A Conversation With Joyce Wallace
Marketing Manager, Chemours
By: Juan Sagarbarria
Integrity, leadership, building relationships, and producing results are the four components that define Joyce Wallace, North American marketing manager for Chemours, as a professional. Her career with Chemours (formerly DuPont) has been full of challenges, but the successful introduction of a new low-GWP blowing agent that will help the polyurethane industry transition to a more sustainable product is her biggest realized feat to date. Spray Foam Magazine recently talked with Joyce about her professional journey and her current endeavor. »
Spray Foam Magazine: How did you arrive at your current position as North American Marketing Manager for such a prestigious entity?
Joyce Wallace: I have been with Chemours/DuPont since 1981 and very proud to be part of a company with such a rich history and commitment to innovation. With a BA in Accounting, I started as an entry-level accountant, progressing through the accounting and finance organization to Accounting Manager for Central Research & Development division before moving to the titanium technologies business in 1996 as their Finance Manager. I moved from finance to sales in 2002 in our Titanium Technologies business responsible for large global TiO2 accounts in the coatings industry. In 2008, I joined the Fluorochemicals business and was responsible for North American marketing for refrigerants like R-22, 134a, 410A, MO99, and the introduction and commercialization of low-GWP refrigerants. Leveraging my experience in commercializing new low GWP refrigerants, in 2015, I moved to my current role, NA Marketing Manager, foam blowing agents within our Fluorochemicals business. My focus has been introducing Opteon™ 1100, a new fourth generation, low GWP blowing agent that will take the polyurethane industry to new heights.
SFM: In your role, what are your daily challenges and how do you overcome them?
JW: My daily challenges are focused on understanding the changing market dynamics, regulatory uncertainties, product testing, and optimization efforts for Opteon™ 1100, but first and foremost, understanding and meeting my customers’ needs—today and tomorrow. I really enjoy bringing innovative products to the marketplace and get great satisfaction proactively anticipating and solving issues along the way.
SFM: What is Chemours’ effect on the spray foam industry?
JW: Chemours is re-entering the spray foam industry with the commercialization of Opteon™ 1100. It is an exciting time as we see and hear the real benefits of Opteon™ 1100 playing out with improved insulation performance, superior shelf life, and formulation flexibility to utilize existing catalysts and other additives. Essentially, it is a drop-in replacement for HFC-245fa. In the past, as this industry has transitioned to meet regulatory changes there were often performance tradeoffs. With Opteon™ 1100, it is a sustainable low-GWP blowing agent alternative with improved insulating performance. This transition is a step change and is good for not only the spray foam industry but also home and building owners.
SFM: Opteon™ 1100 recently was awarded the 2017’s Polyurethane Innovation Award by the Center for the Polyurethanes Industry (CPI). Why is this a testament for the performance of the blowing agent?
JW: We are very proud of the work we have done to bring Opteon™ 1100 to the marketplace. The CPI Innovation Award is truly a coveted award and we are honored to have been selected as this year’s winner. Chemours has re-entered the polyurethane industry and customers are realizing the unique benefits of Opteon™ 1100 across various applications including spray foam, integral skin, appliance, marine, as well as other market segments.
SFM: Are there any products on the horizon that are being produced specifically for the SPF industry?
JW: Chemours continues to be dedicated to innovation and identifying and bringing to market solutions not only for today but also for tomorrow. At the recent CPI conference, Chemours introduced another, Opteon™ 1150. Opteon™ 1150 is a low-boiling, low-global-warming-potential, zero ozone-depleting, non-VOC product designed to deliver excellent insulation and environmental performance in rigid polyurethane foams. Opteon™ 1150 has been shown to greatly improve low temperature insulation performance in a variety of foam applications, as well as enhance processing and yield behavior. Opteon™ 1150 can be used either separately or in blends with other blowing agents like Opteon™ 1100 to meet key performance criteria.
SFM: What are Chemours goals for growth?
JW: Chemours is actively developing several new refrigerant fluids based on HFO-1336mzz technology for a variety of applications including traditional chiller systems and the emerging arena of waste heat recovery by using technologies such as high temperature heat pumps and organic Rankine cycles. These fluids are showing promising results in customer lab and field trials.
SFM: How will you achieve these goals?
JW: Chemours’ focus is to be best in class. We will continue to focus
and remain committed to our customers, product development, safety, unshakeable integrity, and investment to ensure we have world-class facilities. In many cases, our customers tell us they see an increase in their products’ efficiency when they use our HFO-based solutions. HFO technologies represent a clear path towards reducing greenhouse gases while also enhancing performance. Chemours is proud to manufacture these breakthrough products and meet our customers’ needs today and in the future.
SFM: What does the future hold for Chemours?
JW: As the leading industry supplier of more environmentally sustainable foams, refrigerants, and aerosol propellants, Chemours has invested hundreds of millions of dollars to offer customers new products with no ozone depletion and low GWP.
The future for Chemours is bright and full of exciting opportunities. We will continue to serve our customers with high quality service and excellent products, innovate sustainable products, and maintain a leadership position in the markets we serve.