Vanessa White | Director, Renewable and Alternative Energy, Alberta Innovates
Energy 101 (Friday morning)
Vanessa is the Director, Renewable and Alternative Energy in the Clean Resources Division at Alberta Innovates, where she contributes to the advancement of grid modernization in Alberta through ecosystem development and supporting technology initiatives in the areas of non-emitting electricity generation, energy storage and enabling technologies.
Prior to joining Alberta Innovates, Vanessa spent more than 20 years in the upstream petroleum industry, where she drove innovation and developed her diverse background in project management, technology development and pilot operation. Vanessa is passionate about energy literacy. In 2016, she founded a company informing elementary and junior high students about the value of diversity in the Canadian energy portfolio.
Vanessa is a Professional Engineer and past member of the Board of Directors for the Society of Petroleum Engineers Canadian Educational Foundation (SPECEF) where she was the founding chair of the organization’s Energy Literacy Committee. Vanessa’s current board positions include the Decentralized Energy Canada’s Board of Directors and Foresight Clean Tech Accelerator’s Alberta Advisory Board.
Lisa Dryden | Environmental Innovation and Research Advisor, Vertex Resource Group Ltd.
Innovation Gallery (Saturday morning)
Lisa Dryden, Environmental Innovation and Research Advisor with Vertex Resource Group Ltd., holds a BSc. in Environmental and Conservation Sciences, majoring in Land Reclamation from the University of Alberta, and a Professional Agrologist (P.Ag.) Designation in Alberta. She started her career as an Environmental Scientist where she consulted on remediation and reclamation projects for upstream oil and gas.
Also working in the non-profit world, she fostered relationships that promoted an industry association and the environment industry with other industry sectors and levels of government. Lisa currently works in Research and Development at Vertex Resource Group Ltd., focusing on managing and expanding projects that better the environment industry and promotes the company’s long-term success.
Elizabeth Murphy | MSc student, Chemistry Department, University of Alberta
Innovation Gallery (Saturday 11:15-12:15)
Elizabeth Murphy completed her BSc in chemistry and biochemistry at the University of Western Ontario before moving to Edmonton in 2021 to pursue her masters. She is currently a second year MSc student in the department of chemistry, researching the conversion of atmospheric CO2 into useful fuel precursors using transition-metal catalysts. This research has a long-term goal of developing net-CO2-zero fuels by repurposing CO2 waste.
Maxwell Shedd | Team Captain, University of Calgary Solar Car Team
Innovation Gallery (Saturday morning)
The University of Calgary Solar Car Team has the vision of leading the community in the pursuit of sustainable technology. To do so, our team members design, build and race practical solar cars that engage the community and encourage the growth of student leaders.
Throughout our 18 years of impact in the community, our team has aimed to educate younger generations, innovate within our Calgarian community, and inspire the automotive industry to push for the implementation of renewable energies within our daily lives.
Maureen Kolla | Solas Energy, Director of Grid Modernization & ESG
Round Tables (Friday afternoon)
Maureen Kolla has over eight years of experience in the renewable and alternative energy sector, most in technology development and funding. Maureen joined Solas Energy in 2021 after leading and growing the Renewable and Alternative Energy program with Alberta Innovates.
Skilled in research, strategic planning, project funding and proposal development, technical evaluations, fostering collaborative relationships, and effective communications, she brings a diverse skillset. Maureen developed funding programs to support geothermal energy, energy storage, smart grid, and clean technologies. She has a deep understanding of the Alberta electricity framework and the electricity industry.
Maureen is the founder of the Alberta Smart Grid Consortium, which consists of the Alberta Distribution Facility Owners, the Alberta Ministry of Energy, and Alberta Innovates. Maureen holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Alberta and a Master of Applied Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Doctor of Philosophy in Aerospace Engineering from Toronto Metropolitan University.