ties to the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

  • Prof. Bassam Shakhashiri shares a chemical demonstration to help others understand the value of science to society.

    Tireless advocate for science literacy retires

    Bassam Shakhashiri, the kinetic and tireless science educator and 81-year-old University of Wisconsin–Madison chemistry professor who for more than 50 years charmed and amazed audiences with the wonders of science, has retired. His steadfast advocacy for science literacy was a clarion call to scientists and politicians alike.

  • Prof. John Moore works with undergraduate Jiayu Wang during a class discussion section in 2016.

    Chemistry Education through the years: Reflecting on Prof. John W. Moore’s retirement and impact

    Prof. John W. Moore, the W. T. Lippincott Professor of Chemistry at UW– Madison, retired from the Department at the end of Spring 2021. His wife, Program Manager Betty Moore, who retired at the same time, made major contributions to the Department and to John’s professional career.

  • Huang Group at Hirschfelder banquet

    Department welcomes Prof. Xuhui Huang

    Prof. Xuhui Huang, who arrived in Madison over the summer, is the newest faculty member added to the Department. His group is primarily focused on Theoretical Chemistry and Molecular Biophysics, particularly looking at the interface of the two fields.

  • Portrait of Chair Clark Landis

    Landis becomes Department chair: Grateful for legacy of past chair, ready to take on new challenges

    Prof. Clark Landis has taken over as chair of the Department of Chemistry, a position previously held by Prof. Judith N. Burstyn.

  • person with glasses smiling

    Burstyn leaves lasting legacy: First female Department chair implements change despite obstacles

    Prof. Judith N. Burstyn, the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Chemistry’s first female Department chair and a member of the UW–Madison chemistry community for more than 30 years, finished her landmark term in June.

  • More 2021 Badger Chemist Magazine posts