Breakfast + Registration

Chair’s Opening Remarks

  • Mahesh Sashital, Founder & President, Houston Blockchain Alliance


Keynote: Separating Myth from Reality: Blockchain for Power and Energy in 2020 and Beyond

What is blockchain’s role in power and energy?  What problems can this innovative technology solve? During this session separate myth from reality to understand the true potential of this breakthrough technology.  Moving beyond the technological side of blockchain, understand the business applications and the practical approach to identify projects that would benefit most from its utilization.   Overcome common misconceptions to gain a comprehensive understanding of the current and future capabilities of blockchain.  Benefit from a full explanation into the groundbreaking work the Energy Web Foundation (EWF) is doing in this space and how they are on a mission to accelerate the wide-scale adoption of blockchain for transformational impact across the industry.

  • Jesse Morris, Chief Commercial Officer, Energy Web Foundation


Panel: Digitalization, Decarbonization and Decentralization-How Can Blockchain Support These Megatrends Shaping the Power Industry

Hear first-hand actual use cases and proofs of concepts being developed by the most forward-thinking utility companies to capitalize on the current and future trends shaping the industry. Analyze business considerations for implementing blockchain to understand if the technology is appropriate for your organization thereby avoiding any costly mistakes. Uncover how you can go about implementing small-scale tactical deployments to gain traction for scalability and more ambitious, business altering activities in the future.

  • Philip Black, Global Emerging Solutions Lead, Blockchain, Wood
  • Alan Tilley, Chief Innovation Officer, Drift Marketplace, Inc.


  • Moderator: Charles McConnell, Executive Director of Carbon Management and Energy Sustainability, University of Houston
  • Jacob Jurewicz, Corporate Strategy Manager-Corporate Strategy, Innovation, & Sustainability, Exelon Corporation


Networking + Refreshment Break


Panel: Beyond Bitcoin and Cryptocurrency: Effectively Selling Value Proposition and Benefits

The power of blockchain depends on the organization’s ability to work together, taking a holistic view of the overall needs of the enterprise, and finding ways to embrace this technology and adapt. During this session understand the crucial importance of managing change throughout your journey and the levers to pull to gain the needed support and engagement. Ensure strategic alignment by developing a strategy and execution framework in-line with business objectives and learn to leverage internal partnerships from all the areas of the business that blockchain touches. Understand what are the important questions to ask to dive deeply into the barriers and challenges of incorporating blockchain in your organization.

  • Moderator: Grant Reveal, Senior Manager, Access Management, Entergy
  • Khushboo Choudhary, Founder, DEX, Decentralized Energy Exchange
  • Kenneth Bhalla, Chief Technology Officer, Stress Engineering Services


Building a Blockchain Network through Collaboration to Enable Future Scalability

Blockchain is not a stand-alone, plug and play solution. The success of blockchain is dependent on the network of users it has embracing the technology. PayLight Energy, as one of the many technology start-ups in the energy space that are working to revolutionize the industry through the power of blockchain, will share how they are working to place itself in a unique position to help facilitate current financial, energy and technological trends while creating a profitable ecosystem that will drive US and Global markets towards green energy and cryptocurrency adoption. Learn about their current platform and how they are situating themselves for future scalability and value creation. Included in the discussion will be the exciting work the Houston Blockchain Alliance is exploring for the city of Houston to gain practical understanding of what is real and possible.

  • James Peñas, Founder and CEO, PayLight Energy


Brainstorming and Benchmarking-Where Can Blockchain Make the Most Transformative Impact

Carl Miller will lead an interactive session by detailing his extensive work and research into the blockchain space to demonstrate various areas blockchain can truly be a game changer for the energy sector. He will then open the discussion to the audience to perform a workflow analysis of where in the organization blockchain can be the most useful and benchmark implementation best practices. In a structured and informative way, learn from each other on how blockchain can address your most pressing needs.

  • Carl Miller, Senior Manager IT Strategy and Planning, Xcel Energy


Working Luncheon

During our luncheon will we facilitate roundtable discussions to make the most out of your time with your peers. Here you will have an opportunity to have a structured and facilitated discussion with like-minded peers to exchange best practices, pain points, and lessons learned to work together towards a common goal.


Leverage the Power of Community with Blockchain

As the grid becomes increasingly distributed and decentralized, there is increased need to coordinate the activities of DER in the most economically efficient manner. Local energy marketplaces represent an emerging way to achieve this, as highlighted by the European Union's recent passage of legislation requiring the formation of local energy communities. These marketplace are enabling many new opportunities, such as the ability for residents to buy and sell energy with one another and partner with energy retailers and utilities to demonstrate emerging business models. This panel will speak to how technology, including blockchain, can be used to leverage the power of community to better engage users on energy.

  • Scott Kessler, Director, Business Development, LO3 Energy


Case Study: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory Protecting Electrical Grids with Blockchain

The United States Government, spearheaded by the U.S. Department of Energy is investing a considerable amount of money and time into the promise of blockchain. As part of this initiative, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has made significant advancements and moved well beyond the proof of concept phase in many of their projects to identify real use cases for blockchain, especially those that are posed as a solution to secure the most critical systems and data.


Panel: The “Promise” of Smart Contracts in Distributed Energy and Beyond

Blockchain makes smart contracts possible by automating transactions that are commonly performed manually and removing the need for a financial and legal “middleman” to validate these transactions. Smart contracts create trust, simplification reduces costs, increase transparency and overall efficiency. As the sector moves more towards decentralization this will only further evolve the energy landscape by adding in more partners and stakeholders thereby creating more transactions that require transparency, data privacy and automation. Look into specific use cases to harness the vast benefits of utilizing smart contracts with a specific discussion on the problems they can and can’t solve. Learn how smart contracts are allowing for the greater adoption and monetization of distributed energy transactions and the evolution of the “prosumer” by securely enabling peer-to-peer energy trading. Join the discussion to identify the most compelling areas to embark on your journey.

  • Curt Kirkeby, Technology Strategist-Electric Utility Sector, Avista Corporation
  • Aleksi Paaso, Ph.D. PE, Director, Distribution Planning, Smart Grid and Innovation, ComEd


Chair’s Closing Remarks and Recap of the Day

  • Mahesh Sashital, Founder & President, Houston Blockchain Alliance

Summit Concludes