Melinda Burn, PhD
Vice President Strategic Marketing, Solecta Inc.
Melinda Burn is the Vice President of Strategic Marketing at Solecta where she is responsible for the development and implementation of the global growth strategy for the business including the development of a robust innovation funnel. With more than 25 years of experience, Melinda has focused her career on connecting people and ideas at the intersection of marketing, technology and the customer to transform businesses, bring complex scientific solutions to the marketplace and build a sustainable customer experience. Prior to joining Solecta in 2019, Melinda held a variety of roles from R&D to operations to business leadership in the Industrial Water Treatment and Specialty Chemical industries. Most recently she was Vice President of Strategic Marketing and Innovation at Solenis, a leading producer of specialty chemicals for water-intensive industrial operations. Melinda is an ardent champion of the next generation of innovators and the building of an innovation ecosystem working with thought leaders in industry, government and academia and serves on the board of the Delaware Sustainable Chemistry Alliance (DESCA). Melinda holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from the University of Alberta and a PhD degree in Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley.
The philosophy of “build it and they will come” has been replaced with the concept of client-driven innovation. Collaborating with clients to tackle their unmet needs ensures that the right problems are being solved, the right metrics are being tracked, and the right conditions are utilized. Collaborative innovation also increases the quantity and quality of ideas, reduces risk and accelerates the timeline for validation and launch. Solecta will share the co-creation process it has developed and concrete examples that have produced new membrane solutions that uniquely solved client problems by first clearly identifying and defining the compelling unmet need and the process constraints and metrics around it, and then utilizing a formal innovation process. By looking holistically at the client’s needs and their system and bringing the best minds and players together from within Solecta and externally to solve and innovate, Solecta is able to create unique solutions in the separations market.