join energy innovators for networking and an interactive discussion on “pathways to market” quarterly
march 2020

leading experts from venture capital, technology licensing, legal, independent system operators (ISO), established and emerging energy firms will share their stories and advice on what it takes to transform breakthrough ideas into marketable opportunities in today’s evolving energy landscape.

march 2, 2020 @ minneapolis cider co. 4 – 7+ p.m.

register early! space is limited.

event includes networking, appetizers, cash bar, open mic, live polling session, free onsite parking and pickle ball. all are welcome.



Mia Adams
Senior Manager
Market Strategy, MISO

Larry Micek
Technology Licensing Officer, University of Minnesota

Andrew Felbinger
Venture Capital
Urban Innovation Fund

Mark Ahlstrom
Former CEO Windlogics, acquired by NextEra Energy Resources. President of Board, ESIG

Sara Bergan
Associate Attorney,
Stoel Rives, LLC

Zach Emond
Co-Founder, Renew
Power Systems, Inc.,


monday march 2, 2020 @ minneapolis cider company

o 4:00 p.m. – doors open

o 4:30 p.m. – opening / welcome

o 4:40 p.m. – “pathways to market” – expert panel moderated by mia adams, MISO

Mia Adams – Senior Manager Market Strategy, MISO

Mia Adams

Senior Manager Market Strategy

Mia leads strategy and the MISO FORWARD efforts for the Market & Grid Strategy Division at MISO. MISO manages the transmission system for over 200 utilities and runs the market – like a stock exchange for energy – that clears over $24 billion dollars in transactions annually. Mia developed a team of leaders that coordinate strategic programs across MISO for distributed energy resources, wind, solar, storage and changing system risks. Her work focuses on collaborating with internal and external stakeholder groups to synthesize insights and guide the prioritization of investments. In the midst of seismic industry change, market strategy prioritizes on what new products, tools and enabling technologies are needed to continue to foster an ecosystem of exchange that leverages the value of the diversity in the Midcontinent region.

Prior to MISO, Mia worked at 3M in Corporate Strategy and in Global Sustainability in Corporate R&D on innovating new products to address major world challenges like climate change and water scarcity. Before 3M, she was at what is now Siemens Gamesa in wind farm development and in management consulting for market strategy for clean tech and renewable energy clients. Mia has a Masters in Sustainability and Environmental Management from Harvard University, an MBA from the University of Minnesota and a B.A. in Communications and Swedish from North Park University.

Midcontinent Independent System Operator, Inc. (MISO)

Formerly named Midwest Independent Transmission System Operator, Inc. (MISO) is an Independent System Operator (ISO) and Regional Transmission Organization (RTO) providing open-access transmission service and monitoring the high-voltage transmission system in the Midwest United States and Manitoba, Canada and a southern United States region which includes much of Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana. MISO also operates one of the world’s largest real-time energy markets.

Larry Micek – Technology Licensing, University of Minnesota

Larry Micek

Technology Licensing Officer

Larry Micek joined the University of Minnesota Technology Commercialization in 2016 after 35 years of product and business development experience with HB Fuller Company and Cargill Inc. 

Larry has a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and an MBA. He is a registered US Patent Agent and Project Management Institute-certified project management professional and is certified in new product blueprinting from the AIM Institute. He has also received training in intellectual asset management through the Licensing Executive Society, in technology licensing through the National Technology Transfer Center, and in strategic planning from the American Management Association.

Technology Commercialization

University of Minnesota Technology Commercialization facilitates the transfer of University technology and ideas to licensee companies–both established and startup–for the development of new products and services that benefit the public good, foster economic growth, and generate revenue to support the University’s mission.

The University holds 900 patents and 1,800 current licenses for UMN technology in medicine and health, biotechnology, chemistry, engineering, agriculture, and other fields important to society and the economy. Since 2006, the University has spun out more than 150 startup companies.

Andrew  Felbinger – Associate, Urban Innovation Fund

Andrew Felbinger

Associate, Urban Innovation Fund

Andrew is an Associate at the Urban Innovation Fund, a venture capital firm that invests in the future of cities. The fund provides seed capital and regulatory support to entrepreneurs solving our toughest urban challenges – helping them grow into tomorrow’s most valued companies.

Previously, Andrew served as an Associate at Castellan Real Estate Partners, a real estate private equity fund where he was responsible for sourcing, performing due diligence, and closing mixed-use and commercial real estate transactions. Additionally, he was responsible for building the firm’s affordable housing pipeline and creating a buyout vehicle for secondary interests in a multi-billion-dollar Seattle-based office and retail portfolio. Before Castellan, Andrew started his career at Barclays in their global capital markets division, where he was responsible for building the firm’s institutional electronic fixed-income trading platform.

Andrew earned his MBA from the Wharton School of Business and BS from Seton Hall University, where he graduated as the university Valedictorian.

Mark Ahlstrom – former CEO of WindLogics, (acquired by NextEra Energy Resources)

Mark Ahlstrom

Former CEO of WindLogics (acquired by NextEra Energy Resources, now NextEra Analytics, Inc.) and President of the Energy Systems Integration Group (ESIG)

Mark was CEO of WindLogics, the venture-funded Saint Paul company that was acquired by NextEra Energy Resources and is now NextEra Analytics. NextEra Energy Resources is the world’s largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun.

Mark is now the Vice President of Renewable Energy Policy for NextEra Energy Resources and NextEra Analytics. He is a strategic leader in the technical issues for the economic and reliable use of higher levels of clean energy.

Mark is also President of the Energy Systems Integration Group (, the non-profit educational association for engineers, researchers, technologists, economists and policymakers who are transforming our electricity and energy systems.

Sara Bergan – Associate Attorney, Stoel Rives, LLP

Sara Bergan

Associate Attorney, Stoel Rives, LLP

Sara Bergan is an energy law attorney who works primarily with renewable energy and cleantech clients on project development, project finance and energy and environmental regulatory matters.

In advising her clients, Sara is able to tap into her background and experience working on energy policy issues. Prior to joining Stoel Rives, Sara served for several years as the executive director of the Great Plains Institute, a Midwest non-profit that brokers consensus energy and climate policy decisions among diverse stakeholders.

Sara is a graduate of the University of Minnesota School of Law, J.D., 2010 magna cum laude and Donald G. Marshall and Stone Scholarship Recipient. She also attained a M.P.P., in 2006 from Princeton University where she was a Robertson Family Scholarship Recipient and attained a Certificate in Science, Technology and Environmental Policy. In 1997 she graduated from Gustavus Adolphus College with a B.A., Environmental Studies, cum laude.

Stoel Rives, LLP

Formed in 1907, Stoel Rives, LLP is a business law firm providing corporate and litigation services to a wide range of clients throughout the United States. The firm has over 350 attorneys operating in corporate, energy, environmental, intellectual property, labor and employment, land use and construction, litigation, natural resources, project development, and real estate law.

Zach Emond – Co-Founder, Renew Power Systems, Inc.

Zach Emond

Co-Founder and CEO, Renew Power Systems, Inc.

Zach is the CEO of Renew Power Systems. Zach spent three years on research and development for the University of St. Thomas microgrid project in conjunction with Renewable Energy and Alternatives Lab (REAL). His work includes non-linear systems and the development of low-cost energy storage solutions. 

Zach is immensely passionate about renewable energy and the possibilities it will bring to the world. His interests brought him through various research laboratories throughout Europe in search of the latest and greatest microgrid technology.

Zach attained an M.S. in Electrical Engineering at the University of St. Thomas.

Renew Power Systems, Inc. (RPSi)

RPSi is in the business of developing disruptive energy innovations. Our focus is simple, stack-able nanogrids. Our nanogrid technology enables a new approach to energy, forming a grid from the ground up. The stack-ability of our system removes many of the barriers preventing the mass adoption of renewable energy. With our origins in humanitarian electrification over 15 years ago, we are committed to making energy accessible to all.

o 5:30 p.m. – interactive live polling, [bring your phone!]

o 5:40 p.m. – open mic session – facilitated by eric schroeder, vice-president board of directors m-rets

o 6:00 p.m. – networking, appetizers, cash bar + pickle ball

o 7:00+ p.m. – doors close

event includes networking, appetizers, cash bar, open mic, live polling session, free onsite parking and pickle ball. all are welcome.


those in energy innovation, entrepreneurship, researchers, professional services (acct., law, finance, etc.), non-profits / NGOs, investing, students, public policy, and those who care deeply about accelerating the energy transition to avoid and mitigate the significant impacts of climate change. all are welcome.



Expand your network with like minded individuals and firms that share your views


Increase your knowledge of key trends in the energy & innovation ecosystem


Share your story during the open mic session to unlock key resources for your success   


Contribute your voice with live polling that drives the development of


701 Southeast 9th Street Minneapolis, MN, 55414

Minneapolis Cider Co. inspires curiosity as they deliver craft ciders. Their ciders are not defined by a single characteristic. They span from sweet to dry, fruited or hopped, and everything in between. There is a cider for everyone. Not to mention they have a pickle ball court too!

WHAT’S ENNOVATE.NET? is a participant-driven energy innovation network committed to building a strong ecosystem that accelerates the energy transition. We curate quarterly networking events with a thematic panel of speakers, interactive sessions and an open mic that brings the community together in a fun and inclusive atmosphere.

we care deeply about accelerating the energy transition to avoid and mitigate the significant impacts of climate change and believe that continued development of new energy innovation products and services are a component to respond to this challenge.


4 – 7+ p.m.

SEPT. 14
4 – 7+ p.m.

DEC. 7
4 – 7+ p.m.

JOIN OUR E-LIST provides monthly energy innovation network email updates for the regional ecosystem to include energy innovators, event roundups, funding opportunities, resources highlights and events and recaps.


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