The mold that Linda Boyett, global design manager at Americhem Inc., is breaking is growing out of her comfort zone and always stretching herself.
"If I'm not, I'm not growing," she said in her Women Breaking the Mold survey. "A career in R&D is a continuous life of solving challenges."
Boyett received a bachelor's degree in chemistry from Florida International University. She also completed graduate coursework in chemistry as well as a graduate certificate in toxicology and industrial hygiene.
She started in health care/pharmaceuticals at Baxter and eventually relocated to Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, to join materials firm Americhem. When Boyett started in plastics, she began in applied testing but transitioned to the design group because Americhem realized she had more to offer.
"She progressed through the ranks at Americhem with her solid contributions that helped Americhem enter new markets. She also was tasked to lead the EHS [environment, health and safety] team putting standards and protocols in place," according to the Women Breaking the Mold nomination survey submitted by Lauren Hickey, Americhem director of marketing and product management.
Boyett said her greatest achievement has been reinventing herself to enter the field and progressing to advance in a male-dominated industry while also raising two boys.
In the future, Boyett would want to be in a position that keeps her engaged and gives her the ability to learn, provide guidance and teach to the next generation entering the plastics industry.
If she were CEO, she would first sit back and observe the culture, understand what is being worked on and what can be improved. She would focus on the company's strengths, prioritize opportunities and set plans for execution.
"In the beginning, you will not always be working on glamorous projects; at that moment you do not realize how much you are learning. Ask a lot of questions because later in your career you will wish had more time learning all you can," she said. "Stay curious."