The 39thannual Waterborne Symposium was held February 13-17 in New Orleans. Organized by the School of Polymers and High-Performance Materials at the University of Southern Mississippi, the symposium featured 50 speakers on subjects including corrosion, powder coatings, UV, pigments, additives, nanotechnology, high-throughput development and many other pertinent topics. Approximately 280 attendees and 20 tabletop exhibitors took part in the event.

A special feature at this year’s Waterborne Symposium was the first annual Sidney Lauren Memorial Lecture, which was offered by David Lauren, the son of the late Sidney Lauren. David’s lecture delivered a sense of who his father was and focused on the contributions that he made to the coatings industry. Known to friends and colleagues as Sid, Lauren was not only dedicated to his work in our industry but was also focused on its future. Throughout his life, Lauren remained active within the Coatings Industry Education Foundation (CIEF), an organization committed to increasing the number of students majoring in polymer chemistry, and working with and assisting the polymer chemistry departments of colleges and universities. Lauren delivered hundreds of lectures throughout his career at conferences such as Waterborne.

David recalled his father preparing lectures in the days before PowerPoint: re-typing drafts of his presentations until he felt they were ready; taking photographs; developing the film himself; and stuffing the slide sleeves with the images that accompanied his lectures. In 1967, Lauren was the PaVac Award lecturer. The text of this lecture, along with the original lecture slides, were donated by Lauren’s son and daughter to the School of Polymers and High Performance Materials at the University of Southern Mississippi.

To honor Lauren and his active participation with the CIEF, George Schmitz, CIEF President and Chairman, concluded the memorial lecture by announcing the development of a virtual learning center, at, to complement the new Sidney Lauren Memorial Learning Center at the University of Southern Mississippi, which includes a coatings lab and a physical learning center. The establishment of the center was made possible by a donation from the CIEF.

An awards ceremony was held on the final day of the Symposium to recognize the best papers and student posters. The 1st place winner of the student poster award went to Austin D. Baranek. His poster was titled Synthesis and Characterization of Crosslinked, Quaternary Ammonium Polybenzoxazines for Anion Exchange Membranes. Co-authors were Jananee Narayanan, Ginger Tyson, Laken Kendrick and Derek L. Patton. The best student paper award was given to Joshua Hanna, with his paper (co-authored by Dr. James Rawlins) titled, Tracking Steel Corrosion in Halide Solutions with a pH Stimuli-Responsive Polymer.The PCI Award for Technical Excellence (sponsored by this magazine) was awarded to Matthew Linares, Evonik Degussa Corp., for his paper titled Novel Matting Agent for Low-Gloss UV Coatings.Co-authors of the paper were Hans-Dieter Christian, Reinhard Behl, Andreas Feller and Maria Nargiello. The Shelby F. Thames Best Paper Award was awarded to Jens Voepel, Ytkemiska Institute, YKI – Institute for Surface Chemistry, for his paper titled Making Cleaner Surfaces.The paper’s co-author was Anders Larsson.

Next year’s Waterborne Symposium will take place February 4-8, 2013, again at the New Orleans Marriott. If you plan to attend, show organizers suggest booking your hotel reservations in the very near future, as next year’s Super Bowl will take place in New Orleans on February 3.