Future of the Electric Grid Symposium - University of Houston
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Future of the Electric Grid: Renewed or Gridlocked?

Thursday, September 27th
6:00 PM



In the first event of the 2018-2019 UH Energy Symposium Series, we bring together a panel of experts to discuss the future of the electric grid.

With the increasing adoption of distributed renewable energy resources, the potential electrification of the transportation sector and the recent cyber challenges faced by the grid, there has been increased focus on the stability of the current electric grid and how it will evolve in the future.

Moreover, how will this resilience and eventual transformation be financed and regulated? We will bring together an exciting panel of speakers with varying viewpoints to discuss these matters of significant uncertainty.

Symposium Moderator


Matt Rogers

Senior Partner, McKinsey & Co

Matt Rogers is a Senior Partner in McKinsey & Company’s San Francisco location. He focuses on the role technology and innovation play in restructuring markets, especially in oil, gas, power, and other energy and industrial companies.
Matt has spent more than 25 years serving energy and clients globally. He currently leads the Firm’s Oil and Gas practice in the Americas. Previously he led the Sustainability Practice Globally and Power in the U.S. He has written and spoken extensively on oil, gas, power, and resource markets around the world.
Currently his work focuses on North American unconventional resources, restructuring US power markets, and how technology is reshaping operational efficiency in oil, gas, and power.

Symposium Speakers


Jesse Grossman

Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder, Soltage

Jesse Grossman co-founded Soltage in 2006 and serves as chairman and CEO, overseeing the corporate and project finance activities of the firm, as well as sales and acquisition.
Prior to co-founding Soltage, he worked in venture development and management, project finance, marketing and resource use strategies in East Africa, Indonesia and the United States.
Grossman has a bachelor’s degree in biology from Carleton College and a master’s in environmental science from the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

Kenny Mercado

Senior Vice President, Electric Operations, CenterPoint Energy

Kenny Mercado is senior vice president of CenterPoint Energy’s electric utility business, with financial and operational responsibility of the company’s 5,000 square-mile service territory, as well as power delivery to more than 2.4 million homes and businesses in the Houston area.
He previously served as division senior vice president of Grid and Market Operations at CenterPoint, responsible for automating and integrating the company’s nearly 53,000 miles of electric transmission and distribution grid to serve the Texas market.
Mercado received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and a master’s degree in industrial engineering from the University of Houston. He also received an executive MBA degree from Texas A&M University.

John Berger

Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Sunnova

John Berger co-founded Sunnova Energy Corp. in 2012 and serves as CEO. He previously was co-founder and CEO of SunCap Financial, a residential solar power service company.
His previous work in renewable energy includes helping start Standard Renewable Energy, a Top 10 installer of renewable energy and energy-efficient products and services for residential, commercial and government customers, co-founding and serving as managing partner for Contango Capital Partners, LP, a venture capital firm focused on renewable energy and energy technology.
He began his career as an analyst for Enron Corp., including serving as director for Enron Energy Services. Berger graduated cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Texas A&M University and earned a MBA from Harvard Business School.