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Meet a few of our Keynote Speakers

GPEC 2013 Plenary Speakers


Kelvin Okamoto, Cereplast Inc
"An Overview of Federal Trade Commission’s Green Guidelines”

Kelvin Okamoto is Chief Technology Officer for Cereplast and is based in Seymour, Indiana; his primary responsibilities include material formulation, technology strategy and evaluation, intellectual property coordination, quality control and regulatory certifications. Previously, Kelvin was Manager of Materials Engineering for Solo Cup in Lake Forest, Illinois and has also worked for TaylorMade Golf, Trexel, Pactiv, Himont and GE Plastics with technical expertise in sustainable materials, foams, polyolefins and engineering thermoplastics. Kelvin serves on the Bioplastics Special Interest Group Board of Directors. Kelvin also participates with SPI Bioplastics Council, is Secretary. 

Dr. Oliver Peoples, Metabolix

“The Global State of Bio-Based Plastics”

Presentation Bullet Points:

• The role of foundation technology: Leveraging Metabolix’s PHA capabilities to access markets ranging from biobased plastics to renewable chemicals.

• Managing partnerships: Lessons learned from commercializing technology through partnerships.

• The future of Metabolix’s PHA technology and products and trends for bioplastics.

Dr. Peoples, a co-founder of Metabolix, is Chief Scientific Officer and Vice President of Research and Development. Before founding Metabolix, Dr. Peoples was a research scientist with the Department of Biology at MIT.

Patrick Smith, Michigan Molecular Institute

“Trends in Bio-Based Chemicals”

Dr. Patrick B. Smith is a Research Scientist at MMI. He spent 32 years with The Dow Chemical Company. His areas of research included the synthesis, structure/property relationships and applications of biobased materials, polymer characterization and NMR spectroscopy. He served with Cargill Dow Polymers which launched the IngeoTM PLA line of products where he defined the processing conditions for PLA films, developed structure/property relationships for oriented films and a PLA service life model. After his retirement from Dow, he consulted with Archer Daniels Midland acting as ADM’s R&D leader for their Telles joint venture with Metabolix that commercialized PHA. He also supported ADM’s biobased propylene glycol product launch. Dr. Smith’s research at MMI is focused on renewable materials synthesis, characterization and commercial applications.


John Bradburn, General Motors

"General Motors Zero Landfill Initiatives and Progress"

John is manager of waste-reduction efforts at General Motors.  In this role, he leads the company's landfill-free initiative, which has resulted in 103 GM operations around the world that reuse, recycle, and convert to energy all waste from daily operations.  John is an established expert in waste reduction and recycling, and frequently mentors other companies persuing zero-waste goals.

GPEC 2013 Panel Discussion

Dennis Denton, Denton Plastics (moderator of panel discussion)

"Profitable Post-Consumer Plastics Recycling"

Panel Discussion Members:

- Mike Biddle, President/Founder, MBA Polymers
- Tim Goodman, Cradle-to-Cradle Manager, NatureWorks
- Tony Joseph, Vice President of Marketing, NMS