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Dr. Robert L Ford is President/CEO of DRF Industries, LLC and Vice President for the Global Business Roundtable – Houston Chapter.  He was Principal Investigator for the Kauffman Foundation UEP Houston Project from 2011 to 2012 and Emerging Minority Business Leaders Business Plan Competition Facilitator: Winning Team, West Virginia High Tech Foundation Consortium, Liberty, WV in 2006. He was Project Trainer for the LA/SBA SBIR Phase Zero Initiative, SUBR, 2005.  Ford was Professor of Chemistry, Director of the Center for STEM Education and Outreach (C-SEO), and Faculty-in-Residence at the TSU Urban Academic Village through 2013.  He was Professor of Chemistry, SUBR, 1987 to 2003;  Assistant Professor of Chemistry, SUBR, Dillard University, Louisiana State University, and State University of New York at Rochester between 1972 and 1986.  Ford served as GLOBE Partnership Coordinator for TSU and SUBR, and represented both institutions to external business and technology councils. Dr. Ford is a board member of Bridging the Digital Divide, Inc., the Houston-Luanda Sister City Association, and a member of the Thompson Elementary School Site Based Decision-Making Committee.  He was President of the Earl Carl Institute for Legal and Social Policy, Inc.  He has served as Associate Provost for Research at TSU, Vice President for Advancement and Research at Fort Valley State University, Vice Chancellor for Research at Southern University in Baton Rouge and Interim Chair of the TSU Chemistry Department. He represents TSU on the Greater Houston Energy Collaborative and led the University’s Texas Emerging Technology Fund Initiative.  Ford has expertise in STEM education, project development and management, environmental and sustainable development, group facilitation, and small business and entrepreneurship development. He has international business and technology experience in South Africa, The Republic of the Gambia, Senegal, Nigeria, Taiwan, Germany, China, Belize, and The Netherlands. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from Southern University and A&M College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Purdue University at Lafayette, IN, where he was recently recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus at both institutions.