Vice President, Consulting Materials Science and Engineeringat
Josh Guilliams, Vice President of Consultancy, leads Smithers’ technical consulting team based in Akron, Ohio. Josh manages client relationships and works with other Smithers experts on complex projects. He also conducts in-depth investigations of a wide variety of rubber materials and final products on behalf of clients.
Before joining the team at Smithers, Guilliams spent several years in leadership at Polymer Valley Chemicals, Inc., as Technical Director and Vice President of Technical Operations. Prior to his time at Polymer Valley Chemicals, he held technical and commercial roles at Hankook Tire, EASTMAN Chemical Corporation, LANXESS Corporation, and Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations.
Paul Ita runs Notch Consulting, a Massachusetts-based research company dedicated to the market research needs of the global specialty chemicals industry. Mr. Ita focuses on raw materials for the global tire and rubber industries, with a particular focus on carbon black, silica, and rubber chemicals. Through Notch, he publishes the Carbon Black World Data Book and the Carbon Black Quarterly Newsletter.
Martin Von Wolfersdorff
Martin von Wolfersdorff is a consultant specialising in alternative rubber fillers and tire pyrolysis. He is in contact with over 320 tire pyrolysis companies globally and advises tyre manufacturing associations, tire manufacturers, tire collectors, refineries, pyrolysis technology providers & operators on the global tire pyrolysis industry and the marketing of recovered carbon black. Previously, Martin worked in the carbon black industry with Cabot, in the custom colour masterbatch industry with Americhem and in the white pigment industry with Huntsman Pigments. Martin holds a Dipl. Ing. (Univ.) degree in chemical engineering from the Friedrich Alexander University in Erlangen-Nürnberg in Germany.
Dr. Jerry Lai
Director, Product Design & Development, Specialty Blacksat
Dr. Jerry (Zhen) Lai is the R&D Director at Birla Carbon based in Atlanta, USA. Jerry is responsible for new product development and technical service for Specialty Blacks applications in Coatings, Plastics, Inks, Sealants and Niche. Prior to Birla Carbon, Jerry held multiple technical leadership positions at Xerox, Momentive, and Hexion, with years of experience in product development in the chemical industry.
Jerry Holds Ph.D. degree of Chemical Engineering from Leigh University, a Master, and a Bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Tsinghua University. He has over 20 publications, 30+ granted patents, and many conference presentations.
Global Director Reinforcement Materialsat
Theo is Global Director, Strategic Projects for the Reinforcement Materials business at Cabot corporation. He has 33 year of service at Cabot and held various positions in Cabot’s reinforcement materials organization, including Global Technical Service Director, Business Segment Manager, Applications Development Manager and Facility Manager at Cabot Technical Center. Theo has received 6 Cabot Awards of Excellence and played an important role in the development and market introduction of Cabot’s SPHERON® and, more recently, the PROPEL® carbon black series. His educational background is in Analytical and Polymer Chemistry. Theo is highly interested in “Sustainability”, his main hobbies are soccer, sports fishing, tennis and reading. Theo and his wife Carla have two children and live in The Netherlands.
Alpen Group LLC
Shane Perl is managing director of Alpen Group LLC, a firm specialising in management consulting on carbon black feedstocks, pyrolysis oils and specialty chemicals, as well as in the sourcing, sales, distribution, trading and brokering of carbon black feedstock oils. Shane Perl has a BSc in chemical Engineering from Virginia Tech and an MBA in Marketing from University of Detroit and Rutgers University. Before founding Alpen Group, Shane worked 15 years with BASF in capital projects and procurement and 5 years as Director Strategic Sourcing with the carbon black producer Cabot.