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2011 Section Award Winners

Chemical Engineer of the Year - Bruce Holden

The Mid-Michigan Section of AIChE has selected Bruce S. Holden to receive the 2011 Chemical Engineer of the Year Award.  This award is given to a distinguished chemical engineer in the Mid-Michigan area in recognition of significant career accomplishments and active participation in AIChE at the local or national level.  Recipients usually have about 20-30 years of service following graduation.  Publications, patents, company recognition of achievement, and accomplishments in the field of chemical engineering are key criteria for consideration.

Bruce Holden received B.S. and M.S. degrees in Chemical Engineering from Clarkson University and joined The Dow Chemical Company in 1976.  In his 35 years at Dow, Bruce has held technical leadership positions in process R&D, process engineering, and environmental services.  He currently holds the title of Principal Research Scientist in the Engineering & Process Sciences Laboratory.  Bruce is well known for development of separation and purification technology for chemical manufacturing and environmental protection, particularly in the areas of distillation, extraction, absorption, and reactive absorption (emergency scrubbing).  Bruce has made key contributions to the development and commercial implementation of new separations technology including contributions to the VerseneTM Chelants manufacturing plant in Freeport (Texas), Dow AgroSciences plants in Freeport, Midland, and Pittsburg (California), the Methocel manufacturing plant in Midland, Dow’s Hydrocarbons plants in Freeport and Terneuzen (The Netherlands), and Dow’s FilmtecTM manufacturing plant in the Minneapolis area.  In recognition of his many contributions, Bruce has received numerous Dow awards including the Michigan Consultant’s Award, The Doug Leng Excellence in Engineering Sciences Award, and nine Dow Tech Center Awards.  Bruce is also a sought-after consultant and mentor at Dow.  In this capacity, Bruce is well-known for unselfishly sharing his expertise and helping others succeed.

Bruce is active outside of Dow, as well.  He serves on the Fractionation Research, Inc. (FRI) Advisory Committee (oversight) and Technical Committee (technical review).  He is a co-author of Section 15, “Liquid-Liquid Extraction and Other Liquid-Liquid Operations and Equipment,” in Perry’s Chemical Engineers’ Handbook, 8th Ed. (McGraw-Hill, New York, 2007) and co-author of Chapter 7, “Storage of Toxic Materials,” in Handbook of Highly Toxic Materials Handling and Management (Marcel Dekker, 1995).  Bruce also co-authored a well-received article on distillation tower internals (“Choosing Trays and Packings for Distillation,” Chemical Engineering Progress, September, 2009, pp. 44-50).   

Bruce’s service to AIChE includes service as a member of the national AIChE committee charged with writing distillation column testing procedures.  In this capacity, he has served as the editor for two sections on the testing of tower internals.  Bruce is also serving the local Section as Secretary and as a member of the Executive Committee.

Young Chemical Engineer of the Year - Katherine Erikson

The Mid-Michigan Section of AIChE has selected Katherine (Katie) Erikson to receive the 2011 Young Chemical Engineer of the Year Award.  This award recognizes exceptional technical expertise and personal leadership for someone at an early stage in their career.  The award generally is given to a person with approximately 4-12 years of service following graduation.

Katherine Erikson joined Dow Corning Corporation in 2005.  She holds a B.S. of Chemical Engineering from Kansas State University.  She began her career in Midland Process Engineering focusing on emulsions. Katie was awarded a Business Athlete Award for her work there on the “Surfactant Replacement Project”.  In 2008, Katie moved to an Application Engineering and Technical Service (AETS) role in the Electronics Materials Business Unit where she led the Fast Formulation process.  Under Katie's leadership, the program experienced double digit growth, year on year.  She was awarded an AETS award in 2008 for her Fast Formulation support.  In 2010, Katie moved to the Dow Corning Business Center as a Technical Account Specialist.  Katie is the technical expert for semiconductor interlayer dielectrics for the Electronic Materials Business Unit globally.  Katie has also led the implementation and adoption of the Right Now Knowledge Base system in the Business Center.  She led the transfer of items from old database systems to the new system. She also led the team in training activities and continues to help people to adopt the system for their individual role.  Katie received a second AETS Excellence Award for this work in 2010. 

Katie has served the local Section as Co-Chair of the Educational Outreach Program.



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