Joseph Priestley Society Symposium
Chemistry Enabling Life: Clean Air, Clean Water, Clean Energy
What is the correlation between the scientific and innovative activities of the chemical industry and the growing broader needs and concerns surrounding clean air, water, and energy? This symposium will provide information and guidance to help answer that question. First, Ana Persic will speak about the 17 U.N. Sustainable Development Goals, focusing on those that apply directly to air, water, and energy. Then Elizabeth Uhlhorn will discuss practical ways that the chemical industry is approaching advancements in those three core areas.
Following these short presentations JPS Executive Committee member Joel W. Jones will moderate a conversation between the two presenters and invite the audience to ask questions. In this less formal setting the real-world challenges inherent in the dialogue among the global stakeholders can be explored.
- 5:00 p.m.
- 6:15 p.m.
About the Panelists
Science Specialist, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
An ecologist by training, Ana Persic joined UNESCO in April 2006 as a program specialist serving UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Program within the Division of Ecological and Earth Sciences. Since 2010 she has served as science specialist at the UNESCO Liaison Office in New York. Her work relates to strengthening the science-policy interface in the field of environmental and sustainability sciences. As part of UNESCO she has been actively involved in the intergovernmental process of establishing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals. As a specialist in biocultural diversity, on behalf of UNESCO, Ana has been coordinating the UNESCO-SCBD Joint Program on the Links between Biological and Cultural Diversity since 2010. She received a master’s degree in ecological sciences from the University of Padova, Italy, and a PhD in ecotoxicology from the University of Paris-South.
Global Product Sustainability Leader, The Dow Chemical Company
Beth Uhlhorn serves as global product sustainability leader for Dow’s coating materials, performance monomers, and plastic additives businesses. She is responsible for leading product stewardship and product regulatory compliance efforts, as well as driving sustainability strategy for these businesses. Before taking on this role she was the sustainability program manager for nature and ecosystem services, where she oversaw design and implementation of Dow’s new 2025 Valuing Nature Goal, which aims to generate $1 billion (as measured in net present value) in cost savings or new revenue through projects that are good for business and the environment. She has also held several finance positions throughout the company, including finance manager with Dow’s construction chemicals business unit and with Dow Kokam, a former joint venture that manufactured lithium-ion batteries.
Before joining Dow, Beth worked in the nonprofit sector with the World Wildlife Fund. There she was a research associate on the conservation finance team and later helped banks create and enforce environmental policies. She also served in the U.S. Peace Corps in Cameroon, where she trained farmers in natural fertilization techniques and developed small agricultural businesses.
Beth holds dual MBA and MS degrees through the Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise at the University of Michigan. She also received a BA in environmental science and political science from the University of St. Thomas, in St. Paul, Minnesota.
About the Moderator
Joel W. Jones
Executive Vice President, Market Wise PR, LLC
Joel Jones began his career with The Dow Chemical Company. He held various sales, marketing, and sales leadership positions throughout his 29-year career. Most recently Joel held the position of global corporate account executive based in North America, reporting directly to Dow’s chief commercial officer. He was responsible for Dow’s global corporate relationships with Air Products and Chemicals, Brenntag Group, and BASF.
Following his retirement from Dow, Joel held the position of chief commercial officer with private equity−owned, successful start-up KODA Distribution Group. He was responsible for managing all strategic supplier relationships and leading commercial excellence across the portfolio of chemical distributors. KODA subsequently became Azelis North America. Joel then joined Bioamber, an industrial biotech manufacturer and public start-up company, as senior vice president of sales.
Joel is a former president of the Drug, Chemical, and Associated Technologies Association and a past president of The Chemists’ Club. He is a member of Racemics and a board member of the Société de Chimie Industrielle. He is a member of the Joseph Priestley Society of the Science History Institute. He also serves on the Council of Deans of the University of Missouri, from which he received a degree in chemical engineering, and was recently inducted as a distinguished alumni of the University of Missouri Chemical Engineering Department. Joel is also a certified Six Sigma Green Belt.
The Joseph Priestley Society (JPS) lecture series explores topics in science, technology, and industry through professional networking receptions and lectures by industry leaders.