Anthony L. Dent
Dr. Anthony L. Dent's career over the past 40 years includes a number of first time accomplishments. After graduating cum laude from Morgan State College (currently Morgan State University) in 1966 with a BS degree in chemistry, he enrolled the Ph.D. program in the chemistry department of the Johns Hopkins University. He became the first Morgan State chemistry major to enter Hopkins' graduate program.
He had completed the doctoral degree requirements in physical chemistry by the Spring of 1970 and became the first African-American to receive a doctoral degree in chemistry from The Johns Hopkins.
During his Hopkins period, he co-authored 10 technical papers with R. J. Kokes on the topic of infrared evidence for adsorbed species. These publications provided the first ever physical evidence for adsorbed reaction intermediates during a heterogeneously catalyzed reaction. While at Johns Hopkins, he was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa and Phi Lambda Upsilon honor societies.
His professional career continued at Carnegie-Mellon in 1970 with an appointment as an Assistant Professor in the Chemical Engineering Department. He was the first African-American professor hired in the School of Engineering. He was promoted to the rank of Associate Professor in that department in 1975. At Carnegie-Mellon his research focused on applying chemical kinetics and infrared spectroscopy to study adsorbed species. While there, he was inducted into the Society of Sigma Xi.
In 1979, he joined the PQ Corporation's R&D Center in Conshohocken, PA, as a senior chemist. He was promoted through the management and technical ranks to senior research fellow. His specialized expertise includes catalyst characterization, silica gel synthesis and characterization, catalyst preparation, sol - gel technology, polymerization catalyst testing, zeolite and silica extrusion technology. He developed the company's technical basis (catalyst support and catalyst manufacturing) that led to a $70 million silica catalyst business for High Density Polyethylene (HDPE). He provided technical project coordination from conceptualization through commercialization, and he successfully supervised the initial commercial catalyst production runs for all new HDPE catalysts. Tony retired from PQ in 2000 after more than 20 years. Dr. Dent is currently an adjunct professor in the Science & Allied Health Department at Cheney University of Pennsylvania where he teaches Calculus based Physics.