Professional Synopsis:

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Steve has 31 years of experience in the chemical processing industry with a broad range of experience including executive leadership positions in manufacturing, engineering and technology development. Currently, Steve is Vice President of Process Development and Engineering at Rivertop Renewables, a renewable chemical company focused on the low-cost production of glucaric acid for sale into the detergent market. Steve’s team is responsible for leading the company from the lab to world scale industrial bio-processes.

Prior to joining Rivertop in January 2011, Steve served as Director of Process Development and Engineering at Segetis, a startup company developing bio-based industrial materials in the areas of adhesives, additives and polyols.. Steve joined Segetis in June of ’08 and completed the scalling of the manufacturing plant from lab to a world scalable semi-works facility. Prior to Segetis, Steve spent 13 years with NatureWorks LLC (previously known as Cargill Dow LLC) as Director of Manufacturing Technology and Engineering. At NatureWorks LLC Steve led the cross functional team in developing, designing, constructing and starting up the first ever world scale polymer plant that makes plastic from corn.

Prior to joining NatureWorks LLC, Steve worked as a seconded employee from The Dow Chemical Company to the Cargill Dow LLC joint venture. As the seconded employee, Steve was the Director of Manufacturing, Engineering and Process Development. In this role Steve was a key member of the Cargill Dow leadership team and responsible for the process development, engineering and operations of the semi-works PLA polymer facility. Working with Cargill Dow’s commercial and R&D teams manufacturing was able to supply developmental customers with product to assess market needs and determine product performance requirements. The feedback was used to finish the development and design of the world scale PLA Polymer and Lactic Acid Fermentation plants. The efforts resulted in Cargill and the Dow Chemical Company funding the $300 MM to build the first world scale PLA/Lactic Acid facility and move the joint venture from the developmental stage to commercialization.

Prior to being seconded to Cargill Dow Steve was the Global Technology Manager for Dow’s Polystyrene Business in Midland Michigan. In this role Steve’s was responsible for long term technology strategies, identifying new technology opportunities for the polystyrene business along with identifying and solving technology gaps needed to maintain Dow’s leadership in polystyrene. Steve’s responsibility to identify new technology opportunities led to the opportunity for Steve to lead the manufacturing due diligence of the new Polylactide (PLA) manufacturing technology that had been developed by Cargill. Working with the commercial organization Steve presented the recommendations to Dow’s senior leadership that resulted in Dow and Cargill forming the joint venture Cargill Dow LLC. Along with the Cargill Dow analysis, Steve championed the development and implemented a vision to decrease both the capital requirements and manufacturing costs while providing quality product to meet customers’ needs for the polystyrene business. The implementation resulted in 20% increases in existing plant capacity, 12% improvements in plant reliability and 30% increase of new plant technology globally. Steve also was asked to do the due diligence in Brazil to assess if Dow should buy back 2/3rd of the polystyrene business it once held. This analysis resulted in Dow purchasing its 2/3rds and building a new plant while shutting down the existing 25-year-old facility.

Steve has held many roles as he has been continually promoted through a series of important and escalating projects and operations management responsibilities, from run plant engineering roles to operations leader. Steve led the future plant design for polystyrene called “Plant of The year 2000”, during which time Steve envisioned the future technology to be used in manufacturing plants and implemented this vision in the polystyrene plant in Midland Michigan resulting in a 50% reduction in operating costs and a 30% increase in capacity. Another key role was the 5 years Steve spent in Hong Kong as the technology superintendent in the Pacific Area, in this role Steve was responsible for all process technology throughout Asia including Capital spending and budgets, project prioritization. During his time in the Pacific, Steve was instrumental in new business opportunities that led to joint ventures and the building of new polystyrene facilities in both Thailand and Indonesia. Steve also completed due diligence efforts in India and Japan that resulted in declining both joint ventures in those countries.

Steve earned his Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from Washington State University.

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