Mr. James Chao & Mr. Albert Chao Awarded 2023 Winthrop-Sears Medal
The Chemists’ Club is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2023 Winthrop-Sears medal as Mr. James Chao and Mr. Albert Chao of the Westlake Corporation. The award will be presented at the annual Egg Nog Gala ceremony on Thursday, December 14, 2023 at The Players, a historic club in New York City. The prestigious honor recognizes an individual or company that has contributed to the sciences and humanity through innovation and entrepreneurship. After assisting their father, T.T. Chao in founding Westlake in 1986, brothers James and Albert have grown the company into an integrated global producer of chemicals and building products, reaching record sales of $15.8 Bn in 2022. Through the years, they have been laser-focused on operational excellence, cost management, innovation, and strategic investments. Notable acquisitions led by Westlake have spanned the olefin and building products businesses, including Hexion’s global epoxy business, Dimex, Boral Industries, and Axiall Corporation, all while Westlake continues with organic expansions and manufacturing integration initiatives.
Westlake has a long-standing belief in delivering sustainable value to its customers, investors, employees, and the communities in which the company operates. Westlake also demonstrates its commitment to the environment, having recently set an ambitious target to reduce the scope 1 and scope 2 emission intensity of company operations by 20% by 2030. Already making progress, management continues to look for ways to improve its environmental footprint, including further commercialization of new product innovations with sustainability attributes such as GreenVin® lower-carbon caustic soda and PVC, polyethylene One-Pellet Solution and PVCO pipe.
“We are humbled to receive the Winthrop-Sears medal, and to be recognized by The Chemists’ Club among such a noble group of previous award recipients,” said Albert and James Chao, President and Chief Executive Officer, and Chairman of the Board of Directors, respectively, of Westlake Corporation. “We started our business and remain today a family-oriented growth company that places our employees and their safety first. We are also focused on the businesses we understand, namely Performance and Essential Materials and downstream Housing & Infrastructure Products, with an emphasis on helping our customers develop more sustainable products. Westlake is also disciplined in our financial position and committed to being an investment-grade company that can grow opportunistically and add economic value for our shareholders.”
“Their selection is extremely well deserved,” said Dr. Roland Stefandl, President of The Chemist’ Club. “Under their leadership, Westlake has advanced the manufacture and development of specialty resins, coatings, and composites for a variety of industries, including high-growth and sustainability-oriented end uses. These accomplishments highlight how chemistry and the sciences continually innovate to make a better planet.”
Mr. James Chao and Mr. Albert Chao join a select group of distinguished great innovators and entrepreneurs: Dr. Robert Zeller (Oxy Low Carbon Ventures), William Wulfsohn (Ashland Global Holdings), Heinz Haller (Dow Chemical), Gorge Corbin (Solvay), John Panichella (Solenis), Mario Nappa (Chemours), Scott Power (DuPont), and Jon M. Huntsman (Huntsman Chemical Corporation).
About the Award
The Winthrop-Sears medal, established in 1970, is presented annually to recognize individuals who, through their entrepreneurial achievement, have contributed to the vitality of the chemical industry and the betterment of humanity. The medal is named in honor of two of America’s earliest chemical industry entrepreneurs, John Winthrop, Jr., son of the first Governor of the Massachusetts Bay Colony and considered the first chemist in America, and John Sears, creator of the Massachusetts salt industry. The Winthrop-Sears medal is presented at the Chemists’ Club’s annual Egg Nog Gala.
Past Winthrop-Sears medal winners include: William Wulfsohn (Ashland Global Holdings), Heinz Haller (Dow Chemical), Gorge Corbin (Solvay), John Panichella (Solenis), Mario Nappa (Chemours), Scott Power (DuPont), and Jon M. Huntsman (Huntsman Chemical Corporation).
About The Chemists’ Club
Founded in 1898, The Chemists' Club's is a 501(c)3 nonprofit educational organization whose membership is open to anyone with an interest in the chemical sciences, including: chemists and chemical engineers, chemical industry management, consultants, financial analysts, attorneys, academics, and students (dues-free). It provides networking opportunities for members to mix and meet with others in the chemical process sector, such as biotech, chemical, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, paper, and similar industries. The Club also supports the growth of the chemical industry by working with college students and introducing them to the range of career opportunities available in the chemical industry today. For more information about The Chemists' Club: www.thechemistsclub.org