Juan Gonzalez-Gonzalez


Juan was an unlikely person to go into chemistry (he was once a music major). However, after a chance meeting with David Brown Juan Gonzalez was an unlikely person to go into chemistry (he was once a music major). However, after a chance meeting with David Brown at Southwestern College, Juan went down the path of chemical sciences as an undergraduate. Juan went on to become a founding officer of the ACS Student Affiliate chapter at Southwestern College, which has maintained a strong presence at the college and in the community for almost 20 years. Juan transferred to San Diego State University to finish his Bachelor’s degree. A couple of years later, Juan returned to San Diego State for graduate study. There, he specialized in nanochemistry and device applications, where he developed low-cost, reliable methods for the deposition of various types of semiconductor thin films.

Juan has spent the majority of his professional career working to innovate STEM education. For over 12 years, Juan was a high school STEM teacher in both public and private school systems. He created and developed novel courses that emphasize the interdisciplinary nature of “real-world” science while fostering career-ready STEM skills. Juan has been instrumental in helping hundreds of historically underrepresented students break into STEM internships and careers. He tirelessly continues this work at his Alma Mater where he is now a tenure-track professor of chemistry and the current Student Affiliate chapter advisor.

Juan recognizes that the strength of the Executive Committee comes from leveraging the impressive talents and viewpoints that his fellow members offer. If elected as chair-elect, Juan’s priority is to build strong collegial relations with the other Executive Committee members to ensure an environment conducive to constructive collaboration.

As chair-elect, Juan would continue the tradition of excellence of past Executive Committees of creating meaningful professional development opportunities, as well as promoting chemical education in the community. Juan’s vision is to help diversify our local chemistry community and to help give aspiring chemists, especially those from historically underserved backgrounds a platform for greater participation in the ACS. As an older Millennial and the first in his family to go to college, Juan is confident he can be that inter-generational bridge. Juan’s personal goals as chair-elect include:

  • Creating social opportunities to cultivate relationships with our local professional talent and industry partners.
  • Creating events and opportunities that directly support collaboration between the local student affiliate chapters
  • Creating resume-building opportunities for high school and community college chemistry students
  • Increasing the local section’s presence on social media platforms, especially those catering to younger chemists to increase new membership.
  • Creating mentoring opportunities for pre- and early career chemists by matching them with established or retired chemical professionals in the local ACS network.