WCS Announces 2019 Program Highlights

The 34th Western Coatings Symposium & Show (WCS) will return to Las Vegas, NV, on October 20–23, 2019. To be held at the Paris Las Vegas Hotel and Convention Centre, the popular event will offer a three-day technical program, including invited lectures and a panel discussion. Organized by the Arizona, Golden Gate, Los Angeles, and Pacific Northwest Societies for Coatings Technology, the biennial WCS seeks to provide greater knowledge of the trends and advances in coatings formulating while offering attendees an expanded network of key technical contacts in the industry.


The WCS will kick off with a golf tournament on Sunday, October 20. Proceeds will be used to support students at the Western Coatings Technology Center at Cal Poly SLO. On Sunday night, a welcome reception will be held at Drai’s Beachclub/Nightclub for all symposium attendees, exhibitors, and speakers.

Monday Program

On Monday, October 21, the WCS program will begin with the presentation of the first of two Samson-Adler Awards. These prestigious awards recognize an individual from a western U.S. or western Canadian company who has made a significant contribution to the coatings industry over the course of their career.

Following the presentation of the 2018 award, the first keynote address will be given by John Gilbert, chief research and development officer, Behr Process Corporation. Gilbert will discuss “People, Place, Process, and Products: The Inner Workings of Development Today.” His talk will identify some of the key enablers for conducting product development in today’s environment. Divided into the four key topics, the presentation will emphasize how a successful development program requires that each of these areas receive some attention from a company’s management team. Gilbert will share insights he has gained after more than 30 years in product development and formulation.

The keynote address will then lead into the full technical program, with over 100 presentations being given in five concurrent tracks over three days. These presentations will focus on the most challenging issues facing the coatings industry. In addition, the program will be enhanced by student posters and presentations highlighting coatings-related work being performed at a number of universities.

Panel Discussion

On Monday afternoon, the program will offer a Leadership Panel focusing on “Mergers & Acquisitions: Impact on You and Our Industry.” Panel participants will include:

Alison Bell—R&D director of commercialization, North America, The Sherwin-Williams Company;

Sandeep Bhatt—president, DSM Coating Resins North America

Gary LeRoux—president & CEO, Canadian Paint & Coatings Association

Hector Rodriguez—vice president, Business Segments & Strategy, Ravago Chemicals North America

Steve Waterman—vice president R&D, Product Development, Behr Paint Company; and

Dr. Greg Williams—section manager, Applied Research, Behr Paint Company.

Tuesday Program

On Tuesday morning, the program will again begin with a keynote session and the presentation of a Samson-Adler Award. This second award will honor the 2019 recipient. Following the award, the keynote address will lead into a full day of technical talks. A highlight of Tuesday afternoon will be Academic Presentations, highlighting current research.

WCS Trade Show

The WCS trade show will begin on Monday morning and run through Tuesday evening. The products and services of over 100 leading suppliers to the industry will be on display. As with past WCS programs, the trade show hours and technical presentation hours will not overlap, so all attendees and exhibitors can participate fully in both.

General Information

Discounted room rates have been negotiated at both the Paris Hotel and at Bally’s. Indoor passageways from both hotels lead to the Paris Convention Centre where the WCS is being held. Reservations need to be made before September 18 to take advantage of the special rates.

For complete information on the 2019 Western Coatings Symposium & Show, including registration rates and full program details, visit https://westerncoatings.org.

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