Management Team

driving change

Ryan Gilliam, PhD

Chief Executive Officer

Dr. Gilliam founded Chemetry, originally as a research division within Calera Corporation, in 2008. Through Chemetry, Dr. Gilliam seeks to redefine how commodity chemicals are made through taking a new look at an old industry. Dr. Gilliam obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto in Materials Science and Engineering. On his work in catalysis and electrochemistry, Dr. Gilliam has 10 peer reviewed publications and has presented his work at multiple international conferences. He is an inventor on 13 U.S. Patents and an additional 27 foreign patents pertaining to Calera’s and Chemetry’s work.

Randy Seeker, PhD

Chief Technology Officer

Dr. Seeker has thirty-eight years of experience in developing and scaling up a broad range of industrial technologies including combustion, air pollution control and monitoring, chemical processes and conventional and advanced power systems. Before joining Chemetry, he was the New Product Development Manager at GE Energy Environmental Services. He served on the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board for over ten years and has served on several U.S. National Academy of Science panels. He has 43 patents related to his process development activities. Dr. Seeker is an adjunct professor in the Mechanical Engineering department at the University of California, Irvine. Dr. Seeker earned a B.S. from New Mexico State University, and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Engineering from Kansas State University.

Jill Aufricht

Chief Financial Officer

Ms. Aufricht joined the team in 2007 and leads the company’s finance and administration organization. She has over twenty years’ experience guiding emerging and high growth technology companies through a variety of financial and operational matters from start up through commercialization, international expansion, S-1 filing and M&A transactions. Prior to Chemetry, Ms. Aufricht served as Vice President of Finance and Administration for Skeletal Kinetics where she raised the company’s equity financing and led the organization from start up through commercialization, culminating in a successful sale of the company. She began her career as an auditor with Price Waterhouse. She is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of California.

Bob Snyder

Chief Strategy Officer

Mr. Snyder is responsible for developing and executing corporate strategy to commercialize Chemetry technologies. He is a global chemicals and plastics industry executive with over 30 years experience capturing operational improvements and building cultural alignment across acquired and geographically diverse businesses. Most recently, Mr. Snyder served as Vice President of Strategy for Axiall Corporation, leading corporate planning, strategy, and M&A activity, implementing the divestiture of underperforming assets. Previously, he served as Vice President, Chlorovinyls and Aromatics, with commercial leadership and P&L responsibility for businesses with approximately $3.2 billion in revenue and $500 million EBITDA. Prior to Axiall, Mr. Snyder led a range of businesses in the U.S. and Europe at Nova Chemicals, including the $450 million Performance Styrenics business. Mr. Snyder began his career at Dow Chemical before joining DuPont Dow Elastomers, leading the global business development organization for the joint venture. Mr. Snyder holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Virginia and a Master’s of Business Administration from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Vandana Bansal, PhD

Vice President Intellectual Property

Dr. Bansal joined the team in 2010 and heads the Intellectual Property department where she manages all patent and trademark related activities for the company. Dr. Bansal is a seasoned patent practitioner who has over a decade of experience in patent practice in various fields including organic chemistry, clean technology, biotechnology, medical devices, nanotechnology, drug delivery, and electrochemistry. Under her leadership, Calera and Chemetry have successfully obtained over 100 patents worldwide and continue to grow the IP portfolio at a rapid pace. Prior to Chemetry, Dr. Bansal was a patent agent at Foley & Lardner in their Life Sciences IP group where she managed the IP portfolio of large pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies. Prior to Foley & Lardner, Dr. Bansal was a patent agent at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich and Rosati in their Life Sciences IP group. Dr. Bansal holds PhD in Organic Chemistry from Delhi University, India.

Kyle Self, PhD

Vice President Process Technologies

Dr. Self manages research and development activities focused on catalysis and analytics. In addition to technical support of ongoing scale-up activities, his team leads research aimed at next generation processes such as new molecules and oxychlorination. Dr. Self began his career at Exxon Chemical Company working in both process development (Baton Rouge) and plant operations (Baytown), the latter including a major ethylene plant shutdown and debottlenecking project. He then joined Stone and Webster Engineering Corporation where he designed processes for world scale chemical plants, both retrofit and grassroots, and also assisted with shakedown and plant operations support. He has held numerous positions of increasing responsibility with Symyx Technologies, Fluidigm Corporation, and Accelergy Corporation primarily in the development and scale-up of new processes such as selective oxidation, isomerization and Fischer-Tropsch catalysis. He holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from Rice University and a PhD from the University of California at Santa Barbara.

Mike Weiss, PhD

Vice President Process Modeling

Dr. Weiss leads engineering and economic modeling activities. Before joining the team, Dr. Weiss was Vice President of Research for Gas Reaction Technologies. At GRT, he led research teams developing bromine-based processes for the conversion of natural gas to liquids, natural gas to olefins, and propylene to propylene oxide. Previously, Dr. Weiss was a consultant for the Boston Consulting Group, working in new product development and post-merger integration. He is an inventor on 8 U.S. Patents. Dr. Weiss earned a B.S.E. from Princeton University and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Santa Barbara.

Thomas McWaid, PhD

Director, Electrochemistry & Principal Engineer

Dr. McWaid has thirty years of experience in product design, systems development, and engineering management. He spent four years at the National Institute of Standard and Technology’s Precision Engineering Division, first as an NRC Post-doctoral fellowship recipient, and then as a staff research engineer. Dr. McWaid has developed automated reactors, advanced metrology instruments and analytical systems. He has 11 issued patents related to metrology, and materials development and characterization. Dr. McWaid obtained his Ph.D. from the University of California at Santa Barbara in Mechanical Engineering.

Kobe Nagar

Director, Engineering

Mr. Nagar joined the team in 2013. He manages the Process Engineering group, which has responsibilities for process development, process design, and process operations support. Mr. Nagar’s specialties are in the areas of reactor and BOP engineering, process safety, and process scale-up. Mr. Nagar has more than 15 years of experience in the chemicals, power, and defense industries. Prior to joining Chemetry, he worked as a senior process engineer for FuelCell Energy and as a principle engineer for ORMAT where he led the conceptual design of many clean power plant projects followed up with commissioning and field support in North America, Europe, Africa and New Zealand. His work experience also includes serving as an R&D engineer for the Israeli Ministry of Defense. Mr. Nagar received his bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Ben-Gurion Universityand his Master’s degree in Material Engineering from Tel-Aviv University.

Margarete Leclerc, Dr. rer. nat.

Director, Catalysis R&D

Dr. Leclerc is responsible for coordinating activities that link laboratory experiments and pilot research and development. She joined Chemetry in 2012 and has been involved in every aspect of catalysis for the eShuttle™ platform since its inception. Prior to joining Chemetry, her work focused primarily on homogeneous catalysis research and high throughput methodology development for inorganic compounds and polymers. She held positions of increasing responsibilities at Symyx Technologies for 11 years, ultimately managing R&D projects with industrial partners. Dr. Leclerc received a doctoral degree from University of Konstanz, Germany. In addition, she has completed postdoctoral research at Stanford University and also at SRI International. She has coauthored 8 peer-reviewed publications and holds over 30 US and foreign patents..

Horacio Alfaro

EH&S Manager

Mr. Alfaro joined the team in 2012 with over 20 years of EH&S experience working in manufacturing, government and environmental industries. Mr. Alfaro is a licensed safety professional (LSP) and a recognized OSHA Outreach Trainer. Mr. Alfaro also works in the California National Guard as an Environmental Compliance and Ground Safety Officer. Under his guidance, Chemetry has developed an extensive employee health & safety training program and compliance management system including certifying over 50% of employees for HAZWOPER. In addition to his EH&S roles, Mr. Alfaro continues to serve as Platoon Sergeant, Small Arms Master Gunner and State Honor Guard with Chemetry’s support.

J.W. Mattina

Project Manager

Mr. Mattina manages external engineering, procurement and construction activities to scale-up Chemetry technologies, including the eShuttle™ Demonstration Plant project. He joined the team in 2010 and coordinated pilot plant build-outs and demonstration projects to progress Calera’s Beneficial Reuse of CO2 technologies. Mr. Mattina is a Project Management Professional and also completed the Certificate Program in Project Management through UC Berkeley Extension. He earned a BS in Civil Engineering from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.

Jason Jimenez

Manager, Chemical Operations

Mr. Jimenez manages a dynamic 24 hour operations team and he is accountable for eShuttle™ Pilot Plant safety, quality and production while mitigating plant environmental impacts. Mr. Jimenez works closely with the Engineering and Science teams to discover and implement process improvements and he is dedicated to mechanical maintenance and quality control for plant reliability. Mr. Jimenez studied Aviation Mechanics with experience in the aerospace and defense industries prior to joining team in 2014.

Mike Kostowskyj

Experience Team Lead and Scientist

Mr. Kostowskyj manages the Experience Team which was formed in 2015 to create a positive and impactful team dynamic at Chemetry.  The Team’s objectives are communicating the company’s vision, organizing monthly events and activities which engage active participation and improving overall day-to-day work life. Mr. Kostowskyj is also a Scientist on the Electrochemistry Team. He focuses on electrochemical process optimization, corrosion testing and membrane development.  Mr. Kostowskyj received his Masters in Materials Engineering from the University of Toronto and joined the company in 2009.

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