Grid Forward Board of Directors

The Grid Forward Board of Directors represents the diversity of stakeholders: utility, industry solution providers, professional services, education, government and non-profits.

Board Triangle image

Experience that guides our mission to promote and accelerate grid innovation

Our Board of Directors manages the business and financial affairs and strategic direction of the organization as outlined in the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws. Members of the Board have relevant leadership experience in the energy and utility industry, so their contributions will help support the organization’s mission of promoting and accelerating grid innovation. Board Members serve three-year terms.

Nominations from among members in good standing are considered by the Nominating Committee when notice is provided to the Executive Director, Secretary, or other members of the Nominating Committee in writing. Candidates are voted on by the Board of Directors. The slate of renewing and incoming members elected by the Board is then voted on by the membership in the Annual Meeting. Board meetings are generally scheduled quarterly. The Board may fill vacancies from resignation or other changes. Typically 2-4 members are elected each year.

Emeka Anyanwu

Seattle City Light (2020-26)

Emeka joined Seattle City Light in March 2018, and leads teams responsible for Power Resource Management and Planning, Regional Affairs, Customer Energy Solutions, and Electrification strategy, including Grid Modernization and strategic technology deployment. His team is leading efforts to evolve the utility as the operational and business models pivot to meet the current and future customer and community needs and expectations in the new energy marketplace. He has also served on the External Advisory Committee for the Electrical & Computer Engineering Department at Iowa State University and is a graduate of the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce’s Centurions Leadership program.

Luis D’Acosta

Uplight (2023-24)

Luis is the CEO of Uplight, the technology partner of energy providers transitioning to a decarbonized future. A recognized leader across the energy ecosystem, he joined the organization in September 2022 to help scale Uplight’s market leading grid edge customer engagement, enrollment, and load flexibility platform. Prior to joining Uplight, Luis was the global head of Schneider Electric’s Digital Energy business, where he worked to accelerate the digitization of power networks by building and implementing new technology solutions. Having worked on all sides of the utility industry, Luis has vast global experience running software businesses, scaling startups, and leading growth and customer engagement initiatives.

Julie Desimone

Treasurer

Moss & Adams (2019-25)

Julie leads the Power & Utilities National Practice for Moss Adams LLP, and has been providing auditing, accounting, and consulting services since 2000. Some of her specific areas of focus include: advanced utility accounting, regulatory assets and liabilities, technical auditing (including single audits), contracting, business feasibility studies, internal control evaluation, litigation support, and relationship management. Julie currently serves on the Moss Adams’s Executive Council, training and development committee, audit task force, and recruiting program. In addition, she serves as an AICPA peer reviewer and is a regular speaker on technical and operational issues related to the energy and utility industry.

Jackie Flowers

Tacoma Public Utilities (2020-25)

Jackie assumed the role of CEO/Director of Tacoma Public Utilities on August 1, 2018. She is the first female to be permanently appointed to the position. Jackie is active in implementation strategies associated with TPUs utility modernization vision with the goal of integrating technology and fostering innovation to deliver affordable, flexible, secure, resilient, and sustainable power and water services. Jackie spent 13 years as general manager of Idaho Falls Power. During her tenure, the utility participated in the Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration project, exploring benefits of smart grid technology in seven key areas. Jackie is a Registered Professional Civil Engineer with 27 years of professional experience, 19 of which have involved managing public utilities. She has long list of organizations she has been involved with, serving on many boards and often in leadership positions.

Hanna Grene

Microsoft (2022-2023)

Hanna Grene, Director for Energy and Sustainability at Microsoft, is an energy and technology executive with over 14 years of leadership experience in strategic planning, operations, marketing, policy, and business development. She has worked closely with federal agencies, governments, utilities, and C&I clients worldwide to fund and execute renewable energy and grid resilience projects. At Microsoft, Hanna leads strategy and partnerships across the Power and Utilities market in the Americas and works closely with Fortune 500 executives and policymakers to accelerate investment and innovation in a decarbonized, secure, resilient, and affordable energy system. Prior to joining the Microsoft team in 2021, Hanna was the Chief of Commercial Development for PXiSE Energy Solutions, a San Diego-based startup company and subsidiary of Sempra Energy that builds grid controls technology. Hanna helped the organization complete 800MW of renewable energy and microgrid projects across three continents and seven countries. As the Director of Policy at the Center for Sustainable Energy, Grene led corporate strategy and advanced critical legislation to secure $1B in funding for solar, battery storage, and EVs in CA and OR with an emphasis on equity-focused programs. She has advised public utilities commissions, government agencies, and lawmakers on market barriers, technology, and data-based incentive structures to accelerate renewable energy and electric vehicle adoption. Hanna has an MBA from the Rady School of Management at the University of California San Diego and a BA in International Relations from American University. She has been published as a subject matter expert on energy and climate issues with local and national press and has authored original research on corporate governance and culture. In 2021, Hanna was recognized as a San Diego 40 Under 40 Top Business Leader.

Devin Hampton

UtilityAPI (2021-2024)

Devin Hampton is the Chief Executive Officer at UtilityAPI, a software company that is building the data network for the clean energy transition. He is also the Co-Founder of Empowering Diversity in Climate Tech (EDICT), a collective of over 60 companies committed to building stronger businesses through diversity. He is an adviser to multiple organizations in energy and tech including the American-Made Challenges Prize. 

Bill Holmes

K&L Gates (2013-24)

Bill Holmes is a partner at K&L Gates where he concentrates his practice in the area of energy and infrastructure projects and transactions with an emphasis on wind energy, solar energy, hydroelectric power, geothermal, biomass, natural gas, carbon offsets, and energy storage. His experience extends into corporate transactions, water law, and real estate law. Bill also advises clients in negotiating major power purchase agreements, acquisition and sale of energy projects, EPC agreements, O&M agreements, fuel supply, and energy project development agreements. Bill has been selected to be included in the 2007 through 2013 editions of The Best Lawyers in America in Energy Law and Environmental Law and was selected as a “leader in the field” by Chambers Global (Projects: Renewables & Alternative Energy – USA), 2011. He was also named the Best Lawyers 2011 Portland, and Oregon Energy Lawyer of the Year. Bill is an adjunct professor at the University of Oregon Law School, where he taught one of the first renewable energy law courses in the nation from 2008 through 2012.

Marissa Hummon

Utilidata (2019-2025)

Marissa joined Utilidata in 2018 as Chief Technology Officer, responsible for the company’s technology research, product development, deployment, and engineering teams. She brings more than fifteen years of expertise in energy systems and grid optimization, having previously overseen product development for Tendril and managed grid modernization research at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Marissa is a graduate of Colorado College and holds a PhD in Applied Physics from Harvard University.

Carl Imhoff

Pacific Northwest National Labs (2014-2024)

Mr. Imhoff manages the Electric Infrastructure market sector within Pacific Northwest National Laboratory’s Energy and Environment Directorate, conducting advanced electric infrastructure research and product development with the U.S. Depart­ment of Energy, state governments, vendors and commercial energy firms. In this role he is responsible for PNNL’s research and development programs on innovations in the areas of advanced power transmission reliability concepts, demand response, development of improved integration concepts for renewable energy generation technologies, policy and strategy for smart grid concepts, and cross-cutting grid analytic tools in visualization and high performance computing.  During his 30 years at PNNL, Mr. Imhoff has conducted and managed a broad range of energy research. His technical work emphasizes systems engineering and operations in the areas of power system reliability, smart grid, energy efficiency, energy storage and clean generation. He has been actively involved in a number of electric power system organizations and bodies, includ­ing the North American Synchrophasor Initiative, the GridWise Alliance, the Consortium for Electric Reliability Technology Solutions, and the Western Electric Coordinating Council.

Josh Keeling

Generac Grid Services (2017-25)

Josh brings over a decade of experience in analysis, evaluation and development of distributed energy resources to his role at Cadeo. He has a deep understanding of distribution resource planning and demand-side analytics—having been responsible for both as a consultant for Cadmus and as a manager for the Customer Energy Solutions team at Portland General Electric. Prior to joining Cadeo, Josh was a Senior Product Manager at LO3 Energy where he designed transactive energy solutions. In his five years at Portland General Electric, Josh lead distribution resource strategy and product development, helping to deploy a suite of demand response, pricing, transportation, and resilience programs. A voting member of the Regional Technical Forum, Josh holds a Ph.D. in Systems Science, an M.S. in Systems Science, and a B.S. in Economics, all from Portland State University.

Matt Piper

ESRI (2023-2026)

Matt Piper is Esri’s Global Industry Solutions Infrastructure Director. He focuses on technology telecommunications, utilities, water, and architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) and leads Esri Digital Twin Initiatives. As a professional senior leader working for the largest GIS company in the World, he focuses on exploring new opportunities for how location intelligence is applied to utilities and how GIS aligns to future strategies to enable organizations to evolve to meet the changing demands of the industry.
As an Industry thought leader Matt represents GIS capability and value to improve upon efficiency and decision making.

Jennifer Potter

Strategen (2023-2024)

As a Director at Strategen, Jennifer leads projects relating to grid modernization, advanced rate design, policy innovation, and distributed energy resources (DERs). She supports private- and public-sector clients across numerous domains, leveraging her prior experience as a state Commissioner to deliver valuable insights to clients. In her prior role as Commissioner at the Hawaii Public Utilities Commission, Jennifer often led docket process design, workshop organization with diverse stakeholders, and ultimate execution of hundreds of docketed proceedings.

Prior to joining the Commission, Jennifer was a Research Specialist at the Hawaii Natural Energy Institute where she led Virtual Power Plant with the local electric utility and industry contractors. She also led the Pathways to an Open Grid project which determined the marginal and locational costs for DERs on the Oahu grid. Furthermore, she examined new opportunities for demand response and grid services on all the islands of Hawaii. 

Kristan Sheeran

Portland General Electric (2023-2025)

Kristen Sheeran Ph.D. serves as Senior Director of Resource Planning and Sustainability Strategy at Portland General Electric where she drives policy and planning around the company’s integrated resource, system, and program planning, Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) programs, and strategies to meet Oregon’s ambitious clean energy goals. She has created industry-leading sustainability initiatives that serve to strengthen and advance policies to build a clean energy future while protecting communities from climate change impacts. She partners closely with partners across industries to advance the region’s decarbonization objectives. Kristen has more than 20 years of energy sector experience with deep expertise in energy, climate, transportation, markets and regulation, economics and policy. Prior to joining PGE she served as Energy, Climate, and Transportation Advisor to Governor Kate Brown and led the state’s Carbon Policy Office. During that time, Oregon advanced groundbreaking climate policy, including Oregon’s clean electricity legislation (HB 2021) and Executive Order 20-04 to achieve statewide carbon reduction goals. She was a professor of economics for 7 years at St. Mary’s College of Maryland where she taught environmental economics, development, and political economy, and has written and spoken extensively about climate change and clean energy.

Marie Steele

NV Energy (2023-2026)

Marie Steele is the Vice President of Integrated Energy Services at NV Energy where she leads a diverse team responsible for the company’s clean energy customer programs and services including energy efficiency, demand response, electric vehicles, battery storage and renewable energy.  The team is also responsible for integrated grid planning and the distributed resource plan, which ensures NV Energy customers and Nevadans benefit from distributed energy resource deployment.  Her experience at NV Energy spans across transmission and distribution projects, financial planning and analysis, and renewable energy strategy.

A persistent advocate for equitable sustainable solutions, Marie has been a prominent voice in the transportation electrification space in Nevada, co-authoring the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy report, Electrifying Nevada’s 21st Century Transportation System as Principal and Co-Founder at e-Centricity, LLP, a woman-owned Nevada based business.

Marie received her MBA from the ESADE Business School in Barcelona, Spain and has Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Iowa with an International Business Exchange at the University of New South Wales.

Vidya Vankayala

BCIT (2023-2024)

Dr. Vidya Vankayala is currently the Director of Smart Microgrid Applied Research Team (SMART) at the center for applied research and innovation, BC Institute of Technology (BCIT). In this role, Vidya is responsible to define and direct applied research programs that advance the state of the art in grid modernization and resilient systems. His goal is to define and implement a new innovation roadmap for BCIT and province of BC to support resilient energy systems. Dr. Vankayala brings more than 30 years of experience in the utility and hi-tech sectors. 

Dr. Vankayala led innovation 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 30 publications in operations, planning, cyber security and technology enablement of smart infrastructures for industry, community and home.

Previously at Powertech Labs Inc., Vidya was responsible for the world-class High Power Lab which offers unique grid-connected testing and validation services to the utility industry. His team developed several new services at Powertech including NERC CIP assessment and audit support, Distribution Automation, Distribution System Reliability Assessment to incorporate Climate Change Impacts, Wildfire Risk Assessment and Mitigation and Microgrid Design and Planning.

Bryce Yonker

Grid Forward Executive Director (2010-2023), Grid Forward Executive Director & CEO

Bryce Yonker serves as the first executive director & CEO for Grid Forward. He heads up strategic development, programs and operations for the organization. Bryce was a founder and original board member and the initial executive director of Grid Forward. He is also the founder & principal of EnerTec Development, an energy advisory and consulting firm based in Portland Oregon. He is an advisor to multiple industry companies and previously served as the senior director of business development & strategy for Clean Edge, a leading clean tech market research firm. He holds a Bachelors degree in Business Administration from Pepperdine University and an International MBA from IE in Spain.