Chad Forcey 

Executive Director – Pennsylvania Conservative Energy Forum

Chad Forcey has served in public policy since 1998, and has focused on conservation and small business growth throughout his career. He previously ran his own environmental consulting firm, and spent five years as State Affairs Director for the Irrigation Association (IA). At the IA, he fought to advance water conservation and efficient technologies across the 50 states. Chad built public/private partnerships in California and Texas to reduce potable water use during drought emergencies, and increase the use of smart irrigation controllers, surface and sub-surface high efficiency systems in the landscape and agricultural sectors. Chad also represented the Pennsylvania Landscape & Nursery Association for six years, where he drafted and implemented legislation on right to farm, immigration reform, and green infrastructure. He achieved an $11.6 billion federal appropriation for landscape revitalization, and secured $33 million for urban air and water quality projects in Philadelphia. Chad began his career in public service as an aide with the Virginia House of Delegates, as Personal Assistant to Pennsylvania Governor Mark Schweiker, and with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Chad is a member of the Penn State Agriculture Council, and provides industry and conservation advice to the U.S. Senate as a member of the Agriculture Advisory Team. He holds a Bachelors of Science in History from Liberty University, and has completed coursework towards a law degree from Penn State.

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John Easoz

President – Solar PV Consulting & CEO – Direct Gain Consulting, LLC

John R. Easoz currently operates Solar PV Consulting, a consulting firm providing services in areas of strategic business planning and assessment, operations startup, and equipment and process evaluation related to the international photovoltaic (PV) solar industry. Since January 2009, he has developed a client base of over forty companies, ranging from startups to well established PV firms, and covering the value chain from silicon production through installed systems. He has worked in this industry since 1985, and has over 40 years of experience in energy engineering and research, PV development and manufacturing, and technical and corporate management. John is concurrently CEO, and a director of Direct Gain Consulting, LLC. This company is an executive level consulting firm specializing in the renewable energy industry.

Until 2009, John was COO of Solar Power Industries (SPI), where he was responsible for company operations including strategic planning, manufacturing, engineering, research, sales, human resources, and general administration, moving SPI from a startup in 2003 to a company with over $80MM in sales in 2008. SPI is a vertically integrated solar cell manufacturer, which also produces silicon ingots and wafers. Prior to starting SPI, John was Vice President and co-founder of EBARA Solar Inc., an R&D company dedicated to the development of dendritic web silicon processes. He also worked in the areas of nuclear fusion development, surface/particle interactions, ion beam physics, crystal growth, thermal hydraulics, and control systems development while employed at Westinghouse Electric Corporation. John has authored or co-authored over twenty-five technical publications and has two patents.

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Tom Stevenson

Partner – Green Roads Solar Energy & Iceburgh Associates

Tom Stevenson is a partner of Green Roads Solar Energy and Iceburgh Associates. A native of Mt. Lebanon, Pennsylvania, Tom is a graduate of Penn State University and Western New England College School of Law.  He is licensed to practice law in Pennsylvania and has been admitted to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court and the Federal Courts of Pennsylvania.

Active in community affairs, Tom has and continues to serve on numerous board of directors for various non-profit entities. He is also a founding member of the Mt. Lebanon Sunrise Rotary Club. Tom was a Mt. Lebanon Commissioner for seven years and served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives for ten years.

Green Roads Energy, LLC and Iceburgh Associates, LLC were formed in 2011 to provide energy services to business, government, and non-profit clients. These two companies provide innovative programs for supplying electric power and building solar energy generation systems in Pennsylvania and Ohio.

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Ron Gdovic

President & CEO – WINDSTAX Inc.

WINDSTAX  Inc. is a full-service developer of integrated alternative energy solutions. The company is a pioneer in large vertical wind turbines and microgrids that are changing industry’s perspective of energy as a commodity to energy as an opportunity. Ronald Gdovic serves as Chief Executive Officer and President at WINDSTAX Inc. Prior to starting Windstax, Ron served as President of Digital Media & Marketing Division at Mace Security International, Inc. and served as its Chief Operating Officer of the segment. Prior to Mace, he served as Executive Director of InSITeS, the Institute for the Study of Information Technology and Society. Additionally, he served as the Executive Director of 3 Rivers Connect, a cutting-edge technology company resolved to establish Greater Pittsburgh as the leader in advancing social, educational, and economic development agendas through information technology. He has over 20 years of business experience. Ron holds both a B.A. Degree and M.S. Degree from the University of Pittsburgh.

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Brian Kennedy

SVP for Operations and Government Affairs – Pittsburgh Technology Council

Brian Kennedy is the Senior Vice President of Operations and Government Affairs for the Pittsburgh Technology Council. The Tech Council is an advocate for local tech-focused businesses in the Pittsburgh region and helps to make connections and create a better business climate. Prior to joining the Tech Council, Brian worked in community and economic development for the U.S. Senate. Brian is a graduate of Gannon University.

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David Jason

Green Roads Solar Energy & Iceburgh Associates

David Jason is a native Pittsburgher who grew up in Scott Township, where he has resided most of his life. He was a student of both the Charters Valley School Distinct and Valley Forge Military Academy in Wayne, PA, where he graduated in 1987. David attended Westminster College in New Wilmington, PA, studying history and political science, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in 1991.

In 1993, he joined the USAF/PAANG and served both on active duty and in the reserves. He trained as a Security Forces Police Officer and has traveled extensively while being deployed abroad to Japan and Amman, Jordon.

After returning home from his military duty in 2000, David began a new career in the food and beverage industry as the general manager of several local taverns and sports bars in the Pittsburgh area.

In 2007, he changed career paths, moving into the commercial insurance industry and later commercial real estate financing. Through his work in helping secure venture capital for new business startups, David developed a strong interest in the renewable energy sector, which le him to co-found Green Roads Energy, LLC and Iceburgh Associates, LLC with Tom Stevenson and Paul Steigerwald in 2011. 

David has served four consecutive terms on the Scott Township Board of Commissioners since first being elected to that position in 2001. He is currently serving as Board President.

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Mark DeSantis

CEO - RoadBotics

Mark is an experienced technology entrepreneur. He is currently the CEO of RoadBotics, which is further developing a CMU technology that created a smartphone road inspection tool for diagnosing road defects. By utilizing the latest technological advances in machine vision and machine learning, the technology has the potential to one day rapidly identify road issues at a massive scale and an affordable price. Prior to RoadBotics, Mark co-founded and was Executive Chairman of kWantix, an energy hedge fund (acquired by Moody Aldrich Hedge Fund). He also co-founded and was CEO of kWantera, a GE Ventures-backed energy predictive analytics company. Previously, Mark was CEO of Think Through Learning, a venture-backed online tutoring company (acquired by Imagine Learning) and US Managing Director of ANGLE Technology, PLC, a UK-based venture capital firm and consultancy. Mark co-founded and serves as a director to several other venture-backed tech firms.

In a prior career, Mark was the director of government relations for Texas Instruments and earlier served in policy positions in Washington, D.C. including as a senior policy analyst in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and the U.S. Department of Commerce, both in the Administration of George H. W. Bush. He previously served on the staffs of the late U.S. Senator John Heinz. Mark was also a management consultant with Booz Allen.

Mark is currently an Adjunct Professor at Carnegie Mellon University and has lectured at Princeton University and Dartmouth College. He was previously an Adjunct Professor at the University of Maryland. Mark holds a BA and MBA from the University of Dayton, an MS in Technology Management from The American University and a PhD in Public Policy from George Mason University. Mark is active in Pennsylvania, serving on the boards of several non-profits.

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Jim Seif

Jim Seif’s career has spanned over four decades of leadership in the legal, environmental, energy and political fields on a state and national level. In 1971, Jim began his career in the US Attorney’s Office in Pittsburgh where he prosecuted some of the earliest environmental cases of the modern era. In 1977, Jim joined the Dick Thornburgh gubernatorial campaign in Pennsylvania and served as administrative assistant to the Governor for six years until becoming a lobbyist for AT&T. Then in 1985, Jim was appointed as the Regional Administrator for the EPA. Following his work as the Regional Administrator, Jim was appointed as the Pennsylvania Secretary of Environmental Protection by Governor Ridge in 1994. His hard work for the Department of Environmental Protection allowed him to be nominated for and awarded the Lifetime Award of Public Service from the National Academy of Public Administration.

Jim has worked in the private sector as the vice president of corporate relations for PPL, Inc., a Fortune 5000 energy and utility company in Allentown, and as a principal of the Energy and Environmental Practice at Ridge Global, LLC, a strategic consulting firm in Washington D.C. Currently, Jim maintains his own consulting practice, serves on the board of BioChem Technology Inc., a water pollution control company in King of Prussia, and is on the Advisory Committee of the Dick Thornburgh Forum of Law and Policy at the University of Pittsburgh.