Industrial Advisory Board

Julia Cutler

  • Plant Production Planner
  • Colgate Palmolive

Julia is a 2009 graduate of the Drexel CBE BS/MS program. During her four years with Colgate-Palmolive, she has held roles in Operations, Continuous Improvement, and Network Operations. After completing an assignment in Rome, she is now supporting the Morristown, NJ manufacturing facility as a plant production planner, focusing on customer service, inventory, and synchronized supply and demand. Julia is a graduate of the Kent State University lean six sigma black belt program, and a current participant in the Women Unlimited leadership development program. She is currently working towards her MBA at Rutger's University, concentrating in Supply Chain Management.

Garland Fussell
Garland Fussell

  • Senior Research and Development Technologist
  • PolyOne Corporation, Corporate Technology Division

Garland Fussell received a BS in Chemical Engineering from North Carolina State University in 1997, and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Delaware in 2002. He then worked as a Research post doctoral associate and research assistant professor at Drexel University in the Department of Chemical Engineering from 2003-2004. In 2004, He became a Polymer Scientist with Synthes Spine, working on polymeric spinal implants, and was promoted to Scientist II in 2009. He moved to Synthes Biomaterials in 2011 to work on drug/device combination products. In June 2012, Johnson & Johnson acquired Synthes, and merged with their Depuy division and he worked for the newly created Depuy Synthes. As of May 2014, he works for PolyOne Corporation as a Senior R&D Technologist in the Corporate Technology Division.

Kaustubh Ghorpade
Kaustubh Ghorpade

  • Process Development Leader

Kaustubh Ghorpade has a BS/MS in Chemical Engineering from Drexel University, MBA - 5 years. He is Currently working with Sekisui PVOH division as a Process Development Leader. In this role, he is in charge of scale up of new process development and process optimization work for three manufacturing sites (Pasadena, TX, Calvert City, KY, Tarragona, Spain).

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Michael Grady

  • Technical Manager
  • DuPont Industrial Biosciences

Michael Grady, BS in Chemical Engineering Drexel University 1982, MSc Chemical Engineering University of Pennsylvania, 1997 DSc Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zurich (ETHZ), has over 30 years of experience with DuPont. For 25 years Mike worked as a polymer reaction engineer developing new process technology to produce polymeric resins for use in automobile coatings. He, along with Hutchinson at Queen's University and Soroush at Drexel University, have worked on improving the general understanding of the secondary reaction mechanisms at play in free-radical acrylic polymerization including back-biting, beta-scission and thermal initiation. A series of publications have emanated from this work. These insights helped to commercialize two new continuous processes to efficiently produce acrylic resins. More recently Mike has led the process technology development for the DuPont/BP Joint Venture Butamax™ focused on producing isobutanol from corn and sucrose. This work has led to a series of patents and patent applications important to the effort. In the last year Mike has worked as a Technical Manager in DuPont's Industrial Biosciences business managing process technology work focused on producing different biomaterials and bioactives important to DuPont.

Padma Narayan, IAB Vice President

  • Director of Formulation Development, Tech Ops
  • SAGE Therapeutics

Dr. Padma Narayan is currently Director of Formulation Development, Tech Ops, at SAGE Therapeutics, focusing on the development of compounds for the treatment of CNS-related indications. Padma was previously at TESARO, where she led efforts towards drug product development and launches for oncology indications. Padma has also held prior R&D leadership positions at The Dow Chemical Company, Johnson & Johnson, and Pfizer. At Dow, she was leading an organization of scientists and engineers involved in new product development for various industrial sectors such as agricultural, pharmaceutical, consumer products, paints/coatings, and oil & gas. Her areas of expertise in the pharmaceutical industry involves particle technology, formulation research, process development, scale-up, and development of oral and transdermal products. Padma has published various scientific papers and is currently a Scientific Advisor to the Editors of The Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences. She is an active member of the Society of Women Engineers and American Institute of Chemical Engineers. Padma received her PhD in Chemical and Biological Engineering from Drexel University in 1999. She received her Bachelors in Chemical Engineering at Villanova University in 1994. In her spare time, Padma volunteers for STEM activities and plays violin in community orchestras.

Chris Owens, IAB President

  • Founder and President
  • Oppenheimer Nexus LLC

Mr. Owens started his career as a process engineer in the biopharmaceutical industry which lead to a strong foundation for his later role as a business development executive, serving a wide range of technology and manufacturing industries. He sits on multiple boards at Drexel University where he earned his bachelor's in chemical engineering.

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Sandra Mazzo-Skalski

  • Performance Product Specialist
  • Exxon Mobil


Eric Perakslis

  • Senior Vice President and Head
  • Takeda R&D Data Science Institute

Eric is currently the Senior Vice President and Head of the Takeda R&D Data Science Institute where he is focused on building a next generation approach to biomedical knowledge infrastructure and culture. Eric is also a visiting Scientist in the Department of Biomedical Informatics ant Harvard Medical School and is a frequent advisor and collaborator to several international aid and relief NGOs.

Most recently, Eric was the Executive Director of the Center for Biomedical Informatics and the Countway Library of Medicine, an Instructor in Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and is a faculty member of the Children’s Hospital Informatics Program at Boston Children’ Hospital. While at HMS, Eric focused on the approval of the Department of Biomedical Informatics as a full academic department at HMS, the development f the NIH Undiagnosed Diseases Network, industry collaborations, leading the technology efforts for multiple Ebola response programs, and building active research programs in medical product development, regulatory science and cyber security.

Prior to HMS, Eric was the Chief Information Officer and Chief Scientist (Informatics) at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. In this role, Eric authored the first IT Strategic Plan for FDA and was responsible for modernizing and enhancing the IT capabilities as well as the in silico scientific capabilities at FDA.

Eric has served on the editorial board of Cancer Today magazine, on the editorial board and as the Associate Editor for Novel Communications for the DIA flagship publication, the Journal of and Therapeutic Innovation and Regulatory Science. Eric has also served on several the Advisory Committees for the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the SAB of NuMedii, the leadership team of Precision for Medicine, as the Chairman of the Survivor Advisory Board at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey and as the Chief Information Officer of the King Hussein Institute for Biotechnology and Cancer in Amman, Jordan. Eric has also worked extensively with the LiveStrong Foundation, the Kidney Cancer Association, and the Scientist-Survivor program of the American Association for Cancer Research. Eric has also served as the first CTO for OneMind4Research and as a reviewer for Faster Cures.

Prior to FDA, Eric was Senior Vice President of R&D Information Technology at Johnson & Johnson Pharmaceuticals R&D and was a member of the Corporate Office of Science and Technology. During his thirteen years at J&J, Eric also held the posts of Vice President R&D Informatics, Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Director of Research Information Technology as well as assistant Director and Director of Drug Discovery Research. Prior to J&J, Eric was the Group leader of Scientific Computing at ArQule Inc. and he began his professional career with the Army Corps of Engineers.

Eric has a PhD in chemical and biochemical engineering from Drexel University and also holds B.S.Che and M.S. degrees in chemical engineering.

Chris Peterson

  • Consultant
  • Latham BioPharm Group

Christopher Peterson is a PMI certified project manager with over seven years’ experience in validation and knowledge management in the life sciences industry. With the Latham BioPharm Group, Chris manages a program consisting of CMC activities for a phase 1 cancer therapeutic, conducted primary and secondary market research, and designed and executed financial models.

At AstraZeneca, Chris was the business and technical lead for the implementation of a data aggregation and analytics software to support commercial process validation. In support of this project, Chris managed the coordination, configuration, validation, and implementation of the software including selection of the critical process parameters and source data systems, development of bioprocessing hierarchies, and creation of business processes and procedures. Chris is also a subject-matter-expert in SharePoint and administrated a SharePoint based document management system.

Chris was a validation engineer at Merck and Co. for five years, leading projects in autoclave load pattern remediation, cleaning and sterilization validation for routine manufacturing, and change management for cleaning and sterilization validation. Chris has expertise in validation SOP generation, protocol writing, study execution, final report writing and review. Chris piloted and refined cleaning validation protocol and final report templates to create standardized, CBER-ready protocols and final reports.

Chris is a 2009 graduate of the Drexel CBE BS/MS program.