Professor Hans Blaschek
Hans Blaschek received his Ph.D. in Food Science (Microbiology), at Rutgers University in 1980, his M.S. in Food Science at Rutgers University in 1977 and his B.A. in Biological Sciences at Rutgers College in 1974. He presently serves as the Interim Director for the Center for Advanced BioEnergy Research (CABER), University of Illinois where he is responsible for leading planning efforts for the Integrated Bioprocessing Research Laboratory. In addition, Hans holds the position of Theme Leader of Molecular Bioengineering of Biomass Conversion Research Theme with the Institute for Genomic Biology.
He serves as an Assistant Dean, Biobased Research Initiatives in the Office of Research, College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois. He served as the Interim Head of the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Illinois from 200 0 - 2002. He has served as a Professor of Food Microbiology/Biotechnology since 1991 in the same department. His research areas include: Genetic manipulation of microorganisms for biotechnological applications, examination of dry milling co-products as substrates for fermentation to value-added products, development of an integrated fermentation system for solvent production and recovery, pathogen transmission on minimally processed foods.
Hans served for the U.S. Department of Agriculture as the Value-Added/Biofuels Panel Manager for NRI Competitive Grants Program from 1994-1995. He has also consulted on Biomass Conversion systems for Dupont and served as a Research Collaborator and Consultant for Mitsubishi Chemical and Research Institute Technology for Earth (RITE), Kyoto, Japan since 1994. He has chaired many sessions for symposia, including the Bio2006, “Adding Value to the Biorefinery: The Midwest Consortium for Sustainable Biobased Products and Energy”, that was held in Chicago, IL. Another symposium he organized was the “UIUC Bioenergy Symposium: Focus on the Future of Biofuels and Chemicals”, which was held in Urbana, IL May, 2006.
Associate Director for Engineering
Vijay Singh joined CABER in January 2011 as the Associate Director for Engineering. In this role, he will provide leadership to develop industry relationships in anticipation of the CABER bioprocessing facility and the increasing number of processing-related activities on campus. He will also provide connectivity with industry and collaborate with other institutions and units interested in pilot-scale proof-of-concept activities. He will be developing project-based linkages with industry for cooperative research and development in bioenergy systems. He will be improving the demonstration of integrated bench and/or engineering-scale process technology for the production of substitutes for petroleum-based feedstocks, products and fuels that will improve the economics and efficiency of a biochemical or hybrid conversion processes.
Dr. Singh is also an Associate Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Biological Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His research is on development of bioprocessing technologies for corn/biomass to ethanol, advanced biofuels, food and industrial products. Dr. Singh has authored 160 professional publications and holds ten patents related to bioprocessing and biofuels production. He received his M.S. and Ph.D. in Food and Bioprocess Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Singh is recipient of several research and teaching awards from professional societies, trade organizations and academic institutions. Professor Singh has served as associate editor for Journal of Cereal Chemistry and Transactions of American Society for Agricultural and Biological Engineers. He is currently associate editor for Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society, Food and Bioproducts Processing, and Industrial Biotechnology. Vijay has organized and chaired national and international conferences on biofuels and cereal grains processing for National Academy of Engineering, National Corn Growers Association, American Association of Cereal Chemists International and others.
Sue Overmyer is the Administrative Aide in the Center for Advanced BioEnergy Research, College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES). She serves as the assistant to the Director and Associate Director, works with other staff in the office, and serves as office manager for the center. Sue began her career at the University of Illinois serving as secretary to various faculty and graduate students in the Aeronomy Laboratory, College of Engineering. She has held several positions on campus working in the Department of Kinesiology, Office of Conferences and Institutes, Division of Continuing Education and Public Service and the Campus Provost's Office. Sue served as the office manager for the Office of Research, College of ACES, as well as the assistant to the Associate Dean/Director. Sue has been a member of the University of Illinois Secretariat for many years. In 2008, Sue was recognized as the recipient of the Marcella M. Nance Staff Award in the College of ACES.
Coordinator of Communication & External Relations
Natalie Bosecker joined the Center for Advanced BioEnergy Research (CABER) staff as Coordinator of Communications and External Relations in March 2008. Her responsibilities include communications, coordinating a directory of bioenergy capabilities of U of I researchers, and facilitating development opportunities to further the mission of the center. Prior to joining CABER, she was the Media Communications Specialist at the State 4-H Office for nearly nine years.
Before joining the University of Illinois, College of Agriculture, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (ACES), Natalie's career included Illinois AgriNews, Illinois Pork Producers Association, Agriculture Council of America and U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Natalie has a bachelor's degree in Agricultural Communications and a master's degree in Agriculture Education both from the U of I. She grew up on a grain and livestock farm in southeastern Illinois.
Pilot Plant Systems Analyst
Brian Jacobson joined CABER in February 2012. He is responsible for managing Pilot Plant facilities and equipment. Brian graduated with a degree in Technical Systems Management and a minor in Business Administration from the University of Illinois. Previously, Brian was a Quality Control Manager for a manufacturing firm in Chicago. He was responsible for bringing the company’s quality and safety procedures up to ISO 9001:2008 standards. Brian also works in the Department of Food Science & Human Nutrition managing their Pilot Plant facilities.
Visiting Teaching Associate
Eric Anderson is a visiting teaching associate at CABER, teaching ACES 409: Bioenergy Systems (fall semester on campus; spring semester online) and ACES 501: Advanced Bioenergy Topics. He earned a M.S. in Crop Science from UIUC, a M.Ed. in Secondary Science Education from the University of Minnesota, and a B.A. in Biology from St. Olaf College. Prior to coming to UIUC, Eric was a high school science teacher in Seoul, Korea and then in West Chicago, IL. His research interests include cellulosic feedstock agronomy, including weed control in Miscanthus.