Dr. Victoria Finkenstadt is a research chemist in the Plant Polymer Research Unit at the National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research (USDA) in Peoria, IL since 1998. She earned her doctorate from the Whistler Center for Carbohydrate Research at Purdue University in 1997. Her doctoral dissertation involved structure-function properties of polysaccharides and computational science and engineering. She received her undergraduate degree in chemistry from McPherson College (Kansas) in 1989. Before entering graduate school, she worked in the pharmaceutical and biomedical sciences in both quality control and R&D.
Dr. Finkenstadt has published over 50 peer-reviewed publications on starch-graft-copolymers by reactive extrusion, green polymer composites, electroactive bioplastics including biobased corrosion inhibitors. Current projects include polymer science and engineering, advanced material engineering, theoretical investigations into polymer systems and value-added product development from agricultural commodities
Dr. Finkenstadt received a "40 Leaders under Forty" award in 2005. She has mentored over two dozen students and postdocs. She is very active in the American Chemical Society at the local, regional, and national levels. Under her leadership, the Illinois Heartland Local Section of the American Chemical Society received nine consecutive Outstanding Performance Awards (1999-2007).