David C. Lacy


David C. Lacy.

David C. Lacy


David C. Lacy


Research Interests

Synthetic inorganic, organic, and organometallic chemistry. Coordination chemistry of transition metal catalysts

Education and Training

  • NIH Postdoctoral Fellow, California Institute of Technology, CA, 2012-2015
  • PhD, University of California-Irvine, CA, 2012
  • BS, Colorado State University, CO, 2007

Awards and Honors

  • UB’s Exceptional Scholar – Young Investigator Award, 2020
  • Arthur E. Martell Early Career Researcher Prize, 2020
  • NSF CAREER Award, 2019
  • NIH Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (F32GM106726)


  • Coordination chemistry, reactivity, and mechanisms of transition metal catalysts

Research Summary

Our group studies the coordination chemistry and reactivity of Mn, Fe, and Ru complexes with the goal of designing sustainable catalysts for chemically reversible transformations involving molecular hydrogen and other small molecules (e.g., O2, CO2, CO, N2, etc.). Another significant effort in my group is ligand design and synthesis of new coordination complexes where our main goal is to bring out the unique properties of various transition metals to enable new chemistry. These studies have been fruitful in uncovering unprecedented coordination modes, discoveries of unexpected catalyst formulations, and developing synthetic applications that use manganese catalysts.

Lacy molecules phase 1.

Students who join the Lacy Lab will participate in activities that include the following:

  • organic synthesis (ligand & substrate synthesis, organic product analysis)
  • inorganic synthesis (transition metal complex synthesis)
  • organometallic chemistry (metal carbonyls, metallocenes, photochemistry)
  • catalysis (substrate screening, reaction optimization)
  • characterization techniques (electrochemistry, EPR, NMR, FTIR, UV-vis, XRD, MS)
  • mechanistic studies (kinetics, substrate monitoring, hypothesis-driven validation)
Lacy molecules phase 2.

Selected Recent Publications