Anne Gaffney is the recipient of the 2015 Eugene J. Houdry Award of the North American Catalysis Society. The Eugene J. Houdry Award in Applied Catalysis is sponsored by Clariant. It is administered by The Catalysis Society and awarded biennially in odd-numbered years. This award recognizes and encourages individual contributions in the field of catalysis with emphasis on the development of new and improved catalysts and processes representing outstanding advances in their useful application. The award consists of a plaque and a prize of $5,000, which will be presented at the 24th North American Meeting of the Catalysis Society to be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on June 14–19, 2015. The Award Plenary lecture will also be presented during this meeting.
Anne Gaffney is being recognized for outstanding achievements in catalysis as described below: (1) Development of improved rhodium based hydroformylation catalyst for butanediol (BDO) synthesis from propylene oxide; (2) Development of modified zeolite catalyst for Superflex process for conversion of inexpensive HC feeds such as naphtha to valuable light olefins which has been commercialized in 2007; (3) Development of AlkyClean™ process and a new zeolite-based bimetallic catalyst for the alkylation of C3-C5 olefins with isobutane, which has been commercialized in 2013. Her other noteworthy achievements include development of new catalysts based on promoted lanthanide oxides for methane conversion to ethylene by oxidative coupling; invention of a new direct propylene oxide (PO) catalyst for the selective oxidation of propylene with molecular oxygen; development of new catalytic systems for the partial oxidation of methane to syngas at the millisecond contact time; invention of new mixed metal oxide catalysts for the selective oxidation of propane to acrylic acid and the oxidative dehydrogenation of alkanes to olefins.
She received a Ph.D. in physical organic chemistry from University of Delaware in 1981, and a B.A. in chemistry and mathematics from Mount Holyoke College in 1976. Having worked at ARCO, DuPont, Rohm and Haas, and Lummus in various R&D and leadership roles, she has been a most prolific inventor and an author with 233 patent/patent applications and 94 publications (plus 2 book chapters and 2 books edited) as well as 96 presentations or seminars. She has received many awards such as the ACS Award in Industrial Chemistry in 2013, ACS Fellow in 2010, the Tribute to Women in Industry Award in 2007, and the Catalysis Club of Philadelphia Award in 1999.