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About Dr. Shawn Zhao



Dr. Shawn Zhao, PhD

Deputy Director (TTO), Deputy Managing Director (Versitech)

Prior to joining HKU, Dr. Shawn Zhao was the program director of the Office of Corporate Relations (OCR) at MIT. He has many years of successful domestic and Asian business development, technology transfer, and product development experience in many industries including batteries/battery materials, separation/filtration, and composite materials. Before joining MIT OCR, he was V.P. of Commercial Development and Director of Product Development at Porous Power Technologies/Ahlstrom Group in Shanghai where he enjoyed success in sales, establishing collaborations with a US National Lab, and building Alstom’s Shanghai Technology Center. Prior to this, Dr. Zhao founded MatCo Company of Westborough, MA where he raised funds to establish a new lithium ion battery separator manufacturing company, developed solvent-free casting film micro-porous lithium ion battery separators, and consulted on batteries for heavy-duty applications. He has held many positions before that, including as General Manager and CTO at PolyOne Co. in China, as Project Leader at Hollingsworth and Vose Co. in Walpole, MA, as Material Research Manager at PGI in Charlotte, NC, and as a Research Scientist at International Paper Co. in Boston.

Zhao earned his Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from MIT, completing his Thesis under Professor Mark S. Wrighton on “Electron Transfer and Energy Transfer in Photo-active and Electro-active Molecules in Solution and at Interfaces”. He has many affiliations including as Executive Director of the Board of 128 CUTE, as Adjunct Professor of Lanzhou Jiaotong University, as a member of the American Chemical Society, as a member of the Electrochemical Society, and as a member of the Material Research Society.