Professor Robert Bergman (Ph.D. ’66) Wins Welch Award

Professor Robert Bergman
Professor Robert Bergman

C&E News reported this month that Professor Robert Bergman of the University of California, Berkeley, will receive the 2014 Welch Award in Chemistry.

Bergman is widely recognized as a major contributor to the field of organometallic chemistry research. Among other accomplishments, his discovery of transition-metal complexes that can activate a hydrocarbon’s C-H bond has given chemists unprecedented access to useful new compounds for industrial and pharmaceutical applications.

The Welch Foundation, based in Houston, supports fundamental chemical research at educational institutions. The foundation selects one winner of the $300,000 award each year to “foster and encourage basic chemical research and to recognize, in a substantial manner, the value of chemical research contributions for the benefit of mankind.” Bergman is honored for his pioneering contributions to organometallic chemistry research and the application of new discoveries to develop new drugs and clean energy.

Bergman earned a doctorate from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1966 under the guidance of Professor Jerome Berson. He has served on the department’s Board of Advisers since its inception.