Faces of Lubricants: Dr. Monica Ford

Oct 30, 2018

Dr. Monica Ford has made quite the impact during her three-year tenure at Ingevity. Not only is she known for her extensive technical expertise and sterling reputation within the lubricants industry, but Ford also has a vibrant smile that lights up an entire room and a lighthearted wit that’s constantly entertaining. As a senior surface scientist for Ingevity’s Oilfield Technologies and Lubricants businesses, Ford is the technical lead for business development projects. She’s a strategic thinker who is always seeking ways to incorporate information from customers, suppliers and industry contacts in ways that will lead to business growth. Ford holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Tuskegee University and a Doctor of Philosophy in chemical engineering from the University of Florida. As a mother, wife and friend to many, Ford is a positive force constantly driving herself and others to success.

Explain your current job role and what you do at Ingevity on a daily basis.

In my current role, I am the technical lead for business development projects. I am responsible for developing new products for metalworking fluid applications and for helping to identify new applications for our current products. This involves synthesis of potential products and testing of these products to understand their performance attributes.

Tell us about the experience you bring to your role and what you do at Ingevity.

My area of expertise is in surface and interfacial science; basically, understanding how products interact with surfaces and interfaces. Prior to coming to Ingevity I have worked on: development of systems for blood detoxification in the case of an overdose (University of Florida, doctoral research), developing methods to enhance transdermal drug delivery (University of California, Santa Barbara – post doc), and characterization and optimization of systems to disperse soot generated in engine oils (Lubrizol).

What’s your idea of happiness?

Happiness is me. In general, I am a very happy person and can find a way to get in a full supply of laughs on any given day. My happiness comes from my faith, my family, my friends, and the fact that I am truly living a blessed life.

If not yourself, who would you be?

I would be a fairy godmother. I love to make people smile and make a person’s day, so that would be a way to do that all the time.

Where would you like to live?

I would love to live in an RV and travel the United States. I love visiting new places and if I could see a new place each month and experience life in that place for a short time, that would be an ultimate experience.

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?

I have a phobia of cats.

What are you most proud of?

I am most proud of my son. He is the pride of my life and it has been a great experience being his mother.

Who are your heroes in real life? Who is the most courageous person you have ever met?

My heroes are my husband (served in both the Marines and the Army; fought in wars in Iraq and Afghanistan) and my parents who are always there for me. The most courageous person I have ever met is my husband. His life story fascinates me with all that he overcame to be the successful person that he is today.

What’s a hobby you’d like to begin?

I would love to learn multiple languages. I know that’s not your typical hobby, but I am fascinated by linguistics and would love to be able to do more with language.

What’s one of your favorite memories from a project?

My favorite memories are always around presenting the results of the project to an intended audience. I love telling a story that will captivate the audience.

Name one thing about your work that gets you out of bed in the morning.

I literally learn something new every single day at work.

What’s your hidden talent?

I write poetry from time to time.

What is special about the place you grew up?

My hometown of Albany, Georgia is special to me because there is a great sense of community. The community is your family. Southern hospitality abounds there!

What is your life motto?

My life motto is to always be present in the moment because life goes by too fast for daydreaming.

Who inspires you to be better?

My son inspires me to be better. He is the first person that I have ever had full responsibility over other than myself and I am determined to give him the best and to be the best for him.

What items would you like to have if you were stuck in an elevator?

If I were stuck in an elevator, I’d like to have all the tools needed to fix the elevator so that I could get myself out.

What natural talent would you like to have?

I wish that I could sing outside of the shower.