Listen to Ron's Interview with Louis Thedore

The Remarkable (and Still Evolving) Career of Professor Lou Theodore

Episode description: 

Louis Theodore may be a retired professor, but he is anything but the retiring type. After a distinguished career teaching chemical engineering at Manhattan College and serving as director of the Graduate Program (primarily responsible for his program achieving a No. 2 national ranking) Lou has continued to lead an extraordinarily productive life as educator, scholar, author, basketball fan, coach, consultant mentor, grandfather—and most recently, inventor. At 87, he is hardly slowing down. In today’s episode, Lou describes a life story that started out in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen and took him to the top of a complex scientific field as an internationally recognized expert in environmental management. Lou has written 131 text and reference books, covering an expansive range of topics, including environment ethics, air pollution control equipment, nanotechnology, and most recently, a second edition of “Introduction to Environmental Management,” which he co-wrote with his wife, Mary. He currently serves as a part-time consultant to Theodore Tutorials, a firm specializing in providing training needs to industry, government and academia. Along the way, Lou has also maintained his lifelong passion for basketball, supporting youth leagues and publishing a decidedly non-technical book, “Basketball Coaching 101,” an eclectic compendium of personal stories, a short history of the game and a spray of tips and commentary from other coaches, players, writers and fans. (Not surprisingly, he’s working on a second edition of this book, too.)  Lou’s life highlights the importance of keeping close social connection over the years, with colleagues, former students and basketball players—long-standing friendships as well as new ones.   And as a testament to his enduing curiosity and creativity, Lou has just been awarded two U.S. patents relating to processes for obtaining drinking water from geothermal energy and the combustion of fossil fuels. There’s a growing shortage in potable water across the planet, and Lou is intent on joining the search for solutions. 

Guest descriptions:

Lou Theodore is a former Professor of Chemical Engineering at Manhattan College who continues today as a dynamic educator, consultant, author and internationally renowned expert in the field of environmental management. Raised in New York City’s Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood, Lou received a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from The Cooper Union and his Master’s and Doctor of Chemical Engineering degrees from New York University. During his 55-year tenure at Manhattan College, Lou served as Graduate Program Director,  primarily responsible for the program achieving a No. 2 ranking by U.S. News & World Report, and particularly successful in placing students in internships, jobs, and graduate schools. Lou has provided nearly 200 courses to industry, government and technical associations, and is the author or coauthor of 131 texts and reference books and nearly 125 technical papers. He was recently involved with the development of a non-technical environmental calendar that serves as a consumer and youth outreach product. Lou is the recipient of the International Air & Waste Management Association’s prestigious Ripperton award that is “presented to an outstanding educator who through example, dedication and innovation has so inspired students to achieve excellence in their professional endeavors". He was also the recipient of the American Society of Engineering Education AT&T Foundation award for “excellence in the instruction of engineering students”. Beyond his scholarly achievements, Lou has maintained a lifelong passion for basketball. He is the author of “Basketball Coaching 101” (a second edition is in the works) and was honored at Madison Square Garden by National Pro-Am for his contributions to basketball and the youth of America. His “As I See It” column, featured in several weekly newspapers, and his online newsletter at, address an array of social economic, technical and sports issues.


Here’s a short list of Lou Theodore’s bibliography of 131 technical books—and one non-technical book for sports fans.

For a more extensive listing, go to

Introduction to Environmental Management  ( recently published Second Edition with Mary Theodore)

Engineering and Environmental Ethics

Pollution Prevention

Health Risk and Hazard Risk Assessment: Principles and Calculations

Air Pollution Control Equipment

Introduction to Hazardous Waste Incineration

Nanotechnology: Basic Calculations for Engineers and Scientists

Chemical Engineering: The Essential Reference

Environmental Risk Analysis: Probability, Distribution Calculations

Pollution Prevention: Sustainability, Industrial Ecology and Green Engineering

Basketball Coaching 101

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