BCST Board Members


David Bem, PPG Industries

Joan Brennecke, University of Texas at Austin



Gerard Baillely, Procter and Gamble

Mark Barteau, Texas A&M University

David B. Berkowitz, University of Nebraska

Michelle V. Buchanan, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

Jennifer Sinclair Curtis, University of California, Davis

Samuel H. Gellman, NAS, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Sharon C. Glotzer, NAS, University of Michigan

Karen I. Goldberg, NAS, University of Pennsylvania

Miriam E. John, Sandia National Laboratories (Ret.)

Alan D. Palkowitz, Eli Lilly and Company

Joseph B. Powell, Shell

Peter J. Rossky, NAS, Rice University

Richmond Sarpong, University of California, Berkeley

Board Members Biographies


David Bem (co-chair) is Vice President, Science & Technology and Chief Technology Officer-Elect at PPG Industries, Inc. Bem began his career at UOP, a Honeywell Company, where his work was centered on the synthesis and applications of zeolites and microporous materials.  In 2000, he became R&D director of Torial, a subsidiary of UOP, and developed and commercialized high throughput tools for heterogeneous catalysis. In 2002, Bem joined Celanese Corporation as R&D director for acetyls, oxygenates, and acetone derivatives, where he was responsible for advancements in acetic acid and vinyl acetate technologies. In 2005, he became a member of the Celanese Corporate Executive Committee and R&D director for Engineering Polymers/Ticona. In 2007, Bem joined Dow Chemical as the R&D leader for Hydrocarbons & Energy, Alternative Feedstocks and Basic Chemicals, and moved a year later to R&D director for Dow Automotive. He then became R&D director for Core R&D, leading early-stage exploration of disruptive technologies and development of new businesses. Bem then went on to become vice president of R&D for Dow’s Advanced Materials business and eventually named vice president, R&D Consumer Solutions and Infrastructure Solutions. In November 2015, he joined PPG. Bem holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from West Virginia University and a doctorate in inorganic chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Bem is active with many industry organizations. He is a member of the Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology (BCST) of the National Academy of Sciences, the Pennsylvania State University Materials and Research Institute Advisory Board. He holds nine U.S. patents and has authored more than 20 publications.


Joan F. Brennecke (co-chair) (NAE) is Professor for the McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. Prior, she was the Keating-Crawford Professor of Chemical Engineering at the University of Notre Dame and was the founding Director of the Center for Sustainable Energy at Notre Dame. She joined Notre Dame after completing her Ph.D. and M.S. (1989 and 1987) degrees at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and her B. S. at the University of Texas at Austin (1984). Her research interests are primarily in the development of less environmentally harmful solvents. These include supercritical fluids and ionic liquids. In developing these solvents, Dr. Brennecke's primary interests are in the measurement and modeling of thermodynamics, thermophysical properties, phase behavior and separations. Major awards include 2001 Ipatieff Prize from the American Chemical Society, the 2006 Professional Progress Award from the American Institute of Chemical Engineers, the J. M. Prausnitz Award at the Eleventh International Conference on Properties and Phase Equilibria in Greece in May, 2007, the 2008 Stieglitz Award from the American Chemical Society, the 2009 E. O. Lawrence Award from the U.S. Department of Energy, and the 2014 E. V. Murphree Award in Industrial and Engineering Chemistry from the American Chemical Society. She serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Chemical & Engineering Data. Her 130+ research publications have garnered over 11,000 citations. She was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering in 2012.


Gerard Baillely is Vice President, Research & Development, Global Corporate Functions for the Procter & Gamble Company. Gerard joined P&G’s R&D organization in 1985, after graduating from Lycee Descartes Tours in France in Mathematiques, Superieures & Speciales as well as for Chemistry from the Ecole Superieure de Chimie Industrielle de Lyon. Gerard leads multiple R&D capability disciplines covering governance, innovation and technologies. During his 31 year career, Gerard has created a portfolio of upstream products and initiatives that address unmet consumer needs across different categories. For the past 15 years, he held senior R&D positions for Fabric Care (NA Detergent, Global Liquid Platform), Oral Care (Global Dentifrice Platform, China and Latin America Business), and as a VP Home Care, as well as, leading corporate wide R&D capabilities (Analytical, Digital, M&S, Life Science, Clinicals). In addition to his R&D corporate function responsibilities, Gerard is also the Stewart of the Chemistry and Life Science Communities of Practice that span across the company. Externally, Gerard is a member of the board for Living Well Collaborative, a non-profit innovation organization promoting the development of products and services for the senior (50+) consumers. Gerard has been a member of the board of the Consumer Specialty Product Association (CSPA) between 2012 and 2016, a reputed industry agency that promotes the use and safety of consumer specialty products and works with lawmakers and regulators. Gerard has been twice recognized by CSPA for his contributions. Gerard is also a member of the AOCS (American Oil Chemist’s Society) Board of Directors and participates in programs between ACS (American Chemical Society) and the industry. 


Mark A. Barteau (NAE) serves as the Vice President for Research of Texas A&M University. He holds the Halliburton Chair in Engineering, with appointments in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Chemistry. He received his BS degree in Chemical Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis, and his MS and PhD from Stanford. He was an NSF Post-doctoral Fellow at the Technische Universität München. He previously served as the Director of the University of Michigan Energy Institute and prior to that as the Senior Vice Provost for Research and Strategic Initiatives at the University of Delaware. Barteau brings extensive experience as a researcher, inventor, academic leader, and consultant for both US and international organizations. His research, presented in more than 250 publications and a similar number of invited lectures, focuses on chemical reactions at solid surfaces, and their applications in heterogeneous catalysis and energy processes. He has contributed a number of perspectives on energy and environment to The Conversation, Fortune, and NPR, among other media outlets. Barteau was named in 2008 as one of the “100 Engineers of the Modern Era” by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. He is the recipient of numerous awards from the American Chemical Society and national and international catalysis societies. He is a fellow of both the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. 


David B. Berkowitz is Willa Cather Professor of Chemistry and Director of Interdisciplinary Therapeutics Research at the University of Nebraska. The Berkowitz research group is active at the chemistry/biology interface, with particular interests in reaction development/catalyst screening, the creative use of enzymes in organic synthesis, tool development for chemical biology [i.e. ‘teflon’ phosphate mimics, (fluoro)vinylic amino acids], mechanism-based enzyme inhibition and medicinal chemistry. In the latter area, the group is particularly interested in the development of inhibitors targeting vitamin B6 (PLP cofactor)-dependent enzymes and in the synthesis of podophyllum cyclolignans as potential anti-neoplastic agents. Recently, the Berkowitz group has taken a great interest in PLP enzymes involved in signaling in the brain, including the enzymes responsible for the biosynthesis of the NMDA (N-methyl D-aspartate) receptor effectors H2S and D-serine, respectively. Berkowitz has been recognized as an Alfred P. Sloan Fellow, as a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Fellow and as a AAAS Fellow. His honoraria include Visiting Professorships at the Université de Rouen, the Max Planck Institute, the Université de Paris-V and at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He has delivered keynote lectures at Sanofi’s Visions in Chemistry Symposium, the inaugural World Congress on Catalytic Asymmetric Synthesis and the EMBO Conference on Enzyme Mechanisms, the French-American Chemical Society and the International Symposium on Reactive Intermediates andUnusual Molecules. Berkowitz currently serves on the Board of Editors for the Organic Reactions series. From 2010-2015, Berkowitz held a number of leadership positions at the National Science Foundation, including serving as Director of the Division of Chemistry in 2015. In 2018, Berkowitz served as Chair of the Gordon Research Conference on Biocatalysis. His academic path proceeded via the University of Chicago (B.S.-Phi Beta Kappa), Harvard/ETH-Zürich (Ph.D. with Steven A. Benner) and Yale (Merck Postdoctoral Fellowship with Samuel J. Danishefsky).



Michelle V. Buchanan, Associate Laboratory Director for Physical Sciences, oversees four Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) research divisions: the Center for Nanophase Materials Science, Chemical Sciences, Materials Science and Technology, and Physics. She is responsible for two offices in the Department of Energy Office of Science Program: Basic Energy Sciences and Nuclear Physics.  Prior to assuming her current position, she served as Director of the ORNL Chemical Sciences Division from October 2000 to November 2004. She served as Associate Director of the Life Sciences Division from January 1999 to September 2000. She initiated the Center for Structural Molecular Biology at ORNL, serving as its director from 1999 to 2003, and led the Organic and Biological Mass Spectrometry Group in the Chemical and Analytical Sciences Division (now the Chemical Sciences Division) from 1986 to 1999. She joined ORNL in 1978 after earning a B.S. in chemistry from the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas, and a Ph.D. in analytical chemistry from the University of Wisconsin in Madison.


Dr. Buchanan is the author or co-author of more than 150 scientific publications and reports, holds two patents, and was editor of a book on Fourier transform mass spectrometry.  She was North American editor of Biological Mass Spectrometry and has served on the editorial boards of Analytical Chemistry, Organic Mass Spectrometry, Journal of Mass Spectrometry, Biological and Environmental Mass Spectrometry, and Fresenius' Journal of Analytical Chemistry. She received an R&D 100 Award in 1986; ORNL Technical Achievement Awards in 1985, 1989, and 1993; UT-Battelle awards for R&D Leadership in 2000 and 2002; and the Knoxville YWCA Tribute to Women award in science and technology in 2003.


Dr. Buchanan is a Fellow of the American Chemical Society (ACS) and currently serves as a Councilor for the Division of Analytical Chemistry (DAC) and as a member of the Divisional Activities Committee of the ACS.  She has served as a member of the International Activities Committee for ACS, treasurer for DAC ACS, treasurer for the American Society for Mass Spectrometry, and chair of the East Tennessee Section of the ACS. She also served on numerous advisory boards of universities and for major research centers. Current board memberships include Vanderbilt University, the University of North Carolina, Cornell University Boston University, the University of Wisconsin, and the University of Tennessee. Over the past decade she has worked at the national level helping define basic research needs in a number of key energy-related areas.


Jennifer Sinclair Curtis is Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering and Dean of the College of Engineering at University of California, Davis.  She is a Fellow of AAAS, AIChE and ASEE. Professor Curtis is a recipient of a Fulbright Senior Research Scholar Award, AIChE's Thomas-Baron Award in Fluid-Particle Systems, the AIChE’s Fluidization Lectureship Award, AIChE’s van Antwerpen Award, the American Society of Engineering Education's Chemical Engineering Lectureship Award, the Eminent Overseas Lectureship Award by the Institution of Engineers in Australia, and ASEE's Sharon Keillor Award for Women in Engineering, and the NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award. She has served on the National Academy of Engineering's Committee on Engineering Education and has participated in two NAE Frontiers of Research Symposia (2003 and 2008).  Professor Curtis received a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University (1983) and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University (1989). Prior to joining UC Davis in 2015, she was Distinguished Professor of Chemical Engineering and Associate Dean for Research at the University of Florida.  She has also served on the faculty of Carnegie Mellon University and Purdue University.  At CMU she received the engineering college’s Ladd Research Award, and at Purdue she was named University Faculty Scholar.


Professor Curtis' research focuses on the development of multiphase CFD models and discrete element method models for particulate flow.  Her work has been applied to improve the design and optimization of chemical, energy, mining, pharmaceutical, and agricultural processes in which particulate processes are pervasive.  Her multiphase flow models, based on first principles granular kinetic theory, have been adopted by the software package ANSYS Fluent, the largest producer of simulation software used by 96 of the 100 biggest industrial companies and over 40,000 customers.  Her multiphase flow models are also included in the CFD Research Corporation’s multiphase flow CFD software package and the open-source CFD code (OpenFOAM).  


Samuel H. Gellman, NAS, is the Ralph F. Hirschmann Professor of Chemistry at the University of Wisconsin - Madison.  His laboratory's contributions include insights on the origin of biopolymer folding preferences.  One focus has been the design of autonomously folding beta-sheets and their use to explore relationships among sequence, length and conformational stability.  In addition, Gellman's group has helped to pioneer the study of synthetic, protein-inspired oligomers that adopt defined shapes ("foldamers"). Elucidation of the folding behavior for these protein-mimetic systems has enabled the pursuit of biomedical applications.  The work from Gellman's laboratory has been recognized with a number of honors, including the ACS Hirschmann Award in Peptide Chemistry and the ACS Breslow Award in Biomimetic Chemistry.  Gellman is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.  Gellman earned his A.B. from Harvard University and his Ph.D. from Columbia University; he conducted post-doctoral work at the California Institute of Technology.


Sharon C. Glotzer, NAS, is the John Werner Cahn Distinguished University Professor of Engineering and the Stuart W. Churchill Collegiate Professor of Chemical Engineering, and Professor of Materials Science and Engineering, Physics, Applied Physics, and Macromolecular Science and Engineering at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. She is also a core member of the U-M Biointerfaces Institute and the U-M Center for the Study of Complex Systems. She is member of the National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and a fellow of the American Physical Society, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Sharon received her PhD in Physics from Boston University in 1993 and her B.S. cum laude in Physics from UCLA in 1987. She was an NRC Postdoctoral Fellow in the National Institute of Standards and Technology Polymers Division from 1993-1995, and then held the positions of Physicist and Director, Center for Theoretical and Computational Materials Science, Materials Science & Engineering Lab, NIST from 1995-2000. Sharon moved to U-M in 2001 as Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, and Physics, with tenure. Her research on computational assembly science and engineering aims toward predictive materials design of colloidal and soft matter, with current emphasis on shape, packing, and assembly pathways and is sponsored by the NSF, DOE, DOD and Simons Foundation. She has published over 200 archival publications and presented over 300 invited and keynote talks.


Karen I. Goldberg, NAS, is a Vagelos Professor of Energy Research at the University of Pennsylvania and the inaugural Director of the Vagelos Institute for Energy Science and Technology. Following a postdoctoral year at The Ohio State University, she joined the faculty at Illinois State University, a primarily undergraduate institution. In 1995, she moved to the University of Washington where she was Assistant Professor of Chemistry (1995-2000), Associate Professor of Chemistry (2000-2003), Professor of Chemistry (2003-2007), the first Raymon E. and Rosellen M. Lawton Distinguished Scholar in Chemistry (2007-2009), and the first Nicole A. Boand Endowed Professor of Chemistry (2010-17). She served as Director of the first National Science Foundation Phase II Center for Chemical Innovation (CCI), the Center for Enabling New Technologies through Catalysis (CENTC) from 2007-18. Her research is focused on the development of new catalytic systems to efficiently produce chemicals and fuels from a range of available feedstocks. She received her A.B. degree from Barnard College of Columbia University and her Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of California at Berkeley.


Miriam John is serving in various consulting and board roles since her retirement as Vice President of Sandia's California Laboratory in Livermore, California. During her Sandia career, she worked on a wide variety of programs, including nuclear weapons, chemical and biological defense, missile defense, solar energy, and provided leadership for a number of the laboratory's energy, national security, and homeland security programs.


She is a member of the DoD's Defense Science Board (DSB) and Vice Chairman of its Threat Reduction Advisory Committee (TRAC). She is also a member of the AAAS Committee on Science and Engineering Public Policy (COSEPP) and serves on the Board of Directors of the National Institute for Hometown Security. She is the immediate past Chair of the National Research Council's Naval Studies Board, a member of its Intelligence Science and Technology Experts Group and its Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology.


Dr. John is a member of the Board of Advisors for MIT Lincoln Laboratory, the Board of Directors for Draper Laboratory, and the Board of Directors of Leidos, Inc. (formerly SAIC). She has recently been recruited as a member of the Missions Committee of the combined Lawrence Livermore and Los Alamos National Laboratories' Board, overseeing the technical programs of both laboratories. She is a Senior Fellow and immediate past Chair of the California Council on Science and Technology. Dr. John is a member of the Dean's advisory board for the School of Science and Engineering and chairs the Advisory Board for the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Tulane University, where she has been recognized as an outstanding alumna. She is a member of the External Advisory Board of the DOE sponsored, UC Berkeley led National Science and Security Consortium.


She is a past member of the External Advisory Board of Savannah River National Laboratory, the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, the NRC's Board on Army Science and Technology, and the Department of Energy's (DOE) National Commission on Science and Security. She was appointed a National Associate of the National Academies of Science and Engineering and is the recipient of the Navy's Superior Public Service Award. She is the recently announced 2015 recipient of DoD's Eugene G. Fubini Award for her significant and sustained contributions in an advisory capacity to the Department.


Alan D. Palkowitz is the Vice President of Discovery Chemistry Research and Technologies at Eli Lilly and Company. He is responsible for the global small molecule strategy and delivery of clinical candidates in all areas of disease focus including cancer, diabetes, immunology, pain and neurodegenerative disorders. Within Discovery Chemistry Research and Technologies, Dr. Palkowitz oversees a large multi-research site enterprise that includes medicinal chemistry, computational and biophysical/structural sciences, quantitative biology, analytical technologies, synthetic technologies and automation sciences. In his role Dr. Palkowitz has championed the creation of multiple molecular discovery strategies, along with supporting infrastructure, to diversify approaches to drug discovery and successfully expand therapeutic innovation. In addition, he has implemented unique open innovation business models aimed at expanding global access to diverse talent and capabilities in partnership with academic centers and small biotechs. At Lilly, Dr. Palkowitz also serves as a member of several executive oversight committees that set strategic scientific direction for the company. Dr. Palkowitz obtained a Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1990.


Joseph B. Powell, Ph.D., is Shell's Chief Scientist - Chemical Engineering and a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE).  He joined the Process Development Department at what is now Shell Technology Center Houston in 1988, where he has led major R&D programs in new chemical processes, biofuels, and enhanced oil recovery, in addition to a Hunters innovation group.  Dr. Powell has been granted more than forty-eight U.S. patents (another 50+ pending) and several industry awards, including the A. D. Little Award for Chemical Engineering Innovation (AIChE 1998), R&D100 Award (R&D Magazine), American Chemical Society Team Innovation Award (2000), and a U. Wisconsin College of Engineering Distinguished Achievement Award (2009).  He is co-editor and chapter author for the book Sustainable Development in the Process Industries:  Cases and Impact, John Wiley & Sons, New York (2010), and has served AIChE in various roles including division and meeting programming chair, operating council, pilot plants area chair, and topical chair.  Dr. Powell obtained a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison (1984), following a B.S.in Chemical Engineering from the University of Virginia (1978).    


Peter J. Rossky obtained a Ph.D. in Chemical Physics from Harvard University. After two years of postdoctoral study at SUNY-Stony Brook studying ionic solutions, in 1979 he joined the faculty of the Department of Chemistry (now Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Texas at Austin). He is now the George W. Watt Centennial Professor of Chemistry and the Director of the Institute for Theoretical Chemistry. Rossky has published approximately 150 papers in the fields of solution chemistry, computer simulation, and theoretical chemistry. His work has emphasized application of theory to elucidating the molecular-level description of solution chemistry, particularly aqueous solutions. Areas of application have included, first, biologically relevant solutions. Ionic interactions in DNA form a long standing interest. He has also been a major contributor in the area of biopolymer hydration, widely recognized for its significance to the stability of native biological structures. Similarly, technological interest for novel chemistry and for chemical waste disposal has motivated molecular level studies of supercritical fluids, specifically in the context of molecular solvation and reaction thermodynamics in supercritical water. His work on new computer simulation methodology for studying mechanisms of solution photochemistry has emphasized not only the chemistry, but also the interpretation of observable ultrafast transient spectroscopy. Rossky has served on the Editorial Boards of a number of leading chemistry journals, including "Accounts of Chemical Research," "Chemical Physics Letters," "The Journal of Chemical Physics," "The Journal of Physical Chemistry," "Theoretical Chemistry Accounts," and "PhysChemComm" (U.K. Royal Society of Chemistry).


Richmond Sarpong was first introduced to organic chemistry as a Cambridge 'A' Level student by Dr. Ramakrishna at the Maru-A-Pula school in Gaborone, Botswana. In 1991, he began his undergraduate studies at Macalester College (St. Paul, MN) where he was first introduced into organic chemistry research through an undergraduate project in the determination of absolute stereochemistry using the Mosher method under Professor Rebecca C. Hoye. In the summer of 1995, he moved to Princeton University where he began doctoral research with Professor Martin F. Semmelhack studying functional analogs of the enediyne antitumor antibiotics. He left Princeton in the fall of 2000 to pursue a postdoctorate with Professor Brian M. Stoltz at the California Institute of Technology. As an UNCF-Pfizer postdoctoral fellow at Caltech, he was part of a team that completed the first total synthesis of the protein phosphatase inhibitor dragmacidin D. In 2004, Richmond left Caltech to join the faculty at Berkeley. He is currently developing methodology to access a series of 7- and 5-membered ring fused bicycles.



This material is based upon work supported by the U.S. Department of Energy under Award No. DE-FG02-07ER15872


This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. CHE-0925448