MIT and the MIT Energy Initiative (MITEI) have geared up for the next phase of the initiative. George P. Shultz, MIT alumnus and former faculty member, secretary of state in the Reagan administration and now professor emeritus at Stanford's Graduate School of Business, has agreed to serve as chair of MITEI's External Advisory Board. The high-level board, now being formed, will consist of as many as 25 people; it will provide high-level strategic direction for the initiative and review MIT's progress in energy fields.
Melanie Kenderdine joined MITEI in March 2007 as associate director for strategic planning. Previously a vice president at the Gas Technology Institute, she was involved in initiatives to increase natural gas supply and to enhance energy efficiency and security. Earlier, she was a senior U.S. Department of Energy official, serving as director of the Office of Policy and as senior policy advisor to the secretary of energy on oil, gas, coal and nuclear issues. She is a frequent speaker at international energy conferences, including the World Petroleum Congress and the International Energy Administration's International Energy Experts Conference.
Robin Elices, director of the Administrative Services Organization for the Departments of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering and the Center for Biomedical Engineering, will join MITEI later this month as executive director. Elices will work with the director, deputy director and associate director in managing and coordinating MITEI activities. "I'm looking forward to working with this broad-based initiative, which encompasses important interdisciplinary research and educational programs involving all five schools, and improved campus energy management," said Elices, who has 28 years of management experience in higher education, 19 of those at MIT.