Carnegie Mellon University

Energy Week 2021 Speakers

Jim Skea

Jim Skea

Co-Chair, Working Group III, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC); Professor of Sustainable Energy, Imperial College London; Scott Institute Board of Advisors


Jim Skea is Professor of Sustainable Energy at Imperial College London with research interests in energy, climate change and technological innovation. His current main role is as Co-Chair of IPCC Working Group III for the 6thassessment cycle. He was Research Director of the UK Energy Research Centre 2004-12 and Director of the Policy Studies Institute 1998-2004. He has operated at the interface between research, policy-making and business throughout his career. He was a member of the UK Committee on Climate Change from its inception in 2008 until 2018. He is currently chairing Scotland’s Just Transition Commission. Until June 2017, he was President of the UK Energy Institute. He was awarded a CBE for services to sustainable energy in 2013 and an OBE for services to sustainable transport in 2004.

Katherine  Hamilton

Katherine Hamilton

Chair, 38 North Solutions; The Energy Gang; Co-chair – GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic; World Economic Forum‘s Future of Energy Global Future Council


Katherine is Chair of 38 North Solutions. In this role, Katherine has been listed on the#Solar100board by kWh Analytics and received aCleanie Awardas Entrepreneur of the Year. Katherine has led several councils of theWorld Economic Forumas aglobal policy and technology thought leader and is currently Co-Chair of theGlobal Future Council on Clean Electrification. Katherine served as President of the GridWise Alliance, advocating for nearly $5 billion in funding for smart grid projects in the Recovery Act. Prior to that role, Katherine was a policy advisor for Good Energies, Inc., a private investment company with a portfolio in clean energy technologies of nearly$6 billion. She co-directed the American Bioenergy Association, working with the states of Maryland and New Jersey to develop renewable portfolio standards. At the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Katherine led buildings research and then managed government relations in Washington, DC. Katherine spent a decade at Virginia Power, designing overhead and underground electrical systems for commercial and residential developments. Katherine studied electrical engineering at Northern Virginia Community College and holds degrees from Cornell University and the Sorbonne. Katherine is part ofThe Energy Gangpodcast through Greentech Media.

Michael Dorsey

Michael Dorsey

Co-Founder, Around the Corner Capital; Full Member – The Club of Rome


Dr. Michael K. Dorsey is a recognized expert on global energy, environment, finance and sustainability matters. In 1997, in Glasgow, Scotland, Dorsey was bestowed Rotary International’s highest honor, The Paul Harris Medal for Distinguished Service to Humanity. Dr. Dorsey is a “Full member” of the Club of Rome and in 2013 the National Journal named him one of 200 US “energy and environment expert insiders”. A graduate of the University of Michigan, Yale and the Johns Hopkins University, presently Dr. Dorsey a limited partner in the Spanish-Japanese solar concern Univergy-CCC.


Dr. Dorsey is a serial organization builder and leader in for-profit, non-profit, scholarly and governmental realms. In the for-profit arena, Dr. Dorsey is an active investor and co-founder and principal of Around the Corner Capital—an energy advisory and impact finance platform. Thru Around the Corner, Dr. Dorsey maintains active relationships and agreements in the US and beyond with various partners from Barrett Capital, to the California Clean Energy Fund, to Silverleaf Partners, the Royal Bafokeng Holdings (South Africa), Univergy (Japan/Spain), the World Bank and many other institutions and high net-worth individuals driving the global renewable revolution.


In non-profit realms, in 1997 Dorsey helped to co-create the northern California headquartered Center for Environmental Health. In 2013 Dr. Dorsey and two former student collaborators co-created the predecessor to the Sunrise Movement. In late 2018 the Sunrise Movement co-orchestrated launching the Green New Deal. Beyond this Dr. Dorsey sits on a number of non-profit boards. He served 11 years on the national board of the Sierra Club—one of the largest and oldest US environmental organizations. In academia, for the first decade of the 21st century Dr. Dorsey was a professor in the environmental studies program at Dartmouth College. He has also been guest faculty at Wesleyan University (USA), the University KwaZuluNatal and the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa); Kungl Tekniska Högskolan (Sweden); and Erasmus University’s Erasmus Research Institute of Management (ERIM) Sustainability & Climate Change Research Unit (The Netherlands).


Dr. Dorsey’s significant government engagement began in 1992 as a member of the U.S. State Department Delegation to the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, “The Earth Summit.” From 1994-96 Dorsey was a task force member of President William Jefferson Clinton’s Council on Sustainable Development. From April 2007 until November 2008 Dorsey was a member of Senator Barack Obama’s energy and environment Presidential campaign team. In 2010 Lisa Jackson, the US Environmental Protection Agency (US-EPA) Administrator, appointed Dr. Dorsey to the EPA’s National Advisory Committee (NAC). Jackson reappointed Dr. Dorsey in 2012 and Administrator McCarthy re-appointed him again in 2014. Further, in 2014, United Nations NGLS—a specialized unit of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development designated Dorsey advisor on “climate, energy sustainability and SIDS (Small Island Developing States)”.


Dr. Dorsey has published dozens of scholarly and lay articles on a variety of environment, development and sustainable finance matters. In 2016 he became a contributor to the Wall Street Journal. Over decades Dr. Dorsey has been featured or provided his opinions in the world’s leading lay television, radio and print outlets from Al Jazeera, the Associated Press, South Africa’s Business Day, CCTV, CNN, Democracy Now!, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, the Orlando Sentinel, The Sacramento Bee, The Thom Hartmann Show, US News and World Reports and many other outlets.

Raj Kapoor

Raj Kapoor (E 1992)

Chief Strategy Officer & Head of Business, Self-Driving – Lyft


Raj Kapoor is the Chief Strategy Officer for Lyft, as well as the Head of Business for Lyft’s self-driving division. He also serves as a Venture Advisor at Mayfield Fund. Prior to Lyft, he was a co-founder and CEO of both Snapfish (acquired by HP for $300M in 2005) and Fitmob (acquired by ClassPass in 2015), as well as a managing director at Mayfield Fund where he led the first VC investment in Lyft. Raj holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering with an emphasis on Robotics from Carnegie Mellon University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Brian  Anderson

Brian Anderson

Director of National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) -- Department of Energy (DOE)


Dr. Brian J. Andersonis director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory. He manages the complete NETL complex, including delivery and execution of the Laboratory’s mission, and national programs in fossil energy. Brianpreviously served as director of the West Virginia UniversityEnergy Institute.He has a long history of collaboration with NETL and other DOE national laboratories. Brianserved NETL as the coordinator of the International Methane Hydrate Reservoir Simulator Code Comparison study. In 2011, he received theSecretary Honor Achievement Award from the Secretary of the DOEfor his role on the Flow Rate Technical Group, a team spanning multiple national labsthat worked in response to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.Brian also receivedthePresidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on science and engineering professionals in the initial stages of their careers.

 Mayor  Peduto

Mayor Bill Peduto

City of Pittsburgh


William Peduto was elected to the office of Mayor of the City of Pittsburgh in the General Election on November 5, 2013, and took office as Pittsburgh’s 60th Mayor in January of 2014. Prior to taking office, he worked for 19 years on Pittsburgh City Council -seven years as a staffer then twelve years as a Member of Council. As a Councilman, Bill Peduto wrote the most comprehensive package of government reform legislation in Pittsburgh’s history. He strengthened the Ethics Code, created the city’s first Campaign Finance Limits, established Lobbyist Disclosure and Lobbyist Registration, and ended No-Bid Contracts. As Mayor, Peduto continues to champion the protection and enhancement of Pittsburgh’s new reputation -maintaining fiscal responsibility, establishing community-based development plans, embracing innovative solutions, and becoming a leader in green initiatives. The Peduto administration is committed to modernizing city government and implementing leading practices to provide taxpayers with an efficient, effective, transparent, and more accountable government. Under Peduto’s leadership, the City of Pittsburgh has experienced a complete transformation of the city’s procurement process; the reorganization of the Department of Permits, Licenses & Inspections; a commitment to developing a long-term maintenance and investment plan for the city’s assets; the creation of the ONEPGH Resilience Strategy, and technological upgrades including a GPS based Snow Plow Tracker website, 311 Response Center mobile app, an interactive street paving website and several digital tools built with public information in a new open data portal. Setting priorities around strengthening Pittsburgh's 90 communities, Peduto established the Bureau of Neighborhood Empowerment to promote the city's role in housing, small business, and education; led the development of the city's land bank; and championed the creation of a neighborhood-strengthening Rental Registration program. Since taking office, Mayor Peduto has lead a collaborative effort to make Pittsburgh a leading 21st Century city. The Peduto administration has partnered with the White House on numerous initiatives, resulting in direct access to federal support related to affordable housing, education, economic development, energy efficiency, immigration, manufacturing, community policing, workforce development, technology and transportation. Under Peduto’s leadership the City of Pittsburgh has played an active role in National League of Cities, U.S. Conference of Mayors and the Pennsylvania Municipal League initiatives. Pittsburgh was recently selected to join the Rockefeller Foundation network’s 100 Resilient Cities, which provides resources to improve city resilience in the face of climate change, globalization and urbanization trends. In 2015 Mayor Peduto signed a unique agreement with the U.S. Department of Energy to make the city a world leader in district energy production and Pittsburgh joined the UN's Compact of Mayors, a global coalition of climate leaders committed to local action and global impact. Recently Mayor Peduto joined with mayors across the world to reaffirm Pittsburgh's commitment to the Paris Agreement and efforts to combat climate change. Mayor Peduto is also a founding member of the MetroLab Network, a national alliance of cities and universities committed to providing analytically-based solutions to improve urban infrastructure, services and other public sector priorities.
The Peduto administration is working to ensure that everyone benefits from Pittsburgh’s transformation and growth because, “If it’s not for all, it’s not for us.

County Executive  Fitzgerald

County Executive Rich Fitzgerald (E 1981)

Allegheny County


County Executive Rich Fitzgerald took office on January 3, 2012, and he’s currently in his second term. After more than 19 years in public service,including 12 on County Council, he still relishes his role working with others to make the county a great place to live, work, and play. Under Rich’s leadership, Allegheny County has focused on job creation and economic development to great effect. Last year, the region’s unemployment rate reached its lowest level since the 1970s, and since 2012, the county’s median household income has risen at nearly double the rate than it has nationally. The region has become a leader in health care, finance, education, manufacturing, arts and culture, and emerging sectors such as robotics, artificial intelligence, autonomous vehicles, and clean energy. And the diversity of opportunity as well as world-class colleges and universities have made the area a magnet for millennials, attracting more than 10,000 over the past five years. Thanks to that growth and Rich’s responsible fiscal stewardship of tax dollars, the county’s bond rating was upgraded last year for the fifth time in the past six years, putting it at the highest level since 1983. Additionally, seven straight budgets have passed with no millage increases, and the fund balance has increased substantially providing security and sustainability. The progressive budgets also allow for investment in projects and programs that increase the quality of life for more than 1.2 million residents. The county’s buildings, facilities, vehicles, and nine parks are being upgraded and becoming greener. the health Department is demonstrating leadership with its aggressive approach to combating complex issues such as the opioid epidemic and air pollution. Pittsburgh International Airport now offers 67 nonstop destinations, almost double the number from just four years ago. And the Port Authority, under new leadership, is enhancing the customer experience and embracing new technology. Rich says collaboration has been the “secret sauce” to solving the region's toughest problems, and that’s why he focuses daily on meeting with constituents and on forming strong partnerships with elected officials at the federal, state, county and local levels, as well as with community leaders in business, labor, and philanthropy. In addition to his numerous board appointments and memberships as the County Executive, Rich also serves as a member of the board of the County Executives of America, the Remake Learning Council, is Vice Chair of the Southwestern Pennsylvania Commission, and is part of the National Association of County Officials (NACo) Large Urban County Caucus. Raised in Pittsburgh’s Bloomfield-Garfield neighborhood, Rich graduated from Carnegie Mellon University withB.S. in Mechanical Engineering with a business minor. He and his wife, Cathy, a pharmacist, live in Squirrel Hill. They have eight children.

Grant Ervin

Grant Ervin

Chief Resilience Officer and Assistant Director,Department of City Planning -- City of Pittsburgh


Grant Ervin serves as the Chief Resilience Officer and Assistant Director for the Department of City Planning for the City of Pittsburgh. Grant oversees the integration of sustainability and resilience into City services, programs and policy.  He works to make the City of Pittsburgh a smart, sustainable and resilient city by fostering partnerships, leveraging assets and finding creative ways to solve problems. Prior to joining the City of Pittsburgh, Grant served as the Regional Director for 10,000 Friends of Pennsylvania, a statewide sustainable development policy organization; and as Public Policy Manager for Pittsburgh Community Reinvestment Group (PCRG).

Grant serves as an integrator of city activities by working across departments, agencies and sectors.  He brings deep experience, intersecting the worlds of environmental, community & economic development and infrastructure policy to create innovative and sustainable solutions for local governments, community development organizations and state agencies. Grant has helped lead the development of a variety of innovative programs including: Pittsburgh’s OnePGH Resilience Strategy, Pittsburgh Climate Plan, Pittsburgh’s inclusion in the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities Initiative; the United States Department of Transportation’s Smart Cities Challenge, the creation of the Uptown Eco-Innovation District, District Energy Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh and Neighborhood Community Information System and the Pennsylvania Community Transportation Initiative.

Grant serves on the board of directors of Sustainable Pittsburgh, Eco Districts, Pittsburgh Allegheny County Thermal (PACT) and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts (RSA). Grant resides in the Morningside neighborhood of Pittsburgh with his wife and two daughters.