Speakers

 

Keynote Speakers

 
Michael Allman

Michael Allman

CEO, Sempra Generation

Michael W. Allman is president and chief executive officer of Sempra Generation, which operates natural gas power plants for the competitive power market in North America, and is a subsidiary of San Diego-based Fortune 500 diversified energy services holding company Sempra Energy.

Allman is responsible for the operation of merchant power plants, including assets in Nevada, California, Arizona and Mexico. Recently, he spearheaded development of several groundbreaking renewable energy projects including: El Dorado Solar in Boulder City, Nevada, the largest thin-film solar facility in North America, Copper Mountain Solar, a proposed adjacent 48 MW facility and Energía Sierra Juárez, a 150 - 175 MW wind-power project in Baja California, Mexico.

Allman previously served as CFO of umbrella organization Sempra Global, as well as having been president of Sempra Technology Ventures, VP of Audit Services and VP of Corporate Planning and Development for Sempra Energy, where he oversaw strategic planning, mergers and acquisitions and business development.

Allman joined Sempra in 1998 from LEK/Alcar in Los Angeles, where he did marketing and corporate client consulting, and previously operated in the company’s Chicago, Johannesburg and London offices throughout his tenure.

Allman holds an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Michigan State University. Allman is a Certified Management Accountant and a Certified Internal Auditor. He serves as a director of the San Diego Old Globe theater company and is a member of the audit committee of the Zoological Society of San Diego.

 
H. Jeffrey Leonard

H. Jeffrey Leonard

President, Global Environment Fund

Dr. Leonard is the President and CEO of Global Environment Fund (GEF), one of the most experienced and most successful private equity firms dedicated exclusively to investments in the energy and environment sectors. Founded in 1990, GEF currently has approximately $1 billion in aggregate capital under management.

Dr. Leonard is on the Board of Directors of the Emerging Markets Private Equity Association (“EMPEA”), and is a former co-chairman of the Advisory Board of the Clean Tech Network.

Dr. Leonard is on the Board of Reva Electric Car Company (Bangalore, India) and several other GEF portfolio companies. He previously served as a founder and member of the Board of Global Forest Products, Ltd, (Africa) and as chairman of the Board of International Pepsi-Cola Bottler Investments.

Dr. Leonard is a member of the Advisory Board of the US-Brazil Biofuels Partnership. In 2006-07, he served as co-chairman of the energy transition team of Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley. From 1992 through 1998, Dr. Leonard he was a member of the Hydrogen Technical Advisory Panel to the U.S. Secretary of Energy. He is a Board member of the National Council for Science and the Environment (NCSE).

Dr. Leonard is a graduate of Princeton (Ph.D.), London School of Economics (MS. Econ) and Harvard College (BA, magna cum laude). He is the author of five books and numerous technical articles relating to global environmental issues, international trade, energy production and technology development.

 
Federico F. Peña

Federico F. Peña

Former Secretary of Energy
Senior Advisor, Vestar Capital Partners

The Honorable Federico F. Peña is currently a Senior Advisor at Vestar Capital Partners, a leading global private equity firm. The company’s investment strategy is targeted towards companies in the U.S., Europe and Asia with valuations in the $250 million to $3 billion range. Vestar Capital is headquartered in New York and has offices in Boston, Denver, Milan, Munich, Paris, and Tokyo.

Prior to joining Vestar, Peña served as U.S. Secretary of Energy (1997–1998) and U.S. Secretary of Transportation (1993–1997). Before serving in the Cabinet, Peña was President and CEO of Peña Investment Advisors (1991–1993) and Mayor of the City of Denver (1983–1991).

As Secretary of Energy, Peña developed the administration’s Comprehensive National Energy Strategy and oversaw the largest privatization in the history of the U.S. Government, the $3.65 billion sale of the Elk Hills Petroleum Reserve to Occidental Petroleum. Peña crafted the Clinton Administration’s strategy for oil and gas development in the Caspian Sea region and was instrumental in supporting energy investments in Russia.

As Secretary of Transportation, Peña implemented the first international aviation policy for the United States since the Carter administration. This strategy opened up aviation markets around the world, contributing to the revitalization of the U.S. airline industry. Peña traveled extensively throughout the world to assist U.S. transportation companies access global markets. He also led the Administration’s effort to support the privatization of the U.S. transportation systems and infrastructure.

Peña was National Co-Chair of Obama for America and a national board member of the Obama-Biden Transition.

Peña is originally from Brownsville, Texas and has J.D. and B.A. degrees from the University of Texas. He lives in Denver with his wife and their four children.


 

Adventures in Entrepreneurship

 
Peter W. Bressler

Peter W. Bressler

Principal, Bresslergroup, Inc.

Peter W. Bressler, Principal, Bresslergroup, Inc. is the leader of the Integrated Product Development trust. The group is known for its successful user centered product design solutions in a wide range of markets including industrial, commercial, and medical, electronics, and consumer products. Mr. Bressler focuses on strategic business planning and entrepreneurial programs. Mr. Bressler has authored or coauthored over 100 design and utility patents. Mr. Bressler is the founder of and serves as Board Chairman of Solar Roofing Systems, Inc. (“SRS Energy”). The firm is a “startup” developing and commercializing Building Integrated Photovoltaic Roofing Products. Mr. Bressler has received over 70 national and international awards for product design, design engineering, packaging design and graphics. Since 2006 Mr. Bressler has been an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Integrated Product Design Program at the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Bressler graduated from Rhode Island School of Design, receiving the Alcoa and Industrial Design Society of America Student Merit Awards.

 
Chris Hobson

Chris Hobson

Co-Founder and Chief Operating Officer, Bandgap Engineering

Chris Hobson, Co-Founder & Chief Operating Officer, Bandgap Engineering brings to the company fifteen years of leadership experience in operations, finance, marketing and business development. He has worked at both Fortune 500 companies and entrepreneurial startups. Prior to Bandgap, Mr. Hobson was SVP Operations at eCredit, a credit risk management and collections software company that was acquired by Fidelity Ventures. Mr. Hobson is a graduate of McGill University and earned his M.B.A. at Harvard Business School.

 
Dr. Andrey Mushakov

Dr. Andrey Mushakov

Executive Vice President/International Nuclear Operations, Lightbridge

Dr. Mushakov leads Lightbridge’s Fuel Technology Development business and is the primary liaison between Lightbridge, a nuclear energy pioneer, and its development partners in Russia, including Red Star. Lightbridge is the leading developer of proliferation resistant fuel technology and integrated advisory services for existing and emerging nuclear programs. Dr. Mushakov has earlier held various positions at Lightbridge, including Treasurer and Secretary. Prior to joining the firm in 2000, Dr. Mushakov served in commercial bank oversight, corporate finance, and other finance functions in the banking and construction industries. Dr. Mushakov holds a Ph.D. in Economics from St. Petersburg State University of Economics and Finance, M.S. in Management with excellence from Hult International Business School, and B.S. in Banking and Finance with honors from the Finance Academy of Russia in Moscow.

 
William D. Lese

William D. Lese

Managing Partner, Braemar Energy (Moderator)

William D. Lese, Managing Director, Braemar Energy Ventures has more than 24 years of research, operating and venture capital experience in the energy and environmental businesses. Prior to co-founding Braemar, Mr. Lese was a partner with Mantis Holdings, Inc., a venture capital firm focused on investing in environmental and energy efficiency companies, where he concentrated on emerging technologies for converting industrial waste streams into value added products. Previously, he was the Director of Business Development for NPS Industries, Inc., an international manufacturer of engineered equipment for the power industry. Mr. Lese’s business development activities included managing a joint venture with Consolidated Edison Co., and other key customer relationships. Prior to joining NPS Industries, he was one of the original employees of Sithe Energies, Inc. (an affiliate of Vivendi, SA), which became one of the world's largest independent power producers. At Sithe Energies, Mr. Lese’s responsibilities included management of several power projects. Mr. Lese has both chaired and participated on numerous panels focusing on energy technology investment opportunities and major energy issues. He currently serves on the board of directors of Coaltek, Utility Associates, CIRIS Energy, OPX Biotechnologies, Proterro, Solazyme, Renewable Energy Development, Inc., CRB and is Chairman of the Board of Solicore. Mr. Lese has both an MS in Energy Science and a BA in Physics from New York University.

 
Scott Nissenbaum

Scott Nissenbaum

President, Finite Carbon (Moderator)

Scott Nissenbaum is President of Finite Carbon, a company which provides a single-source, end-to-end solution, including the necessary capital, for landowners to create and monetize carbon offsets so they can quickly realize the best value for their carbon credits. Mr. Nissenbaum served for three years as the lead investor and chairman of the board for ImageTree Corporation, a company with patented platform technology and a proprietary process that provides accurate and consistent assessment of forest resources to improve forest management and financial performance. His close involvement with ImageTree led him to recognize forest landowners’ need for a single-source forest carbon development company that facilitates entry into emerging carbon markets. In addition to his experience in forestry, Mr. Nissenbaum spent more than a decade as a venture capitalist in the Philadelphia area with Novitas Capital. Mr. Nissenbaum holds an MBA in finance from St. Joseph’s University and a BS in finance from Pennsylvania State University.


 

Energy Project Development

 
Dan Dobbs

Dan Dobbs

Director of Commercial Finance, SunEdison

Dan Dobbs, Director of Commercial Finance, SunEdison is responsible for developing energy pricing for Power Purchase Agreements. Mr. Dobbs works closely with Sales, Engineering, Construction, and Project Finance to identify, evaluate, propose, and develop new projects. He also provides economic analysis to support Government Affairs’ market development activities and he assists the Research and Development group’s new technology analyses. Mr. Dobbs joined SunEdison in 2006. Prior to SunEdison, he was the New Business Opportunities Manager for the MSG pressure sensor line in Texas Instruments’ Sensors and Controls Division (now Sensata Technologies). Mr. Dobbs has an M.B.A. from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He also holds a Masters degree in Mechanical Engineering, a Masters degree in Technology & Policy, and a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

 
Ray Henger

Ray Henger

Finance Director, OwnEnergy

Ray Henger, Finance Director, OwnEnergy leads the company’s financing efforts and negotiates strategic joint ventures and business development agreements. Mr. Henger is also active in developing a number of OwnEnergy’s community wind projects.

Prior to joining OwnEnergy, Mr. Henger was a Managing Director in Credit Suisse’s Power and Renewables Group. He had also previously worked in the energy investment banking groups of Wasserstein Perella and Donaldson Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ). During his 14 years career in investment banking, Mr. Henger assisted his clients in raising more than $20 billion in debt and equity, primarily for unregulated generation owners and developers. In addition, he regularly advised clients on the purchase and sale of generation assets. Mr. Henger commonly speaks at wind, geothermal and other renewable conferences.

Mr. Henger lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Allison. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the St. Nicks Alliance, a non-profit community development organization dedicated to helping low and middle income families in North Brooklyn. Mr. Henger holds a BA in Finance from Southern Methodist University.

 
Russell Martin

Russell Martin

Executive Vice President, Blue Source

Russell Martin, Executive Vice President, Blue Source runs the company’s Houston office which he joined following a career steeped in CO2 project development. From 1980 to 1987, Mr. Martin worked for Dresser Industries in a number of accounting positions before accepting a position with Enron Corp. In 1996, he joined Shell Oil Company as Manager of its CO2 marketing team. Mr. Martin led the effort to form Shell CO2 Co. in 1998 and was named Vice President of Business Development of the joint venture between Shell and Kinder Morgan. Shell CO2 Co. was acquired in 2000 and Mr. Martin continued as the vice president of business development. Russell lives in Houston and is married to Lynn and has two grown children.

 
Laurie Mazer

Laurie Mazer

Business Developer, BP Wind Energy North America

Laurie Mazer, Business Developer, BP Wind Energy North America is the lead developer on projects in Oregon, California and Nebraska. Her responsibilities include the development effort of utility-scale wind energy projects from inception to construction, including assessing and mitigating risks, negotiating land agreements, securing interconnection and transmission agreements, drafting utility bid packages, building relationships with local community and other project stakeholders, and securing local, state, and federal permits. Prior to joining BPWE in 2007, Ms. Mazer was with Orion Energy LLC, a wind energy development company for 3 years, and was engaged in all aspects of wind project development. Ms. Mazer has worked on wind projects in various stages of development in numerous U.S. states and on Federal lands. Ms. Mazer holds a B.A. in biology from Reed College.

 
Matthew Mendis

Matthew Mendis

Managing Director and Founder, C-Quest Capital

Matthew Mendis, Managing Director and Founder, C-Quest Capital has over 27 years of experience in development, financing and implementation of alternative energy and energy efficiency projects. Over the span of his career he has been responsible for advising and assisting a wide range of international donor agencies, governments and private companies in financially engineering clean energy investments amounting to over $500 million. Mr. Mendis has worked on clean energy investments in the US and over 45 countries around the globe. Throughout this process he has developed a deep understanding of the opportunities for financial leveraging and challenges associated with the implementation of clean energy and emission reduction projects. More recently, Mr. Mendis has helped identify and develop a range of Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and other climate change-related projects. Prior to co-founding C-Quest Capital, Mr. Mendis was Corporate Vice President of International Resources Group, Ltd. (IRG) and Director of its Energy and Environmental Management Division. In 1991 Mr. Mendis founded a private company, Alternative Energy Development, Inc., focused on developing clean energy and climate change projects, which he merged with IRG in 2001. Mr. Mendis currently serves as Chairman and Trustee for Global Village Energy Partnership (GVEP) International. Mr. Mendis holds a B.Sc. in Environmental Engineering and an M.A. in Natural Resource Economics from the University of Maryland.

 
Patrick Shannon

Patrick Shannon

Director of Business Development, First Solar (Moderator)

Patrick Shannon is Director of Business Development of First Solar, a US based manufacturer of thin film PV technology. He focuses on land acquisition, project feasibility and early stage site development for utility scale projects. First Solar Development, Inc. has more than a gigawatt of signed power purchase agreements with California utilities, which include several of the world’s largest proposed PV projects. Mr. Shannon is an expert deal originator with years of experience in negotiation, project analysis, and finance. Previously, Mr. Shannon was Principal at PeachTree Real Estate Partners, a residential and resort development firm with operations in California and Georgia where he managed site acquisition and directed all sustainability initiatives. During his career, Mr. Shannon has also been a proprietary trader and founded and managed two successful hedge funds which focused on index arbitrage opportunities at the CME and volatility arbitrage in equity derivatives at the PCX.


 

The Great Leap Forward: The Future of the Electricity Grid

 
Erich W. Gunther

Erich W. Gunther

Chairman and CTO, EnerNex Corporation

Erich W. Gunther, P.E., Chairman and CTO, EnerNex Corporation helps EnerNex clients define their strategic direction in basic R&D, technology, and product development. Mr. Gunther has 25 years of experience in the design and development of innovative solutions to a wide array of power system problems. In 2004, Mr. Gunther was appointed to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) GridWise Architecture Council - a team of experts assembled to articulate the guiding principles that constitute the architecture of a future, intelligent, energy system. Mr. Gunther and his team are working with leading utilities on their AMI projects and smart grid roadmap development efforts including Southern California Edison, Consumers Energy, Entergy, First Energy, Duke Energy, Salt River Project, and Southern Company. He is a primary contractor and partner with EPRI’s IntelliGrid program. Mr. Gunther serves on several corporate boards including the UCAIug, ReNomics, Smart Grid Labs, and the Center for Advanced Technology Applications. Mr. Gunther received his BSEE from Gannon University in 1980 and his Master of Engineering degree in Electric Power Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1984.

 
Glenn A. Pritchard

Glenn A. Pritchard

Principal Engineer, Exelon/PECO

Glenn A. Pritchard, Principal Engineer, Exelon/PECO has been with the company in Philadelphia for seventeen years. As Principal Engineer he is responsible for developing new applications that leverage AMI Systems and metering data. Mr. Pritchard is currently focusing on Smart Metering and the integration of AMI & Distribution Automation systems into a Smart Grid solution. Mr. Pritchard has recently received the 2008 Utilimetrics’ Utility Best Practices Award for his work in the AMI field. Mr. Pritchard’s other areas of experience include distribution & transmission, substation automation and communications. He specializes in finding new applications of existing and emerging technologies.

Mr. Pritchard graduated from Clemson University in 1990 with a B.S. Degree in Electrical Engineering. He is a registered professional engineer in Pennsylvania.

 
Adrian Tuck

Adrian Tuck

CEO, Tendril Networks

Adrian Tuck, CEO of Tendril Networks focuses on expanding Tendril’s customer base through multiple sales and marketing channels, including alliances with leading companies. Mr. Tuck has more than 20 years of executive management and leadership experience. As CEO, Mr. Tuck is also the vice-chair of the ZigBee Alliance, an association of companies working together to enable reliable, cost-effective, low-power, wirelessly networked, monitoring and control products based on an open global standard. Prior to Tendril, Mr. Tuck served as both interim CEO and executive vice president of Ember Corporation, a leading semiconductor provider to the Smart Grid, where he guided the company’s market strategy through its critical early-growth stage. Mr. Tuck received his education at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, the British Army’s prestigious officer training academy.

 
Michael Valocchi

Michael Valocchi

Global Energy and Utility Industry Leader, IBM Global Business Services

Michael Valocchi, Global Energy and Utility Industry Leader, IBM Global Business Services is responsible for the development and execution of the industry strategy to delivery services as well as the development and direction of the Industry thought leadership.  Mr. Valocchi has 23 years experience serving energy and utility clients, has proven leadership skills and expertise in financial, strategic, operational and regulatory issues, and has directed, managed and delivered solutions to complex business problems and issues.  He is recognized for deep industry knowledge, being responsible for the development of industry point of views and various thought leadership pieces. He is a frequent speaker and quoted in major publications on various aspects of the energy and utility industry. Mr. Valocchi holds a B.S. in accounting from St. Joseph's University in Philadelphia, PA and is a C.P.A.

 
Philip Bane

Philip Bane

Managing Editor, Smart Grid News (Moderator)

Philip H. Bane, Managing Editor, Smart Grid News is a recognized authority on the emerging clean energy, smart infrastructure revolution and the market opportunities it represents. He also serves as the President of Renomics Corporation, a company that re-sources communities by developing smart sustainable infrastructure. Mr. Bane has published numerous articles and reports on the Smart Grid and smart infrastructure, managed manufacturing, integration and digital publishing operations at ‘C’ level positions and negotiated and closed numerous business transactions. Prior to joining Global Smart Energy, the publisher of Smart Grid News, Mr. Bane spent a decade in industrial security: He served as the President of a CCTV manufacturing company and also co-founded G2 Technology, one of the largest domestic security integrators in Russia. Prior to that, he practiced law for over 15 years in Seattle, WA and Washington DC. Mr. Bane holds a JD from William & Mary, a Masters in Tax from George Washington University, and a BA from the University of Virginia.


 

Investing in Energy: Perspectives from the Trenches

 
Michael DeRosa

Michael DeRosa

Managing Director, Element Partners

Michael DeRosa, Managing Director, Element Partners, has been investing in venture capital and private equity transactions in the clean technology sector for over nine years, and joined Element in 2006. His primary areas of focus have included the advanced materials, alternative chemicals, energy technology, environmental, and supply chain management sectors. Prior to Element, he was a partner in Cordova Ventures’ Industrial Technology Fund, a principal at EnerTech Capital Partners, and a Senior Associate at the Safeguard International Fund. Before starting his private equity career, Mr. DeRosa was a management consultant at Booz-Allen & Hamilton. Mr. DeRosa is a director of Arxx Building Products, Inc., EcoSMART Technologies, Inc., TAS, Ltd., Energex Corporation and Ecore International, Inc. and has served on the boards of companies such as Arbinet-thexchange, Inc. and Avista Advantage, Inc. Mr. DeRosa holds an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a BS in Electrical Engineering and Economics from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

 
Andrew Friendly

Andrew Friendly

Principal, Advanced Technology Ventures (ATV)

Andrew Friendly, Principal, Advanced Technology Ventures, joined the firm in 2007 and focuses on investments in clean technology companies. He represents the firm on the boards of AltaRock Energy and Solar Junction, and is an observer on the boards of Rive Technology and Wakonda Technologies. Mr. Friendly co-leads the Renewable Energy Business Network, and also the New England Clean Energy Council's Clean Energy Fellowship Program. Previously, Mr. Friendly was a director at Idealab in Pasadena, CA, where he evaluated energy and clean technologies investment opportunities, focusing on solar PV and thermal, fuel cells, hydrogen generation, flywheels, small-scale wind, advanced batteries, and new transportation concepts. Prior to Idealab, Mr. Friendly was a Partner at Clean Edge, a strategic consulting practice for the cleantech sector and senior manager of Business Development & Strategy at Zambeel, Inc. Mr. Friendly also spent five years at The White House in a variety of positions including Personal Aide to President Clinton and Senior Advisor to the Special Envoy for the Americas where he worked with Congress to design trade legislation and assisted U.S. companies in gaining access to Latin American markets. Mr. Friendly holds an MBA from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University and a BA from Middlebury College.

 
Kevin S. Genieser

Kevin S. Genieser

Managing Director, Morgan Stanley

Kevin Genieser is a Managing Director in the Investment Banking Division of Morgan Stanley and the head of the firm’s Clean Energy and Renewables effort. Kevin has worked on a range of financing and strategic advisory assignments in the domestic and international power sectors. Selected Clean Energy transactions include the IPO and follow-on for EnerNOC, the private placement for Miasole and Suniva, the pending IPO for A123, strategic sale of Xantrex and OptiSolar, the firm’s investment into BPLGlobal, Heliovolt and BrightSource, the follow-on offering for American Superconductor, the sale of PPM Energy/ScottishPower to Iberdrola and the PTC monetization of a wind portfolio for PPM Energy. Mr. Genieser received an A.B. degree from Harvard College and an M.B.A. degree from Harvard Business School.

 
Paul Ho

Paul Ho

Managing Director, Hudson Clean Energy Partners

Paul Ho, Managing Director, Hudson Clean Energy Partners joined the firm in 2008 as a Principal, specializing in biofuels, biomass, geothermal and other renewable energy sectors with 14 years of experience in the energy sector. Mr. Ho joined Hudson from Credit Suisse in New York, where he was Director in the Alternative Energy Group overseeing the firm’s banking efforts in alternative fuels on a global basis. Prior to his renewable energy focus, Mr. Ho had extensive experience in energy sector bond and bank financings, equity offerings, mergers and acquisitions, and advisory assignments spanning five continents, with aggregate transaction value in excess of $50 billion. He had previously worked at Credit Suisse First Boston’s Global Energy Group, Goldman Sachs’ Energy Group, Luminus Management (a power sector-focused hedge fund) and WestLB. Mr. Ho received a BA with distinction in Economics and Statistics from the University of Chicago.

 
William D. Lese

William D. Lese

Managing Partner, Braemar Energy

See profile above.

 
Rick Thompson

Rick Thompson

Co-Founder and COO, Greentech Media (Moderator)

Mr. Thompson brings 15 years of industry experience from leading technology start-ups, incumbent networking and communications companies, and technology market research firms. Most recently, Mr. Thompson was senior analyst at Heavy Reading, the market research arm of Light Reading, the dominant online media company in the telecommunications market. CMP bought Light Reading in 2005. Prior to Heavy Reading, Mr. Thompson was a principal at PointEast Research, where he led market analysis and strategic consulting across a wide range of network communications market segments.

Mr. Thompson previously served as the vice president of marketing at PanGo Networks, a wireless software company, and as director of product management and marketing at Sycamore Networks Inc. At Sycamore, he defined the product strategy and executed the launch of the industry's first intelligent optical switching platform. Under his leadership, Sycamore deployed several of the world's largest intelligent optical network infrastructures for global wired and wireless service providers. Prior to joining Sycamore, Mr. Thompson held similar product management positions with Packet Engines, a pioneer of Gigabit Ethernet switching that was later acquired by Alcatel, and FORE Systems, a leader in ATM networking that was later acquired by Marconi and, subsequently, Ericsson. Mr. Thompson earned a bachelor's degree in industrial engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.