Koji Abe

General Manager, Corporate Development Department; ITOCHU Corporation
In 2013, Koji Abe was appointed General Manager of Corporate Development Department, and is responsible for ITOCHU’s new mid-to-long term business initiatives in advanced technology areas such as energy, healthcare, social infrastructure, and industrial materials. From 2008 to 2011, he served as General Manager of Innovative Technology Business Development Department, where he spent 10 years leading ITOCHU’s innovative technology initiatives through venture investments and joint R&D program with universities and research institutions in the advanced technology field. He also has 12-year global business experience in electronics, telecommunications, and IT industries. He holds ME in Communication Engineering from Graduate School of Engineering at Osaka University. With approximately 130 offices in 65 countries, ITOCHU, one of the leading sogo shosha, is engaged in domestic trading, import/export, and overseas trading of various products such as textile, machinery, metals, minerals, energy, chemicals, food, information and communications technology, realty, general products, insurance, logistics services, construction, and finance, as well as business investment in Japan and overseas.
In 2013, Koji Abe was appointed General Manager of Corporate Development Department, and is responsible for ITOCHU’s new mid-to-long term business initiatives in advanced technology areas such as energy, healthcare, social infrastructure, and industrial materials. From 2008 to 2011, he served as General Manager of Innovative Technology Business Development Department, where he spent 10 years …
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Dr. Dan Hirleman, Jr

E. Daniel Hirleman Jr. joined Purdue University as Chief Corporate and Global Partnerships Officer in 2014, with responsibility for growing strategic private sector partnerships as well as for global alliances with nations, universities, and NGOs. He also oversees the Global Policy Research Institute, and Purdue’s International Programs operation which currently serves over 9,000 students and scholars. Hirleman received the BSME with Highest Distinction from Purdue, followed by MSME and Ph.D. He received Howard Hughes Doctoral and NSF Graduate Fellowships, did six industry internships, and was a visiting researcher at the Technical University of Denmark. He joined the Arizona State University faculty where he received teaching and research awards and held multiple administrative positions culminating in associate dean for research.  In 1999 he joined Purdue as the William E. and Florence E. Perry Head of ME, and in 2010 became dean of Engineering at the University of California, Merced.  He has received: the Hon. George Brown Award for International Scientific Cooperation, and the Charles Russ Richards Memorial Award of ASME/Pi Tau Sigma. He is a Fellow of ASME and chaired Engineers for a Sustainable World. Prof. Hirleman has about 200 technical publications, 6 U.S. patents, and has presented 80 invited lectures in 14 countries on laser-based detection and identification of cells and colonies, semiconductor manufacturing, and global engineering.  His research has been supported by 70 grants from 31 companies and 10 government agencies with total funding of over $21M.  Ten inventions/technologies developed in his lab have been licensed to the private sector and/or are in commercial products. Hirleman is married to Laura Kennedy Hirleman, M.C., who has a counseling practice. They have 3 children, and serve on various boards and ministries.  For stress relief Hirleman plays competitive racquetball.
E. Daniel Hirleman Jr. joined Purdue University as Chief Corporate and Global Partnerships Officer in 2014, with responsibility for growing strategic private sector partnerships as well as for global alliances with nations, universities, and NGOs. He also oversees the Global Policy Research Institute, and Purdue’s International Programs operation which currently serves over 9,000 students and …
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Alec Proudfoot

Engineering Consultant - Proudfoot Design
Alec Proudfoot is the engineer at Google Inc. who started the RechargeIT plug-in vehicle project. He was a member of the engineering team at AeroVironment that created the GM Impact prototype. The Impact entered production as the GM EV1, the first modern high power AC induction electric vehicle. Alec has followed the alternative fuel vehicle scene as an engineer, a consumer, and journalist -- some of his footage appeared in the documentary film "Who Killed the Electric Car." In addition to his alternative fuel vehicle work, Alec has a diverse engineering career, spanning fields from aviation to medical devices to telecommunications, and has also worked as a professional helicopter pilot. Most recently, Alec was a renewable energy engineer at Google working on the RE<C project, and previously worked as an engineering manager on imaging related applications for projects including Google Book Search and Google Maps. In his "20% time," Alec advised Google's philanthropy organization on energy and transportation issues.
Alec Proudfoot is the engineer at Google Inc. who started the RechargeIT plug-in vehicle project. He was a member of the engineering team at AeroVironment that created the GM Impact prototype. The Impact entered production as the GM EV1, the first modern high power AC induction electric vehicle. Alec has followed the alternative fuel vehicle …
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Gary Johansen

Executive Director of Engineering for High Horsepower, Cummins, Inc.
Gary Joined Cummins in 1987 in the Midrange Engine Business as a development engineer focused on emissions, combustion and performance. In 1993, he became group leader for C-Series Engine Performance Development, and in 1995, he assumed responsibility for all midrange engine performance and emissions development. In 1997, Gary became Worldwide Chief Engineer for C and L engines, consolidating platform architecture and complexity across multiple JVs, markets, and six assembly plants. In 2000, he returned to his hometown, Chicago, for family reasons and joined Navistar where he held engineering, purchasing, and strategy leadership roles. In 2005, Gary returned to Cummins in 2005 as Executive Director, Engineering, leading the several Heavy Duty engine programs. Since 2009, Gary has been Executive Director, Engineering in the Power Generation Business Unit, focusing on improvements in product development, technology and innovation, as well as the launch of a number of new large platform programs and the convergence of global product architecture. Gary is very active in several community organizations in Minneapolis focused on issues including STEM education and improving the quality of life for individuals with severe disabilities. Gary earned his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Trine University in 1987.  He and his wife Linda, who have two children, will be relocating from Minnesota to Indiana.
Gary Joined Cummins in 1987 in the Midrange Engine Business as a development engineer focused on emissions, combustion and performance. In 1993, he became group leader for C-Series Engine Performance Development, and in 1995, he assumed responsibility for all midrange engine performance and emissions development. In 1997, Gary became Worldwide Chief Engineer for C and L engines, …
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John Waters

Chief Technology Officer, Energy Systems Network
John E. Waters has been developing sustainable “engineered” solutions since his early work on the first electric car, GM’s EV1. John was the inventor for the battery pack for the EV1, Electric S-10, and multiple electric drive platforms spanning from commercial buses to race cars to golf carts. Along with his “plug-in” colleagues in industry, John discovered how the electron can be utilized for superior performance, reduced costs and lower (system) emissions to both the transportation and built environment sectors, improving the lives of individuals, communities, and nations. John is also active in bringing sustainable energy, housing and transportation solutions to “off-grid” communities around the world. Since the early days of developing the EV1 battery pack, John’s interests led him to develop sustainable energy storage solutions in large format lithium-ion batteries for Delphi, forming the EnerDel joint venture, and launching Bright Automotive as the founding CEO. John also created and led Rocky Mountain Institute’s (RMI) practice in sustainable transportation and consulted with multiple Fortune 1-to-100 companies in sustainable transportation solutions. At RMI (and inspired by Amory Lovins), John launched his passion for whole-system design in energy, economics, quality of life, the built environment, and transportation – all to improve the quality of life for people groups and social systems. John is also a Senior Fellow at the Sagamore Institute, previously a member of Duke Energy’s “Thought Leaders Council”, and advises multiple “plug-in” start-up companies. Prior to RMI and being the VP of Business Development for EnerDel, Inc., John was responsible for the design, testing, and production of multiple lithium battery products, including certified solutions for the iBot® and Segway®. Mr. Waters holds seven U.S. patents, two international patents, two defensive papers in battery pack designs, and has received numerous industry awards.
John E. Waters has been developing sustainable “engineered” solutions since his early work on the first electric car, GM’s EV1. John was the inventor for the battery pack for the EV1, Electric S-10, and multiple electric drive platforms spanning from commercial buses to race cars to golf carts. Along with his “plug-in” colleagues in industry, …
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Michael Rowand

Director of Technology Development, Duke Energy
Michael Rowand is Director, Technology Development for Duke Energy. He is responsible for technology evaluation and development of distributed energy resources, including energy storage, electric transportation, distributed generation, and other end-use energy systems and devices. Mike has 30 years’ experience with Duke Energy in various aspects of the utility industry including Transmission and Distribution Engineering, Customer Service, Rates and Regulatory processes, and Marketing. He is an honors graduate of the University of Florida with a degree in Mechanical Engineering and is a licensed Professional Engineer in North Carolina and South Carolina, and a Certified Energy Manager.
Michael Rowand is Director, Technology Development for Duke Energy. He is responsible for technology evaluation and development of distributed energy resources, including energy storage, electric transportation, distributed generation, and other end-use energy systems and devices. Mike has 30 years’ experience with Duke Energy in various aspects of the utility industry including Transmission and Distribution Engineering, …
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Elizabeth Carey

Solutions Architect, Vice President of Operations - LHP Engineering Solutions
Elizabeth is currently working for LHP Engineering Solutions (LHPES) as the leader of Application Lifecycle Management initiative and leader of the Program Management Office. She works with customers to understand their business and technical needs and then recommends and delivers solutions. She keeps abreast of new technologies in the automotive, commercial vehicle and power generation markets. Prior to LHP, Elizabeth started a consulting firm: E Carey & Associates Consulting LLC. She started this consulting firm at the start of year 2016 focusing on partnering with clients to build successful teams and partnering with leaders to develop and execute new business opportunities (includes: strategy, process mapping, execution plans, project management). A good example of the work she did was for the Community Education Coalition in Columbus, IN to conduct a workforce needs assessment in IT for Region 9. She worked with various employers, educators, industry partners, local government agencies to develop a strategy and roadmap addressing the gaps in K-12 and postsecondary education. Previously, Elizabeth was Executive Director, Electronic Control Systems April 2009 – Jan 2016. Her focus was on leading the electronics and controls strategy, technology plans, sourcing and execution to the plans. Examples include: introducing telematics technology; use of mobility technology for servicing products; adding analytics/modeling for prognostics; addition of multi core microprocessors etc. Prior to this position she was Chief Technical Officer of Cummins Power Generation starting in January 2003. She was responsible for leading a global and diverse engineering business group to deliver products meeting or exceeding cost, quality, and delivery requirements. Directly responsible for the advanced research and development work, ten-year technical plan (example technologies: acoustics modeling, structures, power electronics, alternators, electronics and controls), product development, and engineering functional excellence (identifying and improving process, developing talent, identifying and or developing tools to support the function). Elizabeth was the Sponsor of the Power Generation Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) where she drew on her long personal history of volunteerism to guide Power Generation’s CSR focus. Elizabeth was also the Sponsor of the Women’s Affinity Group at Cummins Power Generation. She joined Cummins Inc. in 1993 as the Director of Electronic Controls. In 1998, Elizabeth led the development of the high horse power natural gas engines and functional responsibility for high horse power diesel and natural gas engine design and analysis. Elizabeth started her engineering career with the Aerospace Corporation in California for eight years, followed by five years with TRW Space and Defense. Her focus was on software development, test and simulation for various government projects. While at TRW she also led the development of a multi-million dollar proposal for which TRW was awarded. Elizabeth has also served as member, counsel and board member to several entities, including the Society of Women Engineers, the Society of Automotive Engineers, KPIT, University of Minnesota Advisory Group, IvyTech Advisory Group. Elizabeth’s undergraduate studies were in Mathematics and Statistics from the California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. Her graduate studies were in Electrical Engineering - emphasis on controls from the California State University, Long Beach. In year 2012 she became a certified coach from iPEC. Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching. She became a certified MBTI facilitator in March 2016. In her spare time, Elizabeth enjoys running, cycling and sailing with her husband.
Elizabeth is currently working for LHP Engineering Solutions (LHPES) as the leader of Application Lifecycle Management initiative and leader of the Program Management Office. She works with customers to understand their business and technical needs and then recommends and delivers solutions. She keeps abreast of new technologies in the automotive, commercial vehicle and power generation …
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Robbie Sears

Vice President, Customer Energy Solutions - Vectren Corporation
Robbie Sears was named Vice President of Customer Energy Solutions in June 2014 where he is responsible for long-term planning for the company’s utilities, emerging technologies, industrial sales, economic development, and market research. Prior to his current role, Sears was Director of Conservation. Sears joined Southern Indiana Gas and Electric Company, a Vectren predecessor company, in February of 1987. His professional career began with Southern Indiana Gas and Electric Company, a Vectren predecessor, in Evansville, Ind., where he has worked for 29 years. Throughout his tenure with Vectren, he has held a variety of marketing, sales, conservation, revenue management and planning positions. In these roles, he has worked with Vectren customers to evaluate and in some cases implement renewable and combined heat and power systems. Prior to moving into his current role Robbie was Director of Conservation at Vectren Energy Delivery where he is responsible for managing all aspects of gas and electric conservation, energy efficiency and DSM programs for Vectren. Robbie was a member and former Chairperson of the Indiana Statewide Demand Side Management Coordination Committee which was charged with the implementation of the statewide Core DSM program portfolio. A native of Evansville, Ind., Sears received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Southern Indiana. Sears currently holds board positions at the Evansville African American Museum, Tri-State Better Business Bureau and the Evansville Industrial Foundation. Sears’ energy industry affiliations include: Sustainable Growth Committee for the American Gas Association, Electric and Gas Energy Efficiency and Conservation Committee for the Indiana Energy Association and the Retail Energy Services Executive Advisory Committee for the Edison Electric Institute. He and his wife, Andrea, live in Newburgh, Ind., and have two children: Cole and Dylan.
Robbie Sears was named Vice President of Customer Energy Solutions in June 2014 where he is responsible for long-term planning for the company’s utilities, emerging technologies, industrial sales, economic development, and market research. Prior to his current role, Sears was Director of Conservation. Sears joined Southern Indiana Gas and Electric Company, a Vectren predecessor company, …
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Wayne Schug

Vice President of Strategy & Business Development - MISO
As Vice President of Strategy and Business Development, Wayne Schug is responsible for coordinating MISO’s ongoing strategy in support of the company’s continuing Value Proposition. In addition to strategy, Mr. Schug is responsible for business development, risk management and executive leadership support. Under his leadership, MISO and its stakeholders undertook an exhaustive analysis of the proven benefits the regional transmission organization provides, published annually since 2007 in MISO’s Value Proposition. Mr. Schug continues to oversee annual updates and additions to MISO’s Value Proposition, which many organizations in the industry now emulate. Mr. Schug also was instrumental in working with MISO executive leadership, the Board of Directors and stakeholders in creating and implementing MISO’s corporate strategy and strategic planning process as well as the company’s first comprehensive business contingency and disaster recovery planning effort. Mr. Schug directed the evaluation and business case development of MISO’s Ancillary Services Market, which began in 2009. Mr. Schug also was responsible for leading the negotiation and filing of a Joint Operating Agreement with PJM, which serves as a model for MISO’s seams agreements with neighboring entities. In his previous areas of responsibilities with MISO, Mr. Schug directed the company’s stakeholder relations, corporate communications, performance management and other functions. Mr. Schug has more than 25 years of experience in the utility industry. Prior to joining MISO, Mr. Schug was Director of Electric Delivery at Indianapolis Power & Light, an investor-owned utility. Mr. Schug was responsible for all distribution-related planning, engineering, construction, operation and maintenance activities for IPL’s service territory and was responsible for both customer service delivery and asset management. Mr. Schug has held committee and task force responsibilities for the Edison Electric Institute and the Indiana Electric Association. He is a former Board member of the Electric League of Indiana and the American Red Cross of Central Indiana. A native of Indiana, Mr. Schug graduated from Purdue University where he earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. Mr. Schug also has a Master of Business Administration from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business and a Doctor of Jurisprudence from Indiana University School of Law.
As Vice President of Strategy and Business Development, Wayne Schug is responsible for coordinating MISO’s ongoing strategy in support of the company’s continuing Value Proposition. In addition to strategy, Mr. Schug is responsible for business development, risk management and executive leadership support. Under his leadership, MISO and its stakeholders undertook an exhaustive analysis of the …
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