Jack Dever Named AIChE’s 2023 Evans Chemical Engineering Practice Award Recipient

The Lawrence B. Evans Award in Chemical Engineering Practice recognizes outstanding chemical engineering contributions in the industrial practice of the profession, through manufacturing, R&D, management, or business leadership practices. The award is endowed by the AIChE Foundation and sponsored by CACHE (Computer Aids for Chemical Engineering) Corporation.

This year’s Evans Award in Chemical Engineering Practice is being presented to Dr. John P. (Jack) Dever, the Chief Technology Officer of AVN Corporation. Dever is being recognized for scale-ups and commercialization of ethylene oxide and acrylic acid process technologies, as well as for doubling the growth of the Mid-Atlantic Technology and Innovation Center (MATRIC; now AVN Corporation).

Dr. Dever and the other Institute and Board of Directors’ Award honorees will receive their prizes at the 2023 AIChE Annual Meeting, November 5–10 in Orlando, Florida.

Great value can be realized when teams of talented individuals have mutual respect for each other’s skills and work together to solve consequential challenges...

About Jack Dever and his work

Jack Dever's early career was spent at Union Carbide, where he was key to the development and commercialization of a game-changing ethylene oxide process that significantly reduced capital and operating expenses, as well as greenhouse gas emissions. He then moved to Dow before joining MATRIC in 2011. There, he served as Director of Process Technology and Process Engineering, and later became MATRIC’s Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. MATRIC is a non-profit R&D organization dedicated to technology development and scale-up for industrial, government, and academic clients. At MATRIC, which was recently acquired by AVN Corporation, he has been instrumental to the growth of the organization from 60 employees and contractors to more than 100. Under his leadership, annual revenues increased from $7.5MM to $16MM, and Dever, along with his new business development team, has generated more than $185 million in revenue, working with over 200 customers.

Reflecting on his career, Dever says that “Great value can be realized when teams of talented individuals have mutual respect for each other’s skills and work together to solve consequential challenges, delivering value for society through their technical achievements.” He advises the next generation of chemical engineers that solutions to future challenges – such as decarbonization, plastic circularity, and sustainability – will only be achieved through interdisciplinary teamwork. He adds, “Chemical engineers should and will play a lead role in developing these future solutions, building on our legacy of delivering the materials that improve the lives of everyone in society.” 

Dever received his BS and MS from West Virginia University, and his PhD from the University of Notre Dame — all in chemical engineering. He is a Fellow of AIChE and a member of the West Virginia University Academy of Chemical Engineers. 

This fall, ChEnected is presenting profiles of all the 2023 Institute and Board of Directors’ Award recipients. Visit ChEnected regularly to meet the honorees.