Dr. Ray Mentzer to deliver ChBE's Spring 2019 convocation address


The Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering is pleased to announce that Dr. Ray Mentzer will be the convocation speaker for its May 2019 ceremony.

The department convocation will be at 10 a.m., Sunday, May 12, 2019, in the Tryon Festival Theatre in the Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, 500 South Goodwin Avenue, Urbana. The event will celebrate undergraduates who are receiving bachelor degrees and graduate students earning master’s and doctoral degrees. The ChBE convocation ceremony will be streamed live via this URL.

A reception will follow the ceremony in a tent on Centennial Plaza, the area between Noyes Laboratory and the Chemistry Annex, just east of the Quad.

Dr. Ray Mentzer (BS ’74) will deliver the 2019 Spring Convocation address to ChBE graduates.
Dr. Ray Mentzer (BS ’74) will deliver the 2019 Spring Convocation address to ChBE graduates.

After receiving his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Illinois in 1974, Dr. Mentzer went on to earn his master’s and doctoral degrees in chemical engineering from Purdue University. He enjoyed a 28-plus year career with ExxonMobil, working around the world with 14 assignments in a variety of areas, including oil and gas facility design and operation, research, financial management, safety, health & environment, and public affairs. His last position with the company was as Global Safety, Health, Environment and Security Manager.

Upon his retirement from ExxonMobil, Dr. Mentzer joined the Mary Kay O’Connor Process Safety Center in the Department of Chemical Engineering at Texas A&M University where he taught the senior-level chemical process safety and oil & gas processing courses for eight years. He oversaw ten graduate students with research focusing on process safety management and metrics, risk assessment, safety culture and resilience, downhole drilling safety, and liquefied natural gas (LNG) safety. Dr. Mentzer is currently a visiting professor in chemical engineering at Purdue University, teaching the senior and graduate student level process safety course and he is Executive Director of the Purdue Process Safety & Assurance Center. The center is supported by numerous major corporations and focused on the prevention of major industrial incidents such as Bhopal and Deepwater Horizon.

Married for 34 years, he met his wife (Beverly, also a chemical engineer) at ExxonMobil. They have two children who have degrees in mechanical engineering and economics. Dr. Mentzer enjoys reading, golf, and international travel.