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Lois Bey is a chemical engineer who holds the distinction of being the first woman graduate in chemical engineering from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, where she graduated with honors in 1950. In 2001, Bey received an IIT Distinguished Alumni Award for this accomplishment as well as for her commitment and contributions to the chemical engineering profession.
Bey's early career involved a lot of hands-on involvement in lab work as well as experience with large industrial chemical equipment. She worked for a succession of companies including Edwal Laboratories, Underwriters Laboratories and the Armour Research Institute (now IIT Research Institute) with responsibilities ranging from lab technician to assistant engineer. From 1956-1960, Bey was employed as a sales engineer for a Midwest chemical process equipment manufacturer, F.M. De Beers, Assoc. where she sold and trouble-shooted equipment.
After taking a job with Baxter Laboratories in 1960, Bey earned a master's degree in Library and Information Science. Until her retirement in 1993, Bey successfully combined both her degrees toward a career as an information specialist in chemical company research & development departments, first at Baxter and later at Stepan Chemical Company.
Bey joined SWE in 1953 and is a life member. She was also an active member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and the American Society of Information Science.
View video clips from Lois Bey's oral history interview.
Read the transcript from Lois Bey's oral history interview.