Derek Welbourn is a major contributor to IEEE Smart Village’s unique business model, in which local people in off-grid communities build local electricity companies that utilize local resources to deliver local solutions at no additional cost to local buyers. First deployed in post-quake Haiti, this model has now been introduced to several African countries and has proven sustainable once established with one-time philanthropic seed funding and IEEE volunteer development support. Patrick has helped present on IEEE Smart Village at both the 2013 and 2014 IEEE Global Humanitarian Technology Conference, as well as other events. He is chief executive officer of inhaus Surfaces Limited in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Patrick Lee is a member of the steering committee for IEEE Smart Village’s $10 million fundraising campaign. As vice president of major project controls for Sempra Energy, Patrick supports the Sempra Energy family of companies, providing oversight and governance for large construction projects, including standardizing processes, controls and reporting. Previously, Lee was senior vice president of customer services, innovation and business strategy for SoCalGas, was responsible for all SoCalGas customer services and programs, as well as strategic planning and development of new businesses and technologies. Prior to that, Lee oversaw public affairs, environmental, land services, engineering, procurement and construction of the $1.9 billion, 500-kilovolt Sunrise Powerlink transmission line – the largest capital infrastructure project in San Diego Gas and Electric’s history. Lee is a member of the California Council on Science and Technology and serves as a trustee on the California State Parks Foundation board, and a registered professional electrical engineer in California.
Dr. Noel Schulz received her B.S.E.E. and M.S.E.E. degrees from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) in Blacksburg, Virginia, USA in 1988 and 1990, respectively. She received her Ph.D. in EE from the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA in 1995. Become joining K-State, Dr. Schulz spent eight years at Mississippi State University (MSU) where she was the TVA Endowed Professor in Power Systems Engineering. She has a total of over 16 years of teaching experience including other schools such as Michigan Technological University, University of North Dakota and Virginia Tech.
She has been active in the IEEE Power & Energy Society serving as Secretary from 2004-2007, Treasurer from 2008-2009, President-Elect 2010-11, and President for 2012-2013. Dr. Schulz is a member of Eta Kappa Nu (Electrical Engineering Honorary Society), Tau Beta Pi (Engineering Honor Society), the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), the Society of Women Engineers and the National Society of Black Engineers. She served on the Board of Directors for ASEE from 2008-2010.