Graham Peaslee Holds the Elmer E. Hartgerink
Peaslee has been appointed the
Elmer E. Hartgerink Professor of Chemistry.
First held in 1995, the Elmer E. Hartgerink Endowed Professorship
recognizes an outstanding chemist dedicated to students, teaching
and research, and committed to the Christian faith. It was established
by Elmer E. Hartgerink, a 1939 Hope graduate who spent his career
as a chemist, serving in the latter part of his career as chair
and chief executive officer, and then chairman of the board, of
Wyckoff Chemical Company Inc. in South Haven. Hartgerink, who died
in February 2000, received a Distinguished Alumni Award from the
college in 1988. The professorship was previously held by its original
recipient, Dr. William Mungall, who retired from the faculty at
the end of June, 2011.
Peaslee has taught at Hope since 1993. Chair of the department
of chemistry, he holds a split appointment between chemistry and
geological and environmental sciences, teaching a variety of introductory
and upper-level courses in each.
Trained as a nuclear chemist, he maintains an active interdisciplinary
research program involving undergraduates. Since joining the faculty,
he has been the principal investigator or co-principal investigator
for more than $3.4 million in external grants and has more than
150 peer-reviewed publications and given more than 100 public presentations.
For the past 18 years, he and physicist Dr. Paul DeYoung have
collaborated to run the college's Nuclear Group, mentoring more
than 100 research students and producing more than 60 research
publications associated with the group. Peaslee has also conducted
research on the Lake Macatawa Watershed since 1998, studying the
sources of pollution in the lake. In addition to articles in research
journals, his resulting publications include, as co-author, the
book "An Environmental History of The Lake Macatawa Watershed."
Among other honors through the years, he has received the college's "Hope
Outstanding Professor Educator" (H.O.P.E.) Award from the
graduating class in 2000; the Macatawa Watershed Project's "Stakeholder
of the Year" award in 2005; a "Janet Andersen Lecture
Award" from the Midstates Consortium for Math and Science
in 2010; and a "James N. Boelkins Natural and Applied Sciences
Division Research Award" from Hope in 2011.
Prior to joining the Hope faculty, Peaslee was a post-doctoral
fellow at the National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory at
MSU. He was also a post-doctoral fellow in the Nuclear Science
Division at Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory. He completed his bachelor's
degree in chemistry in 1981 at Princeton University, and his Ph.D.
in chemical physics in 1987 at the State University of New York
at Stony Brook.
Endowed chairs are established by donors who wish to assist the
college on a permanent basis through the support of a faculty member.
The gift is placed in the college's endowment fund with investment
income used to support the work of the honored professor. In addition
to recognizing faculty members for excellence, endowed chairs provide
funding for summer research projects as well as some salary support.
more about establishing an endowed professorship