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2015 External Panel of Experts

A panel of five experts from across the globe helped Saint-Gobain select the eight finalists to compete live in the grand finale of the NOVA Innovation Competition 2015:

Rick Fedrizzi, CEO and Founding Chair, U.S. Green Building Council; CEO, Green Business Certification Inc.; Chair, Global Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark
Through his bold, collaborative leadership of the U.S. Green Building Council, Rick Fedrizzi has transformed how the world designs, constructs, maintains and operates our built environment.  Since co-founding the organization in 1993, and serving as its CEO since 2004, Rick has pursued a sweeping program of work that has created new markets and sparked game-changing innovation that has led to fundamental shifts in resources saved, toxins eliminated, greenhouse gases avoided, and human health enhanced.

USGBC’s LEED, the premier global green building program, certifies almost 2 million square feet of building space per day in more than 150 countries and has accredited nearly 200,000 LEED professionals.  The education and engagement of this community through 76 local chapters and the more than 100 other World Green Building Council members around the globe make sure green buildings and communities are at the center of every sustainability effort because their impact on the health and well-being of the people who live, work, play and learn in them is significant.  To that end, Rick’s passion is the Center for Green Schools at USGBC, which is working to make sure every child is in a green school in this generation. 

In 2008, USGBC stood up the Green Business Certification Inc. as an independent certification and credentialing body.  With Rick as its CEO, it has expanded beyond its support of LEED to now offer these services globally to the WELL Building Standard, PEER, EDGE and SITES, among others.  With its recent acquisition of the Green Real Estate Sustainability Benchmark, where Rick serves as chairman, there is now an asset-to-portfolio sustainability measurement solution for the world’s largest asset class.   An executive with United Technologies’ Carrier Corporation for 25 years, Rick brings strong business acumen and creative leadership to the global green building movement.

Dr. Cheryl Martin, PhD,
CEO, Harwich Partners; former Deputy Director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy (ARPA-E), U.S. Department of Energy  
Dr. Cheryl Martin, PhD, served as Acting Director of the Advanced Research Projects Agency–Energy (ARPA-E) in 2013 and 2014. In addition, she was the Deputy Director for Commercialization at the agency from August 2011 to March 2015 where she lead ARPA-E’s Technology-to-Market program, which helps breakthrough energy technologies succeed in the marketplace.

Prior to joining ARPA-E, Dr. Martin was an Executive in Residence with Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, a venture capital firm based in Menlo Park, California. Dr. Martin also spent 20 years with Rohm and Haas Company, starting her career as a Senior Scientist for the company’s Plastics Additive business and then holding various research and marketing roles in the Plastics Additive and Coatings businesses. In 2000, Dr. Martin was named Director, Investor Relations where she was responsible for Rohm and Haas’ interactions and relationships with the investment community. She later became Director, Financial Planning, and took on the responsibility for the planning, forecasting and management reporting activities of the company. Dr. Martin was named General Manager of the company’s Adhesives and Sealants business in North America in 2007 and also elected a Corporate Vice President. Most recently Cheryl had been the General Manager for the Paint and Coatings Materials business in Europe, Middle East and Africa. In this role, she was responsible for all aspects (technology, operations, sales and marketing) of the business in this region.

Dr. Martin earned a B.A. degree in chemistry from the College of the Holy Cross. She went on to earn a PhD in organic chemistry from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She is active in the American Chemical Society (ACS) at both the local and national levels and serves on the Board of Directors for Philabundance, the greater Philadelphia region’s largest hunger relief organization.

Dr. Emily Reichert, PhD,
CEO,Greentown Labs
As Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Emily Reichert, PhD, sets Greentown Labs’ strategic direction, focusing on increasing the organization’s impact on clean and energy efficient technology commercialization through entrepreneurship. She also directs Greentown’s efforts to engage new corporate and foundation partners, to expand recognition and education programs for clean technology entrepreneurs, to leverage the local community of entrepreneurs, investors, universities, government agencies and NGOs striving to build our clean energy future, and to maintain Massachusetts competitiveness in clean technology nationally and internationally.

Prior to Greentown Labs, Emily was the Director of Business Operations at the Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry, where she helped grow the company from an angel-funded start-up to a sustainable contract R&D business with a mission to minimize environmental impact of chemical processes and products. She has over fifteen years of experience serving in R&D, business development and operations leadership roles. Emily holds a PhD in physical chemistry and earned an MBA from MIT.

Patrick Sheehan,
Founder and Managing Partner, Environmental Technologies Fund
Patrick is a founder and Managing Partner of the Environmental Technologies Fund. He represents the firm on the Boards of Metalysis, Nujira and Industrial Origami.

Patrick has worked in venture capital since 1985, when he joined 3i. He was instrumental in founding 3i's venture capital practice, and later became the founding Managing Director of its Silicon Valley operation. Before this, he was a research engineer for GEC and Marconi Space Systems.

Patrick was a member of the Executive Committee and Board of EVCA from 2007 to 2010, during which time he also chaired the Venture Capital Committee. After that he then established and Chaired their Environmental Task Force.

Patrick has a PhD in Electronic Engineering from UCL, London.

Dr. Lei Yang, PhD,
Managing Director, Northern Light Venture Capital
Lei joined NLVC in 2010 with more than a decade of experience in technology development, corporate strategy/operations and investments. Prior to NLVC, he was a Principal at VantagePoint Venture Partners (VPVP), where he focused on clean technology investments, including energy storage, lighting, solar, electric vehicle sectors, in the Greater China Area. Prior to VPVP, he was an Associate Partner at McKinsey & Company serving Fortune 500 companies across the high-tech value chain: semiconductor equipment, logic, memory and microprocessor devices, networking/storage equipment, and software and IT services. He supported and consulted with multiple clients in challenging corporate transformation, cross border mergers and acquisitions and post-merger integration situations.

Lei holds a BS in Chemistry from Peking University, a MS in Computer Sciences and a PhD in Chemistry from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
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