WILMINGTON, DEL. — May Shana’a has been named group vice-president, technology and growth strategy, for Ashland Specialty Ingredients, a commercial unit of Ashland Inc. She will lead Ashland Specialty Ingredients’ global research and development and applications capabilities with direct operational responsibilities for the unit’s global research and technical centers.

Dr. Shana’a most recently was global vice-president of skin care and portfolio management at Johnson & Johnson, where she also was vice-president, R.&D., global beauty care. She was involved in more than 200 product launches per year.

Dr. Shana’a spent more than 18 years working for Unilever in skin care, laundry and home care in the United Kingdom, the United States and Italy, where she was vice-president of R.&D. home care. She received a master’s degree in analytical science and a doctorate in chemistry from the University of Hull in the United Kingdom.

Dr. Shana’a will report to John E. Panichella, senior vice-president of Ashland Inc. and president of Wilmington-based Ashland Specialty Ingredients.

“With May’s leadership and distinguished qualifications, I am confident we will be able to drive our application expertise even closer to the customer and continue our focus on solving their unique formulation challenges, Mr. Panichella said. “We look forward to the perspective and experience May brings to this role as she leads the aggressive growth strategy for our new product innovations.”

Ashland Specialty Ingredients offers products for use in such markets as food and beverage, personal care, pharmaceutical, coatings and energy.