Crudden Research Lab

The Group

Current Members

Post Docs

Hey there! My name is Hriday, with a lot of conflicts on how to pronounce it properly, which I better not discuss here. I was born and brought up in a small town named Durgapur (200 Km from Kolkata) in India. Then moved to Kolkata for my B.Sc. (Chemistry Hons.) at St. Xavier’s College. Stayed in the same city and completed my M.Sc. at Jadavpur University. After which, I moved to Canada and joined Prof. Jens Müller’s Lab to pursue my Ph.D. where I worked on making boron-bridged strained ferrocenophanes and used them as monomers for boron-containing metallopolymers. After spending an amazing time there in Saskatoon, I moved to Kingston in February 2019 and joined Crudden’s Lab as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow. Here I am working on an exciting project of making biosensors where NHC molecules will be used as a “glue” between electrode surfaces (e.g., gold) and biological pathogens.

Other than Chemistry, I am passionate about Photography. I also enjoy cooking delicious Indian dishes and listening to (mainly) Bollywood music in my spare time.

I grew up in the Comox Valley on Vancouver Island on the west coast of British Columbia, Canada. After completing my Bachelor of Science at the University of Victoria in 2009, I moved to Vancouver to complete my PhD under the supervision of Professor Parisa Mehrkhodavandi at the University of British Columbia. My dissertation focused on the design and synthesis of a large family of dinuclear indium catalysts for the controlled polymerization of lactide. Following the completion of my PhD in 2014, I moved to the University of Toronto to undertake a postdoctoral fellowship under the supervision of Professor Datong Song, where I worked towards the activation of small molecules through homogenous transition metal catalysis as well as the design and synthesis of new metal precursors for applications in atomic layer deposition. I recently moved to Nagoya, Japan in November of 2017 to join the Crudden group working on the synthesis and catalytic applications of NHC functionalized gold clusters. In my spare time I enjoy baking, reading, crafting and binge watching movies and tv shows.

Hey everyone! My name is Renee, and I joined the Crudden Group @ ITbM in Nagoya in April 2015. I was born in Hong Kong, studied there for a few years before making a move to Vancouver, Canada. I liked Vancouver so much that I did both my undergraduate and graduate studies at University of British Columbia. In 2009, I obtained my Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry, during which I worked in Prof. Peter Legzdins’ lab in activation of inert C-H bond using tungsten nitrosyl complexes. Since then, I began my adventure in materials chemistry and obtained my Ph.D under the supervision of Prof. Michael Wolf. During this time, I developed novel metal-containing (mostly Pd and Au) nanomaterials towards methane oxidation reaction. I was then given a golden opportunity to continue my love for anything nano, to work with NHC-containing gold nanomaterials at the satellite Crudden Group at Nagoya, Japan!

Outside of lab, I love eating (especially Japanese food), drawing digital artwork, gaming, and traveling all over Japan. Need me? Contact me at!

Srijit was born and raised in Yavatmal, India and received his B.Tech/M.Tech degrees from the Department of Biotechnology, Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur, India. During his bachelor’s, he worked on studying cellular effects of anticancer drugs on different cancerous cell lines and developing microfluidics-based rapid DNA hybridization system for disease detection. During his master’s, he worked on developing and studying chitosan nanoparticles-based drug delivery system in Entamoeba histolytica. In 2015, he moved to Kingston to start his PhD in interrogation of metallic nanostructures for sensing and biosensing applications. He developed new surface plasmon resonance biosensor based on plasmonic crossed surface relief gratings and developed miniaturized biosensing platforms to detect pathogenic E. coli in clinically relevant concentrations. In addition, he also investigated chemical sensing of contaminant via surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy and developed low-cost sensing substrates using MiiCraftTM 3D printer and EnvisionTECTM 3D bioplotter.

I was born and raised in Eastern Europe, in the beautiful city of Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine. My B.Sc. and M.Sc. studies in Analytical Chemistry were carried out at the Kyiv Taras Shevchenko University. My work under supervision of Olga A. Zaporozhets was focused on developing solid-state analytical reagents for sorption-spectroscopic and visual test determination of heavy metal ions. From those times comes a habit of meticulous cleaning of all lab glassware as well as my fascination with hiking, biking, and speleology. I gained broad experience and got a real passion in Materials Chemistry (for instance, mesostructured mesoporous silica or metal nanoparticles) while working as a Junior Research Associate at the Institute of Surface Chemistry (Kyiv, Ukraine). Big changes came to my life upon moving to Canada to continue my study at Western University (London, Ontario) under the guidance of John F. Corrigan and Yining Huang. My Ph.D. research was focused on semiconductor structured materials, in particular, 3D arrangements of CdS and CdSe nanoclusters. I moved to Kingston and joined the Crudden group at Queen’s University as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in July 2018 to work towards the preparation of novel NHC-stabilized metal nanoclusters and making use of such their properties as remarkable photophysics and catalytic activity.

When I am not doing chemistry, I am still experimenting in my kitchen with cooking new dishes. My spare time is mainly devoted to the most demanding long-term project of my life – raising my daughter. Together, we enjoy reading, swimming, and solving various puzzles. Please, feel free to contact me at

Konnichiwa, my name is Yuki and I am from Gifu, Japan. I completed my PhD in 2017 under the supervision of Dr. Toshiaki Murai at Gifu University, where I worked on the synthesis of chiral organophosphorus compounds. During this time, I got a chance to work with Dr. Cathleen Crudden for three months. After I finished my PhD, she gave me the great opportunity to come back to Canada. Here I am investigating new ways to transform the carbon-sulfur bond.

In my spare time, I enjoy working out to be the next Captain America, going on adventures outside, cooking and eating food. If you have any questions, feel free to email me at

My name is Karthik Devaraj, and I am originally from India. I completed my International Master in Catalysis, Molecules, and Green Chemistry in 2012 at the University of Rennes 1, France under the supervision of Prof. Pierre H. Dixneuf and Prof. Christophe Darcel. In my masters, I worked on C-H functionalization reactions in environmentally friendly solvents. Next, I started my PhD in 2012 at the University of Uppsala, Sweden under the supervision of Dr. Lukasz T. Pilarski. My PhD work focused on C-H functionalization and aryne-based methodology. After completing my PhD in 2017, I worked as a postdoctoral researcher for one year under the supervision of Dr. Xavier Bugaut, and Prof. Jean Rodriguez, iSm2, Aix-Marseille University, France. My postdoctoral research is centered on the enantioselective dearomatization reactions and pyrylium atropisomers. I have been working as a postdoctoral researcher under the supervision of Prof. Cathleen Crudden since November, 2019. My research work here focuses on stereospecific iterative cross-coupling reactions. Apart from work, I read books about spirituality and philosophy.    

My name is Joey DeJesus and I was born and raised in the greater metropolitan area of Orlando, Florida.  I did my bachelor’s degree at the University of Central Florida and had the opportunity to work with both Prof. Yi Liao’s and Prof. Karin Chumbimuni-Torres’ groups and worked on synthesizing visible light photoacids and alkali metal ionophores, respectively.  Deciding Florida was too dang hot, I moved further north and did my Ph.D. at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.  I worked with Prof. David Jenkins’ group and worked on multiple projects that applied NHC chemistry to SERS sensing (collaboration with Prof. Jon Camden’s group), chiral ligand design and chemistry of macrocyclic tetra NHC complexes with primarily iron, uranium and thorium.  Since Tennessee wasn’t cold enough, I moved to Canada and joined the Crudden group in January 2020 to work on projects applying new NHCs towards design of metal nanoclusters and functionalizing metal surfaces.

In my spare time, I enjoy fulfilling activities such as low speed running and cycling, as well as being awful at video games.  I am also very passionate about eating good food and drinking more coffee than is probably healthy for me.  If you have any questions about the group, feel free to reach out by emailing me at !

Hi everyone! My name is Hong Yi, and I joined the Crudden Group @ ITbM in Nagoya in January 2020. I (born in Hubei/China) studied Chemistry at Wuhan University. I obtained my bachelor’s degree with Prof. Aiwen Lei (2012). Then I continued to complete my doctoral research on radical chemistry with Prof. Aiwen Lei (2012–2017). After that, I moved to Technische Universität Berlin to do the postdoctoral research on silicon chemistry with Prof. Martin Oestreich, funded by the Humboldt Foundation (2017–2019). I recently moved to Nagoya, Japan to join the Crudden group as a postdoctoral research fellow, working on the application of NHC-modified Au nanoclusters in organic catalysis, and fluorescent molecules synthesis for visualization in cell. Beyond chemistry, I like beer, cooking, running, and travelling.

I am Koushik from India. I joined the Crudden Group @ ITbM in Nagoya in November 2020. After completing the master’s degree at Visva Bharati University in 2012, I moved to Hyderabad and joined Prof. A. K. Sahoo’s Lab to pursue my Ph.D. degree, where I was involved in directing group assisted C-H activation. After completing my Ph.D. in 2018, I got a great opportunity to work with Prof. Miura’s group at Osaka University. Recently, I moved to Nagoya and am working on the development of C-S bond transformations using transition metals. 

Outside of lab, I always love to sleepIf you ever need me, feel free to contact!

Graduate Students: PhD Candidates

My name is Alex Veinot, and I joined the Crudden group in September 2017 as a PhD student. I’m originally from the very small town of Middleton, Nova Scotia (population of 1800), and enjoyed my first visit to Kingston because of its small town feel. I completed my Bachelor’s (Honours) degree at Acadia University (Wolfville, NS, 2015) under the supervision of Dr. Bobby Ellis, and during this time I became interested in synthetic inorganic chemistry. Next, I completed my Master’s at Saint Mary’s University (Halifax, NS, 2017) under the supervision of Dr. Jason Masuda, where I continued to pursue inorganic chemistry and found a new interest and appreciation for X-ray crystallography. During my time in the Crudden group I will continue to study organometallic chemistry, while complimenting my synthetic background with some techniques specific to materials chemistry. During my free time I enjoy being outdoors exploring Kingston’s many walking trails, fishing, and playing golf. I highly recommend Queen’s for anyone who is hesitant about moving to a big city like Toronto or for anyone who enjoys being outdoors, feel free to contact me at if you have any questions about the group or the city.

Hello there! My name is Dianne Lee. I am originally from South Korea, but I immigrated to Canada in 2006. I am from a small town called Rothesay, New Brunswick. I joined the Crudden group as a Msc student in May 2017. I finished my BSc Honours in Chemistry at Dalhousie University in 2017. During my 4th year, I did my honours research project under the guidance of Dr. Alex Speed. My undergraduate research was based on the asymmetric catalysis towards bis(amino)cyclopropenylidene carbene-borane adduct.  Contact:

Hi everyone, my name is Emily Albright and I joined the Crudden group in January of 2018 to begin my PhD degree. I am originally from Burtts Corner, a small town in New Brunswick just outside of Fredericton. I studied at the University of New Brunswick where I obtained my BSc degree with honors in medicinal chemistry. After realizing my passion for synthetic chemistry and research, I continued my studies at UNB completing my MSc degree under supervision of Dr. Sara Eisler where I was investigating structural and electronic properties of small organic molecules as building blocks for organic electronic devices.  My current work in the Crudden group involves the synthesis of palladium nanoparticles stabilized by N-heterocyclic carbenes and studying their catalytic ability. When I am not busy in the lab, I enjoy sewing and DIY projects as well as spending time outdoors. If you have any questions about the group or life in Kingston, please feel free to contact me at!


My name is Ishwar, I moved from New Delhi, India to Toronto to pursue my undergraduate studies at UofT. After a long 4 year journey through the world of chemistry, I’m here in Kingston working under Dr Crudden as a graduate student.

Outside of lab I do powerlifting, some amateur photography and listen to east-coast hip hop music.


Hello! My name is Zach Ariki and I am originally from Denver, Colorado. I completed a B. A. in Chemistry at Boston University in 2014 where I got my feet wet in laboratory chemistry under the supervision of Dr. John Porco Jr. As chance would have it, in 2012 I bumped into Cathy at the Beckman Scholars Conference in Irvine California and I learned a lot of interesting things about her and her chemistry. I was intrigued to hear she ran a lab at the Intstitute of Transformative Bio-Molecules (ITbM) at Nagoya University in Japan. Flash forward 2 years and I am living in Japan conducting research towards the preparation of bio-active thyroid hormone receptor analogues. This year was truly a great experience for me. In 2015, I was recruited by Cathy to her lab at Queen’s University and I have been conducting research towards the development of new C-S bond transformations ever since!

In my spare time you can find me in the squash courts or at a computer working on my graphic design projects. Some day I hope to own a small army of pugs and open my own sake distillery! Feel free to contact me at!

Hello everybody!

My name is Emiliya and I am a first-year Ph.D. student in the Crudden research group. I graduated with a B.Sc.Honors majoring in Chemistry from Brandon University in 2013. In the fall of 2015, I received a Master of Science in Chemistry degree from the University of British Columbia. I developed zinc catalysts for the synthesis of a biodegradable polymer, polylactic acid. Besides, I have experience in the oilfield chemistry industry. I worked as a researcher in Russia for four years. My duties included creating and modifying novel demulsifier compounds, supporting field bottle testing crews, and testing intermediates and finished products. I actively participated in conducting laboratory trials of demulsifiers in Western Siberia.      

In my free time, I love spending time with my family and in the countryside gardening with my mom. 

Graduate Students: MSc Candidates

My name is Angus Sullivan. I lived in Kingston until I was 12 when I moved to beautiful Haliburton, Ontario. I did an undergraduate thesis project at Trent University with Dr. Andrew Vreugdenhil and Dr. Steven Rafferty on biocatalyst immobilization in amorphous silica. I graduated with a BSc in chemistry in 2019 and joined the Crudden lab in September of 2019.

I am very happy to be back in Kingston. I spend most of my free time playing sports like soccer, running, playing chess, and watching anime. I’m very excited to begin my research in the Crudden group and learn a lot more about chemistry and working in a lab!

Hi Everyone, my name is Nicole Dozois. I joined the Crudden Group in Fall 2018 to complete my fourth-year thesis and B.Sc. Honours in Chemistry and pursue a M.Sc. through the Accelerated Master’s Degree Program in Chemistry. After my third year of my B.Sc., I spent 16 months on an internship at DuPont Canada. Here, I had the opportunity to participate in the optimization and scale up of chemical synthesis operations and analyze products produced by a variety of process development projects. I really enjoyed the organic work I did, and I hope to continue learning and growing in this field in the Crudden Group. Outside the lab, I enjoy travelling and adapting to new places as I was born in Germany and have lived all over North America including Alaska, Alabama, Quebec, Oklahoma and many more places. I also enjoy cozying up with tea and a book when I have spare time. Please feel free to reach out to me at if you have any questions or want to chat.

My name is Viveka (or Viv) and I’m from Toronto, Ontario. I completed my B.Sc in chemistry at Mount Allison University, in the tiny one-traffic-light town of Sackville, New Brunswick. I did my honours research project in the Metal Heads group with Dr. Glen Briand on redox active bismuth catalyst. I came back to Ontario because I missed the squirrels and am now working on nanoclusters in the Crudden group. Outside of the lab I enjoy hiking, eating and assembling Ikea furniture.

Hello! My name is Jordan Brown. I completed my BSc at the University of Guelph and joined the Crudden group in September 2020 as a MSc student. I’m very happy to be here learning about chemistry and meeting people in the field!  

Outside of the lab I enjoy spending time outdoors and especially like to go camping in the summer and snowboarding in the winter! Feel free to say hi!  

Hello, My name is Michael Furlan. I am currently in the fourth year of my BsCH program in Physics and Chemistry. For my Undergraduate Thesis and Accelerated Master’s, I am being supervised as part of the Crudden and McLean (Physics) groups to continue Scanning Probe studies of the Self-Assembly of NHC’s on surfaces. I’m very much looking forward to being a part of these experiments on both the chemical and physical side!


Outside the lab, I spend most of my time reading, rowing, and running. Please feel free to contact me at

Hi everyone, my name is Lukas Killinger. I am a German student from Stuttgart participating at the double degree program with Queen’s. I have started my graduate studies in October 2019 in Stuttgart and joined the Crudden group in September 2020. Unfortunately, I can’t travel to Kingston at the moment but hopefully will be there in January 2021. During my undergraduate studies I did research on N-heterocyclic phospheniumions.

I spend my free time with sports like soccer, swimming and running. Furthermore I’m active in the local youth work. I’m really looking forward to travel to Canada and gain some new experiences in another country. Please feel free to reach out to me at if you have any questions or want to chat.

Undergraduate Students

My name is Alannah Constable and I am completing my B.Sc. Honours in Chemistry at Queen’s. Although, I was on track to be completing a 16-month internship with DuPont and Worley Canada, given the current circumstances, I am excited to now be working on my 4th year thesis project with the Crudden group. My project involves the optimization and investigation of secondary allylsulfones as latent nucleophiles in transition-metal-catalyzed cross-coupling reactions. 

Outside of the lab I enjoy reading, hiking, and most recently, fostering a dog! Feel free to contact me at if you have any questions or inquiries. 


Hi everyone, my name is Lindsay Young. I joined the Crudden group in the summer of 2020 as an NSERC USRA research assistant and am currently working on my 4th year thesis project for my BScH in Chemistry. I am investigating storage conditions to optimize the shelf-life of NHC-based biosensors!

Outside of the lab you can find me reading, cooking, or practicing Pilates. Feel free to contact me at to say hi or if you have any questions.

Visiting Researchers

Former Members

Ali Nazemi

Post Doc

Brandon Moore

MSc Student

Brian Bestvater

MSc Student

Chris Ziebenhaus

MSc Student

Christene Smith

PhD Student

Ed Cieplechowicz

MSc Student

Eric Keske

PhD Student

Henry Li

Post Doc

Jansen Lau

Undergraduate Student

Jason Rygus

MSc Student

Jenny McLeod

MSc Student

Kenedy Ayoo

Undergraduate Student

Lacey Reid

PhD Student

Luiza Freitas

Post Doc

Matt Zamora

Post Doc

Mike MacLean

PhD Student

Olena Zenkina

Post Doc

Patrick Eisenberger

Post Doc

Patrick Garret

Undergraduate Student

Phil Unsworth

Post Doc

Samantha Voth

MSc Student

Sarah Piotrkowski

MSc Student

Wenxia Zhou

MSc Student

Xiaowei Wu

Post Doc

Zhe She

Post Doc

Mina Narouz

PhD student

Josh Clarke

PhD student

Jacky Yim

Post Doc

Paul Lummis

Post Doc

Group Trips & Activities

The Crudden group works hard, but we have lots of fun outside the lab as well! It’s not unusual to find us at the Grad Club celebrating a publication, an award, or just some great results.

Kingston is great for winter activities. The public skating facilities at the market square are a short walk from campus, and there are lots of hills for a fun afternoon of sledding.

In the summer, we switch to warm weather fun, and we usually have at least one beach day, and take a long weekend to go camping.

There’s a lot fo fun to be had, both in the lab and out!