Peter Foller

Scientific Advisor


Dr. Peter C. Foller received his Ph.D. in chemistry (with a concentration in electrochemistry) from the University of California at Berkeley in 1979.  In 2010, he opted to retire early from PPG Industries having served 15 years in various Pittsburgh-based R&D leadership capacities culminating in his role as R&D director for PPG’s (then) optical and commodity chemical businesses.  For ten years, he led R&D for the photochromic ophthalmic lens internal start-up Transitions Optical, which was sold to Essilor international in 2014 at an enterprise value in excess of $3B.  

After a varied and international R&D career in the service of businesses large and small (three of which he cofounded), Dr. Foller returned to his roots in the San Francisco Bay Area.  He is a co-founder of and active participant in SenSevere LLC, a 2011 spinout of Carnegie Mellon University, which is pursuing unique applications of chemical and electromechanical sensing with clients in the chlorine, water treatment, electric power, and mining industries.  Representing Dalian Actech, Inc. (P.R. China) and SenSevere, Dr. Foller’s entry in the Environmental Defense Fund’s "Methane Detectors Challenge” is now entering pilot trials by utilities and the natural gas producers who sponsored the competition.  A licensing exit is now in negotiation.  

Dr. Foller especially enjoys working with start-up teams, seeding them with ideas and strategies and helping with R&D and pivots.   Dr. Foller is a member of the Keiretsu Forum, a leading network of angel investors.