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UCLA's Kendall Houk Speaker for April 16 Olsen Chemistry Lecture

Thursday, Apr. 10, 2014

Kendall Houk is a guest speaker at USU

2014 Olsen Lecture speaker is UCLA chemist Kendall Houk, a pioneer in organic and bio-organic chemistry. His April 16 talk is open to all.

Richard Olsen and LiVina Hymas Olsen established the Olsen Lectuership in 2006

USU Emeritus Professor Richard Olsen and his wife, LiVina Hymas Olsen, established the Olsen Lectureship in 2006 to provide students and faculty with opportunities to learn from and meet with distinguished scientists.

Utah State University’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry welcomes renowned organic chemist Kendall Houk to campus Wednesday, April 16, as guest speaker for the 2014 Richard Olsen Lecture Series.

Houk, Saul Winstein Chair in Organic Chemistry in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of California, Los Angeles, presents “Cycloadditions in Synthesis, Chemical Biology and Materials Chemistry: Dynamics and Mechanisms.” He speaks at 4 p.m. in Room 046 of the Eccles Science Learning Center. His talk is free and open to all.

Houk’s research is focused on solving problems in organic and bio-organic chemistry using theoretical and computational methods and programs.  His lab tests theoretical predictions and designs of new reactions, reagents and catalysts.


Houk’s appearance is the seventh lecture of the Richard Olsen Lectures Series, which was established in 2006 by USU Emeritus Professor Richard Olsen and his wife, LiVina Hymas Olsen. Olsen, who joined USU’s faculty in 1967, passed away in 2012.

The lectureship honors Olsen’s parents, Kenneth Beal Olsen and Sarah Young Olsen, who, Olsen said, “made many things possible.”

Olsen said the lectureship was also established in appreciation to the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and to Utah State for providing him the opportunity to pursue his professional goals of teaching and research in the field of organic chemistry.

“We’re very grateful to Dr. Olsen for creating this series that enables us to attract top scientists to campus,” says Alvan Hengge, department head.

Parking for the lecture is available in the Aggie Parking Terrace at 700 E. 600 North. The parking terrace is located west of Widtsoe Hall.

For more information about the lecture, contact USU’s Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at 435-797-1619.

Related links:

USU Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry

USU College of Science

Contact: Brad Davidson, 435-797-1628,

Writer: Mary-Ann Muffoletto, 435-797-3517,

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