Professor Ron Gillespie - 1924-2021

It is with sadness that we share the news that Prof. Ron Gillespie has passed away.  Ron was a notable figure both as an instructor as a groundbreaking researcher in the department for many years.  He returned often after his retirement to give entertaining lectures on valence shell electron pair repulsion (VSPER) theory, usually amid several colourful balloons.  This concept of visualizing chemical bonding is at the heart of chemical education at the high school and early undergraduate levels, worldwide.  He was also an influential leader in his research field of inorganic chemistry, and mentored many undergraduate and graduate students, including our own Prof. Gary Schrobilgen.  Gary is preparing a tribute to be shared with Ron’s colleagues and former students as well as the broader chemistry community.
Memories can be shared with the family at the following sites: 

Here is a link to his Order of Canada citation:
And here is a short summary of Prof. Gillespie’s work and lifetime awards:


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McMaster University - Faculty of Science | Chemistry & Chemical Biology