Journal of Surfactants and Detergents at 20: Reflections from Michael F. Cox, the First Editor-in-Chief

Journal of Surfactants and Detergents, Dec 2016

Michael Cox

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Journal of Surfactants and Detergents at 20: Reflections from Michael F. Cox, the First Editor-in-Chief

Journal of Surfactants and Detergents at 20: Reflections from Michael F. Cox, the First Editor-in-Chief Michael Cox Dear JSD Reader: - I am somewhat amazed that we are approaching the 20th anniversary for the Journal of Surfactants & Detergents! It seems unfair that AOCS remains young and vibrant, while anniversaries like this seem to develop at an ever-hastening pace and make us older members ask ‘‘where did the time go?’’ Nevertheless, I remind myself that I am like a fine Scotch whiskey, where being older and more mature is a good thing! I remember very well the formation of JSD, and would like to acknowledge the good people that made it happen. The development of JSD started in 1996, I believe after an S&D division board meeting. If I recall correctly, I mentioned the spark of an idea for a journal to Arno Cahn (my mentor in many ways, who I miss very much), who fanned it into a flame. From there, the fire for the project grew and grew, thanks to significant support from AOCS (Jim Lyons, Jean Wills, Mary Lane) and the S&D division board (Jess Lynn, Arno Cahn, Paul Sosis, and I am sure others). With Arno’s help, I put together a prospectus and submitted it to AOCS for critique and approval, and received constructive criticism, and overwhelming support to take it further. Let me interrupt myself and say a couple of words about why we thought a new journal would be appropriate. The journals that were most often read at the time (and forgive me for not mentioning them, but I am betting most of you will figure this out) consisted of a popular journal out of Europe, which was sponsored by a major surfactants and detergent producer, and another journal that was very theoretically oriented. I, Arno, and others thought we needed a journal that bridged the gap between fundamental science and the application of surfactants, and we wanted JSD to be that bridge. Initially, we wanted JSD to consist of three parts. The major portion would be peer-reviewed technical articles, but we wanted to include a section for review papers, and we wanted to include a section on surfactants and detergents news. A few years later we decided the news section was largely a duplication of news available from other sources, including Inform, so we dropped this section. We also began minimizing the review article section because of two key reasons: it was getting harder and harder to get folks to write review articles, and we were becoming inundated with technical papers for peer-review and publishing. Consequently, the journal, as it exists today, focuses almost entirely on peer-reviewed articles, and clearly fills the void we thought existed in the mid-1990s. In 1996, after receiving the go-ahead to make JSD a reality, the most important step came into being: getting the right folks to make it happen. We were lucky. Mark Nace agreed to take on the significant role of handling the technical articles, involving their receipt, processing, and technical review. Arno Cahn agreed to handle the review article section, and Lisa Quencer agreed to spearhead the news section. I have never worked with a finer group of volunteers, and we all owe them a significant debt of gratitude for the long hours and creativity they used to make JSD a reality. I also want to acknowledge AOCS. The head of AOCS at the time was Jim Lyon. Jim could not have been more supportive, and really led the way in bridging the gaps between our editorial management group of volunteers and the realities of commercial publication. Honestly, as the song, goes, ‘‘…never a disparaging word’’ paraphrases Jim’s attitude and response through JSD’s development period. If I ever run for office, Jim will be my campaign manager. I also want to thank Mary Lane. Mary became our AOCS liaison and a critical member of our editorial team—she was the one with experience in publishing, who knew how to get things done (inside and outside of AOCS). Brian Moore (Assistant Technical Editor) and Tom Krawczyk (Assistant News Editor) also played key roles in bringing JSD to life. I also want to thank the many folks who support, and have supported, JSD. Many have stepped forward. Of particular note during my 8-year tenure as Editor-in-Chief is Russ Elms, who quickly stepped in as Technical Editor, replacing Mark Nace. Russ did a great job, as did all of the fine folks that have stepped forward since I hung up my editor cap. My sincere thanks to everyone that has helped make JSD what it is today. P.S. I apologize if my memory failed and I forgot to remember someone who helped get this journal off the ground (please blame it on my continuing loss of functioning brain cells).

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Michael Cox. Journal of Surfactants and Detergents at 20: Reflections from Michael F. Cox, the First Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Surfactants and Detergents, 2017, 1-2, DOI: 10.1007/s11743-016-1917-5