Grid Forward Board of Advisors

The Grid Forward Board of Advisors draws a diverse group of experts from across our membership to help guide our focus and activities. Join Grid Forward, and become part of this forward-looking group!

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Grid Forward maintains a group of diverse industry professionals to help steer the key activities of the organization. Advisors are invited to serve from among members in good standing to align with the core interests and efforts of the organization. The Executive Committee of the Board reviews Advisor candidates which are confirmed by the Executive Director. There are no term limits for Advisors. Advisor meetings are generally held monthly. Typically four to six Advisors are selected each year.


Our advisors commit to three-year terms, so there are often opportunities for new leaders to help us move forward. Contact Grid Forward if you or someone you know would like to serve.

Jeff Allen

Executive Director


Jeff Allen has served as Executive Director of Forth (formerly known as Drive Oregon) since December 2011. Forth is a nonprofit industry organization working to advance electric, smart, and shared transportation in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. Through innovation and industry development, demonstration projects, advocacy and engagement, Forth is transforming the way we get around. Mr. Allen previously served as Executive Director or organizational development consultant to several nonprofit organizations, including the Oregon Environmental Council, where he served as Executive Director from 1996-2006. He holds a master’s degree in Public Policy from the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley and graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Michigan.

Anjan Bose

Regents Professor & the Distinguished Professor of Electric Power Engineering

Washington State University

Anjan Bose is a Regents Professor and the Distinguished Professor of Electric Power Engineering at Washington State University in Pullman, Washington, where he also served as the Dean of the College of Engineering & Architecture from 1998 to 2005. In 2012-13, he served at the US Department of Energy as a Senior Adviser to the Under Secretary on the electric power grid. Dr. Bose is a Member of the US National Academy of Engineering, a Foreign Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering, and a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical & Electronics Engineers (IEEE). He was the recipient of the Outstanding Power Engineering Educator Award, the Third Millenium Medal, and the Herman Halperin Electric Transmission & Distribution Award. He was appointed by the governor to the board of directors of the Washington Technology Center, and by the US Secretary of Energy on the committee to study the 1999 and 2003 power blackouts. He has served on several committees of the US National Academies including those for Engineering Education, Cybersecurity Research, Power Grid Security and America’s Energy Future.

Cassie Bowe

Vice President

Energy Impact Partners

Cassie has experience in energy across a range of technologies and functional roles. Prior to joining EIP, Cassie worked for 5 years at SunPower, one of the largest global solar companies, in policy and strategy. At SunPower she was responsible for global market analysis, legal and regulatory assessment, and new country entry. She has also gained operating experience at energy storage, micro-grid and energy asset management startups in business development and finance roles. Cassie holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, a BA in Economics from Harvard University, and was selected for Forbes 30 Under 30 in Energy (2018).

Coreina Chan


Rocky Mountain Institute

Coreina is a Principal within RMI’s Electricity Innovation Lab. She leads eLab Leap, an ongoing RMI project dedicated to empowering and improving the lives of low-income communities and households in a clean energy future. Coreina manages eLab Leap’s targeted research and support for emerging DER business models, whose team convenes the eLab Leap Social Change Lab in New York which brings together stakeholders from over 45 organizations to develop and implement unique solutions for low-income energy needs in the state.  Before joining RMI’s eLab Leap team, Coreina was a Manager in the Buildings Practice. She specialized in facilitating design and industry charrettes, with technical areas of concentration in daylighting, water conservation, and life-cycle cost analysis.  Coreina holds a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from Yale University.

Patty Durand

President & CEO

Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative

Patty Durand is President & CEO of Smart Energy Consumer Collaborative (SECC), a nonprofit whose mission is to serve as a trusted source of information for stakeholders seeking a broad understanding of consumers’ views and attitudes about energy technology and grid modernization. SECC also educates consumers and provides materials to support stakeholders in their outreach and educational efforts engaging consumers about smart energy topics. Before joining SECC, Durand worked for the Georgia Institute of Technology where she assisted in smart grid research projects. Ms. Durand holds an MBA from the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Bryan Hannegan

President & CEO

Holy Cross Energy

Bryan Hannegan is President and CEO of Holy Cross Energy, a not-for-profit, member-owned electric cooperative utility providing electricity and energy products and services to more than 42,000 customers in Western Colorado. Prior to joining Holy Cross in July 2017, Bryan was an Associate Laboratory Director at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), where he co-founded the US Department of Energy’s Grid Modernization Initiative and started up the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF), a unique “distribution grid in a box” enabling utilities, entrepreneurs and consumers to work together on cleaner, more affordable and more reliable energy systems. Earlier in his career, Bryan held senior leadership roles at the Electric Power Research Institute, the White House Council on Environmental Quality, and the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

Steve Hauser


GridWise Alliance

Mr. Hauser was recently appointed as CEO of the GridWise Alliance, a national industry led organization that promotes the modernization of the nation’s electricity infrastructure. For more than 30 years, Mr. Hauser has been a leader in clean energy and smart grid technology development efforts including solar, wind, batteries, electric vehicles, GIS software, geothermal, microgrids, fuel cells, and building energy efficiency. He recently authored the lead chapter in a book titled “Smart Grid: Integrating Renewable, Distributed and Efficient Energy” published by Academic Press. Mr. Hauser was the driving force behind the creation of the GridWise® Alliance and the Global Smart Grid Federation. Mr. Hauser has also led the creation of new international brands like GridWise® and GRID 21TM significantly raising the visibility of these issues with federal and state policy makers. He participated as a key advisor to the National Science and Technology Council’s Smart Grid Task Force resulting in the White House release of the “Policy Framework for a 21st Century Grid”. He has held senior management positions at various companies and DOE labs.

Mark Hormann

VP, Key Accounts & Business Development, West

Opus One Solutions

Prior to Opus One, Mark was VP of Sales & Strategy at Varentec where he was responsible for key accounts & go-to-market. He began his career as a distribution engineer with Manitoba Hydro and then took on various roles from utility sales to buy-side M&A within Siemens Energy.  Mark was the team lead for the acquisition integration of eMeter to Siemens prior to taking on global product responsibility for cloud based solutions within eMeter.  Mark holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Manitoba and completed his MBA at Rollins College in Florida.

Graham Horn

VP, Business Development, Western North America


As VP Business Development for Western North America, Graham leads all customer initiatives in the west, focusing on deal origination, structuring, regulatory tracking and market analysis. Graham has been active in the renewable energy space since 2002. Prior to Enbala, he was VP Corporate Affairs at Innergex Renewable Energy (a successful developer of hydroelectric and wind facilities).  He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Victoria and an MBA (Honours) from the University of British Columbia.

Ashley Horvat

VP, Public and Private Partnerships


Ashley Horvat, formerly, “Oregon’s Electric-Car Czar,” brings over a decade of electric vehicle industry expertise to Greenlots’ executive team, leading as Vice President of Public & Private Partnerships. In this role, Ashley is leading a new infrastructure model for Greenlots to advance electric mobility globally. Prior to Greenlots, Horvat led as PlugShare’s Vice President of Strategic Initiatives, founding PlugShare’s consulting division and managing corporate strategic initiatives. In 2013, Governor John Kitzhaber appointed Horvat as the Chief EV Officer for the State of Oregon, where she advised the governor’s office, served as Oregon’s member of the National ZEV Task Force, co-chaired the Energy Oregon Coalition, and coordinated all state EV efforts. Prior to that Horvat led the development of the West Coast Electric Highway, created the Oregon Electric Byways, and co-founded the “Plug & Pinot” initiative. Horvat also co-founded the “Women of Electric Vehicles” organization, where she is dedicated to elEVating women to leadership in the EV industry. She earned a bachelor’s in American Public Policy and Environmental Studies from Western Michigan University and she’s been driving EVs since 2011, including a Nissan Leaf, Chevy Volt, Kia Soul EV, and a Tesla Model S.

Philip Jones


Phil Jones Consulting

Philip Jones is currently President of Phil Jones Consulting LLC based in Seattle, Washington, that provides expert advice and consulting services for organizations in the fields of energy and utility regulation, communications regulation, and cybersecurity compliance and regulation.  Besides his consulting work, Mr. Jones serves as a Director of the Western Grid Group which advocates for clean energy resources and an efficient transmission grid in the Western States.  He also serves as a Board Advisor to Energy Impact Partners (EIP), based in New York City.   Mr. Jones is on the Board of Directors of Greenlots, one of the leading innovators developing intelligent solutions for EV infrastructure for utilities.   He also serves on the non-profit Boards of Directors of Carbon WA and Climate Solutions.  Commissioner Jones served on the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) from March 2005 to March 2017.  Mr. Jones was active nationally with the FERC, U.S. Department of Energy, DHS, and the FCC.   He also served on the Advisory Council of EPRI (Electric Power Research Institute).

Michael Jung

Vice President for Policy, Government, and Regulatory Affairs


Michael Jung is the Vice President for Policy, Government, and Regulatory Affairs (a.k.a., Chief Policy Wonk) at Varentec, a Silicon Valley pioneer in providing innovative solutions for distributed energy resources and decentralized grid control.  Prior to his current role, he served as Policy Director at the cleantech powerhouse Silver Spring Networks. He chaired an energy task force for Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber and served as a policy advisor to the campaign and administration of Ohio Governor Ted Strickland. Michael has managed environmental and climate change policy at American Electric Power and also worked as chief of staff to the President/COO of the company’s flagship operating company, AEP Ohio.  He is a graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy, Yale College, and the Harvard Kennedy School.

Ralph Kappelhoff

Executive, Power & Utilities Solutions

Amazon Web Services

Ralph Kappelhoff has the responsibility for leading the Amazon Web Services Power & Utilities industry solution definition and development. AWS is bringing cloud-based solutions consisting of internet of things (IoT), advanced analytics, machine learning (ML) artificial intelligence (AI), and Alexa Amazon’s digital assistant to a sector facing a transformational change. Ralph has over 20 years of international experience developing automation products and solutions including: energy management systems, geospatial information systems, process automation systems, and many other real-time mission-critical software products. Previously, he was the CTO of GE Grid Solutions and VP Engineering for Alstom and Areva developing market leading energy management systems used around the world. He also served as the General Manager of Rockwell Software leading the development of real-time automation solutions for the manufacturing and process industries. Ralph holds a master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of California, Santa Barbara and Executive MBA’s from Harvard and INSEAD.

Roger Kline

General Manager and Chief Executive Officer

Northern Wasco County People’s Utility District

Roger Kline is the General Manager and Chief Executive Officer of Northern Wasco County People’s Utility District.  Roger has worked in the energy industry for more than 23 years, holding positions in enterprise risk, supply side portfolio management, operations & maintenance and senior management.  Before NWCPUD, Roger worked for the Eugene Water & Electric Board (EWEB), and has held positions with the US Army Corps of Engineers, Calpine Corporation, Texas Independent Energy, Solar Turbines Inc., and the United States Navy.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Colorado Technical University, a graduate certificate in utility management from Willamette University, and has also completed the American Public Power Association’s (APPA) Certified Public Power Manager course along with many other industry and leadership specific trainings.  Roger currently serves as the Northwest Requirement’s Utility (NRU) Executive Committee Secretary/Treasurer, is an Executive Board Member of the Western Energy Institute (WEI) and is the Oregon PUD Association’s (OPUDA) alternate to the Public Power Council (PPC).

Clay Koplin

Chief Executive Officer

Cordova Electric Cooperative

Clay Koplin has served as the Chief Executive Officer of Cordova Electric Cooperative since 2007. He is also currently serving on the Northwest Public Power Association Board of Trustees, Alaska Center for Energy and Power Advisory Board, and is Mayor of Cordova. His professional specialties include project management, underground electric and communication design and installation best practices, various aspects of static and dynamic hydroelectric and hydrokinetic disciplines, electric utility business management, and strategic planning and execution. He has participated in recent US State Department sponsored outreach to Greenland and Northern Canada around arctic, off-grid, renewable energy policies and practices. Clay has a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Alaska Fairbanks and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business.

Ben Kujala

Director of Power Planning

Northwest Power and Conservation Council

Ben joined the Council staff in 2013 as a Senior Analyst, assumed the role of Interim Director in 2016, then became Director of Power Planning in October 2016.  He recently led the redevelopment of the Regional Portfolio Model for the Seventh Power Plan and coordinated the efforts to link together multiple power system models for a cohesive analytical framework for the plan. He is an expert in power system analysis and has represented the Council with regional transmission planners and the Western Electricity Coordinating Council.  Prior to joining the Council, Ben was an Operations Research Analyst for the Bonneville Power Administration where he worked on the long-term adequacy implications of wind generation, electricity market price forecasting, FCRPS operations and evaluating the benefits of a Northwest Power Pool Energy Imbalance Market.  He received a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and a master’s degree in Statistics from Portland State University.

Elliot Mainzer


Bonneville Power Administration

Elliot was named BPA Administrator in January 2014 but had served as Acting Administrator since July 2013. In that role, he is responsible for managing the nonprofit federal agency that markets carbon-free power from Columbia River hydroelectric dams and the region’s one nuclear plant. BPA also operates most of the high-voltage power grid across the Pacific Northwest, distributing wind and other energy to the region and beyond. Mainzer, who joined BPA in 2002, has held a variety of management positions within the agency’s Power, Transmission and Corporate organizations, including trading floor manager and manager of Transmission Policy and Strategy. Most recently, as executive vice president of Corporate Strategy, he led the agency’s strategic planning process and provided policy leadership and cross-agency coordination on renewables integration, market design, climate change and integrated planning. BPA, working with Battelle and other utility and technology partners, is coming near the end of its $180 million Smart Grid Demonstration Project started in 2010. Prior to joining BPA, Mainzer established and managed Enron’s Renewable Power Desk out of its offices in Portland, Ore.

Elaine Markham

Manager of Smart Grid Technology Planning

Puget Sound Energy

As the Manager of Smart Grid Technology Planning at Puget Sound Energy, Elaine and her team lead grid modernization strategic planning efforts and develop innovative demonstration projects. With extensive experience in energy management and program planning, Elaine’s work focuses on the business implications of a transforming utility industry and the stakeholder engagement models required to plan for and build a flexible, digital grid. Elaine seeks to serve PSE’s 1.1 million customers through leading edge grid architecture and operational technologies, as well as impactful and accessible products and services. Elaine is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Washington. She has a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Gonzaga University, and a Master’s degree in Engineering Management from Pennsylvania State University.

Tom Martin

Managing Director of Product, Energy & Utilities


Tom Martin is TROVE’s Managing Director of Product, Energy & Utilities strategically aligning internal and external stakeholders to deliver new analytics and situational intelligence products. Prior to TROVE, Tom led the Emerging Grid Technology at Pacific Gas & Electric leading the implementation of new technology and analytics in support for PG&E’s Electric Operations as PG&E looked to reduce operational costs, improve safety, and increase reliability in support of grid modernization. Tom holds a BS in electrical engineering and a Master’s of Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame.

James Mater

Director and General Manager – Smart Grid

Quality Logic

James co-founded and has held several executive positions at QualityLogic from June 1994 to present. He is currently General Manager of QualityLogic’s Smart Grid business unit. He is active in the Smart Grid industry as a member of the GridWise Architecture Council, the Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration Project, the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel Test and Certification Committee, and as former chair of Grid Forward, as well as giving papers and presentations on interoperability and Transactive Energy. Prior to QualityLogic, James held Product Management roles at Tektronix, Floating Point Systems, Sidereal and Solar Division of International Harvester. Mater holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Reed College, Portland, OR and an MBA from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania.

Jessica Matlock

Chief Executive Officer

La Plata Electric Association

Jessica Matlock was recently named the new Chief Executive Officer of La Plata Electric Association.  Prior to this position, Jessica served as Assistant General Manager of Snohomish County Public Utility District (PUD) No. 1, the 12th largest public utility in the US, overseeing customer and energy services and external/government affairs, including leadership of the PUD’s efforts to develop and operate solar energy, energy efficiency, electrification of transportation, and demand response programs. Matlock also led the PUD’s “Utility of the Future” efforts to modernize and enhance customer experience.  Previously, Matlock held a number of positions with the Bonneville Power Administration, including a fellowship with a U.S. Senator as a lead energy expert for the Energy Policy Act of 2005, as well as serving as a power marketing specialist, constituent account executive for the State of Idaho, and fish and wildlife project manager. She serves and has served on various boards and councils related to hydropower, clean technology, SmartGrid, energy efficiency and conservation, cybersecurity, and fish and wildlife.  A Colorado native, Matlock holds a Master of Public Administration from Portland State University and a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical oceanography from the University of Washington. Matlock also served in the United States Coast Guard.

Ron Melton

Director, Administrator and Senior Technical Leader

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Dr. Melton is the director of the Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration project, the administrator of the GridWise® Architecture Council, and a senior technical leader for smart grid research and development projects. He has over 30 years of experience applying computer technology to a variety of engineering and scientific problems. In addition to smart grid related projects, recent experience includes research and engineering in cyber security for critical infrastructure protection and process control system security. Dr. Melton is a Senior Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a Senior Member of the Association for Computing Machinery.

Tyler Nice

Systems Engineering Supervisor

Eugene Water & Electric Board

Tyler Nice is a licensed professional engineer in Oregon as well as a certified Project Management Professional. He has 12 years of experience in the electric utility industry with a combination of experience in electric generation and substations. At EWEB he serves as the Systems Engineering Supervisor, leading a multi-disciplinary team of engineers and technical staff to provide T&D asset management, capital program implementation, maintenance and testing oversight, as well as long term system growth and resiliency planning.

Steven Parker

President & Board Chairman


Steven Parker, CISA, CISSP, is President of EnergySec, and is a founding director of the organization. He has been engaged in critical infrastructure protection within the electric sector since 2001, including 8 years as a senior security staff member at a large investor-owned utility. As one of the original CIP auditors, he helped establish the NERC CIP audit program at the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC) in 2009. At EnergySec, he developed and established its NERC CIP training program, and has instructed more than 1000 industry professionals on this topic. Mr. Parker is also a partner at Archer Security Group, a leading consulting firm specializing in compliance and security in the energy sector. His experience includes a broad range of security disciplines including e-commerce, identity management, intrusion detection, forensics, incident response and investigations, security event monitoring, and NERC CIP compliance.

Sce Pike

CEO & Founder


Scé Pike is a successful entrepreneur with 21+ years in Product Strategy, Design and Development. Scé started her career in the 90s in Silicon Valley, designing and developing the 1st ecommerce sites for GM, HP, Blue Cross and others. Later she helped to pioneer Smart Phones at Palm, Qualcomm, and Amp’d Mobile. In 2007, Scé started her own company, Citizen, which initially focused on Smart Phone products and later started on Internet of Things (IoT) products such as Connected Car, Connected Health. Scé successfully sold Citizen to Ernst & Young in 2018. While developing IoT products for these industries at Citizen, she realized that there was a lack of enterprise-level Smart Apartment solutions designed specifically for the multi-family-home industry. In 2014, she founded IOTAS, a turn-key, simple smart apartment solutions company to help the MFH industry increase revenue, save costs, gather insights & monetize data from their portfolios. IOTAS has been recognized by Fortune, Wired, Gigaom, ABC, NBC, FastCo and more as the new way of automating apartments to attract tenants. Scé has spoken at Health 2.0, TechFest NW, WebVisions, NAA, and BISNOW on the impact of Internet of Things. She is a passionate advocate of representation and equality of women and minorities in STEM. Scé hopes that IOTAS will also contribute to creating passive income for the disadvantaged by using IoT as a method for everyone to broker their own data.

Jennifer Potter


Hawaii Public Utilities Commission

Commissioner Jennifer Potter began her term with the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission in July 2018 for a term to expire June 30, 2024. Jennifer was previously a faculty member at the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute (HNEI). Prior to joining HNEI, Jennifer was a Sr. Scientific Engineering Associate at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Preceding her stint in academia, Jennifer worked for Sacramento Municipal Utility District and Roseville Electric as a Principal Forecaster, Project Manager, and Enterprise Performance Manager. Jennifer has a Master of Science in Public Policy and Management from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Science in Economics and International Studies from Southern Oregon University.

Scott Reeves

Senior Associate

Cadmus Group

Scott Reeves specializes in helping utility and public-sector clients assess impacts and improve performance for energy efficiency and demand response programs. As a senior associate at Cadmus, Scott leads planning and evaluation research efforts aimed at improving delivery and optimizing savings. In this role, he oversees a broad set of analytic services including pilot and research design, impact modeling, and market research activities. He has extensive experience working in the residential energy sector evaluating whole building and income-eligible programs, as well as demand response projects focused on smart thermostat and dynamic pricing offerings. Scott holds a master’s degree in public policy from the School of Public and Environmental Affairs at Indiana University and a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of Puget Sound.

Heather Rosentrater

Senior Vice President, Energy Delivery and Shared Services


Heather Rosentrater is vice president of energy delivery at Avista Corp., where she is responsible for electric and natural gas engineering, operations and shared services such as fleet, facilities and supply chain.  Heather has led Avista’s Grid Innovation, Smart Grid and Smart City efforts, including representing Avista as a founding member of Urbanova, a living laboratory in Spokane, WA, to design cities of the future.  She also has broad experience in both the electric and natural gas sides of Avista Utilities, having managed departments and projects in transmission, distribution and SCADA, as well as asset management.  Heather is a registered Professional Engineer and holds a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from Gonzaga University.  She serves on the board of directors of Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery and Spokane’s 2nd Harvest.  In addition, she is a member of the Washington State University Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture Executive Leadership Board.

Kerstin Rock

Senior VP of Operations

LO3 Energy

In her role as Sr. VP of Operations, Kerstin is responsible for leading innovation, development and growth of LO3 Energy’s operations worldwide. Leveraging a formal education in economics and nearly 25 years working for, with and within utilities and utility market actors, Kerstin has deep experience in strategy development, technical and economic modelling and consulting, utility financial planning, regulatory strategy, product development, as well as utility program design and evaluation. Prior to joining LO3 Energy, Kerstin developed Portland General Electric’s Smart City Strategy. Previous to that, and building on experience and work she completed for the Cadmus Group, PECI and CLEAResult, Kerstin was the Director of Engineering and Technical Consulting Services at EMI Consulting. There she focused on providing a wide range of strategic and technical consulting services for utility, manufacturing, and start-up clients with a focus on DERs, blockchain, EVs, microgrids and other smart grid solutions. Kerstin holds a Master’s Degree in Economics from Portland State University.

Mischa Steiner

Founder & CEO


Mischa’s product development and management experience in the embedded electronics, wireless, and software industries was honed at organizations such as ECO Fuel Systems, Newpoint Thermal and the Okanagan Research & Innovation Centre.  Mischa is a frequent speaker and panelist at industry conferences, university programs and government events on the smart grid and the innovation potential of technology to transform business and society. He represented Awesense as a voting and participating member during the inception of the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). He is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and an active volunteer at Science World to encourage school children to pursue careers in math, science, and engineering.  Mischa holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Victoria and in Wireless, Electronics, Engineering Technology from the British Columbia Institute of Technology, after leaving a PhD path at Simon Fraser University in Mathematics.

Travis Stevenson 

Founder & President

JTS Consulting

Travis has been at the forefront of utility transformation since 1998, and leads the established utility consulting practice for JTS based out of Vancouver, British Columbia. With a focus on business operations and emerging technologies, he has worked on numerous AMI and Smart Grid initiatives in multiple countries. Travis provides strategic leadership and support to more than 30 JTS consultants who are actively working with utility customers around the globe on projects ranging from demand side management to people, process and tools relating to bulk electric system operations. Prior to founding JTS in 2004, Travis worked as an application consultant implementing utility customer information system throughout North America, and previous to that was employed by BC Hydro as a business analyst. Travis has worked both above and below the meter, with utility scale as well as distributed generation, and been in the field to appreciate how water, gas and electric utilities have operated in the past and need to operate in the future.

Joe Tallez


Tacoma Public Utilities

Joe Tellez is a technology executive with over 25 years of information technology management experience spanning the water, gas, and electric utilities industry. His experience includes definition, development, and management of grid modernization architectures for AMI, OMS/DMS, EMS, customer information & billing, and field force enablement. As the Chief Technology Offer for Tacoma Public Utilities, Joe oversees a variety of business transformational initiatives such as digital transformation and analytics realization through technical sponsorship & leadership, collaboration with stakeholders, and application of industry best practices. Joe provides vision for both short-term and long-term strategies to improve utility performance through the effective use of utility technology. Joe holds a B.S. degree in Industrial & Systems Engineering and a M.S. degree in Systems Architecture & Engineering from the University of Southern California. He also completed the Utility Management Graduate Certificate from Willamette University and is a TOGAF certified IT Architect.

Vidya Vankayala

Director of Grid Modernization

Powertech Labs

Dr. Vidya Vankayala is the Director of Grid Modernization at Powertech. With more than 25 years of experience in the utility and hi-tech sectors, Dr. Vankayala has helped several utilities in grid modernization, distribution automation, smart energy program management and system integration. He has extensive experience in management consulting for electric utility transmission and distribution and also worked for two large technology vendors that provide grid modernization technologies to the global utility sector. Dr. Vankayala has led a number of technology programs at various utilities as a Chief Architect, Solution Director and Industry Specialist. Dr. Vankayala is a member of IEEE and a contributor to several smart grid and smart city standards. He has over 20 publications in operations, planning and technology enablement of smart infrastructures for industry, community and home.

Yeye Zhang

Head of West Region Energy Partnerships

Google Nest

Yeye Zhang leads energy partnerships at Google for the Midwest region, where she works with utility partners to develop customer-focused Energy Efficiency, Demand Response and Connected Home offerings. Prior to joining Google, Yeye worked in the power generation sector, first developing utility-scale solar projects and later distributed generation solutions for commercial and industrial customers. Yeye holds a BA in International Relations from Brown University.