Moderator: Louis Schwartz

Panelists: Khee Poh Lam, Thomas Rowley, Matthew Stanton, Thomas A.Sarkus, Seth Wilmore

 (Panelists are sorted by alphabetical order of the last name)


The Future of Energy: Innovation, Partnership and Responsibility

Energy & Environment panel in CMU-Summit 2015 covers five sub-topics regarding to the main topic, including:

  • Smart City, Green Living
  • Transformation of global energy sector brought by the technological development in renewable energy industry
  • China’s Environmental Revolution & US Participation
  • The innovation of clean technology on conventional energy industry
  • US-China bilateral collaboration in energy security and policy

Louis Schwartz (Moderator)


President, China Strategies LLC


Mr. Louis Schwartz, a lawyer and China specialist who is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, is president of China Strategies LLC. Through China Strategies, Mr. Schwartz provides clients research and analysis, due diligence, merger and acquisition, public and private equity investment and other support on a wide range of matters involving China’s legal system, economic development and trade and investment, with a particular emphasis on China’s burgeoning energy and metals sectors. Mr. Schwartz earned degrees in East Asian Studies from the University of Michigan and Harvard University where he studied Chinese language and literature, economics and law, among other disciplines. Mr. Schwartz also earned a J.D. from George Washington University Law School. For more than 10 years Mr. Schwartz has taught classes at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law and its College of Arts and Sciences, including Law and Development in China, Chinese for Lawyers and Chinese Legal Documents.


Khee Poh Lam


Professor of Architecture, School of Architecture, Carnegie Mellon University


Board of Directors, Energy Foundation


Prof. Lam is an educator, researcher, architect and consultant who specialize in life cycle building information modeling and computational design support systems for total building performance analysis and building diagnostics. He is actively working on a range of R&D activities including green building codes and standards, education and training, as well as sustainable design demonstration projects in the US and China. He has also completed several major award winning projects in the private and public sectors in Singapore, China and the USA. He is currently Visiting Professor at the School of Architecture, Chinese University of Hong Kong, Tsinghua University, China and the National University of Singapore. Prior to his appointment at Carnegie Mellon in 2003, he held positions as Dean of the Faculty of Architecture, Building and Real Estate, Director of the Graduate School of the Built Environment as well as Head of the Department of Building at the National University of Singapore.


Thomas Rowley


Founder, Rittle Associates


Former CIO, China National Offshore Oil Corporation(CNOOC)


Thomas Rowley is the founder of Rittle Associates, a professional services partnership dedicated to providing value driven business solutions to companies aspiring to excel in China.  Thomas has over 17 years experience in information technology senior leadership roles for global corporations primarily in the process industries.  His decade long tenure as Executive Director of Technology and CIO for some of the largest Chinese state owned corporations, such as China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) and ChemChina has provided a unique insight to the developing information technology and energy industries of China.  Thomas, who is fluent in Mandarin Chinese, earned a dual master’s degree in Business Administration and Public & International Affairs at the University of Pittsburgh.


Matthew Stanton


CEO and Co-founder, SolePower


Matthew Stanton is the CEO and co-founder of SolePower, a startup in Pittsburgh, PA developing a power-generating shoe insole for charging cell phones and other portable electronics just by walking. The company was started while Matt and his co-founder were undergraduates in the mechanical engineering department at Carnegie Mellon University.

Prior to SolePower, Matt worked for a US National Research Laboratory and researched at the Biomechatronics Lab at Carnegie Mellon.

While at SolePower Matt has received a number of awards including being named to Forbes 30 Under 30 Energy Category, 2014 Popular Science Invention of the Year, and 2014 Africa Innovator of the Year.


Thomas A.Sarkus


Division Director, Major Projects Division, US Department of Energy’s (US DOE’s) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL)


Thomas A. Sarkus has 36 years of technical and managerial experience, including 29 years in project management at the US Department of Energy’s (US DOE’s) National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). He is currently the Division Director of NETL’s Major Projects Division, Office of Major Demonstrations, Strategic Center for Coal, and provides expert guidance and consultation to major DOE-funded clean coal technology and carbon sequestration demonstration projects.

As a key manager within the major demonstration programs administered by US DOE’s Office Fossil Energy, Mr. Sarkus has worked on a variety of coal preparation, flue gas cleanup and advanced power generation technologies. Many of the major projects he conducted have garnered national and international attention, plus numerous awards, including the National Society of Professional Engineers’ Outstanding Engineering Achievement Award, Power’s Annual Powerplant Award, Power Engineering’s Coal Project of the Year Award, and R&D’s R&D 100 Award. He has hosted over 20 technical workshops on subjects ranging from unburned carbon in fly ash to SO3, reburning technology, and selective catalytic and non-catalytic reduction technologies for NOx control.

A native of Donora, Pennsylvania, Mr. Sarkus’ efforts have contributed to the capture or avoidance of millions of tons of air pollutant emissions at significantly reduced compliance costs, thereby protecting human health and the natural environment while also saving consumers billions of dollars. He holds degrees in Chemistry, Geology, Earth Science, and Law, and is a licensed attorney in Pennsylvania.


Seth Wilmore


Environmental Manager, EverPower


Seth Wilmore is the Environmental Manager of EverPower, a fast growing developer, owner, and operator of utility scale wind projects in the US. Mr. Wilmore’s job is about management of environmental studies and permitting compliance associated with development, construction, and operation of EverPower projects. In addition, involved in the latest guidance and regulations related to wind energy environmental and permitting policies.

Prior to joining EverPower in 2011, Mr.Wilmore worked in a variety of environmental jobs including the Pennsylvania State Park Service, Virginia wetland/water permit writer and inspector, wildland firefighter, and GIS analyst. Mr.Wilmore graduated of Allegheny College in Meadville, PA and George Mason University in Fairfax, VA.