Tuesday, June 9, 2015 | Four Seasons Hotel | Denver
Dean, University of Colorado Denver Business School
As dean of the University of Colorado Denver Business School since 2000, Sueann Ambron has led the school through an era of unprecedented growth in size, stature and program breadth. The Business School’s achievements and vision have been enhanced by Dr. Ambron’s experience as an educator, executive, entrepreneur, technological innovator and community connector.
Under Dr. Ambron’s leadership, the Business School has worked with industry leaders to develop and enhance programs in fields including global energy management, commodities, risk management and health administration. By sparking increased executive engagement, Dr. Ambron has helped embed the school within the fabric of the Rocky Mountain West business community—enabling Business School students to better gain industry experience before they graduate, and jobs in future‐focused fields after graduation.
Dr. Ambron’s decade‐long effort to secure state‐of‐the‐art space for the Business School culminated with the 2012 opening of a six‐story building in Downtown Denver that expands the school’s ability to accommodate growth (the school already is the nation’s 9th largest graduate business school) and program innovation. Fueling this growth has Dr. Ambron’s success at inspiring donor support for the school, setting new fundraising benchmarks not only for the Business School but also for CU Denver as a whole.
Speaker, author and veteran television journalist
Greg Dobbs is an award-winning veteran of international news coverage. He was a correspondent with ABC News for 23 years, reporting from Africa, the Middle East, Eastern and Western Europe, and Asia. Amongst his challenges, he covered the civil war in Beirut, the revolution in Iran, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, the Gulf War, the wars in Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) and Uganda, the Solidarity Trade Movement and martial law in Poland, and dissent in the Soviet Union. His work twice won the highest honors in television journalism, Emmy Awards. Then for HDNet television’s “World Report,” Greg reported programs about the elections in Liberia, the conflicts in the Palestinian Territories, the new leadership in Bolivia, the political attitudes in Dubai, Agent Orange in Vietnam, the security of Egypt, the wealth of Venezuela, the racial balance in South Africa, the rebirth of Beirut, the drug war in Colombia, and the politics of Russia. Dobbs also hosted and co-produced an Emmy Award-winning discussion program on Rocky Mountain PBS, hosted a daily talk show on KOA Radio, and now regularly writes op-ed columns for The Denver Post. He is the author of two books: “Life in the Wrong Lane,” about the life of a foreign correspondent, and “Better Broadcast Writing, Better Broadcast News,” a university-level book about writing as a journalist.
Executive Director, Global Energy Management Program, University of Colorado Denver Business School
Jim Marchiori is Executive Director of the Global Energy Management (GEM) program at the University of Colorado Denver Business School. GEM is an innovative, 18-month program, leading to a Master of Science degree that is focused entirely on managing within the world’s energy portfolio. GEM is delivered in a unique hybrid in-person/online format that allows students to live and work anywhere in the world without sacrificing face-to-face contact with faculty and their peers.
Mr. Marchiori’s career spans nearly 30 years developing talent in oil and gas, where he worked with companies such as International Human Resources Development Corporation (IHRDC), Scimitar Oils Limited, S.A. (Dubai Natural Gas Company), and DCP Midstream. He has consulted to clients all over the world, including all major US and European oil and gas companies, Petronas, Pertamina, Kuwait Oil Company, Abu Dhabi National Oil Company, Qatar Petroleum, Egypt General Petroleum Company, Kazakhcaspishelf/Kazakhoil, the Bangladesh Ministry of Oil, Gas, and Minerals, USAID, and the World Bank.
Mr. Marchiori has a B.A. in Political Science/International Relations from Michigan State University, and an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Senior Policy Fellow, Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy, University of Regina, Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
Dale Eisler is a Senior Policy Fellow at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy at the University of Regina, in Regina, Saskatchewan, and Senior Advisor on Government Relations to University President Vianne Timmons. Mr. Eisler teaches advanced policy analysis with a focus on communications and energy policy. He came to the university in 2013 after careers in the federal public service and journalism. Before joining the U of R, Dale was Assistant Deputy Minister for Energy Security with Natural Resources Canada for the Government of Canada.
During his 16 years with the federal government, Dale also served as Consul General for Canada in Denver, Colorado from 2007-11; Assistant Secretary to Cabinet at the Privy Council Office, which is the Department of the Prime Minister; and, Assistant Deputy Minister of Communications with the Department of Finance. In 2013, he received the Government of Canada’s Joan Atkinson Award for Public Service Excellence.
Senior Advisor, Janys Analytics; Candidate for the Colorado House of Representatives, District 6
Chris Hansen specializes in energy sector economics and data analytics, with more than 15 years of experience in the global energy industry. His current role at Janys Analytics is focused on the development and commercialization of social media-derived products. He is also a candidate for the Colorado House of Representatives, District 6, representing the east-central neighborhoods of Denver.
Previously, as Senior Director at IHS he led a global portfolio of energy events and partnerships, including programs and communities for CERAWeek, a 3000-person executive event focused on energy markets. In addition, he directed a social media analytics development team with a suite of products across several industries. Dr. Hansen was based in Dubai in 2008-09, where he managed a comprehensive review of the Emirate’s energy sector. He is a co-creator of the OptGen analysis, IHS CERA’s unique tool for applying financial portfolio techniques to power generation.
Before joining IHS, Dr. Hansen was a Research Fellow at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies, where he analyzed electricity and gas sector reform in India, and published several papers in professional journals on energy sector economics and policy analysis. Dr. Hansen holds a BSc in Nuclear Engineering from Kansas State University; a Graduate Diploma of Civil Engineering from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa; a Master of Science in Technology Policy from MIT; and a PhD in Economic Geography from Oxford University.
Hansen’s community involvement includes serving on the Denver Metro Chamber Leadership Foundation Board as Secretary, the Co-Chair of the Colorado Energy Coalition, the Central City Opera Board Executive Committee, Denver Kids Mentoring Program, and the UC-Denver Business School Advisory Board. In 2012, he was selected as a Marshall Memorial Fellow by the German Marshall Fund.
Michael F. Farina
Global Gas to Power, Director of Market Development, GE International
Michael Farina is a Director of Market Development with GE’s Global Growth Organization he is responsible for early stage Gas to Power (GTP) project development and concept validation in support of our regional commercial teams. Mr. Farina develops fuel strategies and advises on market issues for our active pipeline GTP projects. As a key leader in the GTP organization, he serves to advance the GTP initiative globally with external partners and stakeholders, while remaining a key point of contact within GE on natural gas trends and fuel market dynamics.
Mr. Farina has been a market intelligence leader at GE for nearly seven years including Leader of the Fuels Center of Excellence at GE Energy and most recently as Strategy and Analytics leader for GE Oil and Gas. Throughout his time at GE he has been deeply involved in strategy and market development related to unconventional resources, natural gas systems, and distributed power. In 2011, he authored Flare Gas Reduction: Recent global trends and policy considerations to showcase GE technology solutions. In 2013, he was lead analyst and co-author of the Age of Gas and the Power of Networks and China’s Age of Gas white papers.
Mr. Farina has been in the oil and gas industry for more than twenty years. Previously he was a Director of natural gas consulting at Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) and has worked on LNG, pipeline, and gas-fired power plant development around the world. Mr. Farina holds a BA in Economics from Colorado State University and a MA in Economics from the University of Colorado.
Alice K. Jackson
Regional VP, Rates & Regulatory Affairs, Xcel Energy (PSCo)
Alice Jackson joined the Xcel Energy PSCo team as the Regional Vice President, Rates and Regulatory Affairs in November 2013 where she oversees the regulatory aspects of Public Service Company of Colorado. Prior to her acceptance of the position with PSCo, Alice held the lead regulatory position with Southwestern Public Service Company (SPS) in Amarillo, TX.
Alice graduated from Texas A&M University with a degree in Management Information Systems. Since graduation, Ms. Jackson began working for a subsidiary of Occidental Petroleum Corporation (Oxy) following a brief stint with Enron. After spending two years in Oxy’s information technology department, Alice held positions of increasing responsibility on Occidental’s energy management team. As of May 2011 Alice joined Xcel Energy. Throughout her career, Alice has been deeply involved in the electric markets including direct participation in stakeholder committees, regulatory rate cases, state legislation and Commission initiatives particularly in Texas, New Mexico, New York, at FERC and now in Colorado.
On a personal note, Alice is the mother of four boys and is actively engaged in various community activities.
Senior Energy Analyst, National Renewable Energy Laboratory
Eric Lantz is a Senior Energy Analyst specializing in renewable power policy, markets, and technology. Most recently Eric was a lead analyst and senior advisor for the DOE Wind Vision report. This landmark study examines costs, benefits, and other impacts for a scenario in which wind power supplies 35% of the nation’s electricity demand by 2050. Previously, Mr. Lantz has led other high profile policy analysis work including an examination of tax credit extension scenarios for wind power conducted at the request of the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources and analysis of economic development and jobs impacts resulting from new renewable capacity and transmission investments in Wyoming and Colorado.
Mr. Lantz is active in two working groups of the International Energy Agency focused on social acceptance of wind and international trends in wind power technology and economics. He holds an M.S. in Energy Policy from the University of Colorado. In his free time, Mr. Lantz enjoys exploring Colorado’s mountains and playing with his children, ages 2 and 5.
Director, Division of Pipeline Regulation, Office of Energy Market Regulation, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
Nils Nichols is the Director of the Division of Pipeline Regulation at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The Division of Pipeline Regulation advises the Commission on the regulation of the natural gas and oil pipeline industries under various statutes, including the Natural Gas Act and Interstate Commerce Act.
Prior to becoming Director of the Division of Pipeline Regulation, Mr. Nichols served as Director of the Commission’s Dispute Resolution Service, which provides mediation, negotiation, and facilitation services to parties engaged in disputes. Previously, Mr. Nichols served as legal and policy advisor to Chairman Joseph Kelliher and before that to Chairman James Hoecker. During his career at the Commission, Nils has also served in the Office of the General Counsel, with a specialty in environmental law and natural gas pipeline certificate issues. He is the author of The NEPA Caselaw Digest, published by the American Bar Association.
Prior to joining FERC, Mr. Nichols was a partner in Conner & Wetterhahn, P.C. in Washington, D.C., primarily representing investor-owned electric utilities. He began his legal career as a clerk at the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals.
Partner, co-chair Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Practice, and partner-in-charge of WilmerHale’s Denver office, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP
Andrew (Andy) Spielman is a preeminent public lands, environmental and natural resources lawyer whose practice involves administrative and regulatory proceedings and government relations, and centers around assisting energy clients with policy and regulatory issues involved in developing new facilities, as well as representing ski areas, timber, mining, and oil and gas companies in the public land use and environmental permitting process. He combines federal, state and local government experience with natural resources, land use and Western public lands law to assist energy developers, mining companies, ranchers, ski areas, water suppliers and others with obtaining regulatory approvals and permits from governments across the United States.
Mr. Spielman earned a Presidential Management Fellowship and later served in senior positions at the US Environmental Protection Agency in Washington DC, including acting Associate Director of the Office of Sustainable Ecosystems and Communities and Special Assistant to EPA's Administrator. His governmental experience also includes positions at the Executive Office of the President, Office of Management and Budget, and in staff positions in the US Senate, as well as with local government in parks, open space, utilities, and housing and economic development.
Hector Castro Vizcarra
Representative, Ministry of Energy, Embassy of Mexico to the United States
Mr. Hector Castro Vizcarra was appointed last June as Mexico’s Ministry of Energy Representative at the Embassy of Mexico to the United States. Since then, Mr. Castro Vizcarra has participated in several forums by explaining the new Mexican energy model. These forums have been held in prestigious international organizations and think tanks such as the Council of the Americas, The American Council On Renewable Energy, the US Department of Commerce and the Minnesota International Center; and locations such as Toronto, Canada; Minneapolis, MN; and Charlotte, NC.
Prior to assuming his current position, Mr. Castro Vizcarra worked as a public servant at the Electoral Court of the Federal District in Mexico City, the Ministry of Health’s Directorate General of Legal Affairs, the National Council for Education Promotion, and in bilateral bodies such as the US/Mexico Border Health Commission. Besides the public sector, Mr. Castro Vizcarra has held positions in the private sector at several prestigious Mexican law firms, as well as the academic sector in which he published several academic papers and taught at the Escuela Libre de Derecho in Mexico City and the Autonomous University of Baja California. He was also a political analyst for a Mexican newspaper.
Mr. Castro obtained a law degree from Escuela Libre de Derecho in Mexico City and studied Strategic Political Analysis at CIDE (Center for Economic Research and Teaching) in Mexico City, as well as Political Communication at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Currently, he is a PhD Candidate in Government and Political Administration at The Madrid Complutense University.