Ricardo Delgado, 26
Account Development Manager, Celanese Corp.
Ricardo Delgado was born in Mexico City and said his family has considerably influenced and supported his career, as he and his sister are third-generation chemical engineers, "which makes us feel very glad and proud."
Delgado studied plastics and industrial chemical engineering at Instituto Politecnico Nacional and is working on his MBA at Universidad Autónoma Monterrey. He joined specialty chemicals maker Clariant as a technical service intern in the masterbatches unit in 2016.
He worked at distributor of plastic resins and specialty chemicals Vinmar International Ltd. as a sales trainee, was promoted to junior sales representative in May 2018, then promoted and relocated to Monterrey, Mexico, as North Mexico sales representative in September 2018.
In 2019, Delgado started at materials firm Celanese Corp. as the Mexico-U.S. account development manager. He was awarded top commercial performer and ideation leader in October 2020 and exceeded the 2020 Q4 sales forecast for about 10 percent.
Delgado said his interest in the industry has come from realizing "we are surrounded by plastics and they are truly an essential need." He added that plastics are a "pillar" of innovation for the medical, food, automotive and aerospace industries.
"I am reaching my dream I promised to my mom when I was a child: I am a happy and grateful adult working on an amazing, challenging worldwide company [such] as Celanese, which allows me [to] support my parents and start building my own family, always looking for new challenges," he said.
Delgado donates his time volunteering in the community. He is a member of the local nonprofit organization Ezer, with many volunteer programs. In his spare time, Delgado likes spending time with his family, traveling, golfing, and watching college football and movies.
"You have to feel proud and passionate about what you do and who you integrally are, even if you are looking for being part of this industry or not," he said. "As Confucius quotes: 'Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.'"
Q: What should the plastics industry do to expand its efforts in diversity and inclusion?
Delgado: We could organize a Plastic Industry Inclusion Congress — as big as the NPE or the K fair — where representatives from the entire plastics industry gather and share their experiences facing diversity and inclusion.
Q: What emerging technology or market most interests you?
Delgado: Biopolymers and electric mobility. In the past these areas were futurist, now they're a reality we must face and keep our team at the forefront.
Q: What about the plastics industry surprises you?
Delgado: Plastics industry triggers a considerable amount of innovation at other industries. It is astonishing that there are several scientific researchers looking to figure out the opportunities plastic has and enhancing their current advantages.
Q: Who is your mentor or someone you look up to?
Delgado: I really admire our CEO Lori Ryerkerk and our VP of Engineered Materials Tom Kelly, both specially for their close connection with people on their leadership to the almost 8,000 employees we are at Celanese.
Q: If you were CEO of a company, what would you do first?
Delgado: I'd let my team know that the most important part of our enterprise is the people who work here and their self-integrity is the most valued thing for us.