2022 Power Up Speakers

Brad Chedister

Chief Technology and Innovation Officer, DEFENSEWERX

From 2013-2016, Brad Chedister was the Lead Engineer / Subject Matter Expert supporting USSOCOM HQ Commander’s Science and Technology Initiative, the Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS) Joint Task Force. Before that, he spent 2004-2016 as a Technology Scout / Subject Matter Expert supporting multiple Special Operations Command (SOCOM) priorities. Chedister is a Biomedical Engineer by training and holds a double Masters in Engineering Management and Technology Management. From 2005 to 2017, he supported several R&D SOCOM programs including Sensitive Site Exploitation (SSE), Human Performance Program (HPP), TALOS, Biomedical Initiatives Steering Committee (BISC), Identity Dominance and Identity Superiority Programs, and Village Stability Operations Task Force for Credibility Assessment. Additionally, Chedister was picked to lead a brainstorming group for the Ebola crisis dealing with key technologies in collaboration with the World Health Organization and White House R&D leadership. Chedister held the position of Warfighter Systems Architect Director at MIT affiliated Draper Laboratories from 2016-2018.

He is currently serving as the Chief Technology and Innovation Officer of DEFENSEWERX – leading technology development and facilitation at multiple Facility locations and teams across the United States.

Michelle Moore


Michelle Moore is CEO of Groundswell, a non-profit whose mission is building community power. A social entrepreneur and former White House official with roots in rural Georgia, Michelle is a relentless agent for change with a passion for connecting clean energy with economic growth. Her accomplishments range from building the global green building movement to leading the sustainability team for the Obama Administration as Federal Chief Sustainability Officer. Since joining Groundswell in 2015, Michelle has led the organization to deploy a market-based project finance and subscriber management model for community solar that shares power and savings with low-income families. Michelle’s work is rooted in her faith and the charge to “love your neighbor as yourself.”

Tim Echols

Georgia Public Service Commission

A younger Tim Echols was selected by the Atlanta Airport Rotary Club as “Student of the Year” from his high school in 1978. While at the luncheon, he met Truett Cathy, the founder of Chick-fil-a, a member of the Atlanta Airport Rotary Club. After the meeting, Truett invited Tim to come by his Hapeville office and gave him a set of motivational tapes and a challenge. Echols said the tapes changed his life and as a result of listening to Zig Ziglar and his teaching, Echols set a goal to be a statewide elected official. After building a national non-profit organization, Echols ran for and was elected to statewide office in 2010, serving as Public Service Commissioner. His primary job is energy regulation. When Echols took office, Georgia was 34th in solar power. Now, 7 years later, the state is 5th in the nation in approved solar.

Robert B. Hughes

Executive Director, U.S. Army Office of Energy Initiatives

Mr. Robert B. Hughes is the Executive Director of the U.S. Army Office of Energy Initiatives and is responsible for the development of large-scale renewable and alternative energy projects which enhance energy security and resiliency for Army installations by leveraging private sector financing. Mr. Hughes’ responsibilities include the development of projects for onsite energy generation and control systems to ensure the availability of power for Army installations’ energy requirements.

Previously, Mr. Hughes served as the Director,

Air Force Office of Energy Assurance (OEA), where he led the implementation of projects to meet the top Air Force energy challenges and support mission-ready installations. As the first director of the OEA, he established a central management office dedicated to providing a comprehensive, enterprise-wide approach to energy projects, including the development and execution of strategic energy assurance initiatives.

Prior to his assignment with OEA, Mr. Hughes served as Director of the 6th Civil Engineer Squadron, 6th Air Mobility Wing, MacDill Air Force Base, Florida, where he oversaw the plans, programs, designs, construction, operation and maintenance of 600 base facilities totaling over 5.1 MSF. Throughout his career, Mr. Hughes has held various engineering positions both within and outside of the Department of Defense.

Erin Spadavecchia

CSI, CDT, Program Manager – Sustainability, Door Security Solutions

Erin Spadavecchia is the Program Manager for Sustainability at ASSA ABLOY Door Security Solutions (DSS) in New Haven, CT.  ASSA ABLOY DSS is a division of ASSA ABLOY (Stockholm, Sweden), the global leader in door opening solutions, dedicated to satisfying end-user needs for security, safety and convenience.  Professionally, Erin’s goals include increasing awareness and creating transparency of sustainable building solutions such as doors, frames, hardware, and access control.

She has 13 years of experience in the building materials industry and is an active member of the Construction Specification Institute (CSI), Metro New York Chapter. Through CSI, Erin has earned the CDT (Construction Document Technologist) credential and serves on their board as President.  Her background includes a Bachelor of Science in Biology/Biotechnology with a concentration in Ecology and Environmental Biology from Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, MA.  

In her spare time, Erin enjoys reading and kayaking trips with her family.  She is based in the Hudson Valley area of New York.  

Daniel Soto

Energy Director, Air Force Civil Engineer Center, Tyndall AFB

Daniel Soto is the Energy Director for the Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC) at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida. Mr. Soto leads over one hundred energy professionals that support warfighters worldwide by providing cost-effective energy assurance solutions. They do this by providing expertise in Energy Savings Performance Contracts, Energy Resilience and Conservation Investment Program, Power Purchase Agreements, Automated Meter Reading System, Data Analysis and Reporting, Utility Rates Optimization, and Energy Manager Training.

Prior to his current position, Mr. Soto has held various leadership positions at AFCEC to include the Energy Rates and Resilience Division, Measurement & Analysis Division, Utilities Privatization Division, and Airfield and Horizontal Construction Branch. He attended the University of Alabama on an Air Force ROTC Scholarship, and was commissioned into the USAF in May 1989. He spent almost four years on active duty before transferring to the Air Force reserve and civil service ranks in 1993.

Mr. Soto has held staff and leadership roles at multiple installations, major commands, and Forward Operating Agencies. Highlights include serving as SABER Flight Chief, Luke AFB, AZ, Aviano 2000 MILCON Program Manager, and the Deputy Base Civil Engineer at RAF Mildenhall, UK.

Mr. Soto is a registered Civil engineer in the state of Texas, and a certified Project Management Professional. He was recently inducted as a Fellow of the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME). He serves on the SAME National Energy and Sustainability Community of Interest and on his local Panama City Post Board of Direction. Prior to assuming his/her current position, Mr. Soto was the Energy Rates and Resilience Division Chief at AFCEC – Tyndall.

Camille Crain

Camille Crain

Section Chief, Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

Camille Crain is the Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) Section Chief at FEMA Headquarters. In this role it is her responsibility to design and administer FEMA Hazard Mitigation Assistance’s newest grant program, BRIC.

Camille came to FEMA HQ from FEMA Region 6 where she served as the Hazard Mitigation Assistance Branch Chief in the Mitigation Division. It was her responsibility to manage FEMA’s three HMA grant programs and the HMA staff for the five states and 68 tribes located in Region 6. She administered in excess of $3 billion of mitigation funding.

Lowell Ursey

Lowell Ursey

Natural Disaster Recovery, Air Force Civil Engineer Center, Tyndall Air Force Base

Lowell Usrey is the Integration Branch Chief for the Natural Disaster Recovery (NDR) Program Management Office (PMO) at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida. He is responsible for driving innovation for the $4.95 billion, effort to rebuild Tyndall as the Installation of the Future.

As chief of the Integration Branch he identifies opportunities to leverage commercial technology, research, and prototypes to enhance operational effectiveness, security, resilience, and digital integration for Tyndal AFB.

Mr. Usrey has supported the Department of Defense as a uniformed member, contractor and a government civilian. Prior to assuming his current position, Mr. Usrey led a wide variety of programs to include facility operations; facility planning, programming, and budgeting; construction management; energy management; space management; and environmental management. Other career highlights include coordinating acquisition programs for 14 major Air Force weapons systems and leading the construction efforts for entry gates at 10 Air Mobility Command bases.

Kelley Smith Burk

Kelley Smith Burke

Director, Florida Energy Office, Florida Department of Agricultural and Consumer Services (FDACS)

Kelley Smith Burk serves as the Acting Director for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Office of Energy.  The office is responsible for the development of energy policy and programs for the state as well as promoting the use of renewable energy and energy efficient technologies.  Mrs. Burk’s responsibilities include supervision and oversight of policy development, program and grant design, and legislative tracking.

Brian Stahl

325th Civil Engineer Squadron, Tyndall AFB, US Air Force 

Brian Stahl, 325th Civil Engineer Squadron deputy base civil engineer and Tyndall Air Force Base Program Management Office deputy director, has played a major role in the base’s recovery efforts.

The 325th CES is responsible for maintaining the operations, maintenance, repair and construction of property to effectively sustain Tyndall’s land and facilities. Stahl’s roles include advising the director of the PMO and advising the commander of the 325th CES. Stahl was one of the 93 personnel who stayed on base during Hurricane Michael and weathered the storm.

David Asiello

Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense
(Energy, Installations & Environment)

Mr. Asiello is the Director for Sustainability & Environment and currently provides technical and policy support to the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Energy, Installations & Environment) and the Deputy ASD for Environment & Energy Resilience.  His areas of responsibility include DoD Environmental Technology Programs; Strategic Sustainability Planning; Integrating Sustainable Procurement Policy and maximizing the use of Sustainable Technologies at DoD Installations; Chemical Management; and integrating Environment, Safety, and Occupational Health considerations into Weapon Systems Acquisition Programs.

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Power Up is the largest business event for energy and sustainability professionals along the Gulf Coast. This event will consist of presentations from state, city, county officials, federal and military contracting officials, architectural, engineering, and construction firms, energy services companies and many more. Join us and connect with new clients and other industry professionals, and meet with exhibitors in the Technology Demonstration Area to learn about new business opportunities for large and small businesses.

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