Dr. Bacon Ke considers himself lucky. Lucky because he worked for organizations that allowed him to develop his lifelong interest-photosynthesis. His passion for the field supported the completion of his third book, Photosynthesis: Photobiochemistry and Photobiophysics, an English version of the Chinese photosynthesis book, except much more expanded and more comprehensive. In fact, Dr. Ke not only authored the book, he also set type for every single page, including the cover. Virtually every day for the past five years was devoted to the book, much of his time spent gathering necessary material from the library at the University of California at Berkeley. Dr. Ke's career, spanning six decades, included research at the C.F. Kettering Foundation, Standard Oil Co., Amoco Chemical and C.F. Kettering Research Lab.
Dr. Ke's life has been one of perseverance and dedication to his science. Born in China in 1920, he obtained a bachelors degree in Physical Chemistry at Tung chi University in China, and he came to the United States in 1947. He did not return to China once the communists came in to power. Rather, he remained in the U.S. continuing his academic pursuits at University of Michigan and Wayne State.
When asked why he made the decision to include American Chemical Society (ACS) in his estate, Dr. Ke stated enthusiastically, "ACS is one of the best organizations for chemists. I've been a member for sixty years-that tells you something!" He also expressed his concern that so many things in this world are not satisfactory, "because ACS is outstanding is so many ways, it gives me extra incentive to support the Society."