Faculty and Staff

Dr. Eugene Losey, Professor and Department Chair

Research Areas: Organic synthesis, green chemistry, sustainability

Dr. Losey received his Ph. D. in Organic Chemistry at Michigan State University. After teaching for several years at Michigan State University, Dr. Losey joined the faculty at Elmhurst in 1977. He is one of the only two members of the Elmhurst College Faculty to receive the Elmhurst College President's Award for Excellence in Teaching twice. He is also a past holder of the T. W. Mueller Endowed Chair. His research interests lie in the areas of synthetic organic chemistry, chemical education and sustainability/green chemistry. Dr. Losey is extremely active on campus. He served and chaired numerous committees and councils, and also served as Dean of the Faculty and Vice President for Academic Affairs during the 2005-2006 academic year. Dr. Losey is currently involved in several strategic planning, renovation and sustainability projects around campus.

Dr. Michelle Applebee, Associate Professor

Research Areas: Environmental analysis, analytical method development

Dr. Applebee came to Elmhurst in 2000, after completing her Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry at the University of North Dakota. In 2001-2002, only her second year at Elmhurst, she received the Elmhurst College President's Award for Excellence in Teaching, Elmhurst's college-wide teaching award. Her research focuses on method development for the determination of water contaminants using a thickness shear mode resonator, and sensor development for both biological and environmental analytes. She recently undertook a sabbatical leave as a Visiting Scientists at Argonne National Laboratory where she worked with electronic noses. Dr. Applebee teaches courses in Analytical Chemistry, the first year chemistry course for science majors, and forensic chemistry for non-science majors. Dr. Applebee is the faculty advisor for the Student Affiliates of the American Chemical Society and is known for her dedication to student learning and advising.

Dr. Ami Johanson, Assistant Professor

(née, Patel)

Research Areas: Protein chemistry, physical biochemistry, biomolecular NMR

Dr. Johanson, the newest member of the department, joined the Elmhurst faculty after spending a year teaching at Saint Xavier University in Chicago following the completion of her doctorate. Her research interests lie in the field of protein motions and their effects of protein function. In addition to her research, Dr. Johanson is passionate about developing programs to make science accessible for the public at large, continuing the work she started at the Marion Koshland Science Museum of the National Academy of Sciences in Washington DC. She is currently working with the Dare to Dream program introducing science to middle and high school aged Latina girls in the Chicagoland area.

Dr. Johanson recieved her Ph.D.in Chemistry from Northwestern University and her B.S. from University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Dr. Kimberly Lawler-Sagarin, Associate Professor

Research Areas: Computational chemistry, solid state chemistry, electronic structure theory, symmetry and bonding

Dr. Sagarin teaches courses in Physical Chemistry, Advanced Inorganic Chemistry and a variety of courses for non-science majors including The Chemistry of Color and Chemistry and Environmental Issues. Her research interests lie at the interface of computational, physical and inorganic chemistry and is currently studying the electronic structure of layered chalcogenides. She is also passionate about communicating the physical science behind environmental issues to nonscientists. In 2008-2009, she received the Elmhurst College President's Award for Excellence in Teaching.

In addition to her work in the Chemistry Department, Dr. Sagarin currently serves as the Director of the Center for Scholarship and Teaching. Dr. Sagarin came to Elmhurst College in 2002 after serving as Associate Director of the Searle Center for Teaching Excellence at Northwestern University and as a tenured faculty member in Chemistry at California State University, Fresno.

Dr. Sagarin received her Ph.D. in Chemistry from Cornell University and her B.S. in Chemistry from Harvey Mudd College. Visit Dr. Sagarin's Homepage

Dr. Colleen Munro-Leighton, Assistant Professor

Research Areas: Organometallic Chemistry, Catalysis, Green Chemistry

Dr. Munro-Leighton is joining our department in the Fall of 2012. She has a B.S. in Chemistry from Butler University and a Ph.D. from North Carolina State University, Raleigh. After completing her Ph.D., she went on to hold a postdoctoral appointment at the University of Virginia and a Visiting Assistant Professorship at Truman State University. Her research interests include organometallic catalysis and CO2 remediation.

Dr. Charles Ophardt, Emeritus Professor

Dr. Ophardt came to Elmhurst in 1970 after completing his Ph. D. in Inorganic Chemistry at Southern Illinois University. He has helped pioneer the use of the web and other technologies on campus. His highly successful on-line course Chemistry and Issues in the Environments (on-line) is a popular choice for students fulfilling their IST general education requirement. He continues to teach this course in retirement from "Elmhurst West". Recent publications include Inorganic Molecules: A Visual Database, a CD-ROM available from JCE: Software. Dr. Ophardt is currently compiling and editing a site containing many demonstrations and writing the Virtual Chembook. Another of his recent projects has been the development of Elmhurst's Personal Professional Portfolio program with Dr. Losey.

Lauren Specchio, Laboratory Coordinator

Ms. Specchio holds a B.A. in Biology from Augustana University. She is the laboratory coordinator for the Chemistry, Biology and Physics Department, a position she started in the spring of 2011.

Bev Barger, Department Secretary

Ms. Barger joined the Chemistry department in 2010. She holds a B.A. in Business Management from Elmhurst College. You may e-mail her at bargerb [at] elmhurst [dot] edu.


Part-Time Faculty

Dr. Kimberley Allen, Adjunct Assistant Professor

Ph. D. in Chemical Engineering, University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology

Dr. David Anderson, Adjunct Assistant Professor

Ph. D. in Medicinal and Natural Products Chemistry, University of Iowa
B.S. Chemistry and Exercise Science (double major), Elmhurst College
Dr. Anderson is also currently teaching in the Department of Kinesiology at Elmhurst.

Dr. Debbie Mulhearn, Adjunct Assistant Professor

Ph. D. in Physical Organic Chemistry, Northern Illinois University
B.S. in Chemistry, Truman State University
Dr. Mulhearn is also currently a Senior Research Scientist at the Center for Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, University of Illinois at Chicago

Mrs. Samina Myran, Adjunct Assistant Professor

M.S. in Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Rush University
M.S. in Secondary Education, National Louis University
B.S. in Biological Sciences/Chemistry minor, University of Jordan



Dr. John Ganchoff, Professor Emeritus

Dr. Ganchoff retired in 1999, after teaching Analytical Chemistry at Elmhurst for over 30 years. For more information about Dr. Ganchoff, see his CV

Dr. Robert L. Glogovsky, Professor Emeritus

Dr. Glogovsky was Elmhurst College's resident physical chemist for 35 years. He is extremely active in the City of Elmhurst. For more information about Dr. Glogovsky, see his CV.