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Lithium is the lightest metal, so soft that you can cut it with a knife. Its structure gives it the ability to store large amounts of energy, making it ideal for manufacturing batteries. As the world moves to create a lower-carbon economy, the energy transition may well hinge on lithium.

To learn more about lithium and its role in electrification and the shift to renewable energy sources, Brown Advisory's Erika Pagel sits down with Eric Norris, President of Energy Storage at Albemarle—the largest producer of lithium in the world.


Episode Introduction

Lithium. We've been hearing a lot about this mineral as a linchpin for decarbonizing our economy. It's the world's lightest metal, soft enough to cut with a knife. Its superpower is that it can store large amounts of energy, making it ideal for manufacturing batteries. And it's particularly ideal for electric car batteries, where its ability to create lighter-weight, more powerful batteries is key to making electric vehicles appealing to consumers. But before it gets to a battery and into an electric vehicle, lithium has to be extracted from either rocks or salt water, which is not an easy process. Our guide to where and how we get access to this increasingly important mineral is Eric Norris, the president of Albemarle's Energy Storage business.


eric norris

Eric Norris

President, Energy Storage, Albemarle

Eric Norris joined Albemarle in January 2018 as Chief Strategy Officer. In this role, he managed the company’s strategic planning, M-A, and corporate business development programs as well as its investor relations efforts. In August 2018, he was appointed President of the Lithium global business unit. Prior to joining Albemarle, Norris served as President of Health and Nutrition for FMC Corporation. Following FMC’s announcement to acquire DuPont Agricultural Chemical assets, he led the divestiture of FMC Health and Nutrition to DuPont. Previously, Norris served as Vice President and Global Business Director for FMC Health and Nutrition, and Vice President and Global Business Director for FMC Lithium. During his 16-year FMC career, he served in additional leadership roles including Investor Relations, Corporate Development and Director of FMC Healthcare Ventures. Prior to FMC, Norris founded and led an internet-based firm offering formulation and design tools to the chemical industry. He started his career in a range of leadership roles with the Rohm and Haas Company. Norris earned a Master of Business Administration from Harvard University and a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and German from Colgate University. Norris is a member of the board of directors of Communities in Schools of Charlotte-Mecklenburg and is a member of the board of advisors of The Zero Emission Transportation Association (ZETA). 




Erika Pagel

Erika Pagel

Co-CIO, Private Client, Endowments and Foundations, Brown Advisory

Erika is a partner, a member of the Executive Team, and serves as a portfolio manager and as the co-chief investment officer of private client, endowments and foundations. Erika has worked in the investment management industry since 1996. Prior to Brown Advisory, she was an investment advisor at Silver Bridge Advisors. Erika started her career at MFS Investment Management before working in sell-side Equity Research for eight years following large cap pharmaceuticals, household products, consumer and retail sectors at Schroder & Co and then UBS Investment Bank. More recently, she was an analyst following consumer and retail companies at a hedge fund, Balyasny Asset Management. For more than 12 years, Erika’s has been researching investment options for sustainable investment managers and helping clients build portfolios that are aligned with their goals. 



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