Advisory Board

Our advisory board draws its members from academia, industry, consulting firms and private practice, all working together to achieve the department’s mission.


  • Evaluate and advise the department on its mission statement and educational objectives.
  • Promote chemical engineering education throughout their communities and through their affiliations.
  • Support department research activities and senior design projects.
  • Assist the department in forming industrial contacts.
  • Serve as representatives of employers for our graduates.
  • Participate in academic and social functions of the department.

Current Members

  • John Chambard (‘97), ExxonMobil
  • Ana Piqueras Davis (‘91), Syngenta
  • John Davis (‘91), Syngenta
  • John Earnhardt (‘63), Pro Services
  • Mark Hurley (‘81), Blueknight Energy Partners
  • Thad Leister (‘87), GE Hitachi Nuclear
  • Nate Miranda (‘94), PepsiCo
  • Tim Nolen (‘89), Eastman Chemical
  • Russ O’Dell (‘75), NC State University
  • Ann Quillian (‘85), Duke Energy
  • Joan Rodberg (‘89), Dow Chemical
  • Joe Royer (‘00), Milliken and Company
  • Stuart Thomas (‘96), DuPont
  • Allen Tothill (‘65), Tothill Management
  • Scott Warlick (‘87), Mallinckrodt Pharmaceutical
  • Alan Weinberg (‘63), Sealed air (retired)
  • Billy Willis (‘76), Duke University Health System
  • Ron Zumstein (‘87), Albermarle

Career Profiles

  • John Chambard (B.S. ’97) has spent his entire career at ExxonMobil, initially starting in Baytown, TX as a process contact engineer and moving into management as the Engineering Services Section Supervisor. In 2009 John transferred with ExxonMobil to Fairfax, VA as Corporate Reliability Specialist with responsibilities for manufacturing sites across the country. John transferred in 2013 to Baton Rouge, LA continuing in his role as Corporate Reliability Specialist.
  • Ana Piqueras Davis (B.S. ’91) began her career as a process control engineer with ExxonMobil in Baytown, TX and later joined Advanced Micro Devices in Austin, TX as a facilities engineer. She has since worked for Union Carbide/Dow Chemical in South Charleston, WV as a production manager, for Dow Chemical in Freeport, TX as a plant manager and for Kao Specialties America in High Point, NC as a health, safety and environment manager. Ana is now the Head of Health, Safety, Environment and Security for Syngenta in Greensboro, NC.
  • John Davis (B.S. ’91) earned a Ph.D. at the University of Texas-Austin in 1996. He started his career at Union Carbide/Dow Chemical in South Charleston, WV as a senior engineer in research and development, and later transferred with Dow Chemical to Freeport, TX where he became a senior process development specialist. John joined Syngenta Crop Protection in Greensboro and became a group leader in formulation engineering technology. John is currently Global Product Supply Chain Manager.
  • John Earnhardt (B.S. ’63) had a 33 year career with DuPont Fibers starting in R&D at Benger Lab in Waynesboro, VA and later moving to Richmond VA and Wilmington, DE, mainly in the Nomex and Lycra/Spandex businesses. After retiring in 1996, John studied two years at the University of Delaware in Environmental Science and started an Environmental Management consulting business, Pro Services Co., which he has operated and managed for 17 years.
  • Mark Hurley (B.S. ’81) worked 28 years at Shell, from 1981 to 2009, starting at a refinery in St Charles, LA and moving up through the managerial ranks to become President of Shell Pipeline Co., LP. In 2010 Mark was hired as Senior Vice President, Crude Oil and Offshore for Enterprise Products Partners based in Houston, TX. In 2012, Mark joined Blueknight Energy Partners as CEO. Blueknight Energy Partners is an Oklahoma City oil and asphalt corporation with revenues approaching $200 million.
  • Thad Leister (B.S. ’87) initially went to work as a process design engineer at Sirrine Environmental Consultants in Greenville, SC. He then joined General Electric where he worked in the Gas Turbine group as the Environmental, Health, and Safety Manager. Thad was later promoted to the GE Plastics business where he served as the Global EHS Manager for their Silicones business and as a Plant Manager in their Specialty Chemicals businesses. Thad is now with GE Hitachi Nuclear where he is the Plant Manager for the Wilmington Field Service Center.
  • Nate Miranda (Ph.D. ’94) earned a B.S. in chemical engineering from Stanford as well as a B.A. in English. His Ph.D. work was performed under the direction of Drs. Benny Freeman and Hal Hopfenberg. Nate started his career at W.R. Grace/Cryovac/Sealed Air in Duncan, SC, moving through the ranks as a section leader, manager, and to Director of Technology and Innovation. In 2012 Nate joined PepsiCo as Senior Director, Beverage Packaging in Hawthorn, NY
  • Tim Nolen (Ph.D. ’89) came to NC State to do his Ph.D. under Dr. Peter Fedkiw after earning a B.S. in chemical engineering from Auburn University. He started his career at Eastman Chemical in Kingsport, TN as a process design engineer. Shortly after being promoted to Research Associate in 1998 he became a Group Leader for Chemical Engineering Research. In 2011 Tim was named a Technology Fellow in Process Engineering and Evaluation Research, a position he holds today, and in 2013 Tim was elected as a Fellow of the AIChE.
  • Russ O’Dell (B.S. ’75, Ph.D. ’78) completed his Ph.D. under the direction of Dr. Ron Rousseau. He began his career at Fiber Industries in Charlotte as an R&D engineer. Through a series of corporate buyouts he then worked for Celanese, Hoechst Celanese, Hoechst North America and KoSa. Russ moved up the technical ladder to become the Global Manager of Technology for the PET business. In 2002 Russ returned to NC State in the Engineering Foundation, and has helped set up over 25 endowments for the department.
  • Ann Quillian (B.S. ’85) has spent her entire career in the environmental arena, first as an environmental engineer with the US Environmental Protection Agency in RTP. She then joined the Florida Department of Environmental Protection in Tampa, FL as a permit engineer. In 2006 she went to work for Progress Energy as an environmental engineer in St Petersburg, and last year transferred with Progress Energy to Raleigh as a Senior Environmental Engineer.
  • Joan Rodberg (Ph.D. ’89) came to NC State after earning a B.S. in chemical engineering at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. She completed her Ph.D. work with Dr. PK Lim, finishing in 1989. Joan then accepted a process engineering position with Union Carbide in South Charleston, WV. In 2001 Joan became an employee of Dow Chemical when Union Carbide became a wholly owned subsidiary. She currently is a senior process engineer at Dow Chemical.
  • Joe Royer (Ph.D. ’00) joined the graduate program at NC State after earning a B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Notre Dame in 1995. His Ph.D. work. was co-advised by Drs. Saad Khan and Joe DeSimone. After earning his Ph.D. and a short post doc co-advised by Drs. Khan and George Roberts, Joe took a position at Milliken and Company in corporate research in 2002. Joe has held Team Leader positions in corporate research and served as the Director of Innovation for the Performance Products Division. Joe is currently Development Manager of Geopolymers for Milliken Infrastructure Solutions, LLC.
  • Stuart Thomas (Ph.D. ’96) came to NC State after earning a B.S. in chemical engineering from the University of Wisconsin. His Ph.D. work was performed under the direction of Drs. David Ollis and Steve Peretti. Stuart went to work for DuPont in Wilmington, DE as a scientist in their corporate R&D department. In 2005 Stuart moved into business development in the biofuels arena, and in 2009 was named Vice President of Technology and Licensing for DuPont Danisco Cellulosic Ethanol, which is now part of DuPont Biofuels Solutions after DuPont acquired Danisco.
  • Allen Tothill (B.S. ’65) began his career as an area engineer at DuPont in Kinston, NC. His work there on process simulation and plant financial forecasting models led him to EDS in Dallas, TX. Allen then joined AMS, a software startup company, and was named VP of marketing. Allen next joined Sprint where he managed multiple sales organizations over a 17 year period and had global responsibility as National Accounts VP before retiring. He then joined Internap Network Services, Inc. and served as Vice President of Carrier Alliances. Today, Allen owns his own consulting company, and serves as an advisor and consultant to an information technology, and management recruiting agency.
  • Scott Warlick (B.S. ’87) initially went to work for Champion Paper in Roanoke Rapids, NC. He moved from the paper industry to specialty chemicals in 1990 when he took a position in engineering at Mallinckrodt Chemicals. In 2006 Scott was promoted to Manager of Global Manufacturing Engineering where he oversaw capital projects for six manufacturing plants. Scott was named Plant Manager in 2010 for the Mallinckrodt pharmaceuticals plant in Raleigh.
  • Alan Weinberg (B.S. ’63) first took a job with Esso Research & Engineering in Florham Park, NJ. He came back south to work for W.R. Grace/Cryovac/Sealed Air in Duncan, SC. Alan moved up the ranks of corporate management to become Vice President of Global Technology for Sealed Air. He retired in 2002, but remained as a consultant for several years.
  • Billy Willis (B.S. ’76, Ph.D. ’81) completed his Ph.D. work under Dr. Jim Ferrell and remained at NC State for 17 years eventually becoming the university Vice Provost for IT. Bill then progressed through a series of high level IT positions: Chief Technology Officer for Interpath Communications, IT Group Vice President at Cable and Wireless, Deputy Chief Information Officer for the State of North Carolina and Senior Technology Leader for Federal Programs at Raytheon. In 2011 Bill was named Chief Technology Officer at Duke University Health System.
  • Ron Zumstein (Ph.D. ’87) came to NC State after earning a BS in chemical engineering from the University of Tennessee, and completed his PhD under the direction of Dr. Ron Rousseau. Ron went to work at Ethyl Corporation, now Albemarle, and has successfully held a variety of positions of increasing responsibility including site management at several of the company’s plant sites. In 2003, he became Vice President for Health, Safety, and Environment and in 2010 became Vice President of Manufacturing. Today, Ron is a Sr. Vice President managing all aspects of the company’s global manufacturing operations, supply chain, and corporate engineering.
    Emeritus Members
  • Jeff Buffo (B.S. ’85) started his career at Milliken & Company in Spartanburg, SC as a process engineer in the textile business. He later joined EuroKera North America in Fountain Inn, SC where he became plant manager. Jeff now is a partner at Keller Williams Realty in Marrietta, GA.
  • Norvin Clontz (B.S. ’65, M.S. ’67, Ph.D. ’70) earned three ChE degrees from our department. His advisor for both his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees was Dr. Warren L. McCabe. Norvin spent his entire career at Milliken, becoming president of Milliken’s larest division – Fashion Apparel and Specialty Fabrics. He also had responsibility for Corporate Engineering, Operations Research, Dyeing and Finishing Technical Services and Corporate Environmental and Energy Management.
  • Tommy Gibson (B.S. ’74) spent his entire career at Alcoa, retiring in 2009 with 35 years of service. He started as a plant engineer in the Badin, NC aluminum smelter and rose through the ranks to become Environmental Health and Safety Manager, Public Strategy Manager, and Plant Manager. Tommy’s career included 27 years in Badin with shorter assignments in Alabama and New York.
  • Carlos Gutierrez (B.S. ’60) initially took a job with Union Carbide in Bound Brook, NJ but came back south in 1962 to work for Milliken Chemical Corporation. Carlos has helped create four companies, starting with Unisphere Chemical Corporation in 1974, then G&H Industries in 1984, URRC (United Resource Recovery Corporation) in 1992 and NURRC in 2008.  NURRC, a joint venture with the Coca-Cola Company, built the largest bottle-to-bottle polymer recycling facility in the world.
  • Randy Jester (B.S. ’75, M.S. ’77) did his M.S. work under Dr. Hubert Winston. He began his career as an R&D Engineer at Fiber Industries in Charlotte. Randy moved up the ranks at Hoechst Research and Technology Corporation as a group leader and project leader in their films business. Randy eventually became an engineering associate at Hoechst Celanese in New Business Development and an Engineering Associate in Market Development for TOPAS Advanced Polymers. Randy retired in 2013 and has started a consulting business.
  • Mike McLean (B.S. ’73) started out as a production engineer at Mallinckrodt Chemical in Raleigh. He later joined Ajinomoto and Wyeth Vaccines in production management positions. In 2009 he returned to the Mallinckrodt manufacturing facility where he started his career. Mike retired in 2013 after 40 years in industry.
  • Tamie Daniels Wells (B.S. ’92) returned to her hometown to work as a process engineer at Eastman Chemicals in Kingsport, TN. She has steadily moved into roles with higher responsibility at Eastman, first in Corporate Technology Strategy as Growth and Innovation Leader and later as the Program Director for Sustainability Analysis. Tamie is now a medical student at East Tennessee State University Quillen College of Medicine.
  • Jim Williamson (B.S. ’85) started his career at Procter and Gamble in Greenville, NC as a process engineer and transferred with P&G to manufacturing facilities in Greensboro, NC and Rochester, NY. He left P&G after 15 years to start Innovative Systems, a firm that sells and installs home automation, audio and video systems. He merged his company with Audio Advice in 2008 and now is General Manager for their operation in Charlotte, NC.