Dr. Cottrell began his career as a guar chemist, focusing on the development of hydroxyalkyl guar, cationic guar and guar double – derivatives for Stein, Hall and Co. From there, he went to the Kelco Division of Merck, where for 13 years, he specialized in alginates, xanthan gum, gellan gum and the development of new biopolymers. Following a stint with a venture capital biotechnology company in water soluble biopolymers, he moved to ISP (formerly GAF), where he focused his expertise on the development of polymers based on vinyl pyrrolidone. His corporate career then led him to work in Europe for Meyhall Chemical AG (which was acquired by Rhône–Poulenc, S.A.), with responsibility for both hydrocolloids and related polymers and the growth of the personal care ingredients business. He returned to the US where he was responsible for guar and xanthan technology for Rhône–Poulenc, Inc. From there he went to National Starch where he was the global R & D director for personal care polymer technology. Most recently, Dr Cottrell was responsible for the development of specialty pet products at The Hartz Mountain Corporation. Dr Cottrell received his Ph.D. in organic chemistry from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. He is the inventor on 45 patents and patent applications, and has authored over 25 publications.