Ralph Alexander is the President and CEO of Talen Energy. He was previously a Partner with Riverstone Holdings LLC. He is based in Houston.
For nearly 25 years, Mr. Alexander served in various positions with subsidiaries and affiliates of BP plc, one of the world's largest oil and gas companies. From June 2004 until December 2006, he served as Chief Executive Officer of Innovene, BP's $20 billion olefins and derivatives subsidiary. From 2001 until June 2004, he served as Chief Executive Officer of BP's Gas, Power and Renewables and Solar segment and was a member of the BP group executive committee. Prior to that, Mr. Alexander served as a Group Vice President in BP's Exploration and Production segment and BP's Refinery and Marketing segment. He held responsibilities for various regions of the world, including North America, Russia, the Caspian, Africa, and Latin America. Prior to these positions, Mr. Alexander held various positions in the upstream, downstream and finance groups of BP.
Mr. Alexander currently serves on the boards of Enviva Partners, LP, Houston Methodist – The Woodlands and Talen Energy Corporation, as well as the Executive Committee of the Nuclear Energy Institute (NEI). He has previously served on the boards of Foster Wheeler, Stein Mart, Inc., Amyris, Anglo-American plc and CHI St. Luke's Health – The Woodlands. Mr. Alexander was formerly Chairman Emeritus of the Board of NYU School of Engineering and a Trustee for New York University.
He received an M.S. in Nuclear Engineering from Brooklyn Polytech (now NYU School of Engineering - Polytechnic) and holds an M.S. in Management Science from Stanford University.
Military Service: Navy 1964-1969, aircrew. Viet Nam Vet
Married for 39 years to my wife Carol. Five Children.
The last 33 years of my career I was employed in Colstrip by Montana Power and then Westmoreland Coal at the Rosebud mine. I Retired as Processing Superintendent. I was also active in issues involving the States natural resources. I served on the Colstrip school board. In 2006 I was approached to run for the open House seat vacated by Monica Lindeen. Throughout my four terms I have served on State admin committee, Local government committee, Natural Resource committee and the last three terms on the Appropriations committee. My last term in the House I was honored to serve as Chairman of the Appropriations Committee, where with the help of the entire committee the House of Representatives passed the budget 100-0. We made Montana history.
In 2014 I ran for the Montana State Senate and was elected. I was successful in passing the Montana disclose act, campaign reform.
I have served in the Senate as Chairman of Energy Telecommunication Committee, and on the Natural Resource Committee, Finance Committee and Tax Committee.
In 2019 I was honored to have been appointed to the National Coal Council by Secretary Rick Perry.
Kelly Ayotte represented New Hampshire in the United States Senate (2011-2017), where she chaired the Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and the Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation Operations. She also served on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs, Budget, Small Business and Entrepreneurship, and Aging Committees. Senator Ayotte served as the “Sherpa” for Justice Neil Gorsuch, leading the effort to secure his confirmation to the United States Supreme Court.
Ayotte served as New Hampshire’s first female Attorney General. Prior to that, she served as the Deputy Attorney General, Chief of the Homicide Prosecution Unit and as Legal Counsel to Governor Craig Benson.
Ayotte is a Senior Advisor for Citizens for Responsible Energy Solutions. She serves on the boards of Caterpillar, News Corp, BAE Systems and Bloom Energy and the advisory boards of Microsoft, Blink Health, Chubb Insurance, Revision Military and Cirtronics. She also serves on the non-profit boards of the One Campaign, the International Republican Institute, the McCain Institute, Winning for Women, and NH Veteran’s Count.
Ayotte is currently the Perkins Bass Distinguished Visitor at Dartmouth College and a Visiting Fellow at the University of Chicago Institute of Politics. In 2017, Ayotte was a joint visiting fellow at the Harvard Institute of Politics and the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs. She is a member of the Aspen Institute’s Economic Strategy and Homeland Security groups.
Ayotte graduated with honors in 1990 from the Pennsylvania State University and earned a Juris Doctor degree in 1993 from the Villanova University School of Law. She is a native of Nashua, New Hampshire where she lives with her husband, Joe, a retired Air Force combat pilot, and her two children Katherine and Jacob.
Patrick Barkey is Director of the Bureau of Business and Economic Research at the University of Montana, a sixty year old organization with a distinguished record of timely, relevant research and information on the state and regional economies. He has been involved with economic forecasting and policy research for more than 30 years, both in the private and public sector. Before coming to Montana he served as Director of the Bureau of Business Research at Ball State University in Indiana for fourteen years. His recent research has been on the economic impact of energy development, the property tax treatment of the telecommunications industry, and the economic impact of trade with Canada.
The BBER is the state’s pre-eminent business research organization. Founded in 1948, the Bureau has been involved with forecasting since its inception, with special attention paid to industries of special relevance to Montana. Since 1975 the BBER has conducted economic outlook seminars in Montana’s major cities, and its 43rd forecasting tour is currently visiting nine cities across the state.
He attended the University of Michigan, receiving a B.A. ('79) and Ph.D. ('86) in economics.
Senator John Barrasso has a long and distinguished career in both medicine and public service. In 2012, Barrasso was reelected to the U.S.Senate with over 75% of the vote to represent his home state of Wyoming.
He is the fourth-ranking member in the Senate Republican leadership as Chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee.
Heserves on committees that directly impact Wyoming’s economy, energyinterests, public lands, national parks and trade.
Senator Barrasso is known by many as Wyoming’s Doctor. During his 24 years as an orthopedic surgeon, Barrasso served as President of the Wyoming Medical Society and was named Wyoming Physician of the Year.
Barrasso has three children – Peter, Emma and Hadley. He and his wife Bobbi live in Casper.
Mr. Borgquist is the founder of Absaroka Energy, a company focused on the development of utility-scale energy storage, transmission, geothermal, wind and solar projects throughout the Western Interconnect.
He previously served as an Assistant District Attorney for Alameda County, CA., in the Navy as a Judge Advocate, as a Special Assistant United States Attorney, and with the Davidson Companies as Director of Wealth Management. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Public Administration from California State University and a law degree from the University of San Francisco.
A fifth-generation Montanan, Webb was raised on the family ranch in northwestern Montana near Trout Creek. Following one year at Carroll College in Helena and one year at Chaminade University in Honolulu, Hawaii, Webb earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science from the University of California at Riverside in 1983. During his college time, he also served an internship with the Greater Riverside Chamber of Commerce and one with Montana’s former US Senator Max Baucus in Washington, D.C.
Webb worked on the ranch all his youth and he and Kathy still own a small cow-calf operation. He and two brothers formed 2 B's Logging from 1983-1991. During that time, he also helped organize and became Executive Director of the Sanders County Economic Development Corporation and worked for Communities for a Great Northwest, based in Libby.
He became Executive Director of the Lewistown Area Chamber of Commerce in 1991, then Vice President of the Billings Area Chamber and, in 1999, was hired as the President/CEO of the Montana Chamber of Commerce. His duties include serving as Executive Director of the Montana Chamber Foundation and of the Montana Manufacturing Association.
As a volunteer work, he was active in the Trout Creek Community Improvement Association, Trout Creek-Noxon-Heron Community Ambulance Service, Clark Fork Valley Hospital Board of Directors, Lewistown Art Center Board of Directors, Montana Council on Economic Education and Montana Ambassadors. He is also Past-President of the Montana Society of Association Executives and Russell Country Tourism Region.
Webb is past Chair of the Montana District Export Council and the Council of State Chambers of Commerce and was recently elected VP of the Conference of State Manufacturers Associations. As such, he also serves on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Manufacturers.
Congressional reporter George Cahlink has nearly two decades of experience covering Capitol Hill and federal agencies. Most recently, he spent 10 years at CQ Roll Call in several editing and writing positions. He also covered the Defense Department as a staff writer for Government Executive magazine, a job that included stints as an embedded reporter in the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan and Kosovo. He got his start in journalism at the Eagle Times and Argus Champion newspapers in New Hampshire. He has won national and regional reporting awards for his work and is a graduate of Saint Joseph's University.
Commissioner Neil Chatterjee was nominated to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission by President Donald J. Trump in May 2017 and confirmed by the U.S. Senate on August 2017. He served as Chairman from August 2017 to December 2017. Prior to joining the Commission, he was energy policy advisor to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY).
Over the years Commissioner Chatterjee has played an integral role in the passage of major energy, highway, and agriculture legislation.
Prior to serving Leader McConnell, Commissioner Chatterjee worked as a Principal in Government Relations for the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and as an aide to House Republican Conference Chairwoman Deborah Pryce (R-OH). He began his career in Washington, D.C., with the House Committee on Ways and Means
A native of Lexington, KY, he is a graduate of St. Lawrence University and the University of Cincinnati, College of Law. Commissioner Chatterjee is married and has three children.
A fifth-generation Montanan, Steve Daines brings 28 years of private-sector business experience to Washington, D.C. as he serves the people of Montana in the U.S. Senate. He serves on the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources where he is an advocate for Montana’s growing energy sector. Steve recognizes the impact Montana energy has on the state’s economy and job creation, which has caused him to be a leading voice in developing Montana’s energy. He believes Montana is setting the example in reducing the dependence on foreign energy while sustaining resources for generations to come. Steve supports an all-of-the-above approach to securing not just American energy independence, but energy dominance.
Steve is honored to host Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Chairman John Barrasso, Under Secretary of Energy Mark Menezes, and other leaders of the energy business in Billings to discuss the best ways to unlock Montana’s endless energy potential.
Steve also serves on the U.S. Senate Committees on Appropriations, Agriculture and Indian Affairs, where he supports Montana’s farmers and ranchers, managing and protecting public lands and supporting the needs of Montana’s veterans and tribes. He has been married to his wife, Cindy, for 31 years. They live in Bozeman and are the parents of four children: David, Annie, Michael and Caroline. Steve and his family are actively involved in their church and community volunteer organizations and enjoy backpacking, hunting, skiing and fishing.
Director, Clean Coal Division, Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), Japan
Masana Ezawa is Director of the Coal Division in METl's Natural Resources and Fuel Department. Prior to this, he held several posts over a 20-year period, notably at the Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) and the Cabinet Office. He has two years’ experience as the Chief Secretary to the Parliamentary Vice-Minister of METI and has twice held the position of Director of the Office for Electricity Supply, Demand, Transmission and Distribution Policy in METI’s Electricity and Gas Industry Department. He was also responsible for formulating the strategy to secure electricity supply after the Great East Japan Earthquake.
Mr. Ezawa was Director of the Environmental Affairs and Recycling Office at the Commerce and Information Policy Bureau. Regarding renewable energies, he designed and amended the Feed-in Tariff program as Director of Policy and Planning at the New and Renewable Energy Division.
Mr. Ezawa studied at the Department of Materials Engineering at the University of Tokyo and received a Master’s degree from the Washington University School of Public Affairs.
Attorney General Tim Fox is a native of Hardin, Montana. He attended Hardin public schools, and graduated from Hardin High School, and the University of Montana with degrees in geology (1981) and law (1987).
Tim and his family moved to Helena, Montana in 1995 to assist then Governor Marc Racicot in his bid for reelection. Shortly after arriving in Helena, he went to work for the Montana Department of Environmental Quality as a Special Assistant Attorney General. In 1998, Tim was promoted to a Division Administrator management position with the DEQ where he managed people, programs, and budgets for the people of Montana. In 1999, Tim was hired as Vice-President and Legal Counsel for a Helena-based national bank, Mountain West Bank. He served in that position for over four years before re-entering private practice with the law firm of Gough, Shanahan, Johnson and Waterman, PLLP.
Tim was elected as attorney general on November 6, 2012, and was sworn in as Montana’s 24th attorney general on January 7, 2013. He was reelected to a second four-year term on November 8, 2016. As attorney general, Tim leads the Montana Department of Justice and its nearly 800 dedicated public servants.
Greg Gianforte is a businessman and entrepreneur who launched and ran five successful companies before his election to Congress. Greg and his wife, Susan, founded RightNow Technologies in their Montana home over 20 years ago. The company grew into Bozeman’s largest commercial employer, creating over 500 high-paying jobs.
Greg’s top priorities are making sure Montanans’ voices are heard in Washington, protecting our Montana way of life, and cleaning up Washington.
Sworn into Congress in 2017, Greg serves on the House Committee on Natural Resources and the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform (OGR). Greg is chairman of OGR’s Subcommittee on Interior, Energy, and Environment.
Greg and Susan have been married for 30 years and raised their four children in Bozeman. A strong supporter of Montana’s public lands, Greg is an avid outdoorsman and sportsman. He enjoys hiking, hunting, fishing, and backpacking.
Russ Girling has been President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) since July 1, 2010. He has led TransCanada Corporation through a period of unprecedented growth, including the development of its Liquids Pipelines business, expansion of its power generation portfolio and the successful US$13 billion acquisition of Columbia Pipeline Group in July 2016.
Previously, Mr. Girling held the positions of Chief Operating Officer; President, Pipelines; Executive Vice-President, Corporate Development; Chief Financial Officer; and Executive Vice-President, Power.
Prior to joining TransCanada in 1994, Mr. Girling held several marketing and management positions at Suncor Inc., Northridge Petroleum Marketing and Dome Petroleum.
Mr. Girling is currently a director of Nutrien, the American Petroleum Institute and the Business Council of Canada and is a member of the U.S. National Petroleum Council and U.S. Business Roundtable. Mr. Girling is the former Chairman of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America, former Chairman of the Natural Gas Council and former director of the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association. He has also served as Chairman and CEO of TC PipeLines GP, Inc. (general partner of TC PipeLines, LP), Chairman of TransCanada Power, L.P. and director of Bruce Power Inc.
Mr. Girling holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree and a Master of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Calgary.
Dave Goodin was elected President and Chief Executive Officer and a Director of MDU Resources Group, Inc. effective Jan. 4, 2013.
Goodin joined Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. as an electrical engineer in Dickinson, N.D., in 1983. He transferred to Glendive, Mont., and then promoted to electric superintendent in Williston, N.D. He moved to the General Office in Bismarck, N.D., in 1993, where he oversaw the electric system operations, including dispatching and energy sales. Goodin was named Vice President of Operations in January 2000, and in July 2007 promoted to President of Cascade Natural Gas Corporation. In March 2008 Dave assumed his responsibilities as President of Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. and Great Plains Natural Gas Corporation, and in October 2008, he also assumed the responsibilities of President of Intermountain Gas Company. In addition to his role as President, he was named Chief Executive Officer for the four companies in October 2008.
Goodin has a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from North Dakota State University. He has a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of North Dakota and has completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard. Goodin is a Registered Professional Engineer in North Dakota.
Growing up in rural Oklahoma, HaroldHamm was the last of 13 children born to sharecroppers. He went towork in the oil fields as a teenager and established ContinentalResources in 1967. He built Continental into an NYSE-traded, Top 10oil producer in the U.S. Lower 48.
In addition to his role asFounder, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ContinentalResources, Mr. Hamm co-founded and serves as Chairman of the DomesticEnergy Producers Alliance. Through DEPA, Mr. Hamm is widelyrecognized as the man who worked tirelessly to help lift America's40-year-old ban on U.S. crude oil exports. Mr. Hamm also serves onthe board of the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation and AmericaFirst Policies.
In 2016, Platts Global Energy Awards honored Mr. Hammwith a “Lifetime Achievement Award” for his legacy of leadership,innovation and commitment to bringing America to energy independence.He was named the recipient of the 2016 “Chief Roughneck Award” byU.S. Steel Tubular Products. He was also inducted into the HoratioAlger Association and has received awards and recognition for hislifetime of contributions, including, Oil and Gas Investor magazine's“Executive of the Year,” Western Energy Alliance's “Wildcatterof the Year,” Platts Global Energy Awards “CEO of the Year”(while Continental Resources was also named “Energy Company of theYear.”) In 2012, he was named one of TIME Magazine's “100 MostInfluential People in the World.” He was inducted into the OklahomaHall of Fame in 2011.
Christian S. Kendall is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Denbury Resources Inc., and he also serves as a member of Denbury’s Board of Directors. Chris joined Denbury as Chief Operating Officer in September of 2015, and was named President in September of 2016. He was appointed to his current role as a Director and CEO effective July 1, 2017. Prior to joining Denbury, Chris was with Noble Energy, most recently serving as Senior Vice President, Global Operations Services. Over the course of his fourteen-year tenure at Noble Energy, he held a wide range of international and domestic leadership positions, primarily in the Eastern Mediterranean, Latin America, and the Gulf of Mexico. Chris began his career at Mobil Oil in 1989.
Chris earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering, Civil Specialty, from the Colorado School of Mines and is a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School.
At the helm of Lighthouse Resources (LHR), Mr. King is the architect of an international supply chain solution that connects natural resources and infrastructure to trade routes from the western U.S. to Asia. His success lies in his financial background and significant experience in mergers and divestures combined with deep understanding of operations, manufacturing, and logistics. Mr. King has held management and leadership roles in public and private companies as well as trade associations and non-profits.
In his current role at LHR, Mr. King is steering the company to be one of the largest suppliers of seaborne thermal coal from the western U.S. to Asia Pacific markets. LHR is the sole owner of Decker Coal Company, a Montana coal mine with over 130 employees selling to Asia Pacific customers, and Millennium Bulk Terminals – Longview (MBT-Longview), a proposed new coal export terminal on the Pacific Coast.
MBT-Longview will have an export capacity of 44 million metric tons per year. The current value of export goods from a fully constructed and commissioned export facility would exceed $2.0 billion of trade from the U.S. to our important and strategic trading partners in the Asia Pacific rim.
Once fully functional, Lighthouse’s coal export terminal will exemplify how U.S. infrastructure investment provides direct economic benefits right here in America via quality jobs and workforce development. Furthermore, the energy to be shipped through the terminals will play a critical role in facilitating regional stability for our Asian allies.
Mr. King is a graduate of the University of Missouri in Kansas City with a Bachelor's of Science degree in Business Administration.
Mark is co-owner of VK Clean Energy Partners LLP which is developing over 600 MW of utility scale solar projects in Wyoming, Utah and Montana. VK Clean Energy Partners is developing the three largest solar projects (MTSUN 80 MW, Broadview Solar 80 MW and Broadview Solar II 300 MW) in Montana near Billings, MT. These projects have all been designed to incorporate energy storage.
Previously Mark owned Pacific Northwest Energy Consultants an energy consulting company that provided technical advice and analytic solutions and support to utilities, merchant generators, developers, investment banks, and other major consulting firms.
Mark has 35 years’ experience in the electric, natural gas, oil, and coal industries and he has extensive knowledge of the electricity, natural gas, renewable, and coal markets in the US, UK, South America, Central America and Asia.
Mark’s knowledge of the California and Western US, New York, Mid-Atlantic, and New England generation, natural gas and renewable energy markets was gained over a twenty-year span from previously serving as Vice President of electricity and natural gas trading for PacifiCorp and the Public Service Company of the New Mexico.
Mark has both B.S. and M.S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Idaho and Washington State University respectively and he is a registered Professional Engineer (Texas).
Dale Lebsack has been the Business Unit Leader for Talen Montana, LLC since May 2017. In that role, he is responsible for managing both Talen’s ownership stake in the Colstrip Steam Electric Station and Talen’s role as operator of the plant.
Mr. Lebsack has over 19 years of experience in the power generation industry, with primary expertise in generation asset management and plant operations. Since 2015, he has led asset management and operations for various power generation portfolios owned by Talen Energy in the Northeast U.S., Montana, and Texas. He joined Talen Energy in June 2015 upon its creation via the merger of RJS Power, a portfolio company of Riverstone Holdings, LLC, with PPL’s competitive generation business.
Before joining Talen, Mr. Lebsack managed RJS Power’s Sapphire generation portfolio centered in New Jersey. With RJS Power for over 10 years, he served in various leadership roles related to power generation assets owned by portfolio companies of Riverstone Holdings, LLC. Among his responsibilities were the technical planning and permitting related to the repowering of three power plants in Texas, managing the conversion to biomass of a coal-fired plant in North Carolina, and supporting asset acquisitions and divestitures.
Prior to joining RJS Power, Mr. Lebsack held plant-level roles with Duke Energy in Arizona and Entergy in Mississippi. He received a degree in Mechanical Engineering (BSME) from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Peder Maarbjerg currently serves as the Assistant Director for External Coordination at ARPA-E and is responsible for legislative and public policy outreach.
Prior to joining ARPA-E, Maarbjerg served as Senior Policy Fellow at the U.S. Nuclear Infrastructure Council, where he researched legislative and policy trends, with a focus on administrative law and budget policy. Previously, Maarbjerg was the Appropriations and Legislative Director for a senior member of the U.S. House of Representatives, Energy and Water Appropriations Subcommittee. He received his B.A. in Anthropology and History from Union College, N.Y. and his J.D. cum laude in Environmental Law from the University of Baltimore.
Colin Marshall is President and CEO of Cloud Peak Energy, which is one of the largest coal producers in the U.S., shipping 57 million tons of thermal coal in 2017. It operates the Antelope, Cordero Rojo and Spring Creek mines in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming and Montana and employs approximately 1,300 people.
Mr. Marshall began his career with the Rio Tinto group in 1987 as a Graduate Trainee. He then worked for Rio Tinto in London as an analyst in the Business Evaluation Department before moving to Brisbane, Australia, as Finance Director of Rio Tinto’s Pacific Coal division in 1996. In 2000, he was appointed General Manager of the Cordero Rojo mine. He served in that role until March 2004, when he moved to become General Manager of Rio Tinto’s West Pilbara iron ore operations. He was located in Tom Price, West Australia, where he managed four large iron ore mines. In 2006, he was appointed CEO of Rio Tinto Energy America, which was spun out of Rio Tinto through an IPO in November 2009 that established Cloud Peak Energy as an independent, publicly-traded company. Cloud Peak Energy is the only NYSE-listed company headquartered in Wyoming.
Mr. Marshall holds both a Masters in Mechanical Engineering from Brunel University and a Masters in Business Administration from London Business School.
The Honorable Mark Wesley Menezes, Under Secretary of Energy serves as the Department’s principal advisor on energy policy and on a wide array of existing and emerging energy technologies. The Under Secretary is responsible for driving transformative energy policy, and technology solutions through coordinated planning, management and performance of the Department’s energy programs.
Prior to being confirmed as Under Secretary of Energy, Mr. Menezes was an executive with Berkshire Hathaway Energy in its Washington, D.C. office. Before joining BHE, Mr. Menezes was a partner at Hunton & Williams LLP, where he headed the Regulated Markets and Energy Infrastructure practice group. Prior to Hunton, he served as Chief Counsel, Energy and Environment, U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce, serving as chief negotiator for the House Majority in the enactment of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. Before his service with House Energy & Commerce, he was Vice President with Central and South West, and upon its merger with American Electric Power, served as Vice President and Associate General Counsel for federal and state legislative and regulatory affairs.
Mr. Menezes has been named in National Journal’s “Hill 100”—top Congressional staff for his work on both energy and environmental matters. He has been frequent guest speaker and lecturer before numerous associations and civic groups, including legal education seminars where he has been called on to address the nation’s energy and environmental policies, utility restructuring, telecommunications, ethics, merger and acquisition practices, and regulatory and legislative processes. He has co-authored numerous articles, a practice manual, and been quoted in the New York Times, Law360, Oil and Gas Journal, Politico as well as interviewed by E&ETV. He’s been listed Best Lawyers in America 2013–2016, Corporate Counsel’s Top Lawyers 2006–2011, Washington Post’s Top Lawyers 2008–2016, and DC Super Lawyers 2012–2016.
Mr. Menezes is a graduate of Louisiana State University receiving both his undergraduate and juris doctor degree. Until joining the government he was a charter member of the Advisory Council, Louisiana State University Law John P. Laborde Energy Law Center, and served on the Board of Directors of the Congressional Chorus & American Youth Chorus.
Joe Micheletti is currently Chief Operating Officer of Westmoreland Coal Company. Mr. Micheletti is the officer responsible for day to day operations of Westmoreland’s (19) mining operations across the U.S. and Canada. Westmoreland’s cornerstone/core value of “Uncompromised Safety” and a culture of always treating people right, are the attributes of the company that he is most proud of. Joe joined Westmoreland in August 1998 and he overflows with great admiration and pride in leading a committed and dedicated workforce of 3,000 employees. From 2012 through 2016, Joe was key to growing Westmoreland’s business platform fourfold, having lead due diligence, business plan development, and overseeing integration of multiple acquisitions.
A mineral processing engineer by education, Joe graduated with honors from Montana College of Mineral Science and Technology in 1987. Joe started his mining career in the gold mining industry, but has now spent most of his career with Westmoreland in the coal sector. He has worked in the production, maintenance, processing, and engineering disciplines of the mining industry for 31 years. Joe previously served as President of the Rocky Mountain Coal Mining Institute, an association of nine western U.S. states dedicated to the promotion of western coal through public education and youth scholarship.
Joe is a 4th generation Montanan; an Anaconda kid. He and his beautiful wife Jenni reside in Billings, Montana and are blessed with three children; Joey, Alyssa and Nico. The Micheletti’s favorite hobbies revolve around enjoying Montana’s Big Sky, especially boating, fly fishing, water skiing, snowmobiling and above all, spending time at the family’s Georgetown Lake cabin.
Shinya Miyake was appointed Regional Head for the Americas of Japan Bank for International Cooperation in June 2017. His responsibilities include relationship management mainly with governments, financial institutions and firms in the region, opinion recommendation to the Governor and CEO of the Bank, and command and supervision for the Bank's five representative offices in the region; New York, Washington D.C., Buenos Aires, Mexico City and Rio de Janeiro.
Prior to the current Position, Dr. Miyake was seconded to Japan Institute for Overseas Investment (JOI) as Executive Managing Director from September 2016 to June 2017. In JBIC, he held the position of Director General of the Nuclear & Renewable Energy Finanace Department from November 2013 to June 2015, and the New Energy & Power Finance Department I from July 2015 to September 2016. As Director General, he had the responsibility to handle all IPP projects globally including renewable energy and nuclear new built projects as well as conventional thermal power projects.
Dr. Miyake joined the Export-Import Bank of Japan (J-EXIM) in April 1987. Prior to the position of Director General, he held the positions of Director of the Corporate Finance Department, Director of the Policy & Strategy Department, and Senior Advisor for Global Environmental Affairs. He was also Chief Representative of JBIC's Representative Office in Paris from October 2008 to April 2012.
He obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of Tokyo in 1987, a Master of Science degree in Politics of the World Economy from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) in 1992, and a PhD degree in Social Science (major: International Business) from Waseda University in 2014. He is a member of Japan Academy of International Business Studies.
A.J. Not Afraid has been involved in economic development activities in Crow for almost a decade. Since his election in November 2016, A.J. has focused on developing the Tribe’s economic resources, with a focus on energy, as well as transforming the paradigm of the Crow Tribal government.
Prior to his term as Chairman, A.J. served as Secretary of the Tribe, a position responsible for overseeing and maintaining government records and reports, as well as the management of elections. He also worked as Director of the Crow Coal Regulatory Office, directing the development of the Nation’s coal resources.
A.J. is a decorated Marine, having served in both the 7th Mortar Battalion and the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit during Operation Southern Watch. He and his wife, Deneen, have 11 children. He enjoys outdoor activities with his family, especially hunting.
Tony O’Donnell was elected to the Montana Public Service Commission in 2016 and has served for nearly 1 1/2 years representing District 2, which encompasses the 10 counties of Southeast Montana. The purpose of the Montana PSC is to provide for “abundant, reliable and affordable power” among many other areas of responsibility including Railroad Safety and Pipeline Safety. His particular personal interest is in strengthening the protections of the electric and gas production and transmission infrastructure (the grid) from cyber and physical threats.
Matt Rose is the executive chairman of BNSF Railway Company after having served thirteen years as chief executive officer and eleven years as chairman--during which time BNSF became a Berkshire Hathaway-owned company in 2010. In June 1999, Mr. Rose was made president and chief operating officer. For almost two years prior to that, he served as senior vice president and chief operations officer. Mr. Rose joined Burlington Northern Railroad (BN) in 1993 and held several positions in the Merchandise Business Unit. Prior to that, he held several positions in the trucking industry. Mr. Rose obtained his Bachelor of Science in marketing with a minor in logistics from the University of Missouri. Mr. Rose is on the Board of Directors for AT&T Inc., Association of American Railroads, Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas and Fluor Corporation. Mr. Rose serves on the Board of Trustees for Texas Christian University and Boy Scouts of America National Executive Board.
Bob has been President and Chief Executive Officer of NorthWestern Corporation since August 13, 2008. He is Co-Chair of the Institute for Electric Innovation, part of the Edison Electric Institute (EEI); a member of the EEI Board of Directors Executive Committee; a member of the American Gas Association Board of Directors; Western Energy Institute past chair and current executive committee member.
Bob lives in Helena, Montana. He holds a BA from Lewis and Clark College in Portland, Oregon, a JD from the University of Oregon, completed the Kennedy School Senior Executives' Program, and has been active in various professional organizations. He has been active with a variety of university-based organizations, and is currently a senior fellow at the University of Florida Public Utility Research Center.
At NorthWestern Energy, Bob’s focus is working with other employees to build a strong company, focused on providing essential infrastructure and service, and that will be a long-term partner to the customers and communities they serve.
Previously, Bob was co-founder and senior partner at Balhoff, Rowe & Williams, LLC, a specialized national professional services firm providing financial and policy advice to clients in the telecommunications and energy industries. Mr. Rowe served as commissioner and eventually chairman of the Montana Public Service Commission from 1993-2004, and also served as president of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC). While at the PSC, Bob was a member and of the Federal-State Joint Board on Universal Service, a founding member of the Federal-State Joint Conference on Access to Advanced Services, and chairman of the Telecommunications Committee. During this time, he testified before various Congressional committees and federal agencies and consulted with and trained U.S. and non-U.S. energy and telecommunications regulators.
Nancy Schlepp became the VP of Communications and Corporate Secretary for Sandfire Resources America, Inc. (previously Tintina Resources) in 2016 after serving as their Public Relations Director since 2013. With a Bachelor of Science from Montana State University, Nancy Schlepp has over 20 years of experience in legislative relations, public policy and public relations and international trade at the local, state and federal level.
Prior to joining Tintina Resources, Nancy was the Executive Director of the Montana Taxpayers Association and previous to that was the National Affairs Director for the Montana Farm Bureau Federation working on international trade and federal policy issues. She serves on many boards and committees, is a past president of the economic development group the Montana Business Assistance Connection, sat on Governor Bullock’s Main Street Advisory Key Industry Network Committee for Natural Resources, is a graduate of Leadership Montana and is currently on the steering committee of Women Leading Montana.
Nancy grew up on a cattle ranch near Ringling, MT; and served as a Meagher County Commissioner for 4 years. In her spare time, she loves gardening and camping with her family. Nancy and her husband Chris own and operate the family ranch with their 3 children; Sarah (20), Ethan (15), and Dawson (11).
Co-founder and Director of the Colstrip United Movement and was recently elected to serve on the Colstrip City Council. Lori was born and raised in Colstrip, MT and lives there currently with her husband Walter. She went to College at MSU in Bozeman and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Horticulture Science in 2013. Lori is a pro-coal activist that uses social media to educate the public about the importance of coal and coal energy. She is a member of REAL Montana Class III, which is a leadership development program designed to build a network of informed and engaged advocates to advance the natural resource industries in Montana.
Jason is a Northern Cheyenne Tribal Member who lives on the Northern Cheyenne reservation and also presides over the Local Wolf Mountain Search and Rescue.
He attended Montana State University in Bozeman and Sheridan College and earned an association of applied sciences degree in welding and metallurgy in 2002. Jason is a journeyman boilermaker, livestock producer and owner of Fire & Rock Construction. He is serving as the President of Boilermakers Local Lodge #11. Jason is also the current State Senator for Senate District 21. During the 2017 Montana 65th Legislative Session, Jason served on Business, Labor & Economic Affairs; Senate Energy and Telecommunications; Senate Public Health, Welfare & Safety and is serving on State Tribal Relations Interim Committee. He also is a member of the Montana American Indian Caucus. During the session, Jason sponsored and passed Senate Joint Resolution 20- an interim study of intractable unemployment in high-poverty counties and helped usher House Bill 185- establish grant program to eliminate tuition for certain postsecondary programs. Jason enjoyed working across party lines to develop, generate, and improve numerous policies for the betterment of Montana, Montana Tribes, rural communities, and urban communities.
Terry Spencer is president and chief executive officer of ONEOK, after serving most recently as president of ONEOK and ONEOK Partners, where he was responsible for the organization’s operations, commercial and support functions, including corporate planning and development, human resources, information technology, corporate services, and investor relations and corporate relations. He is a member of the ONEOK board of directors.
Spencer joined ONEOK in 2001 as director, project development, for natural gas gathering and processing. Later, he served as vice president of natural gas supply and project development in the natural gas gathering and processing segment. In 2005, Spencer became senior vice president of ONEOK’s natural gas liquids business following the asset acquisition from Koch. He became president of the natural gas liquids business in 2006. From 2007 to 2009, he was executive vice president of ONEOK, with responsibilities for ONEOK Partners’ natural gas liquids gathering and fractionation, and pipeline segments, as well as ONEOK’s energy services segment. He also served as chief operating officer of ONEOK Partners and was responsible for the partnership’s three operating segments – natural gas gathering and processing, natural gas liquids and natural gas pipelines.
Prior to joining ONEOK, Spencer held positions of increasing responsibility in the natural gas gathering and processing industry with Continental Natural Gas, Inc., in Tulsa; Stellar Gas Company in Houston; and Texas Oil and Gas Corporation’s Delhi Gas Pipeline subsidiary in Dallas.
He is a member of the Gas Processors Association board of directors and its executive and finance committees.
Spencer earned a Bachelor of Science degree in petroleum engineering in 1981 from the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa.
Brandon Wittman is the CEO/General Manager of Yellowstone Valley Electric Cooperative. He has been in the utility industry for 25 years. He has a Bachelors Degree from Montana State University Billings and an MBA from Rocky Mountain College. He has also completed the Management Internship Program with the National Rural Electric Cooperatives Association and has a Journeyman Lineman Certificate.
He has been the Chairman of the Montana Electric Cooperatives Association Manager’s Group, serves on the Manager’s Advisory Committee for Central Montana Electric Power Cooperative and on the Customer Advisory Board for Border States Electric. He has also recently been elected to the Board of Trustees for CoBank, a cooperative based bank headquartered in Denver, Co.
Brandon was born and raised in the Billings area and appreciates working in and serving the communities throughout the Yellowstone River Valley.