Phil Pienkos, National Renewable Laboratory, USA
Philip T. Pienkos earned his BS in Honors Biology at the University of Illinois and his Ph.D, in Molecular Biology at the University of Wisconsin. He has more than 30 years of biotechnology experience in the pharmaceutical, chemical and energy sectors. He is a co-founder of two companies: Celgene, an established biotech/pharma company, and Molecular Logix, a case study for technology-rich/funding-poor biotech startup. He joined NREL in 2007 as a section supervisor and now holds the title of Principal Group Manager for the Bioprocess R&D Group in the National Bioenergy Center. His group is involved in various aspects of strain development, process integration, compositional analysis, catalytic upgrading, and molecular modeling for advanced biofuels based on a wide variety of feedstocks including lignocellulosic biomass, algal biomass and biogas.
In addition to his line management responsibilities, he is also the Algal Biofuels Platform Lead and the Waste To Energy Platform Lead for NREL and the project lead for the BETO-funded Algal Biomass Conversion project and serves as the Director of Integration for the Algal Testbed Public-Private Partnership (ATP3). He is part of a team of algae experts from NREL and Sandia National Laboratories who worked with the Department of Energy to organize National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap Workshop held in December, 2008 and was a contributor to the National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap document, published in May, 2010. Philip is a founding member of the Algae Biomass Organization and has served as a member of the board of directors for that organization and for the Algae Foundation. He has been named in Biofuels Digest’s list of the top 100 people in biofuels every year since that survey was established.