Valvoline’s Roger England: The Road from Janitor to Ph.D.

Valvoline’s Roger England: The Road from Janitor to Ph.D.

In this episode of AMN Drivetime, Roger shares with Bill Babcox his fascinating career journey and more.

When asked if he was currently in his “Dream Job,” as VP and Chief R&D officer for Valvoline, Roger England’s response says it all about his infectious enthusiasm for all he does.

“Heck yeah. I have a great time. I enjoy going to work,” England shares with Bill Babcox in the most recent AMN Drivetime podcast. “I hired into Cummings Technical Center after high school as a janitor. No one in my family really went to college. My high school advisors told me that I wasn’t smart enough to go to college, that I needed to get my butt to trade school. And at the time, that was a union position to be a janitor there and paid pretty good money. My dad ran a garage, so I’d kind of grown up working in the garage and there were a lot of guys who were engineers at Cummins that would work second shift at the garage for my dad. They were really smart guys and I thought, ‘You know, hanging out at someplace like that with a lot of smart people is not a bad idea.’”

Turns out it was not a very bad idea at all. As England shares, he walked into Cummins with a high school diploma and walked out with a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering. “When I left, I was leading intellectual property, advanced manufacturing and materials engineering for the corporation. I spent a lot time working – most of my time – working at the R&D Technical Center in Columbus, Indiana.”

In this latest AMN Drivetime podcast, Bill and Roger dive into a number of other interesting topics, including:

01:37 How Roger landed his dream job at Valvoline

02:36 Fun experiences pursuing his other passion – racing

04:49 Scoop on Valvoline’s sale of its Global Products Business to Aramco

08:15 Valvoline’s approach to the EV market and Roger’s take on the market as an “Internal Combustion” guy

11:56 Valvoline’s growth strategy including expanding into the Heavy-Duty segment

15:03 What it’s like to hold 13 patents

16:49 The best career advice Roger ever received from his Grandfather

18:31 The always popular Lightning Round!

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