Dr. and Mrs. Semler (Charlie and Darlene) have spent their professional lives working in and teaching about ceramic engineering. Charlie, a member of ACerS since 1963, said that one of the best investments he ever made was back then when he purchased a lifetime ACerS membership-at $240!
Dr. Semler, an expert in refractories, explained that both his ACerS membership and his work in the ceramic field have been rewarding as well as fun. The Semlers have traveled all over the world and are grateful for all of the wonderful experiences they have shared. One nagging concern, however, is that very few people seem to know what "ceramic engineering" is, says Dr. Semler. "I have worked in over 100 countries throughout the years. Whether I am in the United States or in a foreign country, the term 'ceramic engineering' is widely unknown."
Because of that, the Semlers are generous supporters of the Ceramic and Glass Industry Foundation and its outreach work. But rather than make a cash donation, they opted to make a donation to the Foundation in the form of stock. When asked why they chose that method of giving, Dr. Semler explained that during a conversation with Marcus Fish, Development Director of the Foundation, he learned that a stock donation was not only possible, but was very easy to do. "Marcus was right; it was very easy, and we were even more interested when we learned that a 4x multiplier would be used to quadruple the value of our gift. That made this gift a very good value and provided a tax benefit as well."
Both Dr. and Mrs. Semler are educators who are firmly committed to teaching students and the public alike about the field of ceramic engineering. When asked why they would encourage others to believe in and support the work of the Foundation, they explained that the value of education cannot be overstated. "We in ceramics need to promote the field. Much of the time, people think that refractories involve boring, dirty, and uninteresting work, and that is absolutely wrong. The Foundation needs to get the word out so that people know the truth." Mrs. Semler added that it is never too early to introduce the basic concepts related to ceramic and glass science. "Children need to be taught about different fields early on. An understanding is needed of the different aspects of engineering, such as ceramic and refractories; engineering isn't just about computers, which is what most people think of."