NGN Committee

Recent Updates

James Berger | Chair & Professional Development (Paper Competition) Co-Chair

James Berger is an Electrical Engineer at Power Delivery in the Distribution Engineering Services department.

James Berger is an electrical engineer at POWER Engineers in the Distribution Engineering Services department. He works primarily on grid modernization projects including Volt VAR Optimization, Conservation Voltage Reduction (CVR), FLISR, and distributed energy resource interconnection projects. James joined POWER Engineers after graduating with a Bachelors in Electrical Engineering from the University of Colorado Denver in May 2020. Prior to graduation he worked as an intern at Xcel Energy in the Transmission System Protection department for 2 years.


Brian Obermeier | International Collaboration Co-Chair

Brian Obermeier is a senior electrical engineer for Burns & McDonnell’s transmission & distribution group. In his more than 10 years in the industry, Brian has worked with some of the country’s largest investor-owned utilities and renewable energy developers on a range of complex power delivery projects. He is a licensed electrical engineer in the states of Virginia, Michigan and Nebraska.


Kristine Engel | International Collaboration Co-Chair

Kristine Engel leads Applications Engineering at LineVision where she applies her expertise and technical insights for advancements in real-time conductor monitoring. Kristine started her career as a field engineer in the oil industry and later built her expertise as a transmission line design engineer. Kristine has a Bachelor’s in Mechanical Engineering and a Master’s in Sustainable Systems Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Madison. She is a registered Professional Engineer in Wisconsin, Vice Chair of the IEEE Grid Enhancing Technologies Working Group, and International Collaboration Co-Chair for the CIGRE USNC NGN. She enjoys hiking, cooking, and spending time with her foster animals.


Michael Hanestad | Social Media/Outreach Co-Chair

Michael Hanestad is a Senior Power System Engineer in the Distribution Planning group at RLC Engineering, PLLC.

He has 8 years of industry experience and is a registered P.E. in Maine and New Hampshire. He is the Secretary of the IEEE P1729 Working Group and a member of the IEEE 1547 Revision Working Group. He is also the Chair of Social Media and Outreach for the CIGRE USNC NGN and a member of the CIGRE Study Committee C6 on Active Distribution Systems and Distributed Energy Resources. Michael has a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Maine and has conducted or lead more than 200 distribution-related studies while at RLC, including the modeling and integration of novel technologies on medium voltage systems, DER system impact studies, hosting capacity studies, and distribution system planning studies across New England and New York.


Genesis Alverez | Mentoring Co-Chair

Genesis B. Alverez received her B.S (2016) in Electrical Engineering from Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, FL and the M.S. (2019) in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech. She is an Engineer III in the Electric Transmission Operation Engineering Team. Her research interests include power systems analysis, system protection and renewable energy integration in distribution systems.


Maigha | Professional Development/Webinars Co-Chair

Maigha is a Senior Quantitative Engineer in the Relay and Protection Engineering department at Commonwealth Edison, Illinois, USA. A licensed professional engineer, she received her Ph.D in Electrical Engineering (Power Systems) at Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, MO followed by a post-doctoral research fellow position at Clemson University Restoration Institute, Charleston, SC. In her current role she is working on developing simulation and analysis framework for assessing DER impacts on the distribution system. She is a senior member of IEEE, and is engaged with CIGRE NGN and WIE. Her research interests include DERs, smart inverters, EVs, microgrids, real-time simulations and hardware-in-loop testing. She keeps herself grounded through meditation, bird-watching and versatile hobbies.


Andres Laso | Professional Development/Webinars Co-Chair, Marketing Chair

Andres Laso is an R&D engineer working at G&W Electric. With over 6 years of experience in circuit breaker design, Andres has led the first stages of SF6-free gas insulation systems for the medium voltage switchgear for the past 3 years at G&W Electric. Andres earned his degree in Mechanical Engineering from Universidad de Extremadura, Spain. He later specialized with a Master of Production and Design from Universidad Politecnica de Madrid. He is currently active in multiple working groups at Cigre and IEEE. Andres’ vocation is developing manufacturing and innovating technologies that can benefit humanity and nature. In his spare time, Andres participates in triathlons and other endurance races.


Nicholas Skoff | Mentoring Co-Chair

Nicholas M. Skoff received the B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech in 2019, and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech in 2020. He started his career at Dominion Energy in June 2020 with the Transmission System Protection Engineering group in Richmond, VA. His research interests include IEC61850, Microcontroller Applications in Power Systems, and Power System Protection.


Logan Lillis | Events Chair

Logan is an electrical engineer at Burns & McDonnell specializing in substation design. Logan joined Burns & McDonnell after graduating from Iowa State University with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering with a Power Systems Emphasis in 2018. Logan is also actively involved in IEEE, sustainability initiatives, and STEM outreach. She currently resides in Denver, Colorado. In her free time, Logan enjoys running, weightlifting, hiking, reading, spending time with her two dogs, and cheering on the Cyclones.


Navin Shenoy | Membership

Navin Shenoy is a Project Engineer at S&C Electric Company in the Consulting and Analytical Services department. In his current role, Navin provides engineering and consulting services for commercial, industrial and utility power systems, as well as renewable energy distribution systems. This includes tasks such as modeling of power systems and carrying out studies such as protection coordination & control, arc flash analysis, power flow, short-circuit, power quality and transient simulations. Furthermore, Navin has experience in developing settings and test plans for various power system equipment such as relays, power converters, motor starters, power factor controllers, battery systems, and metering devices. He has extensive hands-on experience in relay testing, function testing of substation controls, substation commissioning, troubleshooting and event analysis. Navin received his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering with focus on electric power systems from the Oklahoma State University, USA and his B.E. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Mumbai, India.


Jodie Lupton | Social Media/Outreach & Professional Development (Paper Competition) Co-Chair

Jodie Lupton is an electrical engineer at POWER Engineers in their Distribution Engineering Services department, where she works on automation projects and distribution studies.

Jodie joined POWER Engineers full time after graduating for the University of West Florida with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering in 2021. Before graduating, she was an intern with POWER Engineers, as well as three other utilities and consulting firms throughout her college career. She has experience in overhead and underground distribution line design and transmission line design. She joined CIGRE for the opportunity to network and learn from industry leaders. In her free time, Jodie enjoys playing disc golf, hiking, and reading.


Members-At-Large

Chris Mertz | Engineer III

Chris Mertz joined Dominion Virginia Power after graduating from Virginia Tech with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering and a Master of Science degree in Electrical Engineering in 2011 and 2013, respectively.

Chris is presently an Engineer III in Dominion Energy’s Electric Transmission Planning and Strategic Initiatives group. Prior to joining the Transmission Planning and Strategic Initiatives team, Chris was on the Operations Engineering Support team working on microgrid planning and the development of high voltage laboratory specifications.  Chris started his career as a member of the System Protection Engineering group with roles including short circuit analysis and relay setting development for capital projects, automation of the short circuit analysis and project process, creating relay setting optimization tools, development of system protection standards, and development of NERC PRC compliance procedures. In his free time, Chris enjoys playing soccer, hiking, snowboarding, golfing, home brewing, shooting pool, and spending time with friends and family.
What I love about CIGRE: CIGRE has given me the opportunity to meet and collaborate with professionals from various backgrounds and experiences. CIGRE has given me a broad insight into the technical and business challenges of the modern power systems industry, and also specific ideas and perspectives to help solve challenges at DVP. I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of the NGN for the past four years and look forward to my continued involvement with the CIGRE U.S. National Committee.


David Roop | Business Development and Technical Consulting

David Roop joined Mitsubishi Electric Power Products, Inc. (MEPPI) after receiving his Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech and Bachelor of Science degree in Physics from Radford University.

David leads business development and technical consulting activities for FACTS/HVDC/inverter-based resources (such as onshore/offshore wind and energy storage), including electromagnetic transients and dynamic stability studies, control performance/interaction/testing, and system design.


Deepak Ramasubramanian | Engineer/Scientist III

Deepak Ramasubramanian is an Engineer/Scientist III at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) in the Grid Operations and Planning Group of the Power Delivery and Utilization Sector.

Deepak joined EPRI in 2017 where his work is in the area of modeling, control and stability analysis of the bulk power system with recent focus on the associated impacts of large scale integration of converter interfaced generation. He is part of a team working on improving the present state of the art mathematical simulation models for these converter interfaced resources for use in both steady state and transient time domain simulations. His work also assesses the impact of the stochastic uncertainty of renewable resources on the bulk power system. He is also involved in testing and model development of variable frequency drives.

Deepak received his Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from the Arizona State University, Tempe, USA in 2017 for his dissertation on assessment of the impact of converter interfaced generation and load on grid performance. Prior to that, he received his M.Tech. degree in Power Systems from the Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, New Delhi, India in 2013 and his B.E. degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from the PES Institute of Technology, Bangalore, India in 2011.

He is an active member of the IEEE Power and Energy Society, CIGRE, and participates in the NERC and WEC industry wide load and renewable energy modeling and performance task forces. He is a recipient of an Energy Systems Integration Group (ESIG) Excellence Award, North American SynchroPhasor Initiative (NASPI) Outstanding Graduate Student Award, and the Power System Operation Corporation (POSOCO) Power System Award.

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