Chemical Engineers Acknowledged as Distinguished Alumni

By Sydney Souder

Picture of Donald VictoryThe University of Connecticut’s Academy of Distinguished Engineers inducted two Chemical Engineering alumni in a day of celebration on May 1, 2014. Donald J. Victory (Cheg ’81) and John Wyatt (Cheg ’73) returned to their alma mater to receive the prestigious acknowledgment. They both took the opportunity to reengage with the faculty and students from Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering during their day of honor. The Academy grants membership to truly outstanding alumni for distinguished professional achievement contributing to engineering and engineering management in the highest tradition of the School. To be eligible, candidates must have graduated from the University at least ten years prior, and must have made meritorious engineering, managerial or policy contributions throughout their career.

Picture of John Wyatt

Mr. Victory is Process & Risk Engineering Manager for ExxonMobil Development Company in Houston, TX. He leads a global team responsible for process design, process safety, and facilities layout for major upstream projects. The UConn alumnus began his career with Exxon Production Research Company as a facilities engineer in 1981 and advanced through a series of engineering design, operations, and project management positions in the U.S., Malaysia, Indonesia, Russia, Qatar and Japan. His contributions include the development of the Controlled Freeze Zone (CFZ) process for more efficient CO2 removal from natural gas. Mr. Victory led the conceptual design of an offshore platform that provided one-third of the domestic gas supply to peninsular Malaysia, and he is listed as an inventor on over a dozen U.S. patents.

John Wyatt, Ph.D., is a Senior Advisor for Carmagen Engineering with expertise in the areas of reactor engineering and exothermic reactor safety. Dr. Wyatt retired from ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company (EMRE) as Team Leader for the Photobioreactor Development team. During his 32 year career with EMRE, he was involved in many core refining processes and cutting-edge technologies. Dr. Wyatt was the Commercial Technology Leader for fixed bed reactor technology and is co-inventor on seven reactor engineering patents. He was instrumental in the development of experimental capabilities and testing protocols to assess the exothermic potential of new catalysts and chemical processes. He also identified the lead cause of temperature non-uniformity in exothermic hydroprocessing reactors and led the implementation of a solution that improved safety and saved ExxonMobil millions of dollars. Dr. Wyatt was an adjunct professor at The Stevens Institute of Technology from 1996-2000.

“These individuals bring lasting honor to their alma mater as practitioners and as citizens,” said Dean Kazerounian during their formal induction ceremony.