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Governor Dunleavy to Welcome Global Leaders to Anchorage for the Alaska Sustainable Energy Conference May 22-25

Apr 26, 2023

Erin Brockovich to Headline Conference Kickoff Celebration

Next month Governor Mike Dunleavy will welcome global leaders from both the public and private sectors to Anchorage for the 2023 Alaska Sustainable Energy Conference.

“Alaska is uniquely positioned to lead the world in the energy of the future,” said Governor Mike Dunleavy. “I look forward to hosting both speakers and attendees in Anchorage to share what Alaska has to offer and learn about work being done to make energy more sustainable and affordable.”

In addition to previously announced keynote speakers and special guests, Governor Dunleavy is pleased to announce that Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Energy, David Turk, and Geoffrey R. Pyatt, Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Energy Resources will take part in a discussion moderated by Arctic Energy Office Director Erin Whitney.

Consumer and environmental advocate Erin Brockovich will join Governor Dunleavy for the Kickoff Celebration on May 22. Registered attendees will also have the opportunity to network during an excursion on the Alaska Railroad on May 23.

“It’s up to all of us to take an active role in securing a future for our children and our children’s children on this beautiful planet,” Brockovich said. “To do so, we must talk, we must listen, and we must come together. I look forward to joining Governor Dunleavy in this vital conversation.”

The 2023 Alaska Sustainable Energy Conference will focus on Alaska’s role leading the energy transition from established renewable sources to innovative and emerging technologies, as well as its role securing energy security for domestic and international markets by producing oil, natural gas, and critical minerals under the highest environmental standards on the planet.

From proven technologies like wind and solar to emerging sources such as tidal, hydrogen, or micronuclear, Alaska is well-positioned to be a global leader in all forms of energy. Building relationships, sharing knowledge, and hearing from different perspectives are key to achieving this goal. The conference will explore the future of energy in Alaska and around the world, the intersection of geopolitical upheaval with food and energy security, the latest advancements in renewable power, transmission, and storage, oil and gas, carbon capture, utilization and storage, critical minerals and much more.

Find more information and register at

Members of the media attending the conference should RSVP to Deputy Press Secretary Grant Robinson ( for credentials.

Featured Speakers

Daniel Yergin
Vice Chairman, S&P Global

Daniel Yergin is a respected authority on energy, international politics, and economics, and a Pulitzer Prize winner. He is Vice Chairman of S&P Global, and is chairman of S&P Global’s CERAWeek conference, which CNBC has called “the Super Bowl of energy”. Dr. Yergin’s book The New Map: Energy, Climate and the Clash of Nations is described by NPR as “a master class on how the world works.” He is the author of the bestseller The Quest: Energy, Security, and the Remaking of the Modern World. Dr. Yergin’s book The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil Money and Power was awarded the Pulitzer Prize, was a number one New York Times bestseller, and has been translated into 20 languages.

Rahm Emanuel
United States Ambassador to Japan

Rahm Emanuel was confirmed in a bipartisan vote as the 31st United States Ambassador to Japan on December 18, 2021. Previously, Ambassador Emanuel was the 55th Mayor of the City of Chicago, where he made it a priority to bring global companies to the city, helping Chicago to lead the U.S. in corporate relocations and foreign direct investment for seven consecutive years. Prior to becoming Mayor, Ambassador Emanuel served as President Barack Obama’s Chief of Staff. Ambassador Emanuel was also elected four times as a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois’s 5th Congressional District (2002-2008). From 1993 to 1998, Ambassador Emanuel was a key member of President Bill Clinton’s administration, rising to serve as Senior Advisor to the President for Policy and Politics.

Geoffrey R. Pyatt
Assistant Secretary, U.S. Department of State Bureau of Energy Resources

Geoffrey R. Pyatt, a career member of the Foreign Service, class of Career Minister, was sworn in as Assistant Secretary for Energy Resources on September 19, 2022. Ambassador Pyatt served as U.S. Ambassador to Greece from 2016 to 2022 and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine from 2013 to 2016. Among other recognitions, he received the State Department’s Robert Frasure Memorial Award in recognition of his leadership of the U.S. response to Russia’s invasion of Crimea and eastern Ukraine in 2014.

David M. Turk
Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Energy

Prior to his nomination as Deputy Secretary, Turk was the Deputy Executive Director of the International Energy Agency (IEA), where he focused on helping countries around the world tackle their clean energy transitions. He also directed reports on the digitalization of energy systems, the future of clean hydrogen, and a project tracking progress on a wide range of clean energy technologies.

Kip Tom
Former U.S. Ambassador, United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture

Kip is recognized by multinational businesses, financial firms, humanitarian organizations and national press as an individual who can explain global agribusiness trends to farmers and corporate board members. So as a family farmer, serving as the US Ambassador in Rome has been a privilege to bring the realities of production agriculture and food systems to the multilateral policy arena.

Erin Brockovich
President, Brockovich Research & Consulting

Erin Brockovich is an American paralegal, consumer advocate, and environmental activist who was instrumental in building a case against Pacific Gas & Electric Company involving groundwater contamination in Hinkley, California. The successful lawsuit was the subject of an Oscar-winning film, “Erin Brockovich,” starring Julia Roberts as Brockovich. She is the president of Brockovich Research & Consulting and the author of several books including “Superman’s Not Coming: Our National Water Crisis and What We the People Can Do About It.”

Richard Voorberg
President, Siemens Energy North America

Richard has regional responsibility for the Energy business in the Americas, which includes the company’s Generation, Industrial Applications, Renewables/Wind and Transmission divisions. Previously he served as the Head of Service in North America, where he was responsible for managing all aspects of Large Power Service, including Gas Turbines, Steam Turbines, Generators and Nuclear. Additionally, he is Chairman of the Board for Advanced Airfoil Components and a member of the DOE’s National Petroleum Council.

Michael Sachs
Managing Director, Goldman Sachs

Michael is a Managing Director in the Global Natural Resources Group and a member of the Investment Banking Services Group. Michael is responsible for coverage of the LNG and refining sectors in North America. In addition, he covers companies in the midstream and energy transition sectors. Previously, Michael was the business unit manager for the Natural Resources Group. Michael first joined Goldman Sachs as a summer analyst in London in 2003 and rejoined the firm in 2004 as an analyst. Michael became a vice president in 2010 and was selected for the VP Leadership Acceleration Initiative in 2014 and was named managing director in 2015.

Francis O’Sullivan
Managing Director, S2G Ventures

Francis O’Sullivan is a Managing Director at S2G Ventures where he oversees the firm’s clean energy investing activities. Previous roles included Senior Vice President and Head of Onshore Strategy for Ørsted and Director of Research for the MIT Energy Initiative. He is a Senior Associate with the Energy and National Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and a Distinguished Associate with the Energy Futures Initiative. He also served as a Senior Advisor on electricity to the U.S. Secretary of Energy during the second Obama administration.

Reg Manhas
CEO, Lapis Energy

Reg is a veteran energy executive with an engineering and legal background and over twenty five years of global experience managing complex, above-ground risks. Having created and led external affairs functions in several multi-national corporations, Reg has a proven track record of building strategic partnerships with business, government and community stakeholders and exercising global leadership on sustainability and governance issues.

Chris Gearhart
Center Director, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Chris Gearhart was appointed director of the Center for Integrated Mobility Services after joining NREL as director of the Hydrogen Technologies and Systems Center in late 2012. In more than 16 years with Ford Motor Company, Gearhart led research and development teams in that company’s Fuel Cell System, Stack, and Hydrogen Storage division as well as playing pivotal roles in product development, safety research, and quality assurance programs. Gearhart has also served on the faculty of Michigan State University and the School for Renewable Energy Science in Akureyri, Iceland.

Jim Flatt
CEO, Brightseed

Dr. Jim Flatt is a Biosciences leader, leading teams responsible for conceiving and translating innovative discoveries into successful commercial products in the nutrition, specialty chemical, and energy industries. Jim is a co-founder and CEO of Brightseed, which is making proactive health more accessible through the discovery and development natural product solutions for food, healthcare and agriculture industries through Forager, a powerful AI-powered and system biology-informed technology platform. Previously, Jim held senior R&D leadership positions at Synthetic Genomics, Martek Biosciences, Mascoma and Hampton Creek.

Ramzi Fawaz
President, Ambler Metals

Ramzi Fawaz is President and CEO of Ambler Metals, focused on exploring and developing its sizable holdings in the Ambler Mining District. Throughout his career, Mr. Fawaz has engaged extensively with various stakeholders while executing major project developments. His most recent position was the Senior VP of Projects at Newmont Corporation.

Michael Valore
Senior director-advanced reactors, Westinghouse

Michael is currently the Senior Director of Advanced Reactors Commercialization at Westinghouse. In this role, he is responsible for leading the effort to bring eVinci to the commercial market. Prior to his current role, he served in a senior position as the Westinghouse Americas Procurement Officer where he was responsible for Westinghouse’s North American supply chain. He has previously held roles managing projects for AP1000® in the US and China and was responsible for all material and equipment delivery for AP1000 project sites.

George Potts
Head of climate principal investments, Hartree

Following his Bachelors’ and Masters in 2011, George spent a decade in private equity, joining a start-up Fund that has since grown to 3 offices and $1.5bn of assets under management. He left as a Director in 2021 to spend a year at MIT to enhance his understanding of Carbon, Quantum Computing, AI & Synthetic Biology. In 2022, George was headhunted by Hartree Partners, a $5bn energy & commodities house, owned by Oaktree Capital, with a multi-billion-dollar nature and tech-based solutions pipeline, as well as tier one trading capabilities across environmental products. George established and Heads’ up Hartree’s Climate Principal Investment activities, with a discrete focus on Carbon Markets’ as both a physical and digital value chain.

Simon Freeman
Program Director, Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy, Dept of Energy

Dr. Simon Freeman serves as a Program Director at the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA‑E). His focus at ARPA-E is on maritime energy and environmental sensing technologies. Freeman previously worked as a civilian oceanographer for the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory and the Naval Undersea Warfare Center Division Newport. Freeman was Principal Investigator in the development of inflatable and bioinspired soft robotic systems for underwater vehicle and sensor design, new signal processing methods for acoustic sensing, detection and environmental exploitation, and pressure-tolerant technologies to enhance our access to the seabed.

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