Changes at the Top Level of DECHEMA (Germany)


Big changes will take place at DECHEMA’s top level at the beginning of 2010.

Dr. Hans Jürgen Wernicke takes over as Chairman of the scientific society. He replaces Dr. Alfred Oberholz. Prof. Dr. Ferdi Schüth follows Prof. Dr. Jens Weitkamp as Deputy Chairman. Dr. Kurt Wagemann succeeds Prof. Dr. Gerhard Kreysa as Chief Executive Officer.

By January 1st, Dr. Hans Jürgen Wernicke will take over as Chairman of DECHEMA Gesellschaft für Chemische Technik und Biotechnologie e.V (Society for Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology). Wernicke is Deputy Chairman of the Süd-Chemie AG in Munich and has been a member of DECHEMA’s board since 2006.

He was born in 1949 and studied chemistry at the Christian-Albrechts-University in Kiel. After his doctorate he worked for 8 years for Linde Group in Munich and South Africa. 1985 he joined Süd-Chemie Group where he served, amongst others, as Project Manager in South Africa and as Head of Business Unit in the US and Germany. In 1997 he was appointed Member of the Managing Board and has been Deputy Chairman since 2007. In addition to his professional activities, Mr. Wernicke is an active member of several associations and societies. Among other things, he is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Chemical Industry Fund within the German Chemical Industry Association (Fonds der Chemischen Industrie im VCI) and a member of the Trade Policy Board of the German Chemical Industry Association (Handelspolitischer Ausschuss des VCI) and leads the Working Group on Research of the Bavarian Chemical Industry Association. He is a founding member of the Board of the German Catalysis Society and a Member of the Board of Curators of the „Leibniz-Institut für Katalyse“. Dr. Hans Jürgen Wernicke succeeds Dr. Alfred Oberholz, who was Chairman of DECHEMA since 2004 and will stay as Member of the Board.

Prof. Dr. Ferdi Schüth will be new Deputy Chairman of DECHEMA’s board. He is Director at the Max-Planck-Institut für Kohlenforschung in Mülheim/Ruhr. Among numerous other honorary functions, he has been a Member of the Board of DECHEMA since 2001. Schüth was born in 1960 and studied chemistry and law at Münster University. After his doctorate in chemistry and research periods in Minneapolis and Santa Barbara he habilitated in 1995 at the University of Mainz and took over professorship at the Johann-Wolfgang-Goethe University in Frankfurt. Since 1998 he has been Director at the MPI für Kohlenforschung. He received numerous awards and distinctions for his scientific achievements. He is co-founder and Member of the Supervisory Board of hte AG, member of several editorial boards and holds a number of honorary functions, among them as Chairman of the Selection Committee of the Humboldt Award, member of the International Expert Commission Elitenetzwerk Bayern and member of the Scientific Commission of the State of Niedersachsen. In addition, he is a member of the GDCh Board of Governors and has been Vice-president of the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG) since 2007. Schüth succeeds Prof. Dr. Jens Weitkamp who retired in 2009.

Dr. Kurt Wagemann has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of DECHEMA effective January 1st, 2010. He has been a member of the scientifc staff of DECHEMA since 1989 and Deputy Executive Officer since 2007. Kurt Wagemann was born in 1959 and studied chemistry at the Ludwig-Maximilian-University Munich, where he graduated in the working group of Professor Gerhard Ertl. After his doctorate at the Max-Planck-Institute für Quantenoptik, he joined DECHEMA in 1989, where he took over responsibility for the Work Group Research Planning in 1989. Since 1994, he was also head of the Work Group Events. In 1994, he was appointed Deputy Head of the Department Research Promotion and Events and took over responsibility for the Department in 2000. Since 2005, he has been honorary Chief Executive Officer of the Forschungsgesellschaft Messtechnik, Sensorik und Medizintechnik e.V. Dresden. In 2006, he received a teaching assignment at the University Stuttgart on the topic of biorefineries. Since 2007, he has been Deputy Executive Officer of DECHEMA and Managing Director of ProcessNet – a joint initiative of DECHEMA and VDI-GVC. Dr. Kurt Wagemann succeeds Prof. Dr. Gerhard Kreysa, who was appointed Chief Executive Officer of DECHEMA in 1992 and will retire by the end of 2009.

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