Director of R&D - Specialty Chemicals

Tampa, FL

Posted: 03/27/2024 Industry: Laboratory - Industrial Chemicals Job Number: 91.24SK Pay Rate: 180,000 - 220,000 Remote Friendly: Experience:

Job Description

Director of R&D – Specialty Chemicals

Do you have an advanced degree in Chemistry, made specialty chemicals for a variety of end markets?  Have you managed an R&D team or 15+ scientists and leaders?  Do you bring strong tactical and strategic skills?  This specialty chemical producer is looking to hire an outstanding leader of chemists and scientists to drive research and innovation to meet customer needs, the role is open due to promotion.  This is a highly visible role reporting to the CEO.


  • Responsible for the safety and operation of 2 laboratory sites with approximately 40 employees
  • General purpose: Innovate and develop products for global customers that achieve our business goals
  • Leads a group of approximately 40 US employees with growth in Brazil and China of 5-10 additional
  • Advises, leads, consults, and coordinates with Executive Committee, Vice Presidents and Directors of functional areas, Functional Leaders within business units, suppliers, customers, and vendors, external partners and consultants (others as required)
  • Support and oversee global R&D initiatives and trials in Brazil, China, Australia and Saudi Arabia


  • Maximize the value created by the company’s product development and ‘in-house” (as opposed to "field”) customer technical support activities
  • Lead the effort to keep the safety of the technical team in everyday activity at the level of the company’s standards
  • Drive the organization to out-innovate the competition over the short and long term
  • Enable future growth and prosperity of the global business through sustained delivery of market leading innovations
  • Lead the effort (in conjunction with the Marketing – Business Development, Commercial and Operations teams) to optimally prioritize and allocate resources among short-and long-term projects, and between customer support, operations support, and product development projects
  • Oversee with the global initiatives of the Technical and Innovation team as needed to advance our interests. Provide guidance and direction to Brazil and China team in coordination with local leaders
  • Implement improved systems for monitoring, advancing, and shelving projects as appropriate
  • Mentor and build succession depth within the technical organization, review organizational design and assure talent capabilities and development of strong leaders
  • Work in close cooperation with suppliers and customers as needed to advance our mutual interests
  • Establish performance goals, allocate resources, and assess policies for the Technology and Innovation team
  • Support development and execution of the company’s business strategies
  • Participate, as needed, in merger and acquisition activities
  • Participate, as needed, in road shows, board meetings, lender and analyst meetings and be able to communicate the company’s technical vision to the outside world
  • Coordinates the gate process to ensure product acceptance and communications across business unit leaders
  • Travel required, domestic and international

**If you’d like to hear more about this opportunity and others we are currently working on, please contact Stephanie Kemp at

JO:  91.24SK

Job Requirements

Technical Qualifications:

  • Advanced degree in chemistry or physical chemistry or chemical engineering required. PhD preferred
  • B.A. highly desirable
  • At least 5 years of experience leading a technical / R&D organization (>10 people) in specialty chemicals with responsibility for balancing customer support, operations support, and product development efforts
  • Experience managing a highly customized specialty chemical business
  • Experience with specialty chemicals used for mineral beneficiation, fertilizer coating, asphalt improvement, and oil & gas drilling chemicals a plus
  • Experience synthesizing, formulating, and applying surfactants, emulsifiers, defoamers, and anticaking coatings a plus
  • Successful record of developing and supporting commercialization of innovative new products
  • Demonstrated exceptional creativity and technical capability


  • Position based in Tampa, FL area
  • Must be able to travel up to 25% of the year. Travel includes domestic and global
  • Flexibility in work schedule to meet the demands of the position

**If you’d like to hear more about this opportunity and others we are currently working on, please contact Stephanie Kemp at

JO:  91.24SK

Meet Your Recruiter

Stephanie Kemp
Sr Market Recruiting Specialist

Senior Level Recruitment Professional with more than 19 years of experience in the recruitment and placement of Industrial Chemists and Scientists Nationwide from Entry level to Executive level. Resins, Adhesives, Coatings, Plastics, Lubricants, specialty chemicals, additives, inks, and more!!
I have been very successful bringing top valued talent to my clients, and providing expert level guidance to candidates in career searches.

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