Director, Engineering Learning & University Relations
Dean's Advisory Board, Chair
Noel Ellis supports SAS’ Engineering organization of more than 6,000 employees domestically. His responsibilities include the development of and leadership for Engineering Continuing Education, Organizational Training, as well as a number of Talent Development Programs. He also leads Engineering University Relations and manages SAS’ University Research portfolio. Since joining Raytheon in 2003, Ellis has held a number of leadership positions of increasing responsibility and complexity. In addition to his organizational leadership duties, Ellis has previously served as Raytheon’s Professor of Practice at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.
Dean’s Advisory Board,
Operations Management Consultant
Chair, Fundraising Committee
Anthony (Tony) Reese is a visionary leader with a passion for bringing quality products to market. His impressive career accomplishments highlight innovation management, lean development methods, high-performing teams and processes, and team goal-setting and problem-solving. Before joining Scimitar, Tony was Director of Strategic Consulting for IBP2 where he helped large and medium-sized teams visualize and collaborate on planning and process management initiatives (S&OP and IBP) to reduce costs and improve quality and responsiveness.
Los Angles Cleantech Incubator
Executive in Residence
Chair, Industry Partnership Committee
A Naval Academy graduate and retired nuclear submarine officer, Bob Musselman has led several successful startup and turnaround ventures as CEO. His career has focused on capital equipment manufacturing, cleantech and energy sectors. Bob serves as Lead Executive-in-Residence and CEO coach for portfolio companies of the Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator. Bob is also an active member of the Pasadena Angels, a group of seed investors in startup companies. Products and services he has been involved with include design of heliostats for solar-thermal power plants, equipment for production of thin film photovoltaics, advanced oil purification systems, factory automation equipment, and consulting services.
Phil Andrew has more than 35 years’ experience in natural gas pipeline design, maintenance, installation and operation. Phil’s experience has focused on pipeline operations, management excellence, regulatory strategy and testimony, project management, administration, emergency response and continuous improvement. Phil currently serves as the Program Director assigned to Sempra’s Pipeline Safety Enhancement Plan. Jacobs is providing various services and acting as Program Management Office (PMO) in support of SoCalGas/SDG&E management team.
Southern California Edison
Director of Engineering, Transmission & Distribution
Bill Chiu is the Director of Engineering at Southern California Edison (SCE) with responsibility for all engineering disciplines and technical requirements involved in SCE’s transmission, substations, distribution, and smart metering system, including the interconnections of renewable resources. With nearly three decades of experience in the energy industry, Bill has served in a variety of functional areas that include business strategy, regulatory policy, operations, system planning, engineering, and bulk power infrastructure projects. Bill is an active IEEE Senior Member and served as the Chairman of the IEEE/PES Transformers Committee and currently serves as the IEEE/PES Board of Governors Liaison to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. In 2014, Bill was recognized by IEEE USA with the Regional Leadership Award for his contributions to the power industry. Bill is passionate about STEM education and currently serves on the Industry Advisory Board for the USC Viterbi School of Engineering and the California State University at Los Angeles School of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology. Bill has a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Cal Poly Pomona, a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from USC Viterbi School of Engineering, and an MBA degree from the USC Marshall School of Business. Bill is also a registered professional engineer in the state of California and Texas.
Senior Director of Project Engineering
Century Diversified, Inc.
Rod Garcia, President of Century Diversified, Inc. is a successful businessman with an extensive community and stakeholder relations background. He was born in East Los Angeles and attended local public schools. He is constantly balancing his involvement in the community with his business and family life. His heart is very much dedicated to the community in which he lives and the nation he loves. Mr. Garcia in his endeavors as an entrepreneur, project director, Vice President of a major firm and involvement in the community has provided CDI the managerial direction for professional excellence. He established his first business endeavor in 1981; since then he has established 4 small business enterprises providing civil engineering and management services. He is currently president of Century Diversified, Inc. which provides services to governmental agencies. He has been involved in various community boards and served as an advisors to others including Hispanic organizations, professional, governmental and private including the Latin Business Association, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, California Earthquake Authority Advisory Panel, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation and Caltrans Business Advisory Council to name a few. In 1974, Mr. Garcia founded the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers with the help of 4 other Hispanic engineers working for the City of Los Angeles. The organization has grown from the original 5 members to over 10,000 members nation wide with over 220 student chapters located at practically all of the major engineering schools of engineering, and over 50 professional chapters. The main objective of SHPE was and is to promote the social and economic betterment of the Hispanic community.
Master Black Belt and Senior Principal Engineers
Dan Gonzalez is currently the Senior Principal Engineer and Master Black Belt for Biosense Webster, a Johnson & Johnson company. He has over twenty five years of Design/Development, Manufacturing, and Quality Engineering experience that span the Avionics, Consulting, Food and Beverage, Sheet Metal, Training, and Medical Device Industries in the US, China, Japan, Mexico, Europe and Israel. Dan has worked with Southern California Universities for over two decades and has helped develop hundreds of students and recent college graduates to reach their highest potentials.
Southern California Gas Company and San Diego Gas & Electric
Director, Gas Engineering
Deanna Haines has worked for the Utilities since 1988 and has held various leadership positions primarily in the engineering and environmental areas. Ms. Haines oversees the engineering standards, training and research programs related to the design, operation and construction of the gas infrastructure to ensure the reliable and safe operation of the system. Previous to Deanna’s current position in Engineering she was the Director of Environmental Services responsible for developing and implementing policies and programs to support operations with environmental compliance requirements. Ms. Haines has served on several scientific committees, including the South Coast Air Quality Management District’s Best Available Control Technology Scientific Review Committee (BACT SRC) and the Environmental Protection Agency’s Industrial Combustion Coordinated Rulemaking (ICCR) Committee. She further serves on the American Gas Association’s Distribution, Transmission and Engineering Committee and formerly served on two of their environmental committees. Ms. Haines is on the Dean’s advisory boards for two colleges, Cal State Los Angeles and Cal Poly Pomona. She also serves on the Board of the American Cancer Society and an environmental and health non-profit organization, Breathe LA, to help fund research and education to prevent and help victims of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and asthma in the southern California community. Ms. Haines has a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Redlands and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Southern California.
Fellow for Materials and Processes Engineering
Monica Jacinto is a Technical Fellow for Materials and Processes Engineering at Aerojet Rocketdyne and an Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics. Over her 30 year career, she has led many diverse R&D teams in the pursuit of innovative materials for rocket engines. Monica is the co-inventor of a high-strength and burn-resistant alloy designated MondaloyTM, which is currently being used on the company’s Russian-replacement engine. She mentors the next-generation of engineers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) and speaks at high schools, universities and career conferences for young students. Monica was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA. She received a B.A. and B.S. in Metallurgical Engineering from Columbia University, New York and an M.S. in Materials Science from the University of California, Los Angeles.
Los Angeles World Airports
Deputy Executive Director
Senior Vice President, Energy Infrastructure
Lucy Labruzzo leads the Energy Infrastructure Sector of Cordoba Corporation; a Los Angeles based professional services company. Lucy joined Cordoba in 2014 and has since successfully led the expansion of their energy business into gas and electric transmission and distribution, renewable energy and program management across each of California’s investor owned utilities. She is a Mechanical Engineer and Certified Energy Manager with over 25 years of experience working with utilities across the US and Canada, including energy efficiency, power generation – nuclear, gas and renewable energy – as well as electric and gas transmission and distribution infrastructure projects. Prior to joining Cordoba Corporation, Lucy held an executive position at large global infrastructure firm, where she led their North America Energy Business. She began her professional career as an engineer for the New York Power Authority, one of the nation’s largest state public power organizations. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Manhattan College.
Director, Engineering Integration Customer Support
Courtney Makela is the Engineering Integration Director for the Customer Support Organization. He is responsible for Global Field Service, the Fleet Chiefs, the Chief Mechanics, and the Engineering Operations. Prior to his current assignment, Courtney’s leadership positions included 787 Director of Services, 787 Fleet Chief Engineer, Director of Engineering—787 Airplane Integration Team, and Director of Engineering—787 Wing Integration Team. Courtney has held several engineering assignments in his 26 years at Boeing, including Director of Product Integrity and Safety in Washington DC and Systems Integration Leader for Widebody Product Development. Courtney started his Boeing career in 1990 on the 777 Program as a Mechanical Engineer, and has extensive design experience in flight controls, hydraulics, ECS, structures, and lightning protection systems.
Vice President, Operations
Lisa Maurath serves as the area manager of the Los Angeles transportation and infrastructure office of WSP USA, where she is responsible for the firm’s transportation activities in the region. WSP USA is committed to serving as a valued partner to the small business community in the region, helping to expand and train the available workforce by partnering with small businesses to provide the resources that they need. Maurath has over 30 years of experience in project and program management, business development and operations, project controls, construction management, engineering and procurement in the infrastructure business.
Great Minds in STEM
Founder & Executive Advisor
Ray Mellado is the founder and Chairman of the Board of Great Minds in STEM (formerly HENAAC), a national organization dedicated to keeping America technologically strong by promoting Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math career in underserved communities. Mellado served as CEO of GMiS until 2013. Ray founded GMiS in 1989, after a distinguished 21-career in the private sector as a marketing sales executive with the Xerox Corporation. Throughout his career, Mellado has taken active leadership roles in the Hispanic community.
QTC – A Leidos Company
Chief Information Officer
Nader Nemati is a seasoned executive with more than 30 years of experience in Operations, Sales, Information Technology (IT), and Product Management in Fortune-50, mid-market and start-up companies with focus on revenue growth through product positioning, licensing models and go to market in more than 100 countries, integration, contract management, field enablement, and productivity gains through Lean and Six-Sigma principles and Agile Scrum methodologies, and overall enhancement of stakeholder value while continuing to focus on the highest level of customer service. Nader’s current role is the Chief Information Officer at QTC – Leidos where he has been a key executive team member in the growth and acquisition of QTC initially by Lockheed Martin resulting in the launch of the initial Lockheed Martin Healthcare division and subsequent merger into Leidos, the largest IT government contracting company with combined revenues over $10B. Mr. Nemati has collaborated with several Private Equities and been involved in numerous mergers & acquisitions before joining Leidos. He was the co-founder and CEO of CompuNet eBusiness Group, Inc. later acquired by Epicor Software. Mr. Nemati has also held management-level positions at several Fortune 50 companies including Honeywell, Sears & Roebuck and AlliedSignal in all key geographic regions worldwide. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science from California State University, Los Angeles and a Masters of Business Administration degree in Management Information Systems. He also serves as a volunteer with several organizations including with SCORE working with The Small Business Administration (SBA) helping business owners align their objectives with key technologies.
Jorge Ramirez has 30 years executive experience in the semiconductor manufacturing equipment industry (R&D, Business Development, Marketing and General Management). As President/CEO of Heateflex Corporation he has strategic and P&L responsibilities for both company divisions: Heateflex, the equipment manufacturing division and Safna Engineering & Consulting, the division offering professional engineering and project management services. Ramirez completed a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from California State University, Los Angeles; and a MBA & B.S. in Business & Management from the University of Redlands. He has 6 U.S. patents (4 issued). Ramirez has served on multiple non-profit boards and is currently serving as a Trustee of the Cal State LA Foundation.
Sr. Principal Program Manager - Torrance ETS
Dillon Sandoval is currently responsible for leading supply chain optimization projects to maximize business performance. Prior to this, Dillon served as the Site Leader and Sr. Technical Manager of the Honeywell Aerospace Mechanical Test Laboratory in Torrance, CA. In this role, Dillon led an organization of 100 employees to provide comprehensive test services to R&D Engineering and Integrated Supply Chain customers. As the site leader, he was responsible for leading and managing all aspects of the business including financial performance, engineering program execution, assembly and test operations, facilities management, and quality assurance. Dillon has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from California State University, Long Beach and an MBA from the University of Southern California.
President, Sikand Engineering
Mark Sikand is a registered civil engineer and President and owner of Sikand Engineering. The firm has done planning, engineering and survey work in the Los Angeles, Santa Clarita, Palmdale and Bakersfield areas for close to 60 years. He resides in Calabasas, California with his wife, Lynette, and their two sons, Mark Jr. and Owen, both in college, and their dog Ted. Mark has always made an effort to give back to his community. He has been on the board and served as president of the youth Pony baseball league in the valley, Westhills Baseball, and is currently the chair of the board of his two sons’ middle and high school, Chaminade, is serving his thirteenth year on the Planning Commission for the City of Calabasas and is on advisory boards for Cal State Northridge and Cal State Los Angeles.
Deputy Section Manager of the Power and Sensor Systems Section
Antonio (Tony) Ulloa-Severino spent his formative years in Naples, Italy. Coming to the United States at the age of 13 along with his family, he quickly adapted to his new surroundings in Southern California. Tony has a knack for electronics, and while pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering at Cal State LA, he joined the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena as a student intern. He never looked back from these auspicious beginnings. Tony stayed with JPL after finishing his B.S. and continued to rise in prominence at the lab. During this time, Tony returned to Cal State LA to obtain a Master's degree in Electrical Engineering. Tony is currently the Deputy Section Manager of the Power and Sensor Systems Section at JPL. His other roles at JPL have included being a Cognizant Engineer for the Juno project, a Product Delivery Manager for the Europa Clipper Mission, as well as the Spacecraft Manager for the ARRM mission. He loves spending time on the water, and driving his Cobra on land. Tony speaks four languages fluently. Tony resides in Sunland, California with his wife and three kids and he gives back to his community by coaching AYSO soccer.
Mechanical Systems Division
Sergio Valdez is a member of the leadership team in the Mechanical Systems Division at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. He has extensive experience in the development of spacecraft and science instruments used in earth and space exploration missions. Sergio Valdez holds B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Cal State LA (yea!), and an MBA from Claremont Graduate University's Peter Drucker School of Management.
Los Angeles County
General Manager, Information Technology Services
Dave Wesolik is responsible for directing application development, network activities and data center operations for the largest local government agency in the nation with 110,000 employees and over 12 million citizens. Managing a technology workforce of more than 1,000 employees and a budget of $330 million, Dave oversees collaboration between a centralized Information Technology Service and over 50 county departments to develop and implement technologies for a vast range of public services encompassing everything from animal care and parks to law enforcement and social services. After beginning his career in telecommunications, Dave has moved through almost every aspect of technology over the past 30 years from programming to data center operations to support services before moving into executive management of technology services for Los Angeles County’s Internal Services Department.
The Aerospace Corporation
Dr. Allyson Yarbrough is a Principal Engineer at The Aerospace Corporation, a non-profit, Federally Funded Research and Development Center that delivers independent space systems engineering and technical support to diverse government and civil agencies. She focuses on innovations for satellite and space-related applications. She also researches ways to apply space-related technology for the public good, improving quality of life and enhancing industrial competitiveness. She is passionate about inspiring the next generation of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, math) students, professionals and educators. She holds five patents and is active in several professional and outreach activities. Dr. Yarbrough earned the B.S. Degree in Electrical Engineering at New Mexico State University and the M.S. and PhD Degrees in Electrical Engineering at Cornell University.