Skip navigation

IONA College Logo | Go to Home Page

Chemistry Department Faculty & Staff

Casey A. Dougherty, Ph.D.

Casey A. Dougherty

Assistant Professor, Biochemistry

Office: Cornelia Hall, 105-B
Phone: (914) 633-2280
Degrees: Postdoctoral Scholar, University of Michigan Medical School, 2015-16
Ph.D., University of Michigan, 2015
BS, University of Pittsburgh, 2010

Dr. Casey Dougherty teaches courses in biochemistry and organic chemistry. Her research interests focus on creating highly controlled fluorescent polymer and antibody conjugates to better understand the connection between biological behavior and hydrophobicity ratio for materials used in treating and imaging a variety of diseases.
See more on Dr. Dougherty

Marius Draeger, Ph.D.

Marius Draeger

Assistant Professor, Organic Chemistry

Office: Cornelia Hall, 104-A
Phone: (914) 633-2301
Degrees: Postdoctoral Scholar, Providence College, 2015-16
Ph.D., Organic Chemistry, Brown University, 2015
MS, Technical University Braunschweig, Germany, 2010
BS, Technical University Braunschweig, Germany, 2008

Dr. Marius Draeger teaches courses in organic chemistry. His research interests can be broadly defined as reaction development and synthesis of organic compounds. More specifically, Dr. Draeger is interested in the analysis, synthesis or modification of cyclic molecules, with a strong focus on pharmacological active pyridine compounds and plant-based oligosaccharides.
See more on Dr. Draeger

Kathleen E. Kristian, Ph.D.

Kathleen E. Kristian

Chair, Chemistry
Associate Professor, Inorganic Chemistry

Office: Cornelia Hall, 104-B
Phone: (914) 633-2341

Degrees: Postdoctoral Research Scientist, DOE Ames Laboratory and Iowa State University, 2009-2011
Ph.D., Organometallic Chemistry, Columbia University, 2009
BA, Swarthmore College, 2004

Dr. Kathleen Kristian teaches courses in inorganic chemistry, analytical chemistry, instrumental analysis, and general chemistry. Her research interests fall broadly in the areas of organometallic and inorganic reaction mechanisms, with a specific interest in the synthesis and reactivity of transition metal complexes of nitrogen oxides. In addition to inorganic chemistry research, Dr. Kristian is active in the field of chemical education.
See more on Dr. Kristian

Sunghee Lee, Ph.D.

Sunghee Lee

Board of Trustees Endowed Professor, Biophysical/Analytical/Surface Chemistry

Office: Cornelia Hall, 105-D
Phone: (914) 633-2638

Degrees: Postdoctoral Fellow, Duke University, 1998-2002
Postdoctoral Fellow, Texas A&M University, 1997-1998
Ph.D., Inorganic/Analytical Chemistry, Brown University, 1997
MS, Pohang University of Science & Technology, S. Korea, 1991
BS, Sung Kyun Kwan University, S. Korea, 1989

Dr. Sunghee Lee teaches courses in general chemistry, analytical chemistry, instrumental analysis, nanoscience and seminar. Her current research involves the chemistry of soft materials with an emphasis on their interfaces and surfaces, directed toward crystal engineering, understanding the cell membrane, and materials design needed for the development of advanced functional materials.
See more on Dr. Lee at

Mychel E. Varner, Ph.D.

Mychel E. Varner

Assistant Professor, Physical Chemistry

Office: Cornelia Hall, 105-K
Phone: (914) 633-2290
Degrees: Postdoctoral Scholar, University of California, Irvine, 2010-2015
Ph.D., The University of Texas at Austin, 2010
BS, Truman State University, 2003

Dr. Mychel Varner teaches courses in physical chemistry, computational chemistry, and general chemistry. Her research work performs computational studies with quantum chemical methods to study reactions relevant to the Earth’s atmosphere, such as those leading to the formation of particles and of ozone at ground level.
See more on Dr. Varner

Rodney Versace, Ph.D.

Rodney Versace

Assistant Professor, Computational Chemistry

Office: Cornelia Hall, 104-C
Phone: (914) 633-2653
Degrees: Postdoctoral Associate, City College of New York, 2013-2015
Ph.D., Biochemistry, City University of New York, 2012
MSc, City University of New York, 2009
BS, Cayetano Heredia Peruvian University, Peru, 2003

Dr. Rodney Versace teaches courses in general chemistry. His research interests fall in the area of computational physical chemistry and biochemistry. His main interest is the function of biological macromolecules, such as proteins, lipids and nucleic acids.
See more on Dr. Versace

Silmilly Toribio

Silmilly Toribi

College Laboratory Technician
Chemical Hygiene Officer
Adjunct Professor

Office: Cornelia Hall, 014-G
Phone: (914) 633-2537

As the Chemical Hygiene Officer for the College, Professor Toribio manages laboratory safety for all science departments. As the College Laboratory Technician, she coordinates and prepares introductory level science laboratories, supervises the laboratory assistants, and maintains the chemical inventory. Professor Toribio has research training in the area of biochemistry, focusing on the interactions of fatty acid binding proteins with omega-3 fatty acids. At Iona, Professor Toribio teaches courses in core science areas, chemical safety, and chemistry of emotions – a course that introduces students to the chemical messengers that are linked to emotional systems.

Faculty Emeriti

Jerome S. Levkov, Ph.D.

National Science Foundation S-STEM Program

Iona College has been awarded funding from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to recruit, support and retain undergraduate students majoring in Chemistry and Computer Science. The award will support economically disadvantaged students with high academic aptitude, for scholarships in Chemistry and Computer Science, through the Iona College Development of Excellence in Science through Intervention, Resilience, and Enrichment (DESIRE) Program.
Learn about the program