Art of Engineering Podcast | Custom Powder Systems

A podcast dedicated to some of the top engineers who share something in common:  They’re all women. Hosted by Denise McIntosh—CEO of Custom Powder Systems—who knows the unique challenges women face in this industry. You’ll hear from women who have overcome the odds and grown to be some of the most respected professionals in their fields.

Find episode links below or at one of the following platforms.

Guest: Jean Ann Groves, a retired Business Continuity expert

In this episode, Jean Ann Groves, a retired Business Continuity expert, talks about how the civil rights movements of the 60s and 70s sparked a major change for women in the workplace.  Jean Ann was one of only three women in her business class in college and went on to a successful career in leadership with companies like Exxon before becoming an entrepreneur and going out on her own.  You’ll hear how to counter people who undermine you, how we can close the gender and wage gaps, plus a candid discussion about abuse.

Lisa Kerner, Corporate Trade Show Manager at CRB in North Carolina

Lisa and Denise talk about the history of CRB and their work with Custom Powder. You’ll hear Lisa’s fascinating journey from her beginnings in administration to her current role as the Corporate Trade Show Manager.  Lisa has had to take a completely different approach to trade shows in the last year, due to the global pandemic.  She and Denise also talk about the importance of building business relationships along the way and how young women entering the field can help close the wage and gender gap.

Caroline Hand, Evonik Industries Production Engineer/Healthcare and Nutrition Division

Caroline and Denise talk about how a love of math and science drew her to an engineering expo while in high school. Shortly out of college, Caroline was interviewed by Evonik Industries where she is now a production engineer in the healthcare and nutrition division. She takes advantage of the many mentorship programs offered at Evonik, including Women’s Interest Network which continues to motivate and inspire her.  You’ll also learn how Custom Powder Systems and Evonik came together to solve a production line challenge no other company was able to tackle.

Podcast Episode 11

Dr. Namrata Karki, Product Development Manager with Ortho Molecular Products

In this episode, Denise speaks with Dr. Namrata Karki about her journey all the way from Nepal to Stevens Point, Wisconsin.  Growing up in Nepal, her parents stressed the importance of education.  Her passion and love of higher education pointed Dr. Karki in the direction of America.  Today, she leads a team of scientists and engineers at Ortho Molecular, and mentors other up-and-coming experts in the field.  She and Denise share inspirational stories of how to push through and go after your dreams.

Podcast Episode 10

Dr. Sarah Miksinski, a Senior Director in Global Regulatory Excellence at AstraZeneca

Sarah’s career has gone from working nationally on the regulatory side of pharmaceuticals at the FDA, to working globally on the regulatory side of the creation of pharmaceuticals with AstraZeneca.  Sarah received her post-doctoral degree at the National Institutes of Health, and spent many years at the Food and Drug Administration.  Now at AstraZeneca, she works in research with the coordination of regulations through multiple countries around the world.  Sarah and Denise talk about the value of mentors and why it’s important to seek one out.

The Art of Engineering Podcast Episode 9: Lynn Aurelius

Guest:  Lynn Aurelius, Business Development Manager at Bollé Safety

A fascinating conversation about the personal safety equipment used in industrial plants around the world.  Lynn talks about how she made the unique leap from being a calligrapher to her current position at Bollé Safety.  In March, her company made the decision to begin creating safety protection for health care and first responders.  Lynn and Denise also discuss what it was like breaking into an industry that traditionally didn’t have many women, as well as how to encourage more young women to get into the industry.

Guest:  Helga Salling, Senior Director at IPS-Integrated Project Services

Helga and Denise talk about what it takes to be a female leader in the pharma industry.  Topics include the myth of defining a woman by what she wears, leading from the heart, and embracing who you are in the workplace.   Helga shares what inspired her to begin writing about leadership in the workplace and how she deliberately works to raise others to success.

Guest:  Richalle Ritts, Manager of Process Engineering at Integrated Project Services

Richalle Ritts is not only the Manager of Process Engineering, but she’s also a Mom.  When the lockdown happened in the spring, she quickly learned where the difficulties and the opportunities lay.  In this episode, we’ll learn about some of the unintended benefits of how working from home has helped her family, and helped her team be more effective.  Plus a discussion about helping people find the right information about pharmaceuticals in an age when facts and details are coming from multiple sources.  

The Art of Engineering Podcast with Dr. Eleanor Small: Episode 6

Guest:  Dr. Eleanor Small – Product Development founded in Design for Manufacturability with Johnson & Johnson

Dr. Small shares how chemists take a small formula and make it on a large scale and why team input and customer data are so important.  She comes from a family of health professionals and shares how being around science was a big influence for her.  Today, she sees how the pharma industry is collaborating in a way never seen before to fight COVID-19.  She talks about the challenges (and benefits) of working from home, and what business owners are looking for from young engineers.

Guest:  Michelle Bridges – Executive Trainer with The Great Game of Business

Denise speaks with Michelle Bridges about her work in the medical sales market helping take difficult concepts and make them easy to understand.  Michelle also explains The Great Game, and how involving every member of your staff in making decisions and having accountability on every level has transformed companies giving them 6-times growth on profits.

Guest:  Shannon Goodson – Engineering Manager with Meridian Medical Technologies

In this episode, Denise McIntosh talks with Shannon Goodson about her early interest in chemistry and how that lead to working for a pharma company at a young age.  She played a role in the processing and also in the packaging of liquids, powder processing, and blister lines, among other things.  She quickly gained respect in the industry and advanced in her career all while raising a child with Autism.  In this episode, she talks about how her love for curiosity helped her son’s unique challenges.   Shannon not only has a passion for the industry but genuinely loves getting to know other smart and innovative women.

Denise speaks with Stephanie Wilkins, co-owner of Pharmaconsult US.

Stephanie was encouraged at a young age to look into subjects like drafting and auto repair.  She quickly picked up knowledge and skills, and soon found herself working in companies surrounded by men. Wilkins discovered working in the corporate world was quite different from learning from her early mentors, but she never once considered being a woman as a limitation. Stephanie, along with host Denise McIntosh, discuss progress that’s been made for women in the engineering and manufacturing industry.  

Denise speaks with Kim Duncan, Founder, President, and owner of Duncan Enterprises.

Kim’s engineering story began abroad while attending a high school on a ship! She was the only woman engineer in her graduating class, obtaining her degree almost two years sooner than others. Kim shares several stories about her journey navigating chauvinism as an employee, all the way to becoming the founder and president of her own company.

Denise speaks with Beth Brock, Corporate Support for Environmental Management Systems, Compliance, and Sustainability for Smithfield Foods in Kansas City.

Beth got into engineering at a time when the industry didn’t have many women. She and Denise McIntosh discuss obstacles women have faced working in manufacturing, how to handle those situations, and advice for young women entering the field.