Energy Thought Summit 2020 Energy Thought Summit 2020
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Maria Pope
Portland General Electric, President and CEO

Maria Pope is president and CEO of Portland General Electric, Oregon’s largest electric company. Pope works with customers, community members and government officials to lead Oregon’s clean energy future.

Pope joined PGE in 2009 as CFO and treasurer. She also oversaw the company’s power generation facilities, wholesale power marketing and long-term resource strategy as senior vice president of Power Supply, Operations and Resource Strategy. From 2006 to 2008, she was a member of PGE’s board of directors.

Prior to PGE, Pope was CFO of Mentor Graphics Corporation and held senior operating and finance positions within the forest products and consumer products industries. She began her career in banking with Morgan Stanley & Co.

Pope serves on the Oregon Global Warming Commission as well as other boards and commissions, including the Oregon Business Council and the Electric Power Research Institute.

Pope is an alumna of the Stanford Graduate School of Business and earned her bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University.

Joseph Hamrock
NiSource, President & CEO

Joseph Hamrock has been NiSource President and Chief Executive Officer since July 1, 2015, and was also elected to the NiSource Board of Directors.

Hamrock previously served as executive vice president and Group CEO for NiSource’s Gas Distribution segment, which included local gas distribution companies in Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

In that role, he had comprehensive responsibility for all financial, operational, regulatory and commercial performance at NiSource’s gas distribution operations. In coordination with leadership teams across each of these areas, he focused on driving the company’s long-term growth plan, premised on executing a steady stream of infrastructure improvements and growth investments, synchronized with complementary regulatory and customer program initiatives.

Hamrock joined NiSource in May 2012 after serving in a variety of senior executive positions with American Electric Power (AEP), including president and chief operating officer of AEP Ohio, and roles in engineering, transmission and distribution operations, customer service, marketing and information technology.

He began his energy industry career as an electrical engineer in transmission and distribution planning at AEP in Steubenville, Ohio. He went on to work in commercial and industrial customer services, and held leadership roles in commercial marketing and customer services, strategic development and other executive roles. Prior to becoming president of AEP Ohio, Hamrock was senior vice president and chief information officer in AEP’s Shared Services organization from 2003-2007, and from 2002 to 2003 was senior vice president – General Services.

Jan Vrins
Guidehouse, Global Energy, Sustainability, and Infrastructure Segment Leader

Jan Vrins leads Navigant’s Global Energy Practice. He advises industry executives on developing and implementing their policies and strategies. Jan has experience with policy, regulation and strategy, organizational (re)structuring, business transformation and change management, capital program management, grid modernization and hardening, post-merger integration, and technology strategy and implementation. Jan has worked across the entire energy value chain, generation, transmission, distribution and retail.

Navigant’s Global Energy practice provides consulting and research services for energy companies, government organizations, NGO’s and Foundations, large corporations, product manufacturers, technology companies, and investors in areas including strategy and policy, market structures and pricing, business and operational strategy, grid modernization, grid restoration and hardening, transmission, capital program management, business models and partnerships, emerging technologies, renewables, urban energy, and distributed energy resources.
Since joining Navigant (in 2014), Jan has guided his team to develop thought leadership, solution offerings, and capabilities to support clients as the energy industry experiences major transformation. With over 1000 consulting projects each year in Energy, Navigant is at the forefront supporting their clients to navigate the energy transformation opportunities and challenges. Navigant has one of the largest energy consulting teams globally focused on the energy transformation with over 600 management consultants.

Jan Vrins has co-developed an industry leading framework, The Energy Cloud, which helps organizations understand new opportunities in the energy market, policy and regulatory changes, changing customer needs, new technologies, strategic options, and emerging business models. He also has developed a Utility of the Future model that helps clients understand the trends in the market, potential strategies, underlying integrated business processes and business models, aimed at further improving their commercial and operational performance.
Prior to Navigant, Jan held multiple global energy industry leadership roles at Accenture, KPMG Consulting and BearingPoint. His energy industry experience includes investor‐owned and government-owned utilities and Oil and Gas companies in Europe, North America, South America (including Brazil), and the Middle East. Jan has authored various publications and presented at leading industry conferences, on topics like Climate Action Planning, Decarbonization, Resiliency, Grid Hardening and Modernization, Utility of the future and emerging Business Models, and Sustainable Excellence and Business Transformation. With extensive consulting experience (25+ years) in the energy sector and a history of growing businesses in diverse, global markets, Jan is considered a global (thought) leader in the energy consulting industry.

Jan was recognized by Consulting Magazine as one of the Top 20 Global Leaders in Consulting, 2017.