Dow Rich Helling Rita Schenck Lifetime Achievement ACLCA Life Cycle Assessment

MIDLAND, Mich. - October 03, 2018 -

Dr. Richard Helling, director of sustainable chemistry at The Dow Chemical Company (Dow), was awarded the Rita Schenck Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Center for Life Cycle Assessment (ACLCA) on September 26 at their annual meeting in Colorado. This award recognizes leaders who have had sustained impact on the practice of LCA through the development, performance and teaching of LCA, and have made contributions to the ACLCA organization. The ACLCA award honors those who have made a true impact on the field of LCA and environmental sustainability.

“Rich’s contributions to sustainability and life cycle assessment are felt deeply throughout Dow, the greater LCA community, across the value chain and with Dow customers. In fact, internally, Rich has been dubbed the godfather of life cycle assessment. He has a true passion for this work and has helped advance the concept of life cycle thinking,” said Neil Hawkins, corporate vice president, Environment, Health and Safety, and chief sustainability officer.

Helling joined Dow 31 years ago and has held a variety of roles in research, manufacturing and sustainability. He began using LCA in 2003 as a way to quantitatively add environmental dimensions to the economic analyses of processes to make bio-based materials. Since then, he has led dozens of LCA projects, including many that have been published and presented externally. He has been an innovator of, and advocate for, the use of simple tools to apply life cycle thinking to goals, strategies and decisions within Dow. He is the lead LCA expert at Dow, and the mentor of and teacher to the LCA community at Dow.

Helling has also been active in the LCA community at large – initially amongst fellow chemical engineers and since 2010 with the ACLCA, through which he has given many presentations, contributed to a textbook, and served on the Board of Directors. He has lectured on LCA and sustainability at the University of Michigan, Georgia Institute of Technology, Purdue University, Louisiana State University, Wayne State University and Harvey Mudd College.

“I’m extremely honored to receive this award and look forward to continued opportunities to practice and promote LCA within Dow and the greater LCA community,” said Helling.

ACLCA is a nonprofit membership organization providing education, awareness, advocacy and communications to build capacity and knowledge of environmental LCA. ACLCA membership consists of industry, academia, government, consulting, and NGOs.

For information about Dow’s leadership and progress in sustainability, visit

About Dow

The Dow Chemical Company (Dow) combines science and technology knowledge to develop premier materials science solutions that are essential to human progress. Dow has one of the strongest and broadest toolkits in the industry, with robust technology, asset integration, scale and competitive capabilities that enable it to address complex global issues. Dow’s market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of advanced materials, industrial intermediates, and plastics businesses deliver a broad range of differentiated technology-based products and solutions for customers in high-growth markets such as packaging, infrastructure, and consumer care. Dow is a subsidiary of DowDuPont (NYSE: DWDP), a holding company comprised of Dow and DuPont with the intent to form three strong, independent, publicly traded companies in agriculture, materials science and specialty sectors. More information can be found at

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Jarrod Erpelding


Christy English