Leadership Team


J.P. Blanchard, SVP and President - Performance Materials

J.P. Blanchard is the Senior Vice President and President of U.S. Silica's Performance Materials business unit. Mr. Blanchard joined U.S. Silica in 2011 as vice president and general manager, industrial and specialties and in 2016 was promoted to senior vice president and president, industrial and specialty products. He brings significant experience, energy, and leadership to help accelerate EP Minerals growth trajectory. Mr. Blanchard possesses over 15 years' experience in a variety of industries, including nonwovens, composites, and pharmaceuticals. He has held increasingly senior roles in business management, sales, marketing, and business development, and formerly served as global business director at Johns Manville. Mr. Blanchard holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Michigan Technological University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Michigan.

Jim Ross, Chief Financial Officer - Performance Materials

Jim joined U.S. Silica in 2018 as Director of Strategy with an initial focus on the acquisition and start-up of the Millen, GA facility. Prior to U.S. Silica, he worked as a Project Leader at Boston Consulting Group where he led business strategy and cost optimization initiatives in the energy and industrial goods sectors. He also has deep technical knowledge, having worked in engineering and operations coordination roles at the ExxonMobil Baytown Refinery. Mr. Ross holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering degree from Rice University and a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University.

Geoff Boucher, Vice President of Global Sales – Performance Materials

Geoff was hired in 2019 to accelerate core business and global industrial growth while facilitating entry into adjacent segments. He brings a diverse background with over 20 years' experience in the chemical, industrial, and mining segments with leadership roles in engineering, production, commercial, and general management. Prior to joining U.S. Silica, he acted as General Manager of Imerys' Filtration and Additives business unit. Mr. Boucher holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from UC Berkeley and a Master of Business Administration from UCLA.

Dave Weller, Vice President, Technology, Industrial and Specialty Products

Dave joined U.S. Silica in 2012 as the Director of Technology for the Industrial Specialty Products business unit. In this role, he had responsibility to create a U.S. Silica Research and Development team and oversee the Technical Service and Quality groups. Mr. Weller was promoted to Vice President of Technology for the Industrial Specialty Products business units in 2019 after combining the EP Minerals and U.S. Silica Research and Development teams. Prior to joining U.S. Silica, Mr. Weller worked over a decade at two building product companies in a variety of Research and Development roles. Mr. Weller also served 6 years in the U.S Navy as a Nuclear Power Operator and is a Six Sigma Black Belt. Mr. Weller holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Kutztown University in Pennsylvania. He also holds the following degrees from The Pennsylvania State University: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering, Master of Science in Business Administration, and Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering.

Al Gwizdala, Vice President of Operations

Al joined U.S. Silica in October 1996 as part of the Technical Services Department. During his tenure, he has held the jobs of Corporate Services Lab Manager, Berkeley Springs Operations Manager, Plant Manager of Dubberly, LA, Montpelier, VA, and Berkeley Springs, WV before being promoted to Operations Director – Industrial Specialty Products. Mr. Gwizdala has serviced as Vice Presidents of Operations – ISP, Vice President of Operations – Oil and Gas, and Vice President of Operations – Specialty Materials, before assuming his current position. Today, he works directly with twenty of our mining facilities to make low-cost high-quality products for all of our Industrial Customers. Mr. Gwizdala holds degrees of Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Saginaw Valley State University, Master of Science in Analytical Chemistry from Iowa State University, and Master of Business Administration from University of Maryland University College.

Kimon Beckmann, Vice President of Global Supply Chain

Kimon joined the U.S. Silica / EP Minerals team in April of 2017 as Director of Procurement, and was later promoted to Director, Procurement and Logistics. In 2019 he began managing the Supply Chain for the Performance Materials division. In addition, Mr. Beckmann assumed the responsibility of managing the Performance Materials Customer Service team. Prior to joining U.S. Silica, Mr. Beckmann worked as a Senior Consultant focused in Supply Chain and Production Strategy. Mr. Beckmann has over 15 years of international business experience in the food, pharmaceutical, and electronics industries as a Director of Production, Head of Engineering, and Technical Sales Consultant. Mr. Beckmann has degrees in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering and Business from the University of Technology in Ilmenau, Germany.