President of Publications

Washington D.C.
To be determined
May 15, 2019
Jun 10, 2019
Field of specialization
Work Function
Job Type
Full time

President of Publications, 

The American Chemical Society

Washington, DC

The American Chemical Society (ACS) has exclusively retained Jack Farrell & Associates ( to find its next President of Publications. Interested candidates should please contact Jack Farrell,

The ACS, chartered by Congress, is a not-for-profit scientific and educational association of professional chemists, chemical engineers, chemically related scientists, and technicians. Founded in 1876, ACS is recognized as the world’s largest organization devoted to a single scientific discipline (chemistry). The ACS is an individual membership organization of more than 150,000 members from industry, government, and academia at all degree levels. The ACS is one of the largest not-for-profits in the country.

The ACS has approximately 2,000 employees at two primary locations: its headquarters in Washington, DC and in Columbus, OH. Other staff are deployed globally through wholly owned subsidiaries. The services and functions of the ACS can be separated into three large functional groups: 1) Information Services (includes ACS Publications), 2) Society Programs, and 3) Administrative and Support Services.

ACS seeks an experienced and dynamic new President of ACS Publications to carry on the group’s tradition of excellence and boldly chart the future direction of the program. The position is based in ACS’ Washington, DC headquarters and relocation assistance is available. Please note: the ACS WILL sponsor the winning candidate for this position if need be

ACS Publications is a primary driver of revenue for the organization. As such, ACS Publications began publishing chemical research with the Journal of the American Chemical Society in 1879. Today, ACS publishes nearly 60 peer-reviewed journals with cutting-edge articles across a broad spectrum of scientific disciplines.

The breadth and scope of ACS Publications journals is unparalleled, stretching across chemistry, physics, and biology. Every year over 100,000 authors and their research teams from the community of scientists worldwide submit their work for consideration in these journals. ACS journals are available primarily online, but also in print and mobile formats at more than 5,000 academic, government and corporate institutions worldwide. Additional publishing activity includes Chemical & Engineering News (C&EN), the Society’s flagship news periodical covering the global chemical enterprise and related sciences, and scholarly books.


The President of ACS Publications will have five direct reports and oversee a team of 300 FTEs and a constituency of more than 500 (primarily scientist editors) Independent Contractors.

Primary Accountabilities:

  • Responsible for full business P&L of ACS Publications. 

  • Ensure the timely and cost-effective publication of high-quality peer-reviewed 
technical journals, C&EN, eBooks and other technical publications across a range of formats and media, in accordance with the organization’s financial and operational objectives and the Society's Bylaws. 

  • Develop both short-term and longer-range strategies for the global business functions of the Division, to ensure that realistic performance goals are established, innovations with new products and services are pursued in keeping with customer and user needs, publishing policies and practices are responsive to marketplace developments, and sources of operating revenues and surplus to support the ACS mission are optimized—while ensuring standards of high quality and integrity for the Society’s publications are upheld. 

  • Maintain ACS Publications’ position of leadership in creating, producing, and disseminating technical and other chemical-related information via state-of-the-art digital publishing platforms, and global marketing and sales channels. Conceive and develop new publications consistent with ACS’s mission and high standards of quality, subject to management oversight and Society governance approval. 

  • Direct the development of the technology and digital environments that support the production and delivery of peer-reviewed journals and other scientific content. 

  • Oversee preparation of annual proposed budgets, and assure adherence to authorized budgets and to financial targets and policy objectives established by the Society’s Governance, with oversight also by the ACS CEO and Executive Director. 

  • Participate as voting member of the ACS Governing Board for Publishing, which has delegated authority from the ACS Board of Directors in establishing business strategies and administrative policies for the Society’s information services. 

  • Oversee and support the functions and deliberations of the Joint Board-Council Committee on Publications, which per the Society’s Bylaws is responsible for monitoring the performance of the scientific editors of the Society’s journals in executing their contractual duties. This oversight responsibility entails assessing performance metrics for (currently) nearly 60 peer-reviewed journals and their respective editors, to ensure that the Society’s publications meet competitive market needs in service to the global chemistry enterprise, and are representative of the topical, geographic, gender, and ethnic diversity of the audiences they address. 

  • Contribute to the formulation of the Society's business strategies and administrative policies through participation on the Society’s Executive Leadership Team, which is comprised of those ACS senior executives reporting directly to the Society’s CEO. 

  • In collaboration with the Society’s Divisions of Information Technology, Chemical Abstracts Services (CAS), and Membership, collaborate in the development of ACS’s integrated web presence for the organization’s products, programs, and services.
  • Participate in regular meetings of the Society Committee on Budget and Finance, the Board Strategic Planning Committee, and the ACS Board of Directors, to provide financial and operational updates, and to be kept informed of ACS financial policy changes, overall strategy, budgets, and general financial reporting requirements.
  • Recruit, develop, inspire, and motivate a highly talented team of publishing professionals with the requisite experience and expertise to enable ACS to thrive in a competitive global marketplace for scientific information products and services.
  • Ensure coordination and promotes collaboration among the Publications Division and all other ACS Divisions, notably CAS, Membership and Society Services, Education and Scientific Advancement.
  • Engage with US and international publishing trade associations, and within the broader professional society and scientific publishing community, on pro-competitive shared interests such as enabling technologies and standards, copyright and intellectual property protections, and policies affecting the Society’s global publishing interests. Join with ACS legal and government affairs staff in advocacy/outreach to research funders, legislators and policymakers, and other R&D stakeholders.



  • University or College degree in Chemistry or other allied science is required.
  • Advanced graduate degree or equivalent training in science/engineering, and/or an MBA, is preferred.
  • 18+ years of related experience, including at least 10 years of management experience in roles with direct accountability for both the financial and operational performance of one or more units within a global, digital, professional information and/or technical database publishing environment.