The 2017 Energy Exchange features a solid line up of plenary speakers from across the energy management spectrum. This year showcases policy and decisions makers from the largest and most influential sectors of the federal government and private sectors. Below is the current plenary speaker line up. Be sure to check back often for updates and new speaker additions.
Dr. Timothy Unruh
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Power
U.S. Department of Energy
As Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Power in the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), Dr. Unruh is responsible for leading all of EERE’s applied research, development, and demonstration for renewable energy, including geothermal, solar, wind and water power.
Previously he served as the Federal Energy Management Program Director. In this role, he managed the implementation of policy and actions that resulted in energy efficiency implementation and renewable energy adoption, as well as reduced energy and water use in federal government operations. He was instrumental in guiding DOE through a streamlining of the Super Energy Saving Performance Conctract selection process.
Before joining EERE, he was Director of Operations for ConEdison Solutions, where he led a team of engineers and project managers to implement energy savings projects in government and private installations. While in this role, he worked to educate energy users on performance contracting methods to achieve energy reduction goals. He was also heavily involved in the measurement and verification of energy savings resulting from these projects.
He has Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, and doctorate degrees in electrical engineering from Wichita State University in Wichita, Kansas.
Acting Director Federal Energy Management Program
U.S. Department of Energy
Leslie Nicholls is the Acting Director for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) in the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). She previously served as FEMP’s Strategic Communications and Training Manager.
As Acting FEMP Director, Leslie oversees the implementation of policy and actions that result in energy efficiency implementation, renewable energy adoption, and reductions in energy and water use in federal government operations.
She brings nearly three decades of clean energy and executive leadership experience to EERE. Most recently, she served as Vice President of the Building Energy Solutions Division at Energetics Incorporated, a subsidiary of VSE Corporation. In this capacity, she was responsible for the management of multiple cross-cutting programs. She also provided expertise to federal agencies and private sector energy companies in federal and commercial energy management, greenhouse gas reduction, energy efficiency, clean energy deployment, and strategic planning.
Before holding that position, she worked at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory as a Senior Contracting Officer.
Leslie has bachelor and master degrees in business administration from Washington State University.
CEO Will Allen Foundation & Managing Partner, Nascent Group Holdings, LLC
Will Allen is a Managing Partner and co-founder at Nascent Group Holdings, LLC. In his role as Managing Partner, Allen co-manages the day-to-day operations and investment and acquisition strategy for NGH. Allen attended The Ohio State University where he received his bachelor’s degree in Strategic Communications; he also received a certificate of completion in continuing education courses through the NFL Business Management and Entrepreneurial Programs at Harvard Business School and Kellogg School of Business. Allen has also completed internships with utility company National Grid and also with Congressman Bobby Rush on the Energy and Power subcommittee.
Prior to founding Nascent Group Holdings, Allen was drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2004 and most recently played for the Pittsburgh Steelers. In 2015 Allen finished his NFL career after 12 successful seasons. In his collegiate years Allen was a member of The Ohio State 2002 National Championship. Allen’s senior year he was named a consensus All- American.
Allen is involved in the community and in business. Currently, he serves on the advisory committee for Be A Middle School Mentor that serves middle school students in Allegheny County through the United Way of South Western PA. He also serves as a board member for the Shyne Awards Foundation. In addition to serving those community programs Allen established the Will Allen Foundation. The foundation provides tools and resources to Educate + Influence + Empower people in his surrounding community. His business endeavors include investing in real estate and technology companies.
Director of Sustainable Engineering
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill
Luke Leung is the director of the MEP + Sustainable Engineering Studio for SOM. Leung leads his team in attaining the highest levels of human, environmental, and financial performance. He has won multiple awards, including eight “Excellence in Engineering” awards from the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), two “Beyond Green” awards from the National Institute of Building Sciences, and several sustainable design awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA).
Project highlights include the Burj Khalifa, currently the world’s tallest man-made structure; Roche Diagnostics in Indianapolis; the Greentown Qingdao Tower; the Zhengzhou Greenland Tower; and more than 40 LEED® certified or registered buildings, including a LEED® Platinum building with the first large-scale horizontal wind turbine in Chicago.
Leung is a LEED® Fellow. He is also a Centennial Fellow from the Penn State University Architectural Engineering Department; a member of the ASHRAE Environmental Health Committee; chairman of the Building Pressure Committee; member of the Chicago Committee on High Rise Buildings; member of the AIA Large Firm Roundtable Sustainable Committee; member of the Sustainable Committee of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH); part-time professor at the Illinois Institute of Technology; a member of the Chicago Sister Cities program with China; and member of the editorial teams for the CTBUH “Natural Ventilation in High-Rise Office Buildings” and the ASHRAE handbooks on tall buildings, among other publications.
LTG Gwen Bingham
Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management (ACSIM)
LTG Gwen Bingham is the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management. Bingham previously served as the Commander of the TACOM Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC) headquartered at the Detroit Arsenal in Warren, Michigan and as the Commanding General, White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico. She was the 51st Quartermaster General of the United States Army and Commandant of the U.S. Army Quartermaster School at Fort Lee, Virginia
LTG Bingham graduated with a General Business degree and as an Army ROTC Distinguished Military Graduate from the University of Alabama in 1981. She was commissioned a Second Lieutenant in the Quartermaster Corps. She holds Masters Degrees from Central Michigan University and the National Defense University.
LTG Bingham has served in a myriad of staff and leadership positions throughout her career from Platoon Leader to Two-Star Commanding General. She has deployed in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom and Enduring Freedom, and has served in assignments both in CONUS and overseas. LTG Bingham served as the 51st Quartermaster General of the United States Army and Commandant of the U.S. Army Quartermaster School, Fort Lee, Virginia; Commanding General, U.S. Army White Sands Missile Range, New Mexico, and Commanding General, Tank-automotive and Armaments Life Cycle Management Command, Warren, Michigan.
LTG Bingham is the recipient of numerous military awards including the Distinguished Service Medal (with 1 Oak Leaf Cluster); Defense Superior Service Medal; Legion of Merit (with 2 Oak Leaf Clusters); Defense Meritorious Service Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster); Meritorious Service Medal (with 3 Oak Leaf Clusters); Joint Service Commendation Medal; Army Commendation Medal (with Oak Leaf Cluster); Army Achievement Medal and numerous campaign and service medals.