Marilyn E. Jacox studied physical chemistry at Utica College as an undergraduate. She went on to perform doctoral research at Cornell University and postdoctoral research at the University of North Carolina. She was appointed as a Fellow of the Mellon Institute of Industrial Research in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1958 before joining the National Bureau of Standards/National Institute of Standards and Technology in 1962. She stayed there for the duration of her career.
She is known for her comprehensive spectral databases and wide variety of scientific publications. Her research has had far reaching effects and applications in quantum chemistry, chemical kinetics, atmospheric chemistry, and combustion chemistry.
Throughout her career, she was the recipient of many awards, including the George Pimentel Prize for Advances in Matrix Isolation, the U.S. Department of Commerce Gold Medal for Distinguished Service, the E. Bright Wilson Award in Sprectroscopy from the American Chemical Society, the Federal Woman’s Award, the NIST Samuel Wesley Stratton Award, the Washington Academy of Sciences Award for Distinguished Career in Science, and OSA’s Ellis R. Lippincott Award. She was a Fellow of the American Physical Society, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Washington Academy of Sciences. She was also on the editorial boards for a number of major journals.
She passed away in 2013.