Scott B. Marks is a Senior TS&D Consultant with The Dow Chemical Company and a SME (Subject Matter Expert) for ethylene copolymers and formulated polymers for use in packaging and industrial applications. He has worked in this industry for more than 38 years, been a TAPPI member for over 35 years, and has served TAPPI as co-chair of the International Planning Committee. Scott has held all the Division Council positions in the International Flexible Packaging and Extrusion Division (IFPED), and currently is a Chair Emeritus of the Division and Council Member At-Large.
Scott has been a speaker and session chair in conferences and seminars in the USA for TAPPI and other organizations. He has been a recurring instructor in the IFPED’s Extrusion Coating Short Course and Blown & Cast Film Short Course for many years. He is the recipient of the International Flexible Packaging and Extrusion Division’s (formerly PLACE Division) 2000 TAPPI Leadership & Service Award and Andreas G. Ahlbrandt Prize, an annual award recognizing an individual who has a proven history of diligent work for TAPPI.
1. How has your involvement in TAPPI impacted your professional life?
TAPPI has been an invaluable resource for me in networking with peers, expanding my contacts, and building a knowledge base on materials and machinery used in my industry. The information I have learned from conferences, seminars, and short courses has enabled me to provide my customers with the technical expertise they seek for problem solving and new application developments.
2. When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer?
I never realized I wanted to be a writer. This was something that just grew out of my profession through communication with customers and colleagues. The odd thing is that when I was in high school, an English teacher said I should consider professional writing, but I told her my interests were in engineering. Well, I wound up doing both, so all those years ago she saw something I never did.
3. What is your work schedule like when you’re writing for a TAPPI publication?
Ah, a tough question as when I do work for TAPPI it is typically outside my normal work, and thus I am just busier!
4. What advice do you have for anyone considering writing for a TAPPI publication?
For reference, look at all available prior TAPPI publications for guidance on how to assemble information for your given topic into an easily readable format. Be sure to allocate proper time as writing professionally, especially technically, needs to be properly organized, and more importantly needs to be understandable by a non-knowledgeable reader. Remember that you, as the author, know your subject and your reader may not. So be sure to explain things properly, clearly, and do not presume the reader knows what you may think is something simple.