Heritage Research Group Chemist Named 2020 ACS Fellow
Congratulations Linda Osborn
2020 American Chemical Society (ACS) Fellow
Indianapolis, October 21, 2020 – Heritage Research Group Chemist Named 2020 ACS Fellow
From industry-leading research to her dedicated community outreach efforts, it is no surprise that Linda Osborn, Director of Analytical Research with the Heritage Research Group, was named a 2020 ACS Fellow. We recently sat down with Linda to discuss her career, ACS recognition, and what comes next.
You’ve been with the company for 36 years. Why do you love working at The Heritage Group (THG)?
Since I started in 1984, my position has progressed greatly, allowing me to participate in a variety of projects and teams. Every day I learn something new and this keeps things fresh and interesting. THG team members have the passion and diverse expertise needed for us to collaborate and solve problems, and it’s exciting to see how this commitment and their many unique contributions are helping our company grow. All are very giving of their time and talents, and that’s part of the appeal of working here. When I think about all the ways the company has evolved over the years, it reflects the incredible family behind it and the familial atmosphere that abounds.
My new role has given me the rewarding ability to help develop careers and match people with different opportunities. It’s been especially fun for me because the focus is on all the things that truly excite people about working here, including our emphasis on career development.
Tell us about your ACS Fellow Honor.
This award recognizes members of ACS for outstanding achievements and contributions regarding science, the profession, and the ACS. It’s a fantastic bonus but is certainly not related to my goals. Honestly, I’m most excited about the people from the Indiana section who believe in me so much that they took the time to nominate and support me for this award.
What are the accomplishments that earned you this prestigious recognition?
The career recognition was largely based on my research about the impact of asphalt fumes on worker safety, which started in 1989 and continues today. Five stages of research were initially envisioned by company leadership, and I was lucky to be part of that journey. The results of this work are now featured in over 40 peer-reviewed publications. I was proud to be part of such important research for the industry, and to have the opportunity to work with various professionals within THG and all over the world.
Since I joined the ACS in 2012, I have been passionate about their outreach efforts with the Indiana section. For example, we just completed a project where we created COVID-19 chemistry kits for underserved kids. With incredible community support, we were able to double our original goal and put together 200 bags and purchase additional warm weather items like hats and gloves. Our partner, the National Organization of Black Chemists & Chemical Engineers, has distributed them to local children in need.
How does this exposure at ACS benefit your role at THG?
The award adds great credibility and well-deserved exposure for the company. After all, if it weren’t for THG, I wouldn’t be a chemist! The Asphalt Institute featured an article about it in their newsletter, and as a result, many internal and external colleagues have congratulated me. But I owe a lot of my success to so many people at THG — both past and present.
What are your goals for the future?
Right now, my primary goal is to help employees develop and grow their careers within the company, while encouraging innovation to add value. I am also focusing on a couple important projects for the asphalt industry. The increased collaboration among many talented people across our businesses is giving THG a unique edge that is exciting to watch unfold.
And of course, I will continue to fulfill my passion for community outreach programs, especially those related to STEM. The 2023 ACS national meeting is in Indianapolis, so I’m looking forward to helping plan this big event.
As for down the road on the personal front, my family has and will always be my priority — and I look forward to spending more time with them when I retire!
For more information about the ACS or the Fellow program, please visit www.acs.org.