Speakers List - Energy Risk USA

Keynotes & Chief Risk Officers

Daniel Posner

Chief Investment Officer, Energy Opportunities


Daniel Posner, Chief Investment Officer, Energy Opportunities, ALLIANCEBERNSTEIN

Daniel Posner is a Chief Investment Officer and Co-Founder of the AB Energy Opportunity Fund. Prior to assuming this role, he served as President and Chief Investment Officer of Golub Capital's event-driven hedge fund and led the firm's opportunistic credit business. Previously, Posner was a Managing Director and Partner of D. E. Shaw & Co., where he was the global head of the firm's Credit Opportunities and Distressed Investing unit as well as head of the firm's Portfolio Acquisition unit. He was also a founder and served on the investment committee of the firm's global direct capital activities. During his decade at the firm, Posner served on numerous boards and restructuring committees including Owens Corning, Globe Metals and Russ Berrie. Before joining D. E. Shaw, he was a senior vice president at Intermarket Corporation, a hedge-fund manager specializing in event-driven strategies. Posner's earlier professional experience included distressed investment and advisory roles at UBS O'Connor, Deloitte Consulting Group and Goldman Sachs. He holds a BA (magna cum laude) in economics from Yeshiva University, with awards in economics and literature, and an MBA from the University of Chicago, where he was a Gesher Fellow and received a Bridge fellowship. He is a Professor of finance at Yeshiva University and lectures on topics including private equity, hedge funds and alternative investment strategies.

Sean Collins

Director, Division of Analytics and Surveillance, FERC


Sean Collins, Director, Division of Analytics and Surveillance, FERC

SEAN K. COLLINS is the Director of the Division of Analytics and Surveillance (DAS) within the Office of Enforcement (OE) of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. He has previously held the position of Deputy Director of DAS. Prior to the formation of DAS, Mr. Collins lead a team within OE that performed detailed market, portfolio, and statistical analysis related to the identification, investigation, and prosecution of market manipulation and other potential violations of federal energy laws. Prior to joining the Commission, Mr. Collins worked for KPMG, LLP, Marsh Risk Consulting and Arthur Andersen advising the management of electric and natural gas utilities in the areas of trading, risk management, mergers and acquisitions, regulation and compliance, and process improvement. Mr. Collins holds a BA in Economics from Hampden-Sydney College and an MA in Economics from The Pennsylvania State University.

Helima Croft

Managing Director and Chief Commodities Strategist


Helima Croft, Managing Director and Chief Commodities Strategist, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS

Helima is a Managing Director and the Global Head of Commodity Strategy at RBC Capital Markets. She specializes in geopolitics and energy, leading a team of commodity strategists that cover energy, metals and cross‐commodity investor activity. Helima is a member of the National Petroleum Council, a select group of individuals who advise, inform and makerecommendations to the Secretary of Energy with respect to any matter relating to oil and natural gas. She also is a CNBC contributor, a member of the channel's exclusive family of experts, and is a Life Member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Helima joined RBC Capital Markets from Barclays, where she was a Managing Director and Head of North American
Commodities Research. Prior to that, she worked in Lehman's Business Intelligence group, the Council on Foreign Relations and the CIA, where she focused on geopolitics and commodities. Helima has received many industry accolades throughout her career, including Breaking Energy's Top Ten New York Women in Energy and received her PhD in economic history from Princeton in 2001.


Nigeria Bloczynski

Head of Risk Management


Nigeria Bloczynski, Head of Risk Management, WGL HOLDINGS

Nigeria Bloczynski is the Head of Risk Management at WGL. Mrs. Bloczynski is responsible for implementing WGL's enterprise risk management strategy and also managing the company's exposure to market, credit and other financial risks of the various trading portfolios. WGL sells and delivers natural gas and provides energy-related products and services through its utility and non-utility business segments. She joined WGL in 2008 and has previously served in risk management and quantitative roles in both the energy and financial industries. Prior to joining WGL, she worked in structured securities for at Wells Fargo and Fannie Mae.

Mrs. Bloczynski earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Theoretical Mathematics from Morgan State University and a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in finance from Johns Hopkins University.

Gary Taylor

Chief Risk Officer


Gary Taylor, Chief Risk Officer, BP ENERGY COMPANY

Gary Taylor is Chief Risk Officer for BP Energy Company with headquarters in Houston, TX. BPEC participates in a variety of domestic and global commodity markets including natural gas, power, NGLs, chemicals, and emission credits.
Prior to BP, Gary was a Senior Manager in KPMG's Financial Risk Management consulting practice, Controller of a capital markets hedge fund, Head of Origination and Structuring for Enron's Weather Derivatives desk, a Market Risk Manager at Enron, and to start his career, an auditor and consultant with one of the Big 8 Accounting firms.

Gary holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University and received his CPA license in NY State in 1996.

Michael Wittner

Managing Director, Global Head of Oil Research


Michael Wittner, Managing Director, Global Head of Oil Research, SOCIETE GENERALE

Mike Wittner is the Global Head of Oil Research for Societe Generale Corporate & Investment Banking. Mike is directly responsible for short-term and long-term global oil market analysis and forecasting.

He has been ranked in the top 4 for oil market research in 2009-2017, according to Risk and Energy Risk magazines, including five consecutive years at #1 in 2013-2017. Since 2011, Mike has also been consistently in the top 5 for crude oil price forecast accuracy in Bloomberg's quarterly ranking of the "best forecasters of energy prices".

With more than 20 years of experience in oil market analysis and, before that, 8 years of experience in the geosciences, Mike has extensive knowledge of the global and regional crude oil and refined product markets, geopolitics, and non-fundamental oil market drivers. He joined Société Générale Corporate & Investment Banking in 2007 from Credit Agricole, where he held a similar position. Prior to that, he held senior analytical positions at Koch Supply & Trading, the International Energy Agency, and PIRA Energy Group. Before getting his MBA, he worked as a geologist and project manager for an engineering firm and as an analyst at the Central Intelligence Agency.
Mike holds a BS in Geology from Cornell University and a MBA in International Business from George Washington University.

Mike is a regular speaker at industry conferences and seminars. His commentaries on oil market developments are frequently quoted in the international media and he appears regularly on television news programs. Media interviews have included CNBC, Bloomberg TV, CNN, the BBC, the CBC, the Wall Street Journal, the Financial Times, the New York Times, the Economist, Business Week, the wire services, and the energy trade press.

Novera Khan

Chief Risk Officer


Novera Khan, Chief Risk Officer, UNIPER

Uniper Chief Risk Officer since February 2016. Before, Novera has been leading the Market Risk department of Uniper Global Commodities since April 2014 and before that led the Gas, Oil & LNG Risk team. Novera has extensive experience in the energy industry and has held various Senior Risk Management positions across multiple markets and companies in the US and Europe.


Liza Abad

Enterprise Risk Manager


Liza Abad, Enterprise Risk Manager, HESS CORPORATION

Liza Abad is Enterprise Risk Manager at Hess Corporation, a Fortune 100 E&P company, with portfolio responsibilities overseeing North America onshore, Asia Pacific and Australia regions. In Asia, Liza was responsible for the roll-out of Enterprise Risk program. Liza also served in a research advisory capacity in Hess' Strategy group; shepherding the country risk program and methodology development. Prior to joining Hess, Liza was at Mirant Corporation and Bank of America. Liza has been actively involved in the risk professional and strategy community, furthering risk management best practices and educational needs of energy professionals. At Professional Risk Managers' International Association (PRMIA), she has served various global roles (Global Speaker Coordination Leader, SME and advisory roles) and chapter level roles (Houston and New York Steering Committees). In 2016, Liza was elected Co-Regional Director of PRMIA's Houston chapter. Liza has served as chairperson on the International Energy Credit Association (IECA) Crude and Refined Products committee and on projects for Association for Strategic Planning. Liza has also been an active speaker in the risk community (Columbia University' Energy Symposium, McDermott Will & Emery Energy Conference, LEAP, IECA and PRMIA). Liza holds a MBA from Emory University in Atlanta, GA.

Christian Ashworth-Donn

Director, Global Head Commodities Trading Systems


Christian Ashworth-Donn, Director, Global Head Commodities Trading Systems, BANK OF AMERICA

Michael Berry

Director of Compliance


Michael Berry, Director of Compliance, PETROCHINA INTERNATIONAL

Michael R Berry is currently leading the Compliance Function for PetroChina International (America) Inc., a commercial end user and energy merchant. Mr. Berry was previously the CEO of his own consulting firm, MRB Compliance Consulting LLC, where he led compliance risk assessments for various energy firms and assisted in the adaption of regulations promulgated as a result of passage of Wall Street Accountability Act. Prior to operating his own consulting firm, Mr. Berry joined BP North America as leader of compliance for BP's North America Gas & Power trading unit. In that role Mr. developed a comprehensive compliance function as required by a Deferred Prosecution Agreement with the Department of Justice and a Consent Order with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission in a housecleaning following attempted manipulation of the propane market by some BP traders. He was promoted to the Head of Compliance for all BP North America supply & trading compliance during the tenure of the court-appointed Independent Trading Monitor.

Mr. Berry has experience in venture capital, risk management and education. Mr. Berry holds a Bachelor of Science in Management from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Master of Business Administration with a concentration in Finance from DePaul University.


Erika Bierschbach

Interim Director, Energy & Market Operations


Erika Bierschbach, Interim Director, Energy & Market Operations, AUSTIN ENERGY

Erika Bierschbach has over 23 years of experience in the energy market industry. Bierschbach's experience includes positions in energy risk management and trading at Duke Energy Trading and Marketing as well as Enron Capital and Trade. Bierschbach's current position is interim Director of Energy & Market Operations at Austin Energy, where she manages the wholesale market activities for the utility.

Bierschbach joined Austin Energy to develop and implement the energy hedging program for the utility. Among her achievements are the establishment of Austin's financial energy portfolio, its Risk Oversight Committee, and the establishment of Risk Policy guidelines ensuring the proper oversight and separation of duties required for best practices in energy trading and risk management. Bierschbach and her origination team are responsible for acquiring over 1,200MWs of wind generation and 600 MWs of solar generation to Austin Energy's renewable portfolio to meet the renewable energy goals established by Austin's City Council.

Bierschbach has a degree in Economics from Texas A&M University and is fluent in English, Spanish and French.


Joe Brewer

Director Client Portfolio Management


Joe Brewer, Director Client Portfolio Management, CALPINE ENERGY SOLUTIONS

Joseph Brewer is the Director of Client Portfolio Management at Calpine Energy Solutions. Mr. Brewer currently manages clients with a combined electricity exposure of nearly $300 million. Over the past five years, Mr. Brewer has been an integral part of the development of the risk management platform deployed by Calpine Energy Solutions to help clients better manage their energy risk. As Director of Client Portfolio Management, Mr. Brewer leverages his corporate risk management experience and energy market expertise to help clients make informed decisions within their own organizations. Prior to joining Calpine Energy Solutions, Mr. Brewer led the risk management initiative within the treasury group of one of the twenty largest private companies in the United States. He managed financial positions in excess of $200 million on petroleum products for refinery and pipeline operations in Texas, the Mountain West, and California. Mr. Brewer holds a dual B.S. degree in Finance and Economics from Utah State University.

Mike Burger

Partner and Co-Founder


Mike Burger, Partner and Co-Founder, VERITAS TOTAL SOLUTIONS

Mike Burger has over 30 years of experience in the energy industry, spanning from physical and financial trading to consulting on trading systems and risk management. Mike has expertise in physical and financial trading of most commodities, risk management and policy, quantitative analysis and the implementation of leading commercial ETRM systems. He has led projects related to strategy, hedge analysis and risk governance and development of ETRM system programs to enhance commercial capabilities. Mike is also an experienced manager of large, complex teams and projects.

Mike is currently a Partner and Co-Founder of Veritas Total Solutions, a full-service, energy consulting firm. Before forming Veritas Mike led the business consulting practice of a niche ETRM consultancy for 5 years. Previously he was a partner in Accenture's ETRM practice, served as a business architect on Citadel's gas and power trading desk and led OpenLink Financial's Energy Division for several years. He has traded crude, refined products, fixed income and foreign exchange and served as an upstream engineer and operations supervisor at Mobil.

Mike earned a chemical engineering degree from the University of Southern California and a MBA from the University of Colorado.


Michael Carter

Risk Advisor

Energy Risk Consulting

Michael Carter, Risk Advisor, Energy Risk Consulting

During the course of his career as a risk manager and consultant in the energy industry, Michael has worked with numerous entities facing transformational events including deregulation, new business startup, international expansion, and post-bankruptcy emergence. He has established or expanded the credit and treasury departments for numerous energy entities active in the physical and financial trading of crude, products, power, gas, liquids, carbon, coal and their associated services and derivatives. He has acted as a practitioner, consultant, trainer, and speaker and his broad experience in a diverse cross section of the international energy industry gives him a unique perspective of the many different risk management challenges companies face when trading with each other.

John Clowney

Senior Vice President of Compliance


John Clowney, Senior Vice President of Compliance, CITI

JOHN CLOWNEY is a Senior Vice President within the Compliance team at Citigroup Energy Inc. His work focuses on providing derivatives-related transactional and regulatory advice, trade surveillance, and training to the North American sales and trading business. Prior to joining Citigroup, John held a Compliance role at Bank of America Merrill Lynch where he covered crude oil and products, power, natural gas, and commodity index products. John has held various positions within the institutional fixed income and equity groups within Merrill Lynch in New York. He holds a B.A. from University of Texas and a M.B.A. from the University of Mississippi.

Paul Cusenza

Chief Executive Officer


Paul Cusenza, Chief Executive Officer, NODAL EXCHANGE

Mr. Cusenza has over thirty years of experience in building and managing businesses. He has been Chief Executive Officer since January 2008 and led Nodal Exchange to its commencement of trading in April of 2009. Prior to Nodal Exchange, he was a co-Founder and co-President of 23andMe, a personal genetics company, and the Senior Vice President of Marketing and Alliance Management at Perlegen Sciences. He was part of the Senior Management Team of Capital One Financial during a period of great growth in the 1990s, as the Managing Director of Value-Added Alliances and Vice President Marketing & Analysis. Prior to Capital One Financial, he was a Vice President and Partner at Mercer Management Consulting (now Oliver Wyman) for nearly a decade focusing on financial services. He also worked for IBM early in his career. Mr. Cusenza holds a Masters of Business Administration degree from the Harvard Business School and a B.S.E. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Michigan.



Lynda Clemmons

Vice President, Business Solutions


Lynda Clemmons, Vice President, Business Solutions, NRG ENERGY

Lynda Clemmons is a Vice President in NRG Energy's Business Solutions group. As the leader of the Sustainability and Products team, she manages product development, implementation and sustainability professionals. Their goal is to create a cleaner energy future through technology, renewables and efficiency, both within the organization and with clients. She has been at NRG since 2012, incorporating all of the commercial products and services that enable Fortune 250 companies to achieve their sustainability goals.

Lynda started her career as an analyst in an investment bank. She then spent eight years at Enron where she started the weather derivatives business as well as the SO2 and NOx emissions trading desk. In 2000, Lynda co-founded and was COO of XL Weather and Energy (a division of XL Capital Ltd), a trading and insurance company based in Connecticut. She also co-founded and was the former President of the Weather Risk Management Association.

Lynda holds BA degrees in History and French from Southern Methodist University and a Master of Finance from Tulane University.


Minal Dalia

Power Commodity Risk Manager


Minal Dalia, Power Commodity Risk Manager, BP ENERGY COMPANY

Minal has extensive risk management experience in the energy industry across multiple commodities including power, gas, crude oil, refined products and ags. At BP she is responsible for middle office and market risk. Prior to BP, she was the Global Head of Middle and Back Office at TrailStone and a risk consultant at PwC.

Abhishek Deshpande

Chief Energy Analyst


Abhishek Deshpande, Chief Energy Analyst, NATIXIS

Abhishek has vast experience in oil & gas industry and financial markets. He has strong analytical and quantitative skills supported by all round knowledge of oil markets, demand and supply modeling, macroeconomic research, investment flows and company analysis. Currently he heads the energy research at Natixis. He helped set up and expand the energy research at Natixis in 2011. He was also instrumental in designing and launching the annual Oil Review, Natixis' flagship publication on oil. He has a growing media profile, appearing on BBC, SKY News, CNBC, Bloomberg and is regularly quoted by financial media including Reuters, AFP and Financial Times. He is invited regularly at leading energy conferences worldwide as a plenary speaker including the commodities meeting by United Nations. Before starting his current role as an energy analyst, he worked as a management consultant for 2 years.

Before starting his career in finance and consulting, Abhishek completed his PhD in Chemical Engineering from University of Cambridge. At Cambridge, he worked on micro-fluidics development and its application in pharmaceutical and other fine chemicals industries. He holds a Chartered Engineer status from the Institute of Chemical Engineers (UK) and a Chartered Energy Engineer status from the Energy Institute (UK). He is also a member of the Energy Institute, International Association of Energy Economics and Chatham House.

Whilst at Cambridge and in his current role at Natixis, he has published several academic and economic papers in international peer reviewed journals.


Patty Dondanville



Patty Dondanville, Partner, REED SMITH LLP

Patty Dondanville is a partner with the global law firm Reed Smith LLP. She concentrates her practice in corporate finance and transactional matters, often representing energy companies in mergers, acquisitions, divestitures and financings. Patty also provides legal advice on corporate governance, risk management and compliance programs, and on energy trading and related credit risk, collateral and credit support matters.

Patty's clients include energy and utility holding companies, energy marketing companies, merchant generators, electric cooperatives and municipal utilities. Patty also represents energy companies and trade associations with respect to legislative and regulatory policy at the increasing important intersection between the energy industry and the financial markets.

Patty served as one of the first Co-Chairs, and remains a member, of the Edison Electric Institute's Contract Drafting Committee. She is an active member of the American Bar Association and a former chair of its Infrastructure and Regulated Industries Section. In 2016, Patty was named an "Energy & Environmental Trailblazer" by The National Law Journal.
Patty received her undergraduate degree in American Studies, magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from the University of Notre Dame, and her law degree from the University of Virginia Law School.

Deepak D'Souza

Assistant Controller, Commercial


Deepak D'Souza, Assistant Controller, Commercial, TESORO

Deepak D'Souza is Assistant Controller, Commercial at Tesoro Corporation, one of the largest independent refiners and marketers of petroleum products in the United States. In his current role, Deepak provides leadership and oversight across market risk reporting and monitoring, trading compliance, commercial contracts management and inventory accounting.

Prior to Tesoro, Deepak served in a variety of leadership roles at BP and Energy Future Holdings. These roles included positions within product control, risk reporting and planning & analysis functions.

Deepak holds a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting from Purdue University and a MS in Financial Markets from Illinois Institute of Technology.



Robert Emmett

Chief Compliance Officer


Robert Emmett, Chief Compliance Officer, CASTLETON COMMODITIES INTERNATIONAL

Robert Emmett is the Chief Compliance Officer at Castleton Commodities International, an independent global commodities merchant. He is responsible for regulatory compliance across CCI's global activities, which include the merchandising, marketing, and trading of a wide range of physical and financial energy and other bulk commodities from offices assets around the world. Prior to joining CCI, Robert has worked in compliance and audit roles at Anadarko Petroleum, Centerbridge Partners, and the D. E. Shaw group.

Jennifer Fordham

Senior Vice President, Government Affairs


Jennifer Fordham, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, NATURAL GAS SUPPLY ASSOCIATION

Jenny Fordham is senior vice president, government affairs for the Natural Gas Supply Association (NGSA). She joined NGSA in 2005.

Jenny is responsible for the association's legislative and policy advocacy on issues relating to the competitive natural gas market. She represents the association at senior level meetings with the administration, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), U.S. Congress, media, industry and the public, serving as a spokeswoman for the association on a multitude of natural gas market issues.

Jenny's diverse 25-year energy career helps provide the commercial relevance that is characteristic of NGSA advocacy. Fordham's regulatory affairs and fuel supply planning experience is further augmented by her investor relations and financial planning experience for Columbia Energy Group.

Jenny specializes creating long term strategic advocacy partnerships that broaden policymaker support for commercially relevant positions. Fordham created the first "agriculture and energy" partnership, NGSA and the National Corn Growers Association, credited with securing the end user protections in the Dodd-Frank financial reform legislation. Jenny's work helped establish NGSA as an industry leader on CFTC Dodd-Frank implementation advocacy.

Jenny Fordham graduated cum laude from Shepherd University receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in economics and political science. 

Gürcan Gülen

Senior Energy Economist


Gürcan Gülen, Senior Energy Economist, THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS AT AUSTIN

Dr. Gülen investigates and lectures on energy value chain economics and commercial frameworks. Since the late 90s, he worked on oil, natural gas and electric power sector issues in North America, South Asia, West Africa, and FSU, focusing on the economics, policy and regulation of resource development and delivery, and power market design. Most recently, he has been working in BEG's interdisciplinary team to assess shale gas and oil resources in the U.S.; CEE's natural gas demand assessment in the electric power, industrial and transportation sectors; UT Energy Institute's Full Cost of Electricity study. Dr. Gülen has many articles in peer reviewed and industry publications, and presents regularly to a wide range of audiences. He received a Ph.D. in Economics from Boston College and a B.A. in Economics from Bosphorus University in Istanbul, Turkey.

Frank Hayden

Vice President, Trading Compliance


Frank Hayden, Vice President, Trading Compliance, CALPINE

Frank Hayden has been in the industry since 1987 and currently serves as Vice President of Trading Compliance for Calpine. Mr. Hayden is charged with developing a trading compliance control framework and market monitoring program. He directs overall corporate strategy regarding commercial compliance. His deep experience includes energy trading, assurance risk assessments, risk management, utility asset management, banking and energy trading compliance. During his career, Frank remains focused on enabling organizations with a transparent decision-making framework increasing the effectiveness of compliance programs, risk management and overall efficiency of capital allocation. Mr. Hayden is a co-founder of the Professional Risk Manager's International Association.


Catherine Helleux

Senior Vice President


Catherine Helleux, Senior Vice President, SOCIETE GENERALE

Catherine Helleux holds a double Master of Science in Management from HEC in Paris, France and Otago University in Dunedin, New Zealand. She joined SG Americas, the NY-based subsidiary of France's Societe Generale in 2006, working first within the infrastructure structured finance group and later joining the energy structured financed group where she focuses on the Oil & Gas - pipelines, liquefaction and import/export terminals - and power sectors, from conventional to renewable and storage. Transactions led by Catherine include non-recourse debt, private placement, solar PV securitization and tax equity in USA, Canada, Mexico, Chile, Peru, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Panama, Colombia and Brazil.

Jonathan Hirst

Director, Energy Risk Management


Jonathan Hirst, Director, Energy Risk Management, CONSOLIDATED EDISON COMPANY OF NEW YORK

Jonathan has worked at Con Edison since 1986. In 2001, he established the Company's Energy Risk Management Department, which works to mitigate and control market and execution, and credit risks for the company's energy derivatives' hedging activities. Jonathan has over 30 years of experience in risk management, corporate finance, and business development. Jonathan was awarded a Chartered Financial Analyst in 1990.

Paul Hughes

Manager, Risk Control


Paul Hughes, Manager, Risk Control, SOUTHERN COMPANY

Paul is the Manager of Risk Control for Southern Company Services. His responsibilities include credit management, deal valuation, operational systems, along with various regulatory matters, including serving as the lead for Dodd-Frank compliance. Previously, he managed the financial hedging programs for all of the operating companies in the Southern Company family. Paul has 19 years of experience, primarily in the energy trading sector where he has served in the front, middle, and back office. Before he joined Southern Company, Paul spent seven years at a consulting firm serving a client base primarily made up of energy companies. Previously, Paul worked El Paso Merchant Energy (formally Sonat Energy Services), where he spent most of his time in the natural gas sector, including LNG. Paul began his career at KPMG as a financial auditor.

Paul earned his B.S. in Business Administration from Samford University and a M.Acc. from the University of Alabama. He maintains an active license in the state of Alabama as a Certified Public Accountant and has also earned the designation of Certified Information Technology Professional from the American Institute of Public Accountants.


Kevin Hulsey

Director, Risk Management Energy Commodities


Kevin Hulsey, Director, Risk Management Energy Commodities, SHELL TRADING RISK MANAGEMENT

Kevin joined Shell Trading (US) Company in October 2012 as a Director Risk Management and then helped to create Shell Trading Risk Management, LLC (STRM), which was incorporated in November 2013 and registered as a Swap Dealer under Dodd-Frank in January 2014. Kevin also helped to lead the creation of Shell Trading's Unsecured No-Margin (UNM) credit program that removed the requirement for derivative lines and tenors, and instead, replaced those limits with a credit charge methodology for customers that experience Right-Way Risk credit tendencies. Kevin markets the UNM program along with Shell Trading's Secured No-Margin or ISDA+CSA credit programs to allow STRM to offer its customers multiple platforms and financials products to execute their hedging strategies in crude, natural gas, refined products, natural gas liquids, and power. Prior to joining Shell, Kevin spent time at ConocoPhillips, BBVA Compass, and Sterne Agee & Leach, Inc. Kevin holds a Bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering from The University of Tulsa and a MBA from Tulane University with a focus in Finance and Management.

Sid Jacobson

Managing Director


Sid Jacobson, Managing Director, PIVOTAL RISK ADVISORS

Sid is a management consultant with over 25 years of experience driving change and growth for companies engaged in energy and related derivatives markets. Sid is known for strategic visioning complemented with a successful track record implementing improved commodity strategies, commercial operations, risk management and regulatory compliance.

Prior to consulting, Sid had successful career as an options market-maker with a seat on the AMEX and NYMEX. After trading, Sid was the first risk manager for a global hedge fund and for a PJM utility/energy marketer. Sid also developed derivatives marketing programs to launch new products for NYMEX.

Sid often engages in industry committees focused on developing practices; currently as a Steering Committee Member for the Houston Chapter of PRMIA, a Committee of Chief Risk Officers Advocate and as a conference moderator for Energy Risk USA. Sid graduated Syracuse University with a B.S. degree in Finance with a focus on Managerial Statistics.



Saji John

Managing Director, Global Head of Commodity Market Risk


Saji John, Managing Director, Global Head of Commodity Market Risk, CITI

Saji K. John is the Global Head of Market Risk Management for the Global Commodities group at Citigroup. As the global head of market risk management, Saji's team monitors and provides global oversight for Citigroup's commodity market risk. He is also the Chief Risk Officer for Citigroup's US swap dealer for commodities. He has been with Citi since 2007. Prior to Citigroup, he worked at BP for 5yrs as the Market Risk Manager for BP's energy trading desks in Houston. He started his career in energy commodities as a structurer for the Natural Gas and Power desk with Enron Corp in their energy trading group. He was with Enron for 5 years. Prior to Enron, he worked for various engineering companies as an Electrical Engineer in the Middle East and India. Saji graduated with an MBA in Finance from the University of Texas at Austin. He obtained his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, India. He holds the designation of Chartered Financial Analyst from the CFA institute.

Vince Kaminski




Mr. Vincent Kaminski has spent 14 years working in different positions related to quantitative analysis and risk management in the merchant energy industry. The companies he worked for include Citigroup, Sempra Energy Trading, Reliant Energy, Citadel Investment Group, and Enron (from 1992 to 2002) where he was the head of the quantitative modeling group. Prior to starting a career in the energy industry, Mr. Kaminski was a Vice-President in the Research Department, Bond Portfolio Analysis Group, of Salomon Brothers in New York (from 1986 to 1992). 

As of September 15, 2006, Mr. Kaminski has accepted an academic position with Rice University in Houston (Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business) where he is teaching MBA level classes on energy markets, energy risk management and valuation of energy derivatives. Mr. Kaminski is also teaching classes in the executive education program at the Jones school.

Mr. Kaminski holds an M.S. degree in international economics, a Ph.D. degree in theoretical economics from the Main School of Planning and Statistics in Warsaw, Poland, and an MBA from Fordham University in New York. He is a recipient of the 1999 James H. McGraw award for Energy Risk Management (Energy Risk Manager of the Year). Mr. Kaminski published a number of papers, and contributed to several books, on energy markets. His recent publications in the risk management and commodity options pricing areas include: Managing Energy Price Risk (4th edition), all three subsequent editions, editor and coauthor; The Challenge of Pricing and Risk Managing Electricity Derivatives, in: The US Power Market, Risk Publications, London 1997, author; and Energy Modeling. Advances in the Management of Uncertainty, London 2005, editor and coauthor.

Prof. Vince Kaminski will be holding a book signing on day one of Energy Risk USA on May 10. Don't miss out on this exclusive opportunity.

Glenn Labhart

Chairman of the Energy Risk Diploma Program, GARP, Principal


Glenn Labhart, Chairman of the Energy Risk Diploma Program, GARP, Principal, LABHART RISK ADVISORS

In March 2004 Glenn Labhart formed Labhart Risk Advisors Inc., a corporation providing expertise energy risk management consulting, analytical and business strategy services.

A recognized authority on trading and risk control, Labhart has more than 15 years of experience in the design and implementation of sound risk management processes and policies and has been a leader in helping the industry define today's risk environment and plan for the uncertainties of the future.

Glenn is the first energy-industry risk officer to receive the Financial Risk Manager of the Year Award from the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP). Glenn now serves as the Chairman of the Energy Risk Diploma program for GARP and he is also a board member for the International Risk Who's Who Organization.

From August 1997 to March 2004, Glenn was senior vice president and chief risk officer for Dynegy Inc responsible for the corporate risk oversight of the foreign exchange, assets and energy commodities revenue pool. In 2002, he assumed management of the company's credit risk and corporate insurance and, upon the acquisition of Northern Natural Gas Pipeline Company developed the risk management program for transportation and storage services.

While at Dynegy, 2003, Glenn was charged with the development of all risk management applications in the Openlink trading system. This incorporated portfolio design, deal structuring, risk analytics and real time position reporting on an intranet web based solution.

From 2002-2004, at the request of the Dynegy Audit Committee, he conducted internal investigations in concert with outside legal counsel to provide an assessment of industry practices to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Securities and Exchange Commission and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

During the time period at Dynegy, Glenn led the independent valuation of due diligence for all mergers and acquisitions that included European, Australian, Latin American and US based transactions. As a result of the merger activity, Glenn served as a Board member for subsidiary companies from Dynegy acquisitions.

Prior to joining Dynegy, Labhart was head of risk management at El Paso Energy for energy trading and marketing, and prior the merger with Tenneco Energy the trading control officer. Earlier in his career, he worked for Tricentrol PLC, the Metallgesellscaft Corporation and Neste Oy, the national Finnish oil company.

In these positions he acquired a solid background in physical trading of domestic and international products and formed business liaisons in South and Central America, the UK, Africa, the Middle East and all pipeline and waterborne US regions.

During his trading and risk management career, Glenn was involved in many asset based transactions to include crude oil and refined product storage facilities, crude oil physical transportation, countertrade and trade finance agreements for crude oil and refined products, crude oil processing agreements, refinery acquisition, evaluation of tolling agreements and generation facilities, and corporate merger activities.

His professional affiliations include board memberships with GARP, the Mays Business School at Texas A&M and the Abilene Christian University College of Business Administration Advisory Council. He has also been a representative to the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX) Natural Gas Advisory Committee and a member of the GARP Energy Risk Committee and the DEDMI (Development of Energy Derivative Market in India .

Labhart is a frequent lecturer on risk management issues, and, in particular, the implications of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to audiences including industry associations, training seminars, MBA programs and universities such as Rice University, Texas A&M University and Columbia University on behalf of the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Glenn holds a B.B.A. from the Abilene Christian University and is a graduate of the Rice University Executive Management Program. He is also a life member of the National Eagle Scout Association.


Jeff Lam

Chief Compliance Officer


Jeff Lam, Chief Compliance Officer, POWEREX CORP.

Jeff began his career in the electricity industry in 1988 with BC Hydro where he held various engineering and management positions in the areas of electrical distribution, power marketing, demand side management, and retail electricity pricing.

From May 2000 to March 2007, Jeff was Powerex' principal Trade Policy Representative to the California and US southwest power markets. Jeff was actively engaged in the market reform efforts at the California ISO, California Public Utilities Commission, and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Jeff provided regulatory support to Powerex's power marketing and trading staff and advocated for Powerex' access to wholesale power markets in California and the Southwest United States.

In April 2007, Jeff was appointed Manager of Compliance for Powerex and was responsible for the day to day operation of Powerex' compliance function. Jeff was a key member of Powerex' compliance team that developed and implemented Powerex' compliance program. In May 2010, Jeff was appointed to his current role as Powerex' Chief Compliance Officer.

Jeff has a B.A.Sc. in Electrical Engineering from the University of British Columbia and is a registered professional engineer in BC.


Spyros Maragos

Manager, Structuring Group


Spyros Maragos, Manager, Structuring Group, DIRECT ENERGY

SPYROS MARAGOS has more than twenty years' worth of experience as an energy executive. He has held quantitative, structuring, risk management and fundamental analysis positions in the energy industry.
He worked in energy marketing, consulting, for an oil major as well as for energy hedge funds. Currently, he is Manager of Structuring for Direct Energy.

Spyros has a Ph.D. from M.I.T. where he studied Management, Operations Research and Finance.


Tim McKone

Chief Compliance Officer


Tim McKone, Chief Compliance Officer, CITIGROUP ENERGY

Tim McKone has 25 years of commodity market experience in Front, Mid and Back Office roles with wholesale traders, merchant generators, banks and majors. Tim started his career in Compliance in 2003 and was one of the first regulatory compliance officers in the U.S. wholesale trading marketplace. Tim combines a detailed understanding of the underlying mechanics of physical and financial commodity transactions with in-depth knowledge of the letter and intent of the rules that govern these transactions to help mitigate the risk of non-compliance. He is currently Chief Compliance Officer for Citigroup Energy Inc. Tim has a BA in History from Williams College and a Masters in Accounting and Masters in Taxation from Northeastern University. Tim is a member of New England Patriots Nation, but does not publicize this for obvious reasons.

Sean Patrick Murphy

Chief Data Scientist

Author, Data and Electric Power

Sean Patrick Murphy, Chief Data Scientist, PingThings & Author, "Data and Electric Power"

Sean Patrick Murphy is the co-founder and Chief Data Scientist for PingThings, Inc., an AI-focused startup bringing advanced data science and machine learning to the nation's electric grid. He has degrees in math, electrical engineering, and biomedical engineering, as well as an MBA from Oxford. Sean completed his graduate work in biomedical engineering at Johns Hopkins University and stayed on as a senior scientist at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory for over a decade, where he focused on machine learning, anomaly detection, image analysis, and high-performance and cloud-based computing. Previously, he served as the chief data scientist at a series A-funded health care analytics firm and the director of research at a boutique graduate educational company.

Garth Renne

Garth Renne, Vice President, ERM Analytics


Garth joined Exelon Corporation in September 2014 as Vice President, Enterprise Risk Management Analytics. In this role, he is responsible for reporting, quantifying, and analyzing portfolio-level risks within the organization.

Prior to joining Exelon, Garth was Director of Hedging and Trading at ENMAX Corporation in Calgary, Alberta, where his group was responsible for the management of the firm's wholesale power position, including plant dispatch, hedging activities, and specialized transactions.
Prior to that, Garth served as V.P., Enterprise Risk Management with Brookfield Renewable Power, where he led the firm's risk management group, overseeing both trading operations and corporate risk functions. He has also held a variety of risk, commercial, and analytical roles at both TransAlta and TransCanada Corporations.

Garth is a 1992 graduate of the University of Calgary, where he received his master's degree in economics, and undertook PhD studies at Queen's University.


Zeid Saadi

Advisory Services Manager


Zeid Saadi, Advisory Services Manager, TESORO COMPANIES

Zeid M. Saadi is a risk professional with over 10 years of experience in the energy industry. Zeid is an Advisory Services Manager at Tesoro. He is also responsible for the execution of the enterprise risk management program for the commercial and marketing functions. Prior to his current role, he held multiple positions within Tesoro most recently as Manager, Trading Compliance where he was responsible for the implementation of the Dodd-Frank Act requirements.

Zeid earned his bachelor's degree in business administration and his masters of science degree in finance and from the University of Texas at San Antonio. He also holds a Certification in Risk Management Assurance (CRMA).

Nima Safaian

Head of Trading Analytics


Nima Safaian, Head of Trading Analytics, CENOVUS ENERGY

Nima Safaian is the head of trading analytics with Cenovus Energy in Calgary, Canada. In this role, he applies Data Science and Statistical Learning methodologies to get better insights on risk/reward opportunities. Previously Nima worked as a risk manager with Scotiabank and BP's Integrated Supply and Trading Group. Nima is an active member of GARP Calgary where he leads seminar/workshop series on the practical applications of Big Data and Machine Learning to trading and risk analytics. Nima holds degrees in nuclear engineering and an MBA.

Bryan Sal

Refined Products Market Risk Manager


Bryan Sal, Refined Products Market Risk Manager, SHELL TRADING US COMPANY

Bryan Sal has over 13 years of professional experience in commodities trading, finance, and accounting.

Bryan joined Shell Trading in 2007 where he has held a variety of roles in market risk, product control, and technical accounting advice. Currently, he acts as the Manager of Market Risk for Americas refined products trading. In that role, he manages a large team of analysts that oversee trading "mid-office" functions, including gross margin validation, positions monitoring, and an array of finance-oriented special projects.

Prior to his time at Shell Trading, Bryan held various accounting-related positions including financial statement audit of large, multi-national corporations at Ernst and Young.

Bryan earned a Masters of Accountancy from BYU and is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and an Energy Risk Professional (ERP).


Markus Seiser

Chief Operating Officer, Energy


Chief Operating Officer, Energy, FIS

Dr. Markus Seiser joined SunGard in 2014 as Global Head of Services and Managing Director for EMEA for SunGard's energy business. Initially, he spent several years at Landis & Gyr, a large Swiss company, in the area of network management and optimization as a project engineer and project manager. In 1999, he founded IRM (Integriertes Ressourcen Management) and became CEO in 2001. At IRM, a leading energy solution provider in Europe, Dr. Seiser was responsible for establishing the product and project management teams focusing on physical trade and risk management, for defining the product strategy and for the development of the IRM trading software. In 2007, IRM was acquired by OpenLink. In addition to his ongoing responsibilities as Chief Executive Officer of the IRM subsidiary, Dr. Seiser served as Managing Director of OpenLink's EMEA region. Dr. Seiser majored in Electrical Engineering at the Graz University of Technology in Graz, Austria and holds a Ph.D. from the Technical University in Vienna as well as several post graduates.

Akshay Singh

Modeling and Analytics Leader


Akshay Singh, Modeling and Analytics Leader, GE CAPITAL

Akshay Singh has been associated with strategy, corporate development and risk management in the energy industry for 20 years. He has worked at project finance, marketing, trading and analytic services firms.

David Shimko

Adjunct Professor of Finance


David Shimko, Adjunct Professor of Finance, NYU TANDON SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING

David Shimko has been involved with energy, credit, risk management and derivatives for over 30 years. While head of Commodity Derivatives Research at JPMorgan in the 1990s, he published monthly articles in Risk Magazine and frequently appeared in Energy Risk. At Bankers Trust, he headed a client risk advisory unit, and later co-founded Risk Capital, an independent consulting firm. David has co-authored three issued patents in credit risk management, and has published widely in the academic and trade literature. Concurrent with his professional career, he has taught at USC, Kellogg, HBS and NYU Courant. He is currently Adjunct Professor of Finance at the NYU Tandon School of Engineering.

Chris Strickland

CEO and Co-founder


Chris Strickland, CEO and Co-founder, LACIMA

Dr Chris Strickland is CEO and co-founder of Lacima, a specialist provider of energy risk management, valuation and optimisation software and advisory services. Chris has advised senior executives on energy risk management and complex derivative valuation issues, strategic assessments and implementation of risk systems for over 20 years, and is a recognised expert for expert witness testimonials.
Chris is the co-author (with Les Clewlow) of the books 'Energy Derivatives Pricing and Risk Management' and 'Implementing Derivatives Models' and co-editor of the book 'Exotic Options: The State of the Art'.

In 2005 Chris was named in the Energy Risk Hall of Fame and in 2009 he was named in an elite international group of five by Energy Risk Magazine as a pioneering quantitative analyst who has made an outstanding contribution to energy trading and has shaped today's global energy markets. He is a Coordinator of the Risk Metrics Subcommittee of the Committee of Chief Risk Officers (CCRO) based in Houston, and a member of the Energy Oversight Committee for the Global Association of Risk Professionals (GARP) based in New York.

Chris holds a PhD (Finance), and an MSc (Mathematics) from the University of Warwick, and a First Class Honours (Pure Mathematics) from the University of Liverpool. Chris is an Honorary Fellow at Macquarie University in Sydney and a member of the Special Focus Advisory Board of the Computational Finance & Risk Management Program at the Department of Applied Mathematics, University of Washington in Seattle


Paul Tramonte

Executive Director , CIB Compliance, Commodities


Paul Tramonte, Executive Director , CIB Compliance, Commodities, J.P. MORGAN

Paul Tramonte is an Executive Director of North American Commodities Compliance for J.P. Morgan with over 23 years of industry experience. In addition to his current role, Paul has worked in various regulatory affairs and compliance roles with gas pipelines companies, an electric transmission and distribution utility, wholesale and retail energy marketers, and a merchant power generator. Prior to entering the energy industry, Paul was an auditor with an international accounting firm and is certified public accountant.

Mark Von Weihe

Managing Director, Trading & Risk Management


Mark Von Weihe, Managing Director, Trading & Risk Management, ACCENTURE

Workshop Speakers

Carlos Blanco

Managing Director


Carlos Blanco, Managing Director, Analytic Solutions, ASCEND ANALYTICS

Dr. Blanco provides expertise to Ascend's clients in the areas of analytic modeling, forecasting, optimization and simulation and also contributes to advance the software product and services to meet the evolving client needs.
He is the former co-founder and managing director of Black Swan Risk Advisors where he worked with leading organizations worldwide on a wide range of advisory and education projects.

Dr. Blanco is also a faculty member of the Oxford Princeton Programme since 2004, where he teaches several courses on energy and commodity derivatives pricing, hedging and risk management. He has published over 150 articles on a wide range of financial and commodity risk management topics. Carlos was also a lecturer at the Finance department at the University of California, Berkeley.

He is a former VP, Risk Solutions at Financial Engineering Associates (FEA), where he was a member of the Executive Management Committee as well as an essential contributor in the development and client support of the financial and energy derivatives pricing and market risk management models.

Dr. Blanco holds a Ph.D. in Finance from Universidad Complutense, Madrid, where he was awarded "Magna Cum Laude".


Trevor Rehm

Senior Energy Analyst


Trevor Rehm, Senior Energy Analyst, ASCEND ANALYTICS

Mr. Rehm's has over a decade of experience in energy risk and portfolio management. As Energy Analyst, he supports the Sales and Marketing Group at Ascend to communicate the value of PowerSimm to support decision analysis for electric and gas utilities. During his tenor at Ascend has worked in risk management projects involving complex physical and financial energy portfolios at top utilities such as PPL, AEP, NRG, and NYPA. Trevor has also held positions JP Morgan Chase and City of Boulder Energy Services. Mr. Rehm holds a B.S. in Economics and Environmental Studies from University of Colorado-Boulder and is an Energy Risk Professional certified by GARP.