Ph.D. Candidate, MSE - Georgia Tech
Bedi Aydin Baykal is a PSE Fellow and Ph.D. candidate in the School of Materials Science and Engineering. He is expected to complete his degree August 2017. His thesis topic is “Evaporator erosion-corrosion and mechanical effects.” His research interests also include corrosion in flow systems, flow regime effects on corrosion, repassivation, effects of slurry and caustic conditions on material loss, erosion corrosion and corrosive wear. He received his bachelor’s degree from Istanbul Technical University and his master’s degree from the University of Michigan, both in mechanical engineering.
Kathleen M. Bennett
Principal - Kathleen M. Bennett Consulting, LLC
Kathleen M. Bennett offers extensive experience in the pulp and paper and forest products manufacturing industry with emphasis in strategy, government affairs, communications, environment, and business process development. Current clients include the Renewable Bioproducts Institute at Georgia Tech and the forest industry’s Agenda 2020 Technology Alliance among others. In addition to strategy and communications, she has special expertise in integrating regulations and other external expectations of industry operations with business and operational goals. She formerly served in senior positions at Bowater Corporation, Georgia-Pacific Corporation, Fort James Corporation, and others, and was a Senate-confirmed Presidential appointee to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. She is a former president and chair of TAPPI and member of the TAPPI Foundation Board of Trustees.
Executive Director, Institute for Electronics and Nanotechnology (IEN) - Georgia Tech
Oliver Brand received his degree in Physics from Technical University Karlsruhe, Germany, in 1990 and his Ph.D. from ETH Zurich, Switzerland, in 1994. From 1995 to 1997, he worked as a postdoctoral fellow at the Georgia Institute of Technology. From 1997 to 2002, he was a lecturer at ETH Zurich in Zurich, Switzerland, and deputy director of the Physical Electronics Laboratory (PEL). Dr. Brand has co-authored more than 200 publications in scientific journals and conference proceedings. His research interests are in the areas of integrated microsystems, microsensors, MEMS fabrication technologies and microsystem packaging. Since 2016, he has served as the Director of the Coordinating Office of the NSF-funded National Nanotechnology Coordinated Infrastructure (NNCI).
Assistant Professor, MSE - Georgia Tech
Blair Brettmann received her bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 2007 and her master's in Chemical Engineering Practice from MIT in 2009 following internships at GlaxoSmithKline (Upper Merion, PA) and Mawana Sugar Works (Mawana, India). She received her Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from MIT in 2012 working with the Novartis-MIT Center for Continuous Manufacturing under Bernhardt Trout. Her research focused on solid-state characterization and application of pharmaceutical formulations prepared by electrospinning. Following her Ph.D., she worked at Saint-Gobain on polymer-based wet coatings and dispersions for various applications, including window films, glass fiber mats and architectural fabrics. Later, she served as a postdoctoral researcher in the Institute for Molecular Engineering at the University of Chicago.
Professor & Interim Associate Dean for Research and Innovation, CoE - Georgia Tech
Robert Butera has been a member of the ECE faculty since 1999 and holds a joint appointment in the Wallace H. Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering. A 1991 BEE graduate of Georgia Tech, Dr. Butera attended graduate school at Rice University in Houston, Texas, receiving his MSEE in 1994 and Ph.D. in 1996. Following graduate school, he conducted postdoctoral research at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Md. While at the NIH, he worked jointly in the Mathematical Research Branch and the Laboratory for Neural Control. Since 2014, he has co-directed the Neural Engineering Research Center, which brings together neural engineering researchers from across campus. His research currently focuses on novel methods for peripheral and autonomic nerve modulation using electrical signaling, combining engineering and neuroscience to tackle clinically motivated problems. His lab uses techniques including intracellular and extracellular electrophysiology, computational modeling, and real-time computing. His work has been supported by the NIH, NSF, DARPA, the James S. McDonnell Foundation, and corporations such as GlaxoSmithKline, Procter and Gamble and Axion Biosystems.
Mark D. Cannatelli
Ph.D. Candidate, Chemistry and Biochemistry - Georgia Tech
Mark Cannatelli is a native of Melbourne, Australia. He received his bachelor’s degree from Presbyterian College (South Carolina) in 2010 and his master’s degree from Georgia Institute of Technology in 2012. He is a recipient of a RBI fellowship. His dissertation research focuses on the novel applications of laccases for the synthesis of small molecules and lignin-derived biomaterials, conducted under the supervision of Professor Art Ragauskas.
Director, Industry & Strategic Partnerships, Professional Education – Georgia Tech
Mike Demaline is the director of Industry & Strategic Partnerships within Professional Education at Georgia Tech. As director, Mike is focused on working with industry and strategic partners while promoting the Master’s in Manufacturing Leadership program. Prior to joining Georgia Tech, Mike was the Global Business Manager at Royal Dutch Shell with commercial responsibility for a novel renewable fuels technology which directly converts biomass into transportation fuels.
Over the course of his 30-year career, Mike has also held commercial positions of increasing responsibility with companies such as ABB, Honeywell, and Infor, and he has an extensive background in the global forest products industry. His professional experience covers large capital projects involving process technologies, advanced automation and control systems, and enterprise information solutions.
Mike holds a B.S. in Applied Science with a major in Paper Science and Engineering from Miami University and a Master of Business Administration – Technology Management from the University of Phoenix.
Professor, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Dr. Yulin Deng is a professor with the School Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering. Areas of particular interest include nanomaterial synthesis of self-assembling; biofuel and biomass materials; sustainable energy, including fuel cell and solar cell; polymers; and papermaking and paper recycling. Dr. Deng is an elected Fellow of the International Academy of Wood Science, a member of AIChE and TAPPI. He has received several awards, including AIChE Forest Bioproducts Division Chase Award and RBI President Research Award. He serves as editorial board member for five journals, and associate editor for two journals. He received his bachelor’s degree from the Northeast Normal University, China in 1982; his Ph.D. from Manchester University, UK, in 1992; and his Post-Doctorate from McMaster University, Canada, in 1992.
Ph.D. Candidate, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Xu Du received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Environmental Engineering from Dilian University, China. He currently serves as a research assistant on a project entitled “Hydrogen production by glycerol reforming enhanced by in-situ CO2 absorption.” His thesis, “Lignin based green polyurethanes from 100% sustainable natural materials,” is under the advisement of Professor Yulin Deng. His work has been featured in numerous publications including Chemical Engineering and International Journal of Hydrogen Energy.
Director, Materials & Processing Technology Area
IACMI - The Composites Institute
Cliff Eberle leads Materials and Processing for IACMI – The Composites Institute. In that role he directs teams that are demonstrating advanced manufacturing technologies in carbon fibers, composites recycling, NDE, additive manufacturing, lab-scale composite into the automotive, wind energy, and pressure vessel markets. He was the Chief Engineer for ORNL’s unique semi-production scale Carbon Fiber Technology Facility. He has led innovative research programs on low cost carbon fiber, ultra-high performance carbon fiber, bio-derived materials and electron beam curing. His experience includes strategic planning and execution, partnership development, program development, and technology transition. Mr. Eberle has over 30 years of professional experience including 20+ years in composites.
Ph.D. Candidate, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Nathan Ellebracht received his bachelor’s degree from University of California, Berkeley. His research project, “Nanocellulose-based cooperative chemocatalysts for conversion of biomass-derived furans to fuels,” is under the advisement of Dr. Chris Jones. He gained experience as an undergraduate researcher at UC Davis and UC Berkeley, in particular with the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. After arriving at Georgia Tech in 2014, he served as a technology development engineer intern with ChemiSense.
Assistant Professor, Chemistry - Georgia Tech
Will Gutekunst has expertise in polymer synthesis and organic chemistry. He received his Ph.D. in Synthetic Organic Chemistry under Professor Phil S. Baran at The Scripps Research Institute in 2013, followed by an NIH postdoctoral fellowship with Professor Craig J. Hawker at the University of California, Santa Barbara. His research interests intersect the worlds of modern synthetic organic chemistry and polymer science to develop the tools needed to build next generation functional polymers. Currently, the group’s research efforts focus on the development of new small molecules to dynamically control architecture in hyperbranched polymer systems and the design of novel platforms for polyamide engineering.
Ph.D. Candidate, ME - Georgia Tech
Chad Hume received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 2010 and his master’s degree from Georgia Tech in 2013. He currently serves as a graduate research assistant to Dr. David Rosen. Among his work with Dr. Rosen is the design and manufacture of press fabrics for improved dewatering and product family design for reduced cost and increased efficiency. His thesis is entitled “Hole Design and Manufacture for Press Fabric Layers to Improve Dewatering.”
Executive Vice President, Research - Georgia Tech
Love Family Professor, ChBE
Christopher W. Jones earned his bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan in 1995 and his master’s degree in 1997 and Ph.D. in 1999 in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology, working with Mark E. Davis. After a post-doctoral year working at Caltech with Davis and John E. Bercaw, he joined Georgia Tech as an Assistant Professor in 2000. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 2005, Professor in 2008, and was named the New-Vision Professor in 2011. Today, he is the Love Family Professor and Associate Vice President for Research at Georgia Tech. Chris is the Founding Editor-in-Chief of ACS Catalysis. Jones directs a research program focused primarily on heterogeneous and molecular catalysis and CO2 separation, sequestration and utilization. His group utilizes inorganic, organic and organometallic synthetic techniques to endow solid materials with well-characterized surfaces where the physical and chemical properties of the solid are manipulated by understanding and controlling the structure of the material on all length scales. Most recently, he was recognized by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers with the 2016 Andreas Acrivos Award for Professional Progress in Chemical Engineering, distinguishing him as one of the top academic chemical engineers under 45.
Assistant Professor, MSE - Georgia Tech
Josh Kacher joined Georgia Tech’s Materials Science and Engineering department as an Assistant Professor in fall of 2015. Prior to his appointment, he was a postdoctoral scholar at the University of California, Berkeley. There, he worked in collaboration with General Motors to understand the Portevin-le Chatelier effect in Al-Mg and with the US Navy to develop novel rhenium-replacement alloys. His research approach centered on applying in situ TEM deformation to understand the influence of local chemistry on the behavior of defects such as dislocations and twins. This was coupled with mesoscale characterization of the defect state using EBSD for multiscale characterization of the deformation processes. His master’s and Ph.D. work similarly focused on applying multiscale electron microscopy techniques to understanding defect behavior in a variety of systems such as ion-irradiated stainless steels, materials at elevated temperatures and Mg alloys for light-weight alloy development.
Professor and J. Carl & Sheila Pirkle Faculty Fellow, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Dr Kyriaki Kalaitzidou is an Associate Professor in the G. W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering, at Georgia Institute of Technology. She joined as an Assistant Professor in 2007. She also holds a courtesy appointment in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Tech. Prior she was a post-doctoral researcher in the Polymer Science and Engineering Department at University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Dr Kalaitzidou received her Ph.D. from the Chemical Engineering and Materials Science Department at Michigan State University in 2006 and her Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan Tech. Dr Kalaitzidou’s program blends scholarly research and education in the core engineering areas of materials processing and polymer engineering, as they relate to manufacturing of multifunctional materials and stimuli responsive particles; and to development of green and sustainable manufacturing processes. She has received the 3rd Award in the International Quadrant Competition (2007) for her Ph.D. work on multifunctional polymer nanocomposites and the prestigious Honda Initiation Grand (2008) for her research on light weight composites for automotive applications. Her research sponsors include the National Science Foundation, P3Nano, US Forestry Services, Yamaha Manufacturing, Intel, Boeing and Samsung
Associate Dean for Faculty Development & Scholarship - Georgia Tech
Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering
Kurtis manages the reappointment, promotion, tenure, peer review and selection processes for all faculty and researchers within the College of Engineering. In addition, she leads faculty development initiatives and assists with the management of faculty hiring strategies and inclusion programs. Prior to joining the dean’s office, she served as associate chair of graduate programs in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering and was the College of Engineering ADVANCE Professor, a position that seeks to increase the participation of women in the scientific and engineering workforce. She joined Georgia Tech’s faculty in January 1999, after earning her Ph.D. and master’s in civil engineering at University of California, Berkeley, under an NSF Graduate Fellowship and Henry Hilp Scholarship. She earned her bachelor’s degree (1994) in civil engineering from Tulane University. Her innovative research on the multi-scale structure and performance of cement-based materials has resulted in more than 100 technical publications and two U.S. patents.
Ph.D. Candidate, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Thomas Kwok received his bachelor’s degree with honors from the California Institute of Technology in 2014 and is now pursuing his Ph.D. at Georgia Tech. His thesis topic is entitled “Process systems engineering of novel mild chemical pretreatment options of lignocellulosics.” His advisors are professors Andreas Bommarius and Matthew Realff. He served as a HHMI summer intern at Howard Hughes Medical Institute from 2006-2008 while attending San Francisco University High School; served as a summer undergraduate research fellow at Genomic Institute of Singapore in 2009; and was hired by Romny Scientific as a consultant for development of thermoelectric devices in 2013.
Associate Director, RBI - Georgia Tech
Director, Professional Masters in Manufacturing Leadership
Director, GT Pulp and Paper Engineering Undergraduate Certificate Program and Foundation
Chris Luettgen is associate director for the Renewable Bioproducts Institute, as well as a professor of the practice in Georgia Tech's School of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering. In addition, he is director of the Georgia Tech Professional Education Industry Strategic Partnerships/Professional Masters in Manufacturing Leadership.
Luettgen has 25 years of industry experience, including 19 years at Kimberly-Clark Corp., where he most recently served as senior research and engineering manager for the Kimberly-Clark Professional business sector. He has held positions in product development and innovation as well as in capital project management and manufacturing facility leadership.
For several years, Luettgen has served on the RBI Industry Board of Advisors, and he is the current vice chairman of the Technical Association of the Pulp & Paper Industry. He earned his master's degree at the Institute of Paper Chemistry and his Ph.D. at the Institute of Paper Science and Technology.
Executive Director, RBI - Georgia Tech
Norman Marsolan is executive director of the Renewable Bioproducts Institute and professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Georgia Tech. As executive director, Dr. Marsolan is responsible for engaging the research capacity of Georgia Tech in the service of member companies and industry. After 20 years of service, Dr. Marsolan retired from International Paper Company in 2008, where he last served as director of research and development. He also held assignments as mill manager and as director of technology manufacturing solutions responsible for the worldwide support of pulp and paper manufacturing.
Dr. Marsolan is a past chair of the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI). He is an affiliate member of the forest products industry's Agenda 2020 Technology Alliance and a TAPPI Fellow.
Carter N. Paden Jr. Distinguished Chair, Metals Processing - Georgia Tech
Regents' Professor, Mechanics of Materials, ME
Executive Director, Institute for Materials
Dave McDowell joined Georgia Tech in 1983 and holds a dual appointment in the GWW School of Mechanical Engineering and the School of Materials Science and Engineering. He served as Director of the Mechanical Properties Research Laboratory from 1992-2012. In 2012 he was named Founding Director of the Institute for Materials (IMat), one of Georgia Tech’s Interdisciplinary Research Institutes charged with fostering an innovation ecosystem for research and education. He has served as Executive Director of IMat since 2013. McDowell's research focuses on nonlinear constitutive models for engineering materials, including cellular metallic materials, nonlinear and time dependent fracture mechanics, finite strain inelasticity and defect field mechanics, distributed damage evolution, constitutive relations and microstructure-sensitive computational approaches to deformation and damage of heterogeneous alloys, combined computational and experimental strategies for modeling high cycle fatigue in advanced engineering alloys, atomistic simulations of dislocation nucleation and mediation at grain boundaries, multiscale computational mechanics of materials ranging from atomistics to continuum, and systems-based computational materials design.
IRIM Associate Director of Industry, GTRI - Georgia Tech
Division Chief, Food Processing Technology
Gary McMurray leads the development of advanced robotic systems for the food, transportation and biomedical industries. He is also an affiliated faculty member with the Center for the Development and Application of Internet of Things Technologies (CDAIT). He is in charge of the GTRI Division that conducts significant industrial research under Georgia’s Traditional Industries Program and leads the Division’s efforts for identifying and marketing new research opportunities. His research teams have produced breakthroughs in commercial systems as well as research critical to saving the industry millions of dollars. He is working with GTRI and GT leaders to market our resources to the Department of Defense in the area of unmanned systems.
Assistant Professor, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Andrew Medford received his undergraduate degree from North Carolina State University, and was subsequently awarded a Fulbright fellowship to study polymer solar cells in Denmark. He attended Stanford University where he received his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering for research on the development of computational atomistic and kinetic models of catalytic reactions. Dr. Medford is currently interested in leveraging materials informatics, statistics and machine learning to maximize the practical impact of fundamental atomic-scale simulations in the field of surface science and catalysis. His research areas include heterogeneous catalysis, oxide surface chemistry, density functional theory, kinetic models, uncertainty quantification and Bayesian optimization and inference.
Shreyes N. Melkote
Morris M. Bryan Jr. Professorship, ME - Georgia Tech
Shreyes Melkote began his career at Georgia Tech in 1995 as an Assistant Professor. Prior to his arrival, he was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Illinois. Dr. Melkote’s research addresses both basic and applied problems in the areas of precision machining, micromachining and part fixturing/handling. His research in precision machining focuses on the investigation of surface generation mechanisms in processes such as hard turning and grinding. In particular, it is aimed at understanding the role of process variables and material properties on the resulting surface topography, mechanical properties and microstructure and functional properties through experiments and modeling. His work in micromachining focuses on developing models to accurately predict the mechanics of mechanical micro-cutting processes such as micro-grooving and micro-milling. He is also working to develop novel hybrid micromachining processes for creating complex three-dimensional micro-scale features in difficult-to-machine materials. Finally, his work in part fixturing and handling aims at developing a mathematical approach to the design, analysis and optimization of mechanical fixturing/automated handling devices used in manufacturing and assembly. Such devices include complex fixtures for machining and robotic grasping devices in the handling of thin flexible materials.
Assistant Professor, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Professor Pamela Peralta-Yahya, an assistant professor in the School of Chemistry and Biochemistry is leading a research group developing foundational technologies to more effectively engineer biological systems for chemical synthesis. One area of research is the development of biosensors to screen chemical-producing microbes, which could identify strains that produce chemicals at industrially relevant yield. This technology has potential applications in the area of microbial synthesis of pharmaceuticals & microbial production of high energy density fuels.
Dr. Peralta-Yahya holds a bachelor's degree from Macalester College and a Ph.D. from Columbia University. She pursued postdoctoral research at the Joint BioEnergy Institute (University of California, Berkeley & Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, CA). She received the DARPA Young Faculty Award and the DuPont Young Professor for Scientific Innovation Award in 2014.
Professor, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Associate Director, RBI
Dr. Matthew J. Realff is a Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Georgia Tech and David Wang Senior Faculty Fellow. He has been at Georgia Tech since 1993, after completing his bachelor's degree at Imperial College London and Ph.D. in chemical engineering at MIT in 1992. He was National Science Foundation (NSF) program director from 2005-2007 and currently serves as an NSF external expert in resilient infrastructure systems. He co-chaired the 2013 American Chemistry Society Green Chemistry Conference. In December 2013 he was appointed Associate Director of the Georgia Tech Strategic Energy Institute and in 2014 as Associate Director of the Renewable Bioproducts Institute to help develop programs in chemicals and fuels.
His research interests are in process and sustainable systems engineering. He has current projects in lignocellulosic pretreatment process invention, DoE-sponsored carbon dioxide capture from flue gas streams, and bio-based chemical process design sponsored by NSF.
Associate Professor, MSE - Georgia Tech
Dr. Meisha L. Shofner is an Associate Professor in the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology, joining the faculty following post-doctoral training at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She received a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and a Ph.D. in Materials Science from Rice University. At Georgia Tech, Dr. Shofner's research focuses on designing hierarchically structured polymeric materials for structural and functional applications through approaches such as novel processing, polymer crystallization, and nanoparticle assembly and templating.
In her current research, these methods have been employed preferentially to bio-based materials. Dr. Shofner's research has been recognized with the Ralph E. Powe Junior Faculty Enhancement Award from Oak Ridge Associate Universities and the Solvay Advanced Polymers Young Faculty Award.
John F. Brock III School Chair, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Michael E. Tennenbaum Family Chair
GRA Eminent Scholar or Energy Sustainability
Prior to his appointment at Georgia Tech, David Sholl was on the faculty at Carnegie Mellon University for 10 years. David grew up in Australia and received his undergraduate degree in Theoretical Physics from the Australian National University. He then received a Ph.D. in Applied Mathematics from the University of Colorado at Boulder, where he worked with Rex Skodje from the Department of Chemistry. His research group has published in the areas of computational materials modeling, porous materials for carbon capture applications, membranes for gas separations and heterogeneous catalysis. He has published more than 220 papers with more than 7,000 citations and has given more than 160 invited conference talks and seminars. He is currently a senior editor for Langmuir (an American Chemical Society journal) and chair of the Computational Molecular Science and Engineering Forum in the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. He has served as the research and thesis advisor to more than 80 students at the bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral and postdoctoral levels.
Professor, MSE - Georgia Tech
Preet M. Singh is Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech). His research is focused on the fundamental understanding of the environmental degradation of material properties, especially for metals and alloys, and their protection. His research work is related to the corrosion and SCC problems in the pulp and paper industry, bio-fuels, the energy industry, transportation infrastructure, and nuclear industry. Dr. Singh has published more than 175 papers in refereed journals and conference proceedings. He is an active member of NACE, ASM, TMS, AIST, and ACerS. Dr. Singh is Fellow of NACE International as well as ASM-International.
Ph.D. Candidate, ChBE - Georgia Tech
Jungseob So received his bachelor’s degree from Pennsylvania State University in 2013 and is pursuing his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering at Georgia Tech. He is currently a member of a research group led by one of his advisors, Carsten Sievers, and works on improving the activity and selectivity of solid catalysts for the production of lactic acid based on a detailed understanding of the surface chemistry and DFT calculation for prediction of adsorption geometries and vibrational frequency. His research focus is biorefining and his thesis topic is “Production of lactic acid from monosaccharides over solid catalysts.” Dr. David Sholl is also an advisor.
Professor, ChBE, MSE - Georgia Tech
Previously a Professor of Organic Functional Materials at the Department of Materials, Imperial College of London, Natalie Stingelin joined Georgia Tech in 2016. She focuses her research on the broad field of organic functional materials, including organic electronics; multifunctional inorganic/organic hybrids; smart, advanced optical systems based on organic matter; and bioelectronics. Associate Editor of the Journal of Materials Chemistry, she has published more than 130 papers and six issued patents. She is a co-investigator of the newly established EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Large Area Electronics, and she leads the EC Marie-Curie Training Network 'INFORM' that involves 11 European partners. She was awarded the Institute of Materials, Minerals & Mining's Rosenhain Medal and Prize in 2014 and the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) President's International Fellowship Initiative (PIFI) Award for Visiting Scientists in 2015.
Executive Director - Agenda 2020 Technology Alliance
David Turpin is Executive Director of the forest products industry’s Agenda 2020 Technology Alliance, an industry led consortium that promotes development of advanced technologies for the pulp and paper industry. Turpin oversees identification of the industry’s technology research priorities and development of strategies to address them, building partnerships and identifying potential funding sources. Prior to joining Agenda 2020 in 2014, he served for more than 25 years with MeadWestvaco and its predecessor, Mead Corporation. Most recently with MeadWestvaco, he was Vice President/Innovation Systems, and prior to that served as Vice President/Packaging Materials and Processing. He received his bachelor’s degree in Paper Science from North Carolina State University.
John D. Williams
President, CEO - Domtar
John D. Williams has been President and CEO of Domtar since January 2009 and is also a member of its Board of Directors. He has more than 30 years of experience in both consumer products and packaging. He began his career in consumer product sales in 1976, gaining insight into key market dynamics in the U.K. and the U.S. In 1988, he became European Managing Director of Sweetheart International, a major food packaging and food service business, where he cultivated a customer-driven market view and contributed to record profit and sales growth. In 1992, the company was acquired by the Finnish conglomerate, Huhtamaki. Williams was appointed Chief Executive Officer and Group President of the packaging business (Polarcup), one of the company’s core divisions. He continued this professional journey to Rexam, the world’s second largest consumer packaging group followed by SCA Packaging, a business group of the global consumer goods and paper giant, SCA. He is Lead Independent Director of the Board of Directors of Owens Corning; Chair of the advisory board of the Stern Center for Sustainable Business at New York University; past Chairman of the Paper and Packaging Board (the Paper Check-off); and past Chairman of the Board for the American Forest & Paper Association. In 2010, he was named North American CEO of the Year by RISI, as well as Global CEO of the Year by Pulp & Paper International.
Gaoxiang "Garret" Wu
Ph.D. Candidate, MSE - Georgia Tech
Garret Wu received his bachelor’s degree in Materials Science and Engineering from Georgia Tech in 2011. He completed internships at Colorado School of Mines in 2013 and Missouri University of Science & Technology in 2012. His current project, “Effect of strain on passivation and corrosion behavior of duplex stainless steels,” is under the advisement of Professor Preet Singh. Since 2014, he has participated in a co-op with Novelis, the world’s largest producer of rolled aluminum, where he has worked in a multidisciplinary surface analysis group; applied electrochemical techniques, such as cyclic polarization; and Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) to assess susceptibilities of various aluminum products.
Ph.D. Candidate, ME - Georgia Tech
Yuanzheng Zhu received his bachelor’s degree in Energy and Environmental Science from Zhejiang University, China, and is pursuing his Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech. His research interests include pulp and paper manufacturing, fluid dynamic, Lattice-Boltzmann (LB) method, thermodynamic and particle measurement. He is currently a research assistant on a project entitled “Direct numerical simulation of suspension hydrodynamics with LB method applied and pulp & paper industry,” under the guidance of Dr. Cyrus Aidun.