AFS Members Elect New Leaders

The AFS membership recently voted on a new cohort of leaders: six members of the Board of Directors and the 2nd Vice-Chair, a four-year elected position that progresses from 2nd Vice-Chair to 1st Vice-Chair, Chair and ultimately to Past-Chair. We are pleased to announce that Leonard Castellano has been elected as 2nd Vice Chair, and the following have been elected to the Board of Directors for two-year terms running September 2022-2024: Saravanan Andan, Tinoush Dinn, Martin Lehmann, Godwin Severa, Steve Westbrook and Lin Zhao.

Leonard Castellano is the Chief Engineer at Parker Hannifin Filtration Innovation Center. He has 40 years of experience in R&D in polymeric membranes, melt blown macro and force spun nanofibers in markets including air, fuel & chemicals, food & beverage, biopharmaceuticals and transfusion medicine. Len has expertise in leading the development of novel materials for filtration, separation and purification in macro, micro, nano and ultrafiltration technologies.

In addition to being elected 2nd Vice Chair, he will be a returning AFS board member and is Vice-Chair of the Membership Committee. He is also a past Conference Chair.

Saravanan Andan is currently a Principal Scientist in Berry Global's PD team, based in Old Hickory, TN. Saravanan has over 10 years of experience in R&D and PD with expertise in various nonwoven technologies, filtration and lamination processes. He has developed and commercialized a wide range of nonwoven media for both liquid and air/gas filtration, fiber reinforced plastics, life science, construction and geotextile products.

He has been actively involved in AFS as a presenter, conference session chair and as a member of the Education and Scientific committees. He also served as a co-chair of AFS Fall Conference 2019 and successfully organized the conference events. Saravanan earned his Bachelor of Technology in Chemical Engineering from NIT India and earned Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Akron with a specialization in filtration.

Tinoush Dinn has been with BASF Corporation since 2015 as Research Engineer and member of Global Process & Chemical Engineering Research team, managing R&D, process development, scale-up (lab to pilot and plant), plant support & process optimization for solid-liquid and membrane separation processes.

He will be a returning AFS board member and will continue to serve on the Users Committee. He earned his MSc and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from The University of Manchester (UMIST), England, focusing on innovative design and analysis of solid-liquid separation processes.

Dr.-Ing. Martin J. Lehmann is Principal Expert Research Network and Public Funding at MANN+HUMMEL, having previously served the company as Vice President Air Filtration and Engineering Air Filter Elements. In this assignment, Dr. Lehmann has been responsible for the strategic orientation of air filtration and the global R&D of air filter elements in the transportation segment.

Dr. Lehmann will be a returning AFS board member. He will be a plenary speaker at the upcoming 13th World Filtration Congress (WFC 13), is Co-Chair of the Energy symposium and Chair of the Industry poster session. He is a member of the Scientific Committee of FILTECH, AFS and WFC 13. He is an appointed member of the Scientific Advisory Board of the GSaME at Uni Stuttgart. He was Co-chair of AFS FiltCon 2021 and several other AFS conferences. Dr. Lehmann was an invited keynote speaker at InterPore and FILTECH, and has published over 80 technical papers.

Dr. Godwin Severa, Ph.D., MBA, is an Assistant Researcher at the University of Hawaii with over 10 years of experience in materials development for gas capture in the areas of hydrogen storage and air purification for electric vehicles. His research interest is in developing novel regenerable, ionic liquid and metal-based sorbent materials for gaseous contaminants mitigation.

He has been an active member of AFS since 2016. He is currently the Vice-Chair of the AFS Scientific Committee and a member of the Certification Committee. Godwin serves as Co-chair of the Energy Track for the 13th World Filtration Congress. He is also developing and will be teaching a short course on Filter Media for the AFSCP (AFS Certified Professional) basic certification.

Steve Westbrook currently leads Johns Manville’s North American filtration and separation business and has 20+ years of manufacturing and commercial leadership experience in building products and extruded plastics. He has deep experience in strategy development and implementation and finance (P & L and budgeting). During his extensive career, Steve has worked with many large industrial companies in the Americas and Europe to align business goals and drive commercial success.

Dr. Lin Zhao is an Associate Research Scientist with the Dow Chemical Company. His work at Dow is focused on solid-liquid separation with practical industrial experience on most filtration and centrifugation operations. Before joining Dow, he obtained his Ph.D. degree in Chemical Engineering at the Ohio State University in Dr. W.S. Winston Ho’s group with the research focus of developing advanced membranes for water desolation and gas separation.

He will be a returning AFS board member. He joined AFS in 2015 and has been actively involved as a conference presenter, on the AFS Board of Directors, as Chair of the AFS Publication Committee, and as Conference Co-Chair for AFS FiltCon 2023. He serves as an instructor for the AFS short course “Basic Solid/Liquid Separation” and is actively engaged in AFS Southwest Chapter activities.

Thank you to all these willing AFS volunteer leaders, who will responsibly and proactively lead AFS into the future, advancing our mission of supporting the filtration and separations industry by providing rich opportunities for networking and the exchange of technical knowledge.


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