Michael Kerr – Manager, Technology Development Advisors (South), Alberta Innovates

Michael Kerr is a Technology Development Advisor for at Alberta Innovates located in Calgary. As a Technology Development Advisor, Michael provides assistance to companies innovating with either new products or processes (from patents, prototype development, process improvement or business advice). For newer firms, support includes one-on-one expertise for both technical help and business strategy, including managing cash flow. He is able to help firms access funding support to develop their ideas.

Michael’s background includes a degree in Chemistry, Master’s in Business Administration and most recently attained his Certified Management Consulting designation. He spent several years involved in chemical processing as well as 22 years in advising innovative SMEs for the Federal and now Provincial Governments.

Michael has also been a part time instructor at 3 post-secondary institutions, teaching at the undergraduate and Master’s level in marketing, operations, entrepreneurship, corporate social responsibility and process control math. He has just started as a part time instructor at Mount Royal University for New Ventures Course.


Jinguang Hu – Assistant Professor, Chemical and Petroleum Engineering, University of Calgary

Dr. Jinguang Hu’s is an Assistant Professor in Department of Chemical and Petroleum Engineering at University of Calgary. His current research group is supported by the Canada First Research Excellence Fund (CFREF) Initiative. His research interest is utilizing biomass, photo/bio-catalysts, and cell factories to design and fabricate renewable and sustainable bioproducts and systems, via bioinspired routes, for Energy, Environmental, and Biomedical application. The group’s current research focuses on biomass photorefinery, sustainable H2, biofuels/chemicals, bioinspired materials, inorganic-biological hybrid systems, biomedical, bioprocess engineering, and so on. Prior to joining UCalgary, he worked at University of British Columbia BioProducts Institute and Aalto-VTT HYBER Center (Academy of Finland’s Centre of Excellence in Molecular Engineering of Biosynthetic Hybrid Materials). He is a Research Fellow of GBIC and a recipient of S.C. Trindade Award. He is an active participant in the International Energy Agency (IEA), Bioenergy division. He is also associated with the China-Canada Joint Centre for BioEnergy.


Doug Hooper – Director, Policy and Regulation, Advanced Biofuels Canada

Doug Hooper is the Director, Policy and Regulation, for Advanced Biofuels Canada. Since 2005, Doug has helped lead the development of Canada’s advanced biofuels sector. Doug has worked directly on all key federal/provincial energy and climate action policies in Canada, including renewable and low carbon fuel regulations, carbon pricing, and fiscal policies to build biofuel production capacity and expand clean fuel use.


Bridgette Duniece – Vice President, Operations and External Affairs, Permolex

With over 26 years of experience in all aspects of business and project management and 12 years of experience at Permolex, Ms. Duniece has excelled in all aspects of industrial and community safety, sales and environment programs with a customer based philosophy. Currently focused on working with the Provincial and Federal Governments, the Alberta Bioenergy Producers Group (ABPG), sitting on the Board of Directors of BioAlberta, the Biomass Quality Network Canada (BQNC) Biofuels Committee and working with other stakeholders, Ms. Duniece continues to focus on community relations, sector advocacy, the environment and market based commodity modeling.


Pascale Champagne – Professor & Undergraduate Chair, Civil & Chemical Engineering, Queen’s University

Pascale Champagne, PhD, PEng, DWRE, FEWRI, FASCE: Dr. Champagne is a Professor of Civil & Chemical Engineering, Canada Research Chair (Tier II) in Bioresource Engineering, and the Director of the Beaty Water Research Center (BWRC) at Queen’s University. Dr. Champagne is an internationally recognized leader in bioresource engineering, alternative water and waste management systems and environment sustainability. She has established a highly productive interdisciplinary research program with projects in the fields of environmental and chemical engineering, biology and green chemistry.



Ashley Cruz – Events & Administrative Assistant, Biomass Energy Network

Ashley is a graduate of NAIT’s Event Management Program with a Specialization in Program Planning. Formerly an interior designer at Stantec, she has experience working with architects and engineers on energy-efficient design of interior spaces. After transferring to an administrative role more focused on events and marketing, she became a certified event planner and joined the client care team at River City Events, identifying clients’ event requirements to provide suitable event rental and planning solutions. During her time with the Biomass Energy Network, Ashley is excited to gain experience planning “green” events, expand her knowledge of low-carbon biofuel technologies, and play a small part in the movement towards cleaner energy in Alberta.

Ashley currently serves as a Director of Marketing and Communications with the International Live Events Association (ILEA) Edmonton Chapter, and she was also a Future Leader award finalist at the 2019 Edmonton Event Awards. She is passionate about sustainability and optimistic about reducing the world’s carbon footprint one step at a time.

Michael Chae – Operations Director, Biomass Energy Network

Dr. Michael Chae has helped oversee several research programs in the area of biomass conversion during his five-year tenure as the Program Manager of the Biorefining Conversions and Fermentation Laboratory (UofA).  This experience has cultivated a desire to advocate for the development of novel bio-based technologies that can accommodate the growing global demand for renewable fuels, products, and chemicals.  In addition to his vast experience in facilitating laboratory research, Dr. Chae has also served as a Project Manager for BioFuelNet Canada and is currently serving as a member of the Bioeconomy Alberta team.

Through his various laboratory experiences, Dr. Chae has received extensive training in genetics, biochemistry, molecular biology, and inorganic chemistry.  Working in the Biorefining Conversions and Fermentation Laboratory has exposed Dr. Chae to the value of multidisciplinary collaborations in accelerating the development of innovative and disruptive technologies.  This tenet was a key factor leading to Dr. Chae’s involvement in the establishment of the Biomass Energy Network.

Dr. Chae received his PhD from the Department of Biological Sciences at the University of Alberta in Molecular Genetics. His work focused on using a model organism, Neurospora crassa, to study intracellular signaling pathways.  Following his graduation, he was awarded a Japan Society for the Promotion of Science Postdoctoral Fellowship to study the process of ageing at Saitama University in Saitama, Japan. He then moved to Dallas, Texas for another postdoc at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Centre to elucidate the molecular mechanisms of circadian rhythms. In 2012, he moved back to Edmonton, Alberta to work for Maxxam Analytics, an environmental testing laboratory, as a Scientific Specialist, and was later promoted to Soils Supervisor of the Inorganics Department.  In April 2014, Dr. Chae was recruited to the University of Alberta where he serves as the Program Manager for the Biorefining Conversions and Fermentation Laboratory, and the Operations Director of the Biomass Energy Network.


Dominic Sauvageau – Associate Professor, Chemical and Materials Engineering, University of Alberta

Prof. Dominic Sauvageau (BEng MEng, PhD – Chemical Engineering, McGill University; P.Eng.) joined the University of Alberta in January 2011. His research focuses on different aspects of Bioengineering from bioproduction of biofuels, biomaterials and specialty chemicals in microbial systems to the development of bacteriophage-based technologies. He is heavily involved in the development of advanced fermentation technologies, such as self-cycling fermentation, for the improvement of productivity in microbial systems. His research involves the bioconversion of sugar feedstocks (by bacteria and yeast) and of methane (by methanotrophic bacteria) to value-added products (alcohols, biojet fuel, biopolymers). His work combines principles from chemical and process engineering with techniques from molecular biology, genetic engineering and synthetic biology.

He is the recipient of an Early Career Researcher and a Discovery Grant Accelerator Supplement Awards from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). He received the Provost’s Award for Early Achievement of Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching (2015) and the Faculty of Engineering Undergraduate Teaching Award (2014) at the University of Alberta. He was the supervisor and co-supervisor of four awarded teams of students representing the UofA at the International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) synthetic biology competition (2012, 2013, 2017, 2018).

Marty Luckert – Professor, Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology, University of Alberta

Marty Luckert is a professor in the Department of Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology at the University of Alberta. He specializes in forest and natural resource, policy and economics. He has worked domestically and abroad on natural resource management and development issues. His expertise includes forest tenure policy, biofuels, land use change, and livelihoods in developing countries. Marty has served on numerous forest and natural resource policy committees across Canada and internationally.


Bob Koch – Professor, Mechanical Engineering, University of Alberta

Dr. C.R. (Bob) Koch is a Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Alberta, Edmonton Alberta (since 2001). In 2016 he is a visiting professor at the Institute for Measurement and Control at the Technical University of Berlin, Berlin Germany. In 2007, he was a visiting professor at the Institute of Systems Theory at the University of Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany. Before joining the University of Alberta, Dr. Koch worked for 10 years in the automotive industry. From 1991 to 1992 and from 1994 to 2001 he worked at Daimler-Benz – DaimlerChrysler in Stuttgart Germany in advanced internal combustion engines. During 1992 to 1994 he worked for General Motors in the Detroit area on automotive powertrain control. From this work he holds 7 US patents and 5 German patents. C.R. Koch received his B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada in 1985, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Stanford University, Palo Alto, CA, in 1986 and 1991, respectively. Improving fluid mechanical and combustion systems using closed loop control methods is the general focus of his research. His research interests include combustion engines, biofuels, advanced powertrains and control of both reacting and non-reacting fluid. He is an assistant editor for the Journal Mechatronics and has been on the technical committee for a variety of conferences and reviews. He is also active providing peer review for journal papers, grant applications and conferences. He has chaired sessions in conferences and been on the program committee for conferences.