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Energy and Environment Directorate

Sue Clark

Sue Clark

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
PO Box 999
Richland, WA 99352
(509) 372-6180


Sue B. Clark holds the position of Battelle Fellow in the Energy and Environment Directorate with Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and Regents Distinguished Professor of Chemistry with tenure at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington. In this joint appointment, she leads a research effort focused on the chemistry and chemical engineering of processing nuclear materials. Her current research areas include chemistry of radioactive waste systems, environmental chemistry, actinide separations, and radioanalytical chemistry. Her research support includes grants and contracts from the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Science and National Nuclear Security Administration.

She began her current position as a joint appointee in January 2015. She began her academic career at WSU in the Chemistry Department in 1996 as an Assistant Professor, and served as Department Chair (Aug. 2005 - Dec. 2007). She also served as Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at WSU's Tri-Cities campus from Jan. 2008 - Aug. 2008, and Interim Dean of the College of Sciences (WSU system-wide) from July - Dec. 2010. Previously, she held an appointment to the U.S. Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board, appointed by President Barack Obama (2011-2014).

Professor Clark is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the American Chemical Society (ACS), and is the 2012 recipient of the ACS's Olin-Garvan Medal. She is also an elected member of the Washington State Academy of Sciences. She served as an elected member of the Governing Board for the U.S. Council for Chemical Research from 2009 to 2011. She also served on the National Academy's Nuclear and Radiation Studies Board from 2004 to 2009, and was a member of many of the study committees established by the Board. She served on the Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee for the U.S. DOE (2003 - 2011), and has served as a consultant to Battelle Memorial Institute and the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centers.

She holds a BS degree in Chemistry from Lander College (Greenwood, SC) and MS and Ph.D. degrees in Chemistry from Florida State University (Tallahassee, FL). Prior to joining Washington State University, she was an Assistant Research Ecologist at the University of Georgia's Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (1992-1996), and Senior Scientist at Westinghouse Savannah River Company's Savannah River Technology Center (1989-1992).

Education and Credentials

  • Bachelor's Degree, Chemistry, Lander College
  • Master's Degree, Inorganic/Radiochemistry, The Florida State University
  • Doctorate, Inorganic/Radiochemistry, The Florida State University.

Affiliations and Professional Service

  • Dr. Clark holds a Presidential appointment to the U.S. Nuclear Waste Technical Review Board, which advises Congress and the DOE Secretary on the technical issues associated with the management of the nation’s high-level radioactive waste and DOE-owned spent nuclear fuel (2011 to present)
  • U.S. Council for Chemical Research, board member (2009-2011)
  • National Research Council's Nuclear and Radiation Studies Board (2005-2009)
  • National Research Council's Board of Radioactive Waste Management (2004-2005); also served on associated study committees
  • DOE Basic Energy Sciences Advisory Committee (2003-2011)
  • Fellow, American Chemical Society (2010)
  • Fellow, American Association for the Advancement of Science
  • Elected member and board member, Washington State Academy of Sciences; chair-elect, Membership Committee

Awards and Recognitions

  • American Chemical Society Garvan-Olin Medal for her research activities and advocacy for advancing women chemists
  • Fink Distinguished Lecturer, Georgia Institute of Technology's Department of Chemistry (2008)
  • Westinghouse Distinguished Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, WSU (2002-2008)

PNNL Publications


  • Morrison SS, CL Beck, JM Bowen, TA Eggemeyer, CC Hines, M Liezers, LA Metz, SM Morley, KR Restis, M Snow, DE Wall, SB Clark, and BN Seiner. 2017. "Determination of tungsten in geochemical reference material basalt Columbia River 2 by radiochemical neutron activation analysis and inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry." Journal of Radioanalytical and Nuclear Chemistry 311(1):749-754.  doi:10.1007/s10967-016-5065-1
  • Snow M, SS Morrison, SB Clark, J Olson, and M Watrous. 2017. "237Np Analytical Method using 239Np Tracers and Application to a Contaminated Nuclear Disposal Facility." Journal of Environmental Radioactivity 172:89-95.  doi:10.1016/j.jenvrad.2017.02.018


  • Clark SB, MV Buchanan, and B Wilmarth. 2016. Basic Research Needs for Environmental ManagementPNNL-25166, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA. 
  • Lines AM, Z Wang, SB Clark, and SA Bryan. 2016. "Electrochemistry and Spectroelectrochemistry of Luminescent Europium complexes." Electroanalysis 28(9):2109-2117.  doi:10.1002/elan.201600034
  • McDonald LW, JA Campbell, T Vercouter, and SB Clark. 2016. "Characterization of Actinides Complexed to Nuclear Fuel Constituents using ESI-MS." Analytical Chemistry 88:2614-2621.  doi:10.1021/acs.analchem.5b03352


  • McDonald LW, IV, JA Campbell, and SB Clark. 2014. "Failure of ESI Spectra to Represent Metal-Complex Solution Composition: A Study of Lanthanide-Carboxylate Complexes." Analytical Chemistry 86(2):1023-1029.  doi:10.1021/ac401751r
  • Samuels AC, CA Boele, KT Bennett, SB Clark, N Wall, and AE Clark. 2014. "Integrated Computational and Experimental Protocol for Understanding Rh(III) Speciation in Hydrochloric and Nitric Acid Solutions." Inorganic Chemistry 53(23):12315-12322.  doi:10.1021/ic501408r


  • Douglas M, SB Clark, JI Friese, BW Arey, EC Buck, and BD Hanson. 2005. "Neptunium(V) Partitioning to Uranium(VI) Oxide and Peroxide Solids." Environmental Science and Technology 39(11):4117-4124. 

Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas