Title: Investing in New Technologies for Current & Future Processes
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Rebecca T. Ruck (she/her/hers) is Associate Vice President, MSD Process Research & Development, where she leads the Enabling Technologies group, a role she proposed that has created an innovation incubator of biologists, chemists, engineers and data scientists. Her team is making impressive contributions across all pipeline projects, including the application of an unprecedented biocatalytic cascade sequence to the manufacturing route of islatravir, a pioneering photochemical flow process for belzutifan and an immobilized enzymatic flow reaction for nemtabrutinib. Becky has been actively involved in the external research community through academic collaborations, creation of MSD’s university lectureship series and recruiting efforts that have led to an unrivaled increase in the number of women in the Process R&D team. She has expanded her women in chemistry efforts externally through the WCC-Merck Research Award and Empowering Women in Organic Chemistry (EWOC) conference and internally through expanded Diversity, Equity & Inclusion accomplishments, such as a series of D&I-themed TED-style talks that have greatly impacted the department’s understanding and appreciation of these important topics.For these efforts, Becky has been recognized with the 2018 ACS Award for Encouraging Women into Careers in the Chemical Sciences and as a 2020 HBA Rising Star and ACS Fellow. In addition, she currently holds positions on the NASEM Board on Chemical Sciences & Technology, ACS Petroleum Research Fund and the MIT Visiting Committee and is a Topic Editor at ACS Catalysis. Becky graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University, obtained her PhD in organic chemistry from Harvard University in the lab of Prof. Eric Jacobsen and conducted NIH-funded post-doctoral research at the University of California-Berkeley with Prof. Robert Bergman.