SMC 2014 Speaker - David Bem, The Dow Chemical Company - Biography

Dr. David S. Bem
R&D Vice President, Advanced Materials
The Dow Chemical Company

David Bem is the vice president of Research & Development for Advanced Materials at The Dow Chemical Company. Prior to this role, he was the R&D director for Core R&D responsible for leading early stage exploration of disruptive technologies and the development of new businesses. He joined Dow in 2007 as the R&D leader for Hydrocarbons & Energy, Alternative Feedstocks and Basic Chemicals.  In 2008, he became the R&D director of Dow Automotive until he moved to Core R&D in 2010.

David received a B.A. in chemistry from West Virginia University in 1990 and a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1995. David began his career at UOP, a Honeywell Company, focused on the synthesis and applications of zeolites and microporous materials. While at UOP, he led the discovery and development of PI-242, a high activity catalyst for butane isomerization. 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, David joined Celanese Corporation as R&D director for acetyls, oxygenates, and acetone derivatives where he was responsible for advancements in AO+™ (acetic acid technology) and Vantage Plus™ (vinyl acetate technology). In 2005, he became a member of the Celanese Corporate Executive Committee and R&D director for Engineering Polymers/Ticona. In that role he drove new product development for POM (Polyacetyl), LCP, PPS, and PBT, he led Celanese Corporate innovation team and the implementation of innovation processes.

David was recently appointed to the Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology (BCST) of the National Academy of Sciences and the Scientific Advisory Board for Oakridge National Laboratories Energy and Environmental Sciences Directorates. He is also on the Board of Advisors for the Department of Chemistry at UW-Madison. David holds nine US patents and has authored more than 20 publications.