Mines Global Energy Future Innovation Forum
Thursday, November 2, 2023

Join Colorado School of Mines’ Global Energy Future Initiative (GEFI) as we explore the tremendous challenges facing the energy sector and meet the innovators rising to meet them.

Event Date: Thursday, November 2, 2023
Event Time: 1:00PM – 5:30PM MT
Networking Reception: 5:30pm – 6:30pm MT
Location: Friedhoff Hall, Colorado School of Mines, 924 16th St. Golden, CO 80401 (MAP IT)
Parking: Click here for visitor parking information
Accommodations: Click here for hotel options near campus

Attendees from industry, government, civil society and academia will benefit from:

  • Forward-looking insights from industry and government leaders
  • Cutting-edge energy research presentations by faculty experts
  • Energy innovators networking reception
  • Opportunity to join Mines’ Global Energy Future Initiative (GEFI)

Interested in sponsoring the Global Energy Future Innovation Forum? Follow this link to learn more. 


GEFI Innov8x Challenge
Friday, November 3, 2023

Stick around to join us on the following day, November 3, for the GEFI Innov8x Challenge. Mines students will pitch solutions to current challenges submitted by leading energy  companies, competing to win funding to pursue energy research and startups.

Event Date: Friday, November 3, 2023
Event Time: 11:00AM – 1:00PM MT
Location: Ben Parker Student Center, Grand Ballroom, Colorado School of Mines, 1516 Maple Street, Golden, CO 80401 (MAP IT)
Parking: Click here for visitor parking information
Accommodations: Click here for hotel options near campus

Students on a stage, presenting to an audience


Abdulrahman Al-Belushi, Assistant Deputy Minister for Mining Enablement, Ministry of Industry & Mineral Resources, Saudi Arabia

Abdulrahman is an accomplished Mining and Metals industry professional leading the first-ever licensing rounds of the largest site in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. As the Assistant Deputy Minister of Mining Enablement, he drives the growth and competitiveness of the Saudi mining sector and overseeing the implementation of the mining strategy. With expertise in exploration policies and opportunities development, Abdulrahman plays a vital role in shaping and advancing the industry.

Abdulrahman’s educational background includes two master’s degrees in Mining & Energy Economics, obtained from the esteemed Colorado School of Mines and the Institute of French Petroleum (IFP). These qualifications, coupled with his hands-on experience and leadership capabilities, position him as a valuable asset in shaping and advancing the mining sector in Saudi Arabia.

Headshot of AlBelushi

Todd Chapman, Former U.S. Ambassador to Brazil and Ecuador and Non-Resident Fellow at the Payne Policy Institute

Ambassador Todd Chapman (ret.) served 30 years as a career diplomat in the U.S. Foreign Service until 2021.  As the U.S. Ambassador to Brazil, he advanced a broad economic, security, and environmental agenda at the sixth-largest U.S. embassy in the world.  Prior to Brazil he also served as the U.S. Ambassador to Ecuador, as well as at U.S. embassies in Costa Rica, Mozambique, Afghanistan, Nigeria, and Bolivia.   Ambassador Chapman was selected for the Presidential Distinguished Service Award in 2021 and 2022.   He was admitted into the American Academy of Diplomacy, and is a non-resident senior adviser at the Center for Strategic and International Studies and board member of the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue.  Ambassador Chapman now serves as an international business consultant and is a member of several corporate boards.   Ambassador Chapman earned a bachelor’s degree from Duke University and a Master of Science degree from the National Intelligence University.

Steven Christensen, Manager Technology Assessment & Planning, Corporate Development, Xcel Energy

Steve currently leads a small team at Xcel Energy that commercializes technology that can enable 100% carbon-free electricity by 2050.  Much of the focus is on technologies that complement wind and solar with firm, dispatchable, and reliable resources that may include long duration energy storage, geothermal energy, advanced nuclear, carbon capture, and/or clean molecules.  Prior to this role, he was a scientist at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory where he focused on developing solar, hydrogen, and bioenergy technology.  During this time he collaborated with the Colorado School of Mines which included supporting graduate student researchers.  He holds a Ph.D. and B.S. in Materials Science & Engineering from Northwestern University and the University of Utah, respectively.  When not pursuing clean energy technology to the ends of the earth, he enjoys a lifestyle of the Mountain West with family and friends.

Gerald W. Grandey, Vice-Chair, Board of Governors, Mines Foundation

Gerald W. (Jerry) Grandey (born 1946, Long Beach, California) was previously the President and Chief Executive Officer of Cameco Corporation, one of the world’s largest uranium producers. He joined Cameco in 1993 as Senior Vice President, was appointed President in 2000 and CEO in 2003. In 2010, The Harvard Business Review recognized him as being one of the top 100 CEO’s in the world because of the value created for shareholders during his tenure. Mr. Grandey retired from Cameco in 2011.

Inducted into the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame in 2013, Mr. Grandey was awarded the Canadian Nuclear Association’s Ian McRae Award in 2012 for his work in advancing nuclear energy in Canada. In 2011, he was nominated for the Oslo Business for Peace Award in recognition of his efforts to facilitate the dismantling of 20,000 Russian warheads (Megatons to Megawatts), with the resulting uranium used in nuclear energy plants for the generation of electricity. The US. Nuclear Energy Institute awarded Mr. Grandey the William S. Lee Award for leadership in the nuclear industry noting his work to implement the Megatons to Megawatts agreement between the United States and Russia.

In 2020, Mr. Grandey was named as a recipient of the Saskatchewan Order of Merit. Established in 1985, the Saskatchewan Order of Merit is a recognition of excellence, achievement and contributions to the social, cultural and economic well being of the province of Saskatchewan and its residents. The Order of Merit takes precedence over all other provincial honours and awards.

Currently, Mr. Grandey serves as Vice-Chairman of the board of the Colorado School of Mines Foundation and Chairman of the board of Rare Elements Resources, a mineral resource company focused on rare earth extraction and recovery. Formerly, Mr. Grandey was a member of the boards of Nutrien Ltd., the world’s largest provider of crop nutrients, inputs and services, Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan, Canadian Oil Sands, Inmet Mining Corporation, Centerra Gold Inc., Sandspring Resources and Bruce Power. Mr. Grandey has a degree in geophysical engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and a juris doctor degree from Northwestern University. He is also Chairman Emeritus of the London based, World Nuclear Association.

Jeff Gustavson, President, Chevron New Energies

Jeff Gustavson, 51, is president, Chevron New Energies, a position he assumed in August 2021. In this role, he is focused on lower carbon business prospects that have the potential to scale, including commercialization opportunities in hydrogen, carbon capture, and offsets and support of ongoing growth in biofuels. Prior to this role, Gustavson served as the vice president of Chevron’s North America Exploration and Production Company overseeing its Mid-Continent Business Unit, which manages a large resource base of oil and liquids-rich assets in the mid-continent United States, including Chevron’s significant Permian assets in Texas and New Mexico. Gustavson has also served as president of Chevron Canada Limited, where he was responsible for the company’s upstream interests in Canada.

Gustavson joined Chevron in 1999 and has held positions in Finance, Mergers & Acquisitions, Corporate Strategic Planning, Supply and Trading, Investor Relations and Upstream, with numerous assignments in the United States, as well as Venezuela, the United Kingdom and Canada. Jeff sits on the external advisory boards for both the College of Engineering and the Department for Research and Innovation at the University of Colorado and recently appointed to the board of trustees for the Houston Museum of Natural Science. He is also on the board of directors of the Chevron Employee Political Action Committee.

Gustavson received Bachelor’s degrees in both economics and international affairs from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1994 and a Master’s degree in business administration from the University of Texas at Austin in 1999.

Maki Ikeda,  Head of Innovation – Product Development, BHP Think & Act Differently

Passionate about decarbonization, technology innovation and challenging our ecosystem to think differently about sustainability and the future of our industries, Maki has spent a large part of her career in the Energy sector, in operational, technology, innovation and strategy roles, and expanded her reach in the broader Industrial space.

She is currently the Head of Innovation – Product Development, within BHP Innovation Think & Act Differently. Her team has adopted an open innovation model, accelerating technology deployment and creating pathways for the integration of technologies required to build modern lower impact mines.

Maki has extensive international experience, having worked in Latin America, North America, North Sea and South East Asia, which shaped her firm belief in the need for diversity in business. She holds a Diplome d’Ingenieur from Ecole Polytechnique, Palaiseau, France and a Master of Science in Reservoir Engineering from Stanford University, CA, USA.

Warwick King, Vice President Low Carbon Technologies, ConocoPhillips

Warwick King is the Vice President for Low Carbon Technologies. King began his career with the company in 1983 as a project engineer in Aberdeen, Scotland. Following several engineering and project management roles in the North Sea, Houston and Russia, he became Production Manager for Conoco Energy Nigeria in 1997. In 1999, he moved to Houston as the development supervisor of the Central Lobo Asset before becoming Upstream Project Manager of the Zuata III heavy oil project in Venezuela in 2001.

With the merger of Conoco and Phillips in 2002, he was transferred to Strategy and Portfolio Management in Alaska. Following this he became the North Slope Development Manager responsible for the reservoir management and development of ConocoPhillips’ North Slope operated assets. In 2011, King relocated to Brisbane, Queensland and assumed the role of president for Australia East.

In 2017 King was seconded to be chief executive officer, Australia Pacific LNG. During this time, he also served on the Boards of the Queensland Resource Council, Queensland Natural Gas E&P Industry Safety Forum Association and Queensland Minerals and Energy Academy.

In 2020 King became the Regional President for Asia Pacific
and took up his current role in July 2021.

Brent Lewis, CEO and Co-Founder., Carbon America

Brent has 20 years of senior-level investment banking, project finance, and C-suite experience in renewables, natural resources, and utilities, closing transactions with an aggregate value in excess of $20 billion. He has developed/financed over 2GW of wind and solar projects. Brent has deep experience in all aspects of energy/infrastructure, finance, including carbon capture and utilization, and tax equity. MBA Kellogg School of Management, BA (Economics) Western University.

Ashleigh Ross headshot

Dan Lumma, President, Kiewit Engineering Group Inc.

Dan Lumma is president of the Kiewit Engineering Group. In this role, Dan is responsible for engineering and design across the power, water, oil, gas and chemical, industrial and infrastructure markets. Dan brings a comprehensive project execution and technical background as well as solid management and commercial development capabilities. He has extensive market knowledge and has developed strategic relationships across the industry with owners, partners and suppliers.

Dan began his career in 1990 as an engineer at Bibb and Associates, working on the design and commissioning for power projects in the U.S., Mexico, Caribbean, and South America. He became a member of the Kiewit team in 1998 when Bibb was acquired by Kiewit. After being promoted to engineering project manager and eventually manager of projects, Dan transitioned from the power market to the oil, gas and chemical market in 2003. He served as EPC project manager for the offshore and oil sands markets, including managing Kiewit’s first major project in the Alberta oil sands. Dan was promoted to area manager in 2008, senior vice president in 2011, and president of Kiewit Engineering Group in 2017.

Dan is a registered professional engineer in the state of Kansas. He holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the Missouri University of Science and Technology and a master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA), Global Energy from the Haskayne School of Business, University of Calgary and IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates, Inc. (IHS CERA).


Reza Hedayat, Associate Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering

Dr. Reza Hedayat is an Associate Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the Colorado School of Mines. He received his Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from Purdue University. Dr. Hedayat’s research focuses on evaluation of geomaterials and sustainable construction materials. Dr. Hedayat is the recipient of the Early Career Award from the US Department of Energy, Cook Ph.D. Dissertation award from the American Rock Mechanics Association (ARMA), and the Manuel Rocha Medal Runner-Up Award from the International Society of Rock Mechanics (ISRM).

Eliza Hotchkiss, PhD Student, Advanced Energy Systems Program

Eliza is researching the intersection between energy security and resilience as part of the CSM AES PhD program. After researching resilience extensively, she is exploring the overlap between resilience and energy security, including definitions, metrics, algorithms, and methodologies, to include the role of renewable energy technologies.

As a dedicated researcher specializing in carbon dioxide storage, Dorothy’s primary focus is to replicate the CO2 sequestration process in various geologic formations using laboratory experiments. Dorothy aims to analyze the response of petrophysical and physical properties during carbon injection, driven by a deep passion for making significant contributions to the future of carbon capture and storage. Her enthusiasm lies in exploring the technical intricacies of CO2 sequestration in saline aquifers and diverse rock formations, with the goal of advancing carbon capture and storage practices in this rapidly evolving field.

Yaoguo Li, Professor, Geophysics; Director, Center for Gravity, Electrical, and Magnetic Studies

Alexis Navarre-Sitchler, Professor and Ben Fryrear Endowed Chair for Innovation and Excellence, Geology and Geological Engineering

Dr. Navarre-Sitchler is a Professor in the Geology and Geological Engineering Department at Colorado School of Mines. She is an expert in geochemical kinetics and application of numerical simulation to answer questions about geochemical processes in natural and engineered Earth systems. Her current interests lie in the areas of chemical reactions induced during CO2 and fluid injection into the subsurface.

Manika Prasad, Professor, Geophysics; Director, Mines CCUS Innovation Center

Manika Prasad is Professor of Geophysics, Director of the Mines CCUS Innovation Center (MCIC), and co-director of the Center for Rock and Fluid Multiphysics. A large part of Prasad’s work is on multiphysics investigations of sediments and rocks materials for CCS and energy applications. She has received awards for teaching and research, for example, the Martin Luther King Junior Recognition award (2022), the Virgil Kauffman Gold Medal (2017), and SEG Outstanding Educator Award (2015).

Neal Sullivan, Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Director, Colorado Fuel Cell Center

Professor Sullivan’s research focuses on experimentation with electroceramics. He serves as Director of the Colorado Fuel Cell Center at the Colorado School of Mines, where new materials for electricity generation and green hydrogen are scaled up to meet the needs of practical applications. His research spans from early-stage materials discovery to complete system integrations. The research is supported through a robust equipment base formed over decades of collaboration with many of the world’s leaders in high-temperature electrochemistry.

Brian Trewyn, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry and Associate Director, Materials Science Program

Prof. Trewyn’s expertise is in the synthesis, characterization, and application development of porous materials. His research activities focus on bioactive molecule delivery to viable cells, chemical separations, heterogeneous catalysis, and combining multiple catalysts into single systems. His teaching experience is in biochemistry, microbiology, and the chemistry and biochemistry of pharmaceuticals for senior undergrads and the fundamentals of heterogeneous catalysis for senior undergraduate and graduate students. His research interest in energy aligns largely with hydrogen storage/transportation and methane utilization.

Luis Zerpa, Associate Professor/Associate Department Head, Harry D. Campbell Endowed Chair in Petroleum Engineering

Luis Zerpa is an Associate Professor and Associated Department Head of the Petroleum Engineering Department at the Colorado School of Mines. Luis holds the Harry D. Campbell Endowed Chair in Petroleum Engineering and is the Director of the Center for Rock and Fluid Multiphysics. Luis received his degrees in Mechanical Engineering (BS and MS) from the University of Zulia (Venezuela) and PhD in Petroleum Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines. Luis has been working on reservoir engineering related projects in industry and academia for over 20 years. His research combines experimental and modeling evaluation of multiphysical properties of rocks, fluids, and their interactions with applications to petroleum reservoir engineering, geothermal, and geologic carbon sequestration (CCUS).

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