Michael J. Fevola is Inolex's VP, Research & Development, responsible for the company's technology pipeline and leading the innovation process from discovery to commercialization. He also manages global product stewardship and intellectual property matters. Formerly, Mike was a Research Director & Fellow, Global Beauty R&D at Johnson & Johnson Consumer. He holds 35 issued U.S. patents and is a coauthor of numerous articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals and trade journals.
I have always been fascinated by chemistry—it is a vocation for me. Chemistry explains the make-up of everything in our environment, be it natural or manmade. Practiced on the industrial scale, chemistry has enabled society to achieve extraordinary advances in our quality of life. Today, green chemistry guides us to continue this marvelous application of science with a critical emphasis on safety and sustainability, ensuring that such advances may continue for generations to come.
Leave it better than you found it. Applies universally. Recognize that a series of small incremental improvements can ladder up to significant change for the better. Just imagine if everyone lived by this simple motto.
The three pillars of sustainability are People, Planet, and Profit, in that order. Meeting the needs of our customers and clients must always come first, followed closely by those of our colleagues and team (the People). In meeting these needs, we must operate with respect for our environment and society (the Planet). If we do so with the appropriate financial discipline, then the “Profit” will follow. Robert Wood "General" Johnson II once wrote, “industry only has the right to succeed where it performs a real economic service and is a true social asset.” I agree.
Good science is difficult. If you are not failing along the way, you are not setting the bar high enough. That isn’t to say the rigor of good science is not fun. Solving challenging problems and developing innovative solutions is tremendously rewarding.