John attended his first SSA (now SESHA) meeting in 1979 at the old Tower Hotel in Scottsdale. It was only the second year for the professional association. He had heard of the group’s formation the year before and coerced Ed Sawicki into an invitation. John became an active member and supporter of the association, attending all of the annual conferences and many SSA-sponsored events in the United Kingdom.
John received his BS in Chemistry from Michigan State University in 1948 and his MS in Physical Chemistry in 1949. He joined industry as a laboratory chemist at Standard Oil in 1949 and among his early assignments was that of “Safety Officer” for the refinery laboratory. In 1953, he began his work on his doctoral degree at the University of Texas in Austin, receiving his PhD in Surface Chemistry and Corrosion in 1956. After receiving his PhD, John resumed his career in industry as a research chemist in that field science. In his research work prior to joining the semiconductor industry, he was a member of a group actively involved in the first work on the development of fuel cells.
In 1959, intrigued by the new area of technology, he made the jump to the then fledgling semiconductor industry where he was engaged in chemical process development for device fabrication at Rheem Semiconductor Corporation. While conducting his research at Rheem, John is credited with developing a technique for spraying dopant materials on the surface wafers prior to the diffusion process; this process was the forerunner of the current “spin-on” technique. He also headed a team that was involved in producing one of the first power transistors and later the beginning of epitaxial deposition for transistor fabrication. During this time in his career he also chaired the company safety committee.
Dr. Bordeaux then moved on to research at Stanford Research Institute, where he headed a team working on Defense Department research in CVD processes for the formation of non-conductive barriers and hetro-junction materials for night vision devices.
Returning to the mainstream semiconductor industry in 1969, John was co-founder and Vice President of Marketing of Strata Physics, a company manufacturing Gallium Arsenide Phosphide in the beginning of the LED surge. In 1978, he moved on to form his own company, Flocon, Inc., the first company dedicated to the designing and manufacturing of gas cabinets and gas safety control systems. John was the co-inventor of a digital weighing system for accurately measuring the use of liquid materials contained in a cylinder under pressure. He also developed the first automatic emergency shutdown controls for cylinder gas delivery systems and the first automatic crossover system for switching delivery between gas cylinders.
In the late 1970’s and 1980’s, he participated in many seminars and meetings throughout the US, Europe and Asia, speaking on hazardous gas safety and related safety subjects. He was a member of the original SEMI Standards Gas Safety Committee co-chaired by Lee Neal and Andy Lorenz and subsequently went on to co-chair the SEMI Standards Facility and Safety Division, where he received the SEMI Standards Leadership Award. He was a member of the committee that provided input to the Northern California Fire Chiefs Association in the writing of the “Toxic Gas Ordinance” and the rewriting of Articles 59 and 80 of the Uniform Fire Code. In 1987, John became a safety consultant, specializing in semiconductor manufacturing equipment safety and was considered one of the industry’s foremost authorities. He was an active participant in the SEMI task forces working on guidelines for the various safety documents that have been produced, including the original task force for SEMI S2 (then document 1606).
John dedicated much of his 44 year career in the industry to EHS advancements, and in recognition for his dedication and accomplishments, Dr. Bordeaux was the 2003 recipient of the SESHA Lifetime Achievement Award. John passed on May 23, 2003, but his passion for EHS advancement in the semiconductor industry and his legacy are ever present through his daughter, Aimee Bordeaux, SEMI EHS Director and a current SESHA Board of Director Member (2001-2006).