Title and Description Page
Childhood and Early Education 1
Takes education very seriously from early age, working hard to graduate first to receive Penn scholarship. Grows up in Philadelphia, moving numerous times. Attends Overbrook High School with fine teachers. Facility in mathematics leads to interest in science and engineering.
University of Pennsylvania (Penn) 4
Enters chemical engineering program in 1933, at age sixteen. Enjoys laboratory work. Takes advantage of strong English Department as well as courses in philosophy, astronomy, and foreign languages. Studies chemical engineering under well-reputed Norman W. Krase. Very demanding engineering curriculum. Despite extremely high aptitude in mathematics and physics, prefers practical aspects of engineering.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 9
Receives Tau Beta Pi Fellowship to attend any university. MIT is "natural" choice due to unquestionable superiority in chemical engineering at the time. First experience away from home. Practice School offers tremendous practical experience. Very rigorous program and stimulating environment—the best and brightest. Completes thesis virtually unsupervised.
M. W. Kellogg Company 19
Begins work with catalytic cracking and picks up other chemical projects that emerge. Asked to transfer to subsidiary, Kellex Corporation.
Kellex Corporation (Manhattan Project) 20
Works with highly skilled engineers to design and run plant to produce highly concentrated uranium-235. Very little understanding of fission or the project as a whole. Works with Eyring, Urey, Groves, and Rehnberg. Actual diffusion plant controlled by Union Carbide which did not wish to involve engineers.
Scientific Design Company (SDC) 25
Starts company with Rehnberg by proposing construction of monochloroacetic anhydride plant to former boss, then vice president of Stauffer. Although initial project never completed, both take advantage of contacts to expand worldwide. Work in England leads to further contacts in Europe and Japan.
Halcon International, Inc. 30
As SDC expands and petrochemical industry becomes saturated, Halcon created as holding company for SDC (for engineering licensing) as well as Catalytic Development Corporation (for manufacturing) and SD Plants (for construction). Pioneers in many chemical production processes, including ones for ethylene oxide, terephthlalic acid, maelic anhydride, Oxirane, and acetic anhydride. Recession of early 1980s forces sellout. Receives several awards for research and industrial development.
Stanford University 44
Frustration with the macroeconomic atmosphere leads to new career in academe—in the Economics Department. Publishes a great deal and teaches seminar on relationship between economics and technological development. Contact with government officials.
Thoughts on Development of Chemical Engineering 48
Great opportunities of post-war era no longer available because majority of industry sustained by huge corporations. Practical experience in industry necessary to facilitate progress and innovation. The field has become so theoretical that the gap between academe and industry has widened, making the Practice School concept increasingly critical.
Leisure Activities 53
Enjoys swimming, opera, travel, wine, art, tapestries. Maintains numerous contacts throughout industry.