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Robert Venables: Southeast Conference Executive Director

Robert’s involvement with Southeast Conference began in 2001 and continued for 7 years as a member of the SEC Board of Directors, including one year as president before stepping down in 2008 to take the role of SEC Energy Coordinator. Robert was previously employed by the Haines Borough for nearly 8 years, the first half as Economic Development Director and the last half as Borough Manager. Before his work with the municipality, Robert was the local manager for a SE Alaska regional wholesale distributor and served 7 years on the local chamber of commerce with 2 terms as President.

Bob Deering: Renewable Energy Coordinator for the Alaska Region of the U.S. Forest Service

Bob Deering has been the Forest Service's Regional Renewable Energy Coordinator in Alaska since 2015. As the Renewable Energy Coordinator, Deering facilitates the utilizatoin of forest renewable energy resources for the communities throughout Alaska. He works closely with the regiona's diverse stakeholders and communities. Deering has worked in engineering and energy roles within the Federal sector for more than 28 years. His experience collaborating with both the public and private sectors makes him well qualified for his renewable energy role.

Karen Petersen: Southeast Alaska Biomass Coordinator for Southeast Conference

Karen has recently begun work for SE Conference as the Biomass Outreach Coordinator.  She is the facilitator for the Alaska Wood Energy Development Task Group, and organizer for the Alaska Wood Energy Conference.  Her position at SE Conference involves outreach for all things biomass.  Karen lives and works from Thorne Bay Alaska.

Greg Mickelson: Vice President and COO of the Energy Division Alaska Power and Telephone Company

Greg has been employed by AP&T for over 37 years. Greg has more than 35 years’ experience in electrical system design, construction, construction management and management of power operations for a hydro-diesel grid. He has been responsible for the construction of two hydroelectric projects on Prince of Wales Island. During his lengthy tenure with Alaska Power & Telephone Company, Greg has served in a variety of positions prior to being appointed by the Board of Directors as Vice President of Power Operations in 2008.

Jodi Mitchell: Chief Executive Officer at inside Passage Electric Cooperative

An expert in rural energy systems, Jodi Mitchell has worked with Inside Passage Electric Cooperative (IPEC), known formerly as the Tlingit and Haida Regional Electrical Authority, for more than 20 years, assuming the role of chief executive officer/general manager in 2008. Prior to IPEC, she worked at Sealaska. She is currently the vice chair on the Sealaska Board. Mitchell is former chair and trustee of the Kootznoowoo Permanent Fund Settlement Trust, a director of the Kwaan Electric Transmission Intertie Cooperative, and a member of the Energy Committee for Southeast Conference.

Alec Mesdag: Director of Energy Service for AEL&P and SEC Energy Committee Chair

Alec is the chair of the Southeast Conference Energy Committee and board treasurer. Alec holds a B.S. in Environmental Science from Oregon State University. He currently serves as Vice President & Director of Energy Services for Alaska Electric Light & Power. In his current role he manages demand-side energy programs for the utility, helping to influence customer actions to optimize the use of energy in Juneau.

Doug Ward: Director of Shipyard Development for Vigor Alaska

Since 1994, Doug Ward has been Director of Shipyard Development for the Ketchikan Shipyard. The Ketchikan Shipyard is owned by the Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA) AND operated by Vigor through a long term public private partnership that includes the City and Borough of Ketchikan.  Vigor is currently building the first of two Alaska Class Ferries for the Alaska Marine Highway System.  Doug is co-founder of the Ketchikan Marine Industry Council (KMIC) and Maritime Works (MWs) formed to support the growth and expansion of Alaska’s maritime industrial base.

Carol Tuynman

Carol Tuynman is the Creative Director of Alaska Arts Confluence in Haines, Alaska. The organization works to inspire a culture of collaboration borough wide by focusing on downtown revitalization and building positive relationships between all people through creative placemaking initiatives such as art on Main Street, First Friday, and the Fort Seward Interpretive Walking Tour and Sculpture Garden.

Bobbie Meszaros

Bobbie Meszaros is Tlingit, of the Ch’áak’ (Eagle) moiety of the Sik’nax.ádi (Wolf Killer Whale) Clan from Shtax’héen Kwáan (Wrangell, Alaska) and Tseesk’iya dachxán (grandchild of the Tahltan Crow Clan). Bobbie works for Sealaska Heritage Institute as the new Development Officer. In this role, she is

Rick Harris

Rick Harris was the Executive Vice President of Sealaska until July 2014 when he retired after 34 years with Sealaska Corporation. During his tenure with Sealaska he had an active role in legislation and regulation development, environmental management and lobbying in both Alaska and in Washington D.C.