Jesse Gordon

Jesse Gordon
Mentor: Dr. Leslie Murray
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
"I got involved in research because I love chemistry, and I want to make an impact on the field. I've since realized that I enjoy research because it tests and fuels my creativity, while constantly challenging me to adapt to new information and build upon that knowledge."


Chemistry; Economics



Research Interests

  • Bioinorganic Chemistry
  • Coordination Chemistry
  • Organometallic Chemistry

Academic Awards

  • Bright Futures
  • Frazier-Tanner Scholarship
  • Dean's List
  • University Scholars Program


  • American Chemical Society

Hobbies and Interests

  • Guitar
  • Piano
  • Tennis
  • Running

Research Description

Synthesis and reactivity of trinuclear Sn(II) complexes
The ability of multiple transition metal centers to react cooperatively to active substrates (e.g., O2, N2, CO2) has precedence in metalloprotein active sites. This reactivity relies on the ability of individual transition metal ions to undergo cycles of oxidative addition and reductive elimination. In fact, oxidative addition and reductive elimination cycles are the foundation of modern organometallic chemistry. Similarly, it was recently demonstrated that low valent main group atoms are able to perform oxidative elimination reactions; however, performing reductive elimination remains a challenge. In contrast to transition metals, main group centers rely on populating energetically accessible triplet states, which have diradicaloid character with frontier orbitals of similar symmetry to transition metal d-orbitals. Drawing a parallel between the cooperative reactivity in clusters that enhances the reactivity of transition metal ions, we reasoned that multinuclear main group complexes, in which steric and electronic properties are controlled by ligand design, could exhibit novel cooperative reactivity as compared to mononuclear compounds. Thus, this project seeks to examine cooperative reactivity of trinuclear main-group complexes housed within a macrobicyclic ligand.