Daniel is a graduate student in the Jackson School of Geosciences and LBJ School of Public Affairs. During his graduate studies he has worked as a research assistant for the UT-Austin Energy Institute, Energy Systems Transformation Group, and ENCOMPASS Earth-Society Systems Project. His thesis focus on web-based decision support systems that enable multi-stakeholder engagement in energy and natural resource project siting. Prior to graduate school, Daniel served for three years as Federal Relations Coordinator for The University of Texas System in Washington, D.C. He has also worked for the U.S. Department of State, Austin Energy, and the non-profit Center for International Policy.
Kristen Pranke is 2nd year MBA student at McCombs, concentrating in energy finance. Prior to business school, Kristen was a Sr. Consultant in Deloitte’s Strategy and Operations service line, with project experience in the areas of energy efficiency, renewable energy, natural gas, petrochemicals, and energy management software applications. She has functional experience in strategic planning, industry and market analysis, capital investment planning, risk assessment, and change management. At McCombs, Kristen is a Vice President in the Clean Tech club, is a member of Board Fellows, and is an active member of the Golf club. This past summer, Kristen interned at GE Capital Energy Financial Services. She graduated from Washington and Lee University with a BS in business.
Clare is a graduate student at the LBJ School of Public Affairs. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Politics & Government from the University of Puget Sound. Prior to studying energy policy at UT, she worked in Washington D.C. for three years at the U.S. Green Building Council, where she helped coordinate advocacy for LEED adoption and related energy efficiency initiatives at the state and municipal levels across the country. Clare is presently employed at the Austin Technology Incubator in the Clean Energy division. She’s an active member of the USGBC National Capital Region Chapter and the Association of Women in Energy.
Arpit graduated from the University of Texas with a degree in Finance in 2006. He spent five years working as an implementations project manager for an ERP software company that was focused in the energy industry. He developed his subject matter expertise in land management processes tied to oil and gas, wind and coal. Arpit is currently a class of 2013 MBA student concentrating in Clean Technology Finance and Entrepreneurship.
Natalie is a member of the McCombs MBA class of 2013, concentrating in clean energy technologies and sustainable development. In additional to serving on the leadership team of the UT Energy Forum, Natalie is the VP of Students & UT Relations of the McCombs CleanTech Group and a CleanTech Fellow. She is passionate about the growing and evolving energy industry and hopes to pursue a career in expanding the development of renewable energy technologies. Prior to attending McCombs, she spent six years at HKS, Inc. in Dallas, TX as a structural engineer and was involved on several LEED building projects. She holds a B.S. in Architectural Engineering from the University of Texas.
Brian is a 2nd year MBA candidate at the McCombs School of Business. He is focusing his efforts at McCombs on finance, clean technology and energy and is a leader in the McCombs Cleantech Group. He interned this summer with Wells Fargo’s Cleantech Commercial Banking and Environmental Finance groups in San Francisco. Prior to business school, Brian was a Manager in the Client Services Group at Power Advocate, a boutique consulting firm focused on the utilities and oil & gas industries. Brian was a subject matter expert in the wind energy, solar energy and electric transmission practice areas and consulted for a number of clients engaged in implementing large renewable energy programs. Brian also held electrical power engineering positions at The Shaw Group and General Dynamics.
Chris Stanton is a second-year MBA student at the McCombs School of Business concentrating in Energy Finance. He is interested in how new developments in technology and public policy affect the valuation of power generation assets. Chris worked last summer at PowerFin Partners, an Austin-based asset management firm that invests in utility-scale solar power plants. Before starting the MBA program he served as energy reporter for The National, an English-language daily newspaper based in Abu Dhabi. Among hundreds of articles, he covered OPEC summits, upstream oil projects, the Copenhagen climate talks and the Arab Spring revolt in Cairo in the spring of 2011.
Ben is a graduate student in the Jackson School of Geology and the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. He holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Grinnell College with a minor in Mathematics. Prior to his graduate studies he taught for three years in the U.S. Peace Corps in Namibia. He has also interned for the U.S. Department of Energy and worked as a research assistant in the UT Energy Systems Transformation Group. His research analyzes how consumers make investment decisions within the residential PV market.
Alisa is a second year Master’s candidate in Global Policy Studies at the LBJ School of Public Affairs. She specializes in international energy security and policy, and comes from a background working in Tokyo for the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan and the Japanese electric power utilities. Since 2009 Alisa has participated in various United Nations meetings on climate change and sustainability, including COP15, COP16, and Rio+20, as part of the Business and Industry constituency. She spent this past summer interning at the U.S. Department of State, and her current research includes cost-benefit studies of underground transmission lines as part of the Webber Energy Group. Alisa holds a B.A. from the University of Southern California.
Matt Stringer is a graduate of Texas A&M and currently pursuing his masters in Earth and Energy Resources. After graduating from Texas A&M, he spent three years in the Peace Corps serving in El Salvador and Guatemala where he worked alongside various local and international organizations implementing projects in food security and health care. After Peace Corps, Matt returned to Texas to work at AMD Research coordinating funding for academic research for various universities throughout North America, Latin America, Europe, and Asia.
Ariel Shalin is a second year dual degree master’s candidate in the McCombs School of Business and LBJ School of Public Affairs. She is a graduate of the University of Southern California and has a background in communications. Prior to attending graduate school at UT, Ariel taught high school English in Houston as a Teach for America corps member. During her time in Houston, she developed an interest in energy and decided to return to school to learn more about the business and policy components of the energy industry.
John is a second-year dual-degree Masters student in the Jackson School of Geoscience and the LBJ School of Public Affairs. His areas of focus are the energy value chain and policy decision making to produce optimal outcome for the United States through both quantitative and qualitative data. John is passionate about energy due to its link to economic activity and standards of living. His goals for the UT Energy Forum are to showcase the energy ideation that is occurring across all disciplines at the University.
Nicole Hughes is a second year dual degree graduate student in the McCombs School of Business and the Jackson School of Geosciences, where she is focusing on clean tech and energy finance. Within the Jackson School of Geosciences, Nicole is the President of the Energy Resources Group. Prior to returning to school, she worked in energy consulting and developed an interest in the electric grid and its capacity for change. This past summer, she interned at the Electric Reliability Council of Texas. She graduated from Harvard University with a degree in Earth and Planetary Science.
Minator is a second year student in the School of Law. He was also an undergraduate student at UT-Austin from which he holds bachelors degrees in government and political communication. Minator is a member of the Texas Journal of Oil, Gas, and Energy Law (TJOGEL) and the Friar Society. In the past, he has worked at UTs Office of Governmental Relations and the Office of General Counsel. This summer, Minator will be a summer clerk at the law firms of Thompson & Knight and Bracewell & Giuliani, working primarily on oil and gas issues.