Grace M. Bochenek
Director & Professor, School of Modeling, Simulation and Training, UCF
Fascinated by the next generation of technology capability, future workforce, and the opportunity to drive innovation, with a view of the strategic and a pure understanding of tactical solutions. Dr. Grace M. Bochenek is a pioneer and leader in research and technology development.
Currently, she is the director of School of Modeling, Simulation and Training (SMST) at the University of Central Florida (UCF) where she plans to capitalize on UCF and SMST’s 40-year history of as early pioneers in human-centered modeling and simulation research to expand M&S at UCF as an innovative, integrative, and inspirational force across campus both in research and academics.
Prior to joining UCF, Dr. Bochenek held positions in both the Department of Energy and Department of Defense serving as a member of the federal government Senior Executive Service, with over 30 years of technical and managerial experience. She served as the Director of the National Energy Technology Laboratory, NETL, and, in the Department of Army, as the Chief Technology Officer of the U.S. Army Materiel Command and the Director of the Tank Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center. Dr. Bochenek held a presidential appointment as the Acting Secretary of Energy during the 2017 administration transition. She is well-versed in science, technology investment strategies, commercialization and performance, technology maturation and integration, and performance analyses with an emphasis on strategic alliances, partnerships, and global/international programs.
She has been recognized with numerous awards, including the Presidential Rank Award as Meritorious Executive, a Silver Medal from the National Defense Industry Association, and Decorations for Exceptional Civilian Service from both Departments of Army and Energy.
Event and Meeting Planner, Mitsubishi Power Americas
Krystle Boston is an event and meeting planning professional with an exceptional ability to develop, plan, and execute first-class events and build relationships with business stakeholders, global teams, and vendors. Since joining the company in 2015 as a marketing specialist, her ability to bring the “vision” alive has led to her current role as the lead Meeting and Event Planner at Mitsubishi Power Americas. She leads the external event strategy, logistics/operations, and event execution supporting marketing communications in the Americas region. Event types range from industry tradeshows and conferences to association meetings, user group meetings, symposiums, tech conferences, and customer networking events. Krystle holds a Bachelor of Science in Graphic Communications and Journalism from Florida A&M University.
Vice President, Chief of Staff and Head of Marketing, Mitsubishi Power Americas
Todd Brezler is chief of staff and head of marketing at Mitsubishi Power Americas, Inc., a world leader in power generation and energy storage solutions. Mr. Brezler is responsible for leading the company’s marketing communications, corporate communications, pricing, government relations, and market intelligence and strategy efforts for the Americas.
Mr. Brezler leads the company’s “Change in Power” campaign. He is also responsible for the marketing of multiple major initiatives, including the recent Hydaptive™ integrated package for hydrogen energy storage, which supports the company mission of providing power generation and energy storage solutions to their customers, empowering them to combat climate change and advance human prosperity. Mr. Brezler also leads the company’s market forecasting, modeling, and analysis team.
Prior to joining Mitsubishi Power Americas, Mr. Brezler gained extensive global experience in both B2B and B2C marketing with a wide range of companies, from Fortune 50 to family-owned. He spent 10 years at Proctor & Gamble in brand management and sales roles for brands including Prilosec OTC, Actonel, Eukanuba, and Iams.
Earlier in his career, Mr. Brezler worked for Caterpillar Corporation in the Turbomachinery Products division for Solar Turbines in San Diego, California. As a gas turbine engineer, he worked on the U.S. Department of Energy-funded Advanced Turbine Systems project. He began his career at the Westinghouse Electric Corporation in Orlando, Florida as a gas turbine mechanical design engineer.
Mr. Brezler holds a B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Penn State and an MBA from University of Tennessee. Mr. Brezler lives in Lake Mary, Florida.
Events Manager, College of Engineering and Computer Science, UCF
Natasha Coleman received her Diploma in Event Management from the Rosen College of Hospitality Management at the University of Central Florida (UCF) in 2019. She held several positions in the Event Services Department at the UCF Student Union from 2016 – 2019. She has worked with events in a variety of capacities over the past three years at the Orange County Regional History Center, The Crystal Ballroom Lake Mary, and The Maitland Area Chamber of Commerce. Natasha has experience in planning and executing a wide range of events including social events such as weddings, birthday parties and baby showers as well as corporate events such as public programing, ribbon cuttings, and golf tournaments. Today, she holds the position of Events Manager at the UCF College of Engineering and Computer Science where she collaborates to create various events for the students, staff, faculty and alumni.
Dean of College of Engineering and Computer Science, UCF
Michael Georgiopoulos received his Diploma in EE (National Technical University of Athens; 1981), and MS, Ph.D. in EE (University of Connecticut; 1983, 1986). He has been at the University of Central Florida (UCF) since 1986 and is currently a Professor in ECE. He serves as the dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science (2013-present). His research expertise lies in machine learning with special emphasis on neural network algorithms and related applications. He has been involved in more than 50 grants and contracts a good number of them multi-million dollar contracts involving multiple stakeholders. He has published and presented more than 270 papers in journals and conferences. He has served as Associate Editor of the Neural Networks journal and the IEEE Transactions on Neural Networks. In 2010, he was named a UCF Pegasus Professor, the most prestigious award bestowed to senior UCF faculty members for extraordinary contributions in teaching, research, and service. He was inducted at the UConn Academy of Engineering in 2014.
Founding Director, Center for Advanced Turbomachinery and Energy Research (CATER), UCF
Jayanta Kapat is a Pegasus Professor and a Trustee Chair in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at UCF. He obtained his Sc.D. in Mechanical Engineering from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1991. He joined UCF in 1997 as an Assistant Professor, and was promoted to the ranks of Associate Professor and Professor in 2001 and 2005, respectively. Since mid-2000’s, Dr. Kapat has fully focused his research activities on turbo-machineries and associated technologies for power generation, aviation, and space propulsion, and created partnerships with leading OEM’s in these industries. The most significant impact of his work stems from his vision for CATER. He brought 10 core faculty members with multidisciplinary capabilities together to solve some of the most complex research problems in turbomachinery for power generation, aviation and space propulsion. With research support of more than $20M for his individual research, mostly from NASA, DOE and Siemens Energy, Kapat has facilitated significant graduate- and undergraduate-level research, graduated 33 Ph.D., 61 MS and 17 BS Honors-in-Major (HIM) (Thesis) students, and published more than 350 papers in journals and conferences – mostly co-authored with his students. He has also 14 patents issued, and has established excellent success rates for job placement and internships of his students at all levels.
Senior Vice President of North American Manufacturing, Mitsubishi Power Americas
Shane Mickey is Senior Vice President of North American Manufacturing for Mitsubishi Power Americas. In this role, he has responsibility for leading the manufacturing of new power generation equipment as well as repairing power turbine components. These responsibilities include operations over factories at Orlando Service Center in Florida and Savannah Machinery Works in Georgia.
Shane has 25 years of total power industry experience, in various roles in Strategy, Engineering, Projects, Services, and Commercial Operations. He is Six Simga Black Belt and Project Management COE certified. He also served with distinction in the U.S. military as a naval nuclear submarine officer.
He currently resides in Orlando, FL where he serves on the Dean’s Advisory Board for University of Central Florida’s College of Engineering and Computer Sciences.
Senior Director Marketing Communications, Mitsubishi Power Americas
Christa Reichhardt is the Senior Director of Marketing Communications at Mitsubishi Power. As a seasoned strategic communicator, Christa has spent more than two decades translating complex energy topics into compelling storytelling engines supporting the energy transition. She and her husband are raising three daughters (and a dog) in Oviedo. Florida, and in her free time, she loves to travel and experience different cultures across the globe.
Executive Assistant II, College of Engineering and Computer Science UCF
Jennifer Sutton received her diploma in Business Administration from University of Phoenix. She began her career at University of Central Florida in 2020 as the Executive Assistant to the dean of College of Engineering and Computer Science. With over 20 years’ executive level experience, she continues to thrive and grow with UCF. She has become an integral part of the college by assisting with different type of events (North American Championship-North American Programming Camp, Academy of Science, Engineering and Medicine of Florida, etc.) hosted by the college as well as her regular duties of supporting the dean.
She resides in Deltona, Fl with her boyfriend (dog and cat). In her free time, she rides her motorcycle, sings, and volunteers for local Veterans and Children’s organizations.