1. What made you want to be a chemist?
I loved organic chemistry – best class in all of college.
2. If you weren’t a chemist and could do any other job, what would it be – and why?
Surgeon; I like to help people and enjoy detailed work.
3. How can chemists best contribute to the world at large?
Become civic scientists, aiding on boards and panels that interest them and society.
4. Which historical figure would you most like to have dinner with – and why?
Jesus Christ because he is God having appeared in the flesh, and he is the one that I love more than life itself.
5. When was the last time you did an experiment in the lab – and what was it?
As I recall, it was a methyleneation of carbonyl compounds in 1989 for my first publication as an assistant professor.
6. If exiled on a desert island, what one book and one CD would you take with you?
The Bible and the CD of all Charles Spurgeon’s (19th Century Minister) recorded sermons and books.
James Tour is the Chao Professor of Chemistry, Professor of Computer Science, Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science and the Director of the Carbon Nanotechnology Laboratory at Rice University and works in the area of molecular electronics, nanotubes and nanocars.