Texas A&M Conference on Energy: 2019 Panelists

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2019 Event Resources


If you wish to participate as a panelist on the following topics, please send an email to tamuers@gmail.com with your request.

Panel I: Sustainability and the Circular Economy

September 23, 2019

In today’s world, production generally moves in a linear model – resource extraction, product manufacturing eventually leading straight to a landfill. Instead of using a linear business model, companies are increasingly attempting to use resources in closed loops. This economic model is called the circular economy, and it aims to keeping products, components, and used materials at their highest utility and value throughout the entire supply-chain. Several policies based on the circular economy have already been extensively implemented in the European Union, thus paving the way for a carbon-neutral economy. However, in the United States, companies and policymakers are reluctant to implement such policies due to differences in ideologies and business practices. This panel will significantly address these challenges in the broader context of U.S. manufacturing and consumption practices, existing policies, and industries’ and consumers’ mindset. The panel will also address the role of design in activating circular economy practice.

Dr. Ahmed Ali

Moderator

Dr. Ahmed Ali

Assistant Professor of Architecture; Fellow, Center for Health Systems and Design; Fellow, Center for Housing and Urban Development;   Department of Architecture, Texas A&M University

Biography

Ahmed is an assistant professor of architecture at Texas A&M University. He has been teaching and practicing architecture in the United States, Italy, Turkey, and Egypt since 1998. Dr. Ali earned his Ph.D. and Master’s degrees in Architecture and Design Research from Virginia Tech School of Architecture + Design, a Bachelor degree of Fine Arts in Architecture from Alexandria University and a Scuola Primaria (sezione asilo-elementari) Diploma from Istituto Don Bosco Alessandria, Egitto. Dr. Ali is the founder and director of the Resource-Based Design Research Lab at Texas A&M University. The lab is dedicated to research and develop solutions for building components and assemblies made from the waste flow and by-products from industrial manufacturing. The lab partners with the United States Business Council for Sustainable Development (US BCSD), the industry and other academic institutions in cross-disciplinary collaboration to design and assess new forms of architecture and products. Dr. Ali is currently leading a project with General Motors and Zahner to design building envelopes and roofing systems from GM by-products. He is an international leading figure advocating for resource reuse in the building and construction industry and his work on innovating the architectural design process for resource reuse has been published and presented in top journals, proceedings, and conferences worldwide.

   
Dr. Joseph B. Powell

Panelist 1

Dr. Joseph B. Powell

Chief Scientist – Chemical Engineering   Shell

Biography

Dr. Joseph B. Powell is a Fellow of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers and has been Shell’s Chief Scientist – Chemical Engineering since 2006. He joined the Process Development Department at Shell Technology Center Houston in 1988, where he has led R&D programs in new chemical processes, biofuels, and enhanced oil recovery, in addition to a Hunters innovation group.

Dr. Powell has been co-inventor on more than 125 distinct patent applications with more than 60 granted and has received several industry awards including the A. D. Little Award for Chemical Engineering Innovation (AIChE 1998), R&D100 Award (R&D Magazine) and American Chemical Society Team Innovation Award (2000), U. Wisconsin College of Engineering Distinguished Achievement Award (2009), AIChE Process Development Division Service Award (2012) and Practice Award (2017). He is co-editor and chapter author for the book Sustainable Development in the Process Industries: Cases and Impact, John Wiley & Sons, New York (2010), and has served AIChE in various roles including Process Development Division Programming chair, Spring Meeting Program Chair (2015) and Co-Chair (2012), Chemical Technology Operating Council, Executive Board Programming Committee, Center for Energy Initiatives board member, Pilot Plants 12B Area Chair, Shale Gas and Sustainability Topical Chairs.

Joe currently serves on the U.S. National Academy Board on Chemical Sciences and Technology, U.S. Department of Energy Hydrogen Technical Advisory Committee, editorial committees of Annual Review of Chemical and Biological Engineering and Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology, Crosscutting technologies panel lead and author for Mission Innovation Carbon Capture Utilization and Storage (2017) and was elected to the Board of Directors of AIChE (2016). He obtained a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison (1984), following a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the Univ. of Virginia (1978).

   
Ron Sherga

Panelist 2

Ron Sherga

Circular Economy Program Director   BP

Biography

Ron Sherga is Circular Economy programme director for BP and Chairman and founder of EcoStrateSFS Inc. He has been active in the recycling industry most of his life with a focus and history dealing in plastics of various types. Ron has taken a proactive approach as a leader in creating solutions for more challenging waste and scrap products and helping to create and develop end products and many innovative solutions. He is gifted and sought after advisor for recycling, innovation, and sustainability.

Ron has advised and played key roles in the Carpet recycling industry, E-scrap, packaging scrap, and auto scrap recovery areas on a global basis. He has advised on plastics to oil, WTE and various sorting and size reduction systems to waste companies, materials recyclers, and various investment groups and agencies. Ron has sold and licensed patents dealing with materials tracking, tagging and monetizing for obtaining environmental credits and offsets. He was a leader in helping ISRI ( Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries) become more involved in plastics, He is certified by MIT in Clean Energy Ventures and helped to judge the MIT Clean Energy Prize in 2012.

Ron feels he has reached the zenith of his career with the creation of EcoStrateSFS a company he founded to take the most problematic polymer content waste materials using proprietary IP, trade secrets and unique materials knowledge, to turn these materials into higher value end products. These products are capable of consuming billions of pounds of waste that were generated as by-products of current recycling efforts and from post-consumer waste. The EcoStrats patented global solutions will reduce the use of high polluting materials such as aluminum, virgin polymers, energy, GHGs, and water consumption. EcoStrateSFS is currently making and selling a variety of products which have been sold and installed domestically and overseas. They are increasing production and creating strategic partnerships to enter markets more aggressively and grow EcoStrate into a global brand.

Effective in January 2019, Ron Sherga assumed the role of Circular Economy programme director for BP. This is a new role for BP and Ron was asked to use his expertise and decades of experience in waste solutions to assist in BP’s efforts to lead the polymer industry in the chemical recycling of waste and scrap polymers. This global advisory role to BP seeks to address the large and complex challenges that are affecting our waters, air, and land. Ron is delighted to lend his experience and was attracted by the commitment BP has shown toward carbon remediation and GHG reduction.

Ron Sherga is married with three grown children and has been active on a national basis on issues regarding children with disabilities and chronic illnesses. Ron served as a college trustee, for Stephens College in Columbia, MO. for six years. He has founded and led numerous charities and agencies within Texas and testified before Congress in support of children. Ron and his wife helped to create a unique children’s hospital in Dallas, Texas in memory of their daughter Audrey….called Our Children’s House at Baylor.

   
Dr. Christine Daugherty

Panelist 3

Dr. Christine Daugherty

VP of Sustainable Agriculture & Responsible Sourcing   Pepsico

Biography

Christine and her team deliver global transformation and innovation through agriculture sciences and responsible sourcing solutions for PepsiCo.

Prior to PepsiCo, Christine worked at Tyson Foods, where she held various roles, most recently Vice President of Sustainable Food Production. Her responsibilities included natural resource conservation programs, responsible sourcing, and farm animal well-being, as well as leading the company’s sustainability programs across multiple platforms.

Christine holds a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Arkansas School of Law, a Post-doctoral in Plant Gene Regulation from the University of Florida, a Ph.D. in Plant Physiology from Louisiana State University, as well as an MS degree in Plant Pathology from Iowa State University.

   
Bruce Wilcoxon

Panelist 4

Bruce Wilcoxon

Senior Industry Affairs Leader   Baker Hughes, a GE company

Biography

Bruce recently joined the Industry Affairs team at Baker Hughes, a GE Company where he is responsible for developing and managing strategic external relationships in the low carbon and energy transition space.

Prior to joining Baker Hughes, Bruce served as the Sr. Director of Environmental Affairs for Dynegy Inc. a large U.S. independent power producer where among other issues, he managed the company’s engagement on the Clean Power Plan. Bruce also spent 15 years with ConocoPhillips in a variety of corporate sustainability, public policy, and HSE roles. He served for five years as the ConocoPhillips Climate Change Director. Bruce started his career as a geologist with BP Exploration.

Bruce holds an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin, and MS in Geology from Louisiana State University and a BS in Geology from the University of Michigan.

   
Lisa Marckewza

Panelist 5

Lisa Marchewka

Vice President, Brand and Strategy   Evoqua Water Technologies

Biography

Lisa Marchewka is vice president of brand and strategy for Evoqua Water Technologies, responsible for corporate strategy, market communications and sustainability. She has been an active executive in the water industry for more than 20 years. Formerly, she was senior vice president of marketing for Gradiant Corporation, a Boston-based company specializing in advanced processes for industrial wastewater recovery. She also spearheaded commercialization and branding efforts as vice president in Pall’s water division, responsible for strategic initiatives, product management, and corporate development and held various commercial roles at Siemens Water. In addition to obtaining an MBA from Boston College and an environmental engineering degree, Lisa sits on the academic advisory board of Worcester Polytechnic Institute and has presented and published numerous papers for industry conferences and journals.
   

Panel II: How will increased US exports of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Crude Oil impact global energy prices?

September 24, 2019

The renaissance in the oil and gas production of the United States over the past decade has been nothing short of remarkable. This was fueled by a continuing gusher from the US shale oil patch—which has turned the US into the world’s largest oil producer. The country is pumping almost 11 million barrels per day (bpd) breaking the 1970’s record of 10 million bpd. In 2015, the 40-year-old crude oil export ban was repealed, and crude exports have increased steadily since then. Despite the fear US would need dozens of liquified natural gas (LNG) import terminals to meet its energy needs, the US became a net natural gas exporter in 2017 with exports quadrupling to 1.94 billion cubic feet per day within just one year. Whether this increase in exports will help or hurt the US economy is a debated question. Proponents of crude and LNG exports argue that projected increases in production will raise domestic supply enough to offset exports and prevent domestic prices from significantly rising. Critics counter that domestic production will not be enough to make up for exports, resulting in significantly higher natural gas and refined product prices for US consumers. This panel will strategically address export policy and market trends and their influence on crude and natural gas prices in the US.

Dr. Sorin Sorescu

Moderator

Dr. Sorin Sorescu

Foreman R. and Ruby Bennett Chair in Business Administration, Head of Department of Finance   Mays Business School, Texas A&M University

Biography

Sorin Sorescu is Professor of Finance and the Foreman R. and Ruby Bennett Chair in Business Administration at the Mays Business School at Texas A&M University. Prior to joining Mays in 2002, he was an Assistant Professor of Finance at the Bauer College of Business at the University of Houston. He holds a Ph.D. in Finance from the University of Florida, as well as an MBA and a Bachelor of Science in of Electrical Engineering from McGill University in Canada.

Professor Sorescu’s research interests focus on short sales and informational content of security prices, asset management, market efficiency, and macro finance. His research appears in the Journal of Finance, the Journal of Financial Economics, the Review of Financial Studies, the Journal of Financial and Quantitative Analysis, the Journal of Marketing, the Journal of Financial Markets, the Journal of International Money and Finance, and the Journal of Money, Credit, and Banking.

Professor Sorescu taught corporate finance, financial markets, and investments analysis at the undergraduate, M.S. MBA, EMBA and Ph.D. levels.

He currently serves as the Head of the Department of Finance.

   
Scott Culberson

Panelist 1

Scott Culberson

Director of Supply and Trading   Cheniere Energy, Inc.

Biography

Mr. Culberson joined Cheniere in 2014 and is responsible for managing the physical gas supply and financial natural gas price risk at the Cheniere facilities. This includes buying the feedstock gas, managing any load disruptions, and developing US Gas market analytics. Prior to joining Cheniere, Mr. Culberson was with Castleton Commodities International, where he led a team that traded a variety of physical and financial natural gas products, covering the entire US Natural Gas grid. He entered the industry working in the regulated pipeline business, first as an engineer and analyst at El Paso Corporation, and later leading the Optimization and Logistics desk for Panhandle Energy. Mr. Culberson earned his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Texas A&M University and his MBA in Finance from the University of Houston.
Keith Barnett

Panelist 2

Keith Barnett

Senior Vice President   ARM Energy

Biography

Keith Barnett has over 30 years of experience in the energy industry with leading companies like Chevron, Columbia Gas Transmission, American Electric Power, and Merrill Lynch Commodities. Keith held engineering, managerial and executive positions with those companies in the areas of production, drilling, offshore platform design, natural gas marketing, fuel procurement, trading and structuring analytics, corporate strategy and fundamental analysis of energy markets. He had significant participation in two National Petroleum Council studies; including leading the power demand team in the 2003 natural gas study and serving on the steering and report writing committees. Keith was also the Natural Gas Task Force lead for the Edison Electric Institute for several years. He has testified before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the Senate Committee on Energy on natural gas and power matters. He has spoken on natural gas, power, and global energy markets for the past two decades. Prior to joining ARM Energy, Keith served as Director of Strategic Analysis for Merrill Lynch Commodities where he led the effort to create an integrated global point of view for energy commodities that could serve short term trading and longer-term investment horizons. His responsibilities at ARM Energy encompass physical and trading fundamental analysis of crude, natural gas, NGL’s and global drivers to international energy flows (crude, products, LNG, coal, and petchems). Keith frequently presents to the board of directors or sponsoring Private Equity groups for ARM’s producer clients.

Keith has an engineering degree from Texas A&M University.

Panelist 3

Suzanne Fong

Crude Oil Trader   Phillips 66

Biography

Suzanne Fong has 13 years of experience trading crude oil, gasoline, and fuel oil commodities at BP, ConocoPhillips and now Phillips 66 and has 19 years overall of oil industry experience in various roles in marketing, scheduling and brokering. The last 11 years Suzanne has been trading crude oil both in the domestic and international markets for ConocoPhillips and now Phillips 66. She currently trades the Permian and US Gulf Coast markets for Phillips 66 and has been instrumental in building the company’s trading portfolio in those regions as well as expanding the export volumes out of its Beaumont terminal.

Suzanne has B.A in International Studies from Johns Hopkins University.