Senior Leadership Insights: A Conversation with Bob Beckler, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO at TemperPack
Join The Graduate School for a series of conversations with alumni reflecting on the role that their Duke education played in their careers. On October 15, we'll feature Dr. Bob Beckler '83, Chairman and CEO at TemperPack, the largest producer of sustainable cold chain materials for e-commerce foods and life sciences products in the U.S. He was appointed Chief Executive Officer at TemperPack in July 2021 after serving as Executive Chairman since 2017. Dr. Beckler has spent his career in the chemical and packaging industries, serving as President of WestRock's global packaging business, and President of Packaging for MeadWestvaco (MWV), WestRock's predecessor, where he managed their packaging and specialty chemicals business. His experience includes an executive role as President of MWV Rigesa, living and working in Brazil for four years. Dr. Beckler is a member of the Board of Directors of Verso Corporation, a producer of graphic and specialty papers, and Chair of the Board of Directors of The Richmond Forum, America's largest subscription speaker series. Dr. Beckler received his B.S. in chemistry from Duke and his Ph.D. in chemical engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Dr. Beckler will be joined in conversation by Courtney Johnson, Ph.D. candidate in Chemistry. The discussion will focus on six key questions:
- Tell us about your background. How would you describe your career path?
- Can you tell us about some of the organizations you've worked for that hire PhDs, and describe a typical day for a PhD-qualified professional?
- What do you see as the value that doctoral training has added to your professional trajectory?
- Beyond strong research skills, what other skills, experience and/or training are important for success in your field?
- Are there any skills, training, or experiences you wish you'd had in graduate school to prepare you for your current career path?
What can students who would like to work in this field (or explore it further) do to prepare?
The Senior Leadership Insights series is sponsored by The Graduate School and is open to Duke faculty, graduate students, postdocs, alumni, and staff. Questions? Contact Dr. Melissa Bostrom, Assistant Dean for Graduate Student Professional Development, at email@example.com.