Day 1 Sessions

All Day 1 Sessions are 3:15-3:55 pm

Energy Implications of Emerging Transportation Needs
Rob Threlkeld, Global Manager, Renewable Energy, General Motors

Driverless cars…battery-powered vehicles…solar-powered trucks…The world’s largest transportation companies are experimenting with new paradigms not even imagined even a decade ago. With these new modes of travel come new challenges and opportunities regarding how transportation will be fueled in the future – offering insights that can be applied to other industries as well.

In this session, you will learn:

  • What lessons being learned by transportation companies regarding renewable energies can be applied to other industries
  • How will renewable energies be used with technologies sell in the most primitive stages
  • Why it is imperative to consider energy demand when considering the world’s future transportation needs

Rob Threlkeld manages the nearly 70 megawatts of renewable energy that make up GM’s global renewable energy portfolio. He is responsible for accessing the feasibility of future projects as they pertain to GM’s overall sustainability strategy.



Track: Energy Procurement & Distributed Energy

Climate Change Resilience Planning
Moderator: Frank Rukavina, President, Sustainable Innovations Operative
Gabriel Adams, Sustainability Program Manager, Fluor Federal Petroleum Operations
Kassidy Burnett Boorman, Program Manager, Los Alamos National Laboratory
Lissa Myers, Sustainable Transportation, Climate Change Resiliency Practice Leader, NREL

Changes in the global climate system are evident from observed increases in ocean and air temperatures, polar icecap reductions, more frequent sever weather events and sea level rises. In addition to undertaking climate change mitigation measures, it is becoming increasingly important that governments and commercial business begin to consider how regional climate change could directly impact their operations.

In this session, you will learn:

  • What is required of a company to conduct a risk-based climate change impact analysis
  • When to develop and implement a resilience action plan for a business
  • How seriously regional climate change can impact a company’s operations

Frank Rukavina was previously responsible for the National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s advancement of corporate environmental, social and economically responsible decision-making and for the implementation of energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.


Gabriel Adams has more than 20 years of experience in the environmental and sustainability fields. Gabriel and his team support the US Department of Energy Strategic Petroleum Reserve project. He has managed the collection of sustainability data for sustainability projects at the SPR, and recently participated with a DOE Sustainability Program Office-sponsored change resiliency planning process to assess the SPR’s most significant climate-related vulnerabilities.



Kassidy Burnett Boorman has 10 years of experience in environmental and biological work, as well as in the health sciences. Burnett Boorman is a member of the pollution prevention program at Los Alamos National Laboratory. As part of that program, she is leading a project to identify resource vulnerabilities in relation to the future of the Laboratory and its mission. Previously, she led and participated in diverse pollution prevention projects focused primarily on source reduction. Boorman holds degrees in animal science and nutritional biology.



Lissa Myers has 20 years of experience in urban planning and public policy in both the public and private sector. For the last eight years, Myers has managed the design and implementation of sustainability strategies at the NREL campus to maximize the benefits of the research conducted at the lab, improve resiliency and reduce environmental impact of doing business. She holds a bachelor of environmental design in urban planning from the University of Colorado at Boulder and a master of public policy from the University of Denver.



Track: Air, Waste, Water & Energy

Design for Sustainability
Devan Tracy, Energy Engineer, Lockheed Martin
Claudia Capitini, Sustainability Lead, Arrow Electronics

Sustainability can be a quantitative approach to drive better business outcomes and improve the ability for decision-makers to understand the total cost of ownership of a product over its lifecycle. Both Lockheed Martin and the U.S. Defense Department are examining this topic closely, along with the related requirements in RFPs.

In this session you will learn:

  • How lifecycle thinking has evolved as a concept in recent years
  • What the U.S. Defense Department’s Design for Sustainability Framework is
  • When and how to integrate lifecycle analysis into the design process

In her current role as an energy engineer, Devan Tracy is responsible for developing business cases to implement both on-site renewable energy and energy efficiency projects to drive affordability and support corporate sustainability initiatives. In her previous role with the Lockheed Martin Corporate Sustainability Office, Tracy facilitated streamlined life cycle assessment analyses and supported the annual sustainability report development and external reporting initiatives. She is a graduate of Lockheed Martin’s Engineering Leadership Development Program (ELDP).


Claudia Capitini is a sustainability practitioner with more than 15 years of experience in science communications, branding and marketing, operational sustainability and product lifecycle assessment. Capitini has worked all over the world building and expanding sustainability programs and consulting for organizations with complex offerings and challenging communications needs. Currently at Arrow Electronics, she is leading the creation of Arrow’s global sustainability program and works to bring consumer-facing sustainability solutions to the technology space.




Track: Circular Economy & Supply Chain


The Wise Use of Technology in EHS Strategies
Moderator: Sameer Vyas, Partner, Huco Consulting
Karen Nielsen, Corporate Director, Environmental, Health and Safety, Kinder Morgan

Managing environmental, health and safety risk is a vital need for companies of all sizes; it can also be a time consuming, labor-intensive, expensive task. Emerging technologies are helping businesses, but finding and implementing the correct information systems in the field can be a challenge.

In this session, you will learn:

  • Why and how systems can help manage EHS
  • Which aspects are most important in choosing the correct EHS software
  • What metrics a company can use to evaluate EHS excellence

Sameer Vayas has managed and supported several large-scale EMIS technologies. He has used several leading off-the-shelf enterprise solutions as well as developed cloud-based point solutions. He holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and an MBA from the University of Southern California.




Karen Nielsen has 15 years of EHS experience primarily within oil and gas operations. She currently works as a corporate director of environmental, health and safety for Kinder Morgan. Over the last 10 years, she has held other positions with Kinder Morgan, including director for air quality permitting and compliance and EHS compliance specialist.


Track: Materiality & Metrics


4:05-5:00 pm
Smart Buildings: Gateway to Smart Cities
Sponsored Research Presentation
Tim Ritchie, Vice President of Sales, Buddy Platform

For Tim Ritchie, IoT is more than tens of billions of devices generating exabytes of data, it’s the potential of a network of sensors and technologies intelligently working in concert to positively impact the environment. With 25 years of experience, nearly half of that with SaaS companies, Ritchie has helped clients like Apple, Accenture, Starbucks, CBS, Microsoft, Vodafone and March of Dimes navigate complex technology ecosystems and integrate new technologies.