Leading up to the GC&E Conference we will be posting interviews with our 2017 GC&E Conference organizers to learn a little more about them and the excellent sessions you can look forward to at this year’s conference!
Stephen C. DeVito, Chief, Data Quality & Analysis Branch, Toxics Release Inventory Program, U. S. Environmental Protection Agency
Stanley P. Kolis, Research Advisor, Small Molecule Design and Development, Lilly Research Labs, Eli Lilly and Company
Session: Advancing the Design and Selection of Safer Commercial Chemicals: How do We Begin?
Q: What motivates you to work in the green chemistry & engineering space?
A: Stanley Kolis: I want to make sure that the good we do in manufacturing pharmaceuticals to treat disease is not compromised by negative effects on the overall environment.
Stephen DeVito: The environment is our most precious resource. Protecting it is a high priority. Green chemistry and green engineering practices are fundamental, win-win, common sense ways of preventing pollution at its source.
Q: In one sentence, describe the session you are organizing at GC&E.
A: This session will focus on the prioritization of toxic chemicals used in commerce globally and will foster discussion on how available pharmacokinetic, toxicity, toxic mechanism, structure-activity relationship, and other data can be used with alternatives assessment constructs to design safer and more sustainable substitutes.
Q: What will attendees learn at your GC&E session? What makes it unique?
A: Well-known, recognized speakers from industry, academia, governmental and non-governmental organizations will not only speak on the above topic, they will also participate in a panel discussion to share their perspectives on how industry, academia, governmental and non-governmental organizations can work collaboratively and use regulations as an innovation catalyst to design safer and more sustainable chemicals.
Q: What is your favorite aspect of the GC&E Conference (or what are you looking forward to)?
A: Stanley Kolis: This is the first GC&E Conference that I am attending. Of course I am looking forward to seeing how our session plays out, but I am really interested in seeing what is cutting edge in the field.
Stephen DeVito: Networking. There is no other better conference for networking with green chemistry and green engineering folks.
Q: What are you currently focused on in your work or research?
A: Stanley Kolis: I am currently involved in executing thermal hazards assessments and process safety evaluations for our small molecule development and manufacturing organizations.
Stephen DeVito: Using the Toxics Release Inventory to characterize the impact of industry implementation of green chemistry and green engineering practices on reducing emissions and other waste management quantities of toxic chemicals.
Q: If you weren't a chemist, what would you be doing?
A: Stanley Kolis: I would probably be a computer programmer or AI engineer. I think that machine learning and data science are fascinating.
Stephen DeVito: I would probably be a teacher. I love to teach.
Q: When you aren't at work, how do you spend your free time?
A: Stanley Kolis: I have four kids aged eight through 17, so I am usually attending one of their sporting or other events. When that is done, I spend some time dabbling in the Python computing language, taking MOOC courses, or reading whatever I can get my hands on.
Stephen DeVito: I spend my free time with my wife and our two children. We love to go on trips, go to sporting events, and watch old movies.
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