Coca-Cola global R&D director for packaging, sustainability giving virtual talk May 27

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Auburn University will host a virtual talk with Dana Breed, global research and development director for packaging and sustainability at The Coca-Cola Company, on May 27 as part of the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences’ 75th Anniversary Celebration.

Breed is the third speaker in the virtual “7 for 75 Speaker Series” during the yearlong celebration, which began March 1. She will give a talk titled “An industry career in sustainable materials: What do I do? How do you get a job doing something similar?”

Before joining Coca-Cola, she developed innovation strategy and led the development team for medical devices, medical packaging and consumer goods at Eastman Chemical Company. Prior to that role, she researched new products across a variety of industries and developed materials and structures for flexible packaging at Dow Chemical Company.

Breed is a member of the packaging advisory board of California Polytechnic State University, the external advisory board for the School of Materials Science and Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology and the advisory council for Auburn’s School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences.

During her talk, she will discuss the corporate role of research and development, her career implementing various types of sustainability programs and the types of competencies and experiences she looks for when hiring early career professionals.

“Dr. Breed’s talk will offer the public a rare opportunity to get an in-depth view of research and development in packaging and sustainable biomaterials from a top expert in the field,” said Janaki Alavalapati, dean of the School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences.

“Students interested in pursuing career opportunities within the booming packaging industry will also find great value in learning from her insights as both innovator and leader.”

The event is open to the public via Zoom from 2-3 p.m. CDT at and will be live-streamed via the school’s Facebook page at

The “7 for 75 Speaker Series” features distinguished alumni and industry leaders—representing an array of forestry, wildlife and natural resource fields and enterprises—covering a wide range of topics, from land management to current and future technology to stakeholder engagement.

The next speaker will be Rhett Johnson, director emeritus of the school’s Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center and board member of the Solon and Martha Dixon Foundation. Johnson will discuss his tenure at the center as well as his history and relationship with the Dixon family. His talk is scheduled from 2-3 p.m. CDT June 24.

(Written by Jamie Anderson)

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The Auburn University College of Forestry, Wildlife and Environment is a flagship institution for natural resources-based degrees including natural resource management, geospatial and environmental informatics and sustainable biomaterials and packaging. The school serves as the backbone for Alabama’s $30 billion+ forest, wildlife and natural resources related enterprises. Its mission is to create next-generation professionals and leaders, to develop new knowledge and disseminate science-based solutions to our clientele to improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of citizens in Alabama and beyond.