Learn more about the technologists, founders, and market experts who will be presenting on what they
know at this exciting event.
VP Business Development
Mr. Sproull serves in a business development capacity for ESS. Having held executive roles and founded startups in both high tech and emerging clean energy spaces, Bill’s passion centers on bringing disruptive technologies to markets where gaps exist. ESS is manufacturing and deploying flow battery systems, based on a safe and inexpensive iron, salt-water electrolyte, with a focus on long-duration energy storage applications worldwide.
Dr. Brian Morin is co-founder and CEO of the Soteria Battery Innovation Group (BIG), a growth company working to eliminate lithium-ion battery fires, reduce weight of lithium-ion batteries, and reduce costs. Prior to this role, he was president and co-founder of Dreamweaver International, founder and CEO of Innegrity LLC, and a research physicist for both Milliken & Company and DuPont. In addition, Brian serves on a number of advisory boards and foundations. He received Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Materials Physics from The Ohio State University and earned a B.S. in Physics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Co-Founder & Partner
Chris Thomas is a co-founder and partner at Assembly Ventures. Detroit and Berlin. Prior to Assembly Ventures, he co-founded the Detroit Mobility Lab and the Michigan Mobility Institute where he served as a senior advisor to mobility startups around the globe. Chris also co-founded Fontinalis Partners and, for more than a decade, worked to build it into one of the premier investment firms in next-generation mobility. Prior to Fontinalis, Chris served in the US Army and worked as an investment banker at UBS within its Technology and Energy groups. He earned his master's in business administration from the Yale School of Management.
Co-Founder & CEO
Doug Campbell is CEO and co-founder of Solid Power, a new breed of battery company that partners with the likes of BMW and Ford to develop all-solid-state EV batteries. He also founded i2C Solutions and co-founded Roccor, LLC, which merged in 2015, with Doug serving as CEO through 2018 and remaining on its board until the company was acquired in 2020. He began his career in advanced technology development at the Space Vehicles Directorate of the Air Force Research Laboratory. Doug holds a B.S. and M.S. in Civil Engineering with a Structural Mechanics emphasis from the University of New Mexico.
CTO & Co-Founder
In 2011, Douglas Tham was bitten by the startup bug and hasn’t looked back. As CTO and co-founder of MATRIX Industries, a Silicon Valley pioneer of thermoelectric energy harvesting solutions, Douglas is helping eliminate the need to recharge or replace batteries in electronic devices by providing battery-less solutions. Prior to founding MATRIX, he published research on silicon nanowire FETs, nanostructured silicon photovoltaics, silicon-based thermoelectrics, and semiconductor nanowires. Douglas holds a B.A. in Chemistry, a B.S.E, and an M.S.E in Materials Science from the University of Pennsylvania as well as a Ph.D in Chemistry from the California Institute of Technology.
Head of Test & Applications
Gabriel DeVault is an industry leading EV drivetrain engineer pursuing sustainable technologies in both practical transportation and sport applications. He helped found Zero Motorcycles, and worked for JOBY Aviation during the creation of the JOBY S2 eVTOL concept and spearheading the creation of both the JOBY LEAPTech Truck and the ZeroAvia HyPERTruck. Gabriel has designed, built, and flown two of his own electric aircrafts and has assisted in building and creating more than a dozen electric airplanes and believes in pushing the industry forward from all levels.
Giri Joshi, a Senior Scientist and Principal Investigator at Nanohmics Inc has extensive research and development experience in thermoelectric materials, devices, and applications. He has served as a Manager/Director of Materials research and development at GMZ Energy, Evident Technologies, and Sheetak where he led teams of scientists and technicians working to fabricate and improve performance of thermoelectric materials and devices for power generation and cooling applications. His current research/product development efforts include nanophase composites for thermoelectric devices, body heat power generation and cooling devices, and microfabrication of microconcentrator for cubesat applications.
Maglev Aero Inc.
Ian Randall is Co-Founder, President & CEO of Magev Aero Inc., developing an eVTOL Air Vehicle Platform expanding the performance envelope across Advanced Air Mobility applications based on a novel breakthrough propulsion innovation. Ian graduated from Purdue University with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering and a Minor in Electrical Engineering with a concentration in System Design, and Dynamics & Controls. He held leadership roles across projects and programs spanning eVTOL UAVs, NASA and Blue Origin sponsored Suborbital payloads, a Land Speed Record Electric Motorcycle program with Purdue University, Long Endurance UAVs, and Fault Tolerant Cloud Computing Workload Management. He is also an avid robotics and aviation enthusiast and enjoys music and table tennis.
CEO & Co-Founder
Jeff Engler is CEO and co-founder of Wright Electric, a US-based company developing the world's first family of zero-emissions commercial aircraft and that participated in the US Army's Power Transfer Cohort in 2021. Wright Electric is working within and across the aviation industry to develop electric airplanes that deliver lower costs and lower emissions for short regional flights. Jeff was also co-founder of Podimetrics, a medical device startup that aims to keep diabetic feet healthy, as well as co-founder of MatchLend, a financial services startup. He has a BA in History from Columbia College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Founder & CEO
As founder and CEO of Influit Energy, John Katsoudas drives the company vision and guides overall operations. He has more than 17 years of experience in material science and was the named inventor on the company’s core technologies patents. John spent a career in applied physics, working with government agencies, renowned research groups, and policy makers. His expertise spans from ideation to manufacturing and business development. A former member of the Material Research Collaboration Access Team at Illinois Tech, John designed and built multiple beamlines at the Advanced Photon Source at Argonne National Laboratory and is an expert in battery materials.
Director of Technology
Dr. Jorge Elizondo is co-founder and director of technology at Heila Technologies, a Kohler Company dedicated to simplifying deployment, operation, and optimization of distributed energy resources. Jorge received his Ph.D. from MIT in 2016 where he worked on microgrid stability analysis and control strategies. At MIT, he was heavily involved in the energy community, twice receiving the MIT Clean Energy Prize top award and serving as co-director of the MIT Energy Conference. Prior to MIT, Jorge worked on renewable energy projects in Mexico and received an M.S in Electrical Engineering and a B.S in Physics from Monterrey Tech.
Co-Founder & CTO
Joshua Seagroves is co-founder & CTO of Parasanti, an edge computing hardware and data orchestration software company dedicated to powering the world's infrastructure, to tame the cloud and bring it down to earth. Parasanti offers sensor fusion, AI/ML enablement, and workload orchestration capabilities to the DoD to deliver JADC2 capabilities of the future.
Kyle Teamey is an investor and US Army Reserve Colonel with experience in national security. Prior to joining Breakthrough Energy, he was on the investment team at In-Q-Tel and an entrepreneur with companies and funds including Liquid Light, Redpoint Ventures, Switch, and Dunia Frontier Consultants. He holds a B.A. in Environmental Engineering from Dartmouth College, an M.A. in International Finance and Energy Policy from Johns Hopkins, and an M.S. in Materials Science from Columbia. Kyle is also an inventor on 25 issued US patents and has been published in journals ranging from Topics in Catalysis to Military Review.
Vice President for Policy and International Outreach
Levi Tillemann is the author of The Great Race: The Global Quest for the Car of the Future and a regular contributor to WIRED, the New Yorker, and other publications. He is a former member of the Obama administration Department of Energy, senior advisor to Valence Strategic, and currently leads global policy for Ample, an electric vehicle battery swapping company. Before that, Levi led an initiative on decarbonizing manufacturing, use-phase, and end-of-life emissions of the automobility ecosystem at the World Economic Forum. He holds a B.S. from Yale as well as an M.A. and Ph.D from Johns Hopkins SAIS.
Ashley H. Priddy Centennial Professor
The University of Texas at Austin
Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics
Maruthi Akella is the founding director for the Center for Autonomous Air Mobility and the faculty lead for the Control, Autonomy, and Robotics area within the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at UT Austin. His research program encompasses coordinated control aerospace systems, adaptation and physics-based learning, guidance for hypersonic vehicles, and computationally lightweight vision-based sensing solutions. For his high-impact research contributions, he was recognized by the AIAA Mechanics and Control of Flight Award, the AAS Dirk Brouwer Award, the IEEE-CSS Award for Technical Excellence in Aerospace Control, and the IEEE Judith A. Resnik Space Award. He is also currently Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of the Astronautical Sciences and Associate Editor for the AIAA Journal of Guidance, Control, and Dynamics.
Co-Founder & CTO
Max Mankin is co-founder and CTO of Modern Electron where he leads a team of 40 scientists, engineers, and technicians; rectifies product and market requirements with technology; and sets company market and technology strategy. Prior to Modern Electron, Max was an Entrepreneur in Residence at the Invention Science Fund. He earned a BS with honors in Chemistry from Brown University and a Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from Harvard University, where he held fellowships from the Hertz and National Science Foundations. Max is an inventor with numerous accolades, including being among Inc. magazine’s most brilliant entrepreneurs under 30 as well as Forbes 30 Under 30.
Our Next Energy (ONE)
Mujeeb Ijaz, founder and CEO of ONE, is an engineer with 30+ years experience developing electric vehicles (EVs) and battery systems technologies to further adoption of EVs through advancements in battery safety, range, and cost. Mujeeb led teams at Ford Motor Co., developing Ford’s Edge with HySeries Drive, the Ford Fusion Hydrogen 999, and the Chrysler ENVI project. He was president of A123’s Venture Technologies unit, guiding development of Li-Ion battery solutions for EVs, and more recently, a senior director at Apple developing novel energy storage solutions. A graduate of Virginia Tech, Mujeeb holds 31 U.S. patents in battery technology and energy management systems.
UT Austin | U.S. Army
Nick Barry is a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Texas at Austin. His current research involves optimization of the design and operation of permanently isolated nanogrids and microgrids, improving resilience in military electrical systems through virtual islanding, and resilience assessment techniques for microgrids. Nicholas graduated with honors from West Point with a B.S. in electrical engineering and earned an M.E. from Missouri Science and Technology as well as an M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic University. Additionally, he served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computers Science at West Point.
Shannon Sentell is Stealth Power's COO, leading strategic partnerships and technology operations for the company. With deep engineering and hardware experience, Shannon is shaping the future of the idle mitigation and hybrid power market in the government, private sector, and beyond. He received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from West Point, a masters in Nuclear Engineering from MIT, and a Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering from the University of South Carolina. He completed his post-doctoral studies as an Army War College Fellow at the Fletcher School at Tufts University.
Carnegie Mellon | Mechanical Engineering
Researcher and Ph.D. Candidate at Carnegie Mellon University. His academic research focuses on modeling, simulation, and testing of Li-ion and Li-metal batteries for electrified terrestrial and aerial mobility systems. His research has been published by the National Academy of Sciences, ACS Energy Letters, Journal of the Electrochemical Society, Nature Energy, and other journals. These publications have informed transportation policy in various regions across the globe. His work is also featured in Forbes, WIRED, MIT Technology Review, Quartz, Axios, and other media outlets where he also regularly critiques developments in the electric mobility and Li-ion battery space.
Program Lead — Stationary Storage
ACCESS, Argonne National Lab
Sue Babinec is the Program Lead — Stationary Storage at Argonne National Lab where she is tasked to establish a sustainable growth strategy for breakthrough stationary storage for grid applications. Babinec previously served six years in Washington DC as senior commercialization advisor at the Advanced Research Projects Agency — Energy (ARPA-E) where she co-managed the energy storage portfolio for both transportation and grid. Prior to ARPA-E she led several research groups focused on design and scale-up of Li-ion technologies as a technical director for A123 Systems, Inc. Babinec spent the first two decades of her career at The Dow Chemical Corp., where she was the Senior Electrochemist, a senior member of the Corporate VC group, was awarded the Inventor of the Year Award, and was the company’s first woman Corporate Fellow. She holds 50+ patents, and has authored or coauthored dozens of journal articles and book chapters.
Dr. Tal Sholklapper is co-founder of Voltaiq and serves as CEO of the New York-based company. He and his team are working to provide analytics that accelerate the transition to a battery-powered world. Before co-founding Voltaiq, Tal was the lead engineer on a Department of Energy project at the CUNY Energy Institute where he worked to develop an ultra-low-cost grid-scale battery. Prior to his work at CUNY, Tal co-founded Point Source Power, a low-cost fuel-cell startup based on technology he developed while at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) and UC Berkeley. He holds a BS, MS, and Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from UC Berkeley.
Dr. Veronika Stelmakh is the CEO and cofounder of Mesodyne, an MIT spin out commercializing a new class of power generator that converts fuel to electricity via light. Mesodyne’s LightCell™ generator is silent, has no moving parts, operates on any hydrocarbon fuel, and offers up to 10x the energy density of lithium ion batteries.
Dr. Stelmakh holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Arlington, and a MS and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from MIT. The focus of her Ph.D. work and post doc at MIT's Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies was the development of a practical photonic crystal selective emitter for thermophotovoltaic applications which resulted in a world record benchtop demonstration and is at the core of Mesodyne's technology. Dr. Stelmakh is an expert in the field of thermophotovoltaics and has authored numerous technical articles on this subject.