AEE Honors Energy Efficiency Professionals at the 41st International Awards Banquet

Through its International Awards Program, the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE) shines the light on the important work that is being done by individuals, organizations, agencies, and corporations. By identifying those who exemplify the very best in their fields, energy professionals are honored and the industry is advanced. Recognition of excellence by one’s peers and other professionals in the energy industry is the purpose of this program.

The 2018 International Awards will be presented the evening of Wednesday, October 17th at the AEE International Awards Banquet, being held at the Charlotte Convention Center in Charlotte, NC in conjunction with the 41st World Energy Engineering Congress (WEEC).

Energy Engineer of the Year
Shail Derashri
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Shail is a “love to learn” individual with a passion for Energy Conservation and Sustainability. She is the 1st woman to gain the Certified Energy Manager (CEM) certification in India. She is also a Certified Energy Auditor (CEA), a Lead Auditor for ISO 50001:2011 Energy Management System, a Chemical Engineer and holds MBA in Entrepreneurship & Operations from Rollins College with over 10 years of experience and expertise in in efficiency improvements and predictive maintenance, failure analysis and industrial training. She has also developed business strategies to provide economic sustainability to the “Partners in Hope PANUA”, a project in Kenya. Shail is a life member of AEE and a member of the Indian Society of Heating Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers. Previous awards include AEE’s Asia Subcontinents Young Energy Professional of the Year and Best Performing Energy Auditor by the Society of Energy Engineers and Managers (SEEM).


Corporate Energy Management
Baxter Healthcare Corporation
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Baxter touches the lives of millions of people around the world every day. Their products and therapies can be found throughout hospitals, clinics, pharmacies, and patient’s homes. Baxter supplies products to over 100 countries and manufacture their products in more than 50 plants worldwide.  Since 1999, Baxter’s Global Energy Management Program has driven to improve efficiency, reduce energy consumption, costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Since 2005 the program has reduced the energy consumed per unit of product by 22.5%. This provided $30 million in annually in cost savings and 914GWh annually. Baxter’s Global Energy management program is an important element of their Corporate Responsibility (Sustainability) Program and is reported in many stakeholder investor surveys (Bloomberg, Dow Jones sustainability index and others). The Energy Program is certified to the International Standard for Energy Management of ISO50001. Additionally, every Corporate Energy Engineer is required to have a Certified Energy Manager (CEM) certification and plant energy managers are also encouraged to become CEM’s.

Institutional Energy Management
University of British Columbia
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
The University of British Columbia’s (UBC) energy planning and innovation team of four engineers and five building automation systems specialists are responsible for reducing campus energy use by 2% per annum. Since starting an energy management program in 1998, UBC has accumulated $65M in energy and water savings. During this period, UBC reduced campus GHG emissions by 40% while the campus has increased institutional floor space by 42%.  UBC’s Energy Management Plan (EMP) identifies conservation and efficiency opportunities and includes regular monitoring of thermal energy, electricity, and water usage of large buildings, benchmarking and data analysis to identify over-consuming buildings or systems and establishes multiyear targets for energy savings. Its 2016-2020 plan has annual savings targets of 4 GWh electrical and 20,000 GJ of natural gas. These energy accomplishments would not have been possible without a strong commitment from senior management, a strategic energy management plan based on continuous improvement, a dedicated energy team, and the support of its conservation partners BC Hydro, Fortis BC and the Province of British Columbia.

Energy Professional Development
Harris Schaer
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Harris Schaer is the Associate Director of Energy Management & Sustainability for the Columbia University Medical Center.  Working with 14 buildings, totaling 3.1 million sq. ft. and a $30 million annual energy spend, Harris’s many accomplishments include: ventilation optimization of laboratory spaces, saving 50,000 kWh/yr and 2,000 MMBTU/yr; LED lighting program savings of 125,000 Kwh/yr; #6 oil phase-out, converting boilers to natural gas; campus-wide energy audits and retro-commissioning measures; implemented an air change rate optimization regime in animal care facilities, saving $200,000/yr; compostable waste collection program in CUMC housing; electric vehicle charging stations at CUMC garages; and introduced utility tracking and automated bill-entry software.  Harris has a Bachelor’s Degree in Physics and a Master’s Degree in Solid State Physics, and holds LEED AP, CEM and DGCP certifications. He is trained in energy modeling, codes, carbon accounting, power grid architecture, and utility markets.



Energy Manager of the Year
Bobby H. Starling
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Bob Starling loves saving energy and working with others to help them save energy. Bob began his career in energy by working for the Huntsville Center for US Corps of Engineers (USACE) in 1992 after 22 years of Civil Service experience in the United States and in Germany.  While employed at USACE as a Program Manager, he led a team in the development of the first Energy Savings Performance Contract (ESPC) awarded with $1.4 billion ordering authority. Upon retirement from USACE, he served as the Regional Director for a major energy services company, Ameresco, where his chief responsibility in this job was accountability for all Government and Commercial energy projects. In his first year at Ameresco, his team was awarded a $50 Million ESPC project in only 70 calendar days—the fastest ESPC project ever awarded. He now has his own consulting company where he has helped numerous clients save $12 billion in energy and a 92% success rate in contract awards.  Bob has been an AEE member and WEEC attendee for the 25 years and counting, served as the Huntsville AEE President from 2011 to 2012 and as AEE Region II VP from 2016-2018. During his tenure as AEE VP, he focused on maintaining and building Student Chapters and supporting student and AEE scholarships.   Bob devotes his time as Program Manager for Energy Huntsville for the past 5 years. The charter for Energy Huntsville is to share and promote energy opportunities within its membership. In this position Mr. Starling is responsible for securing speakers for the monthly meetings to speak on new concepts and established successes in the energy field.

Energy Project – National
Retro-commissioning at the World's Busiest Airport
Watch Video Acceptance Speech

Atlanta Airlines Terminal Corporation manages the world’s busiest airport, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Energy One Consulting retro-commissioned the 7.4 million square feet facility, including energy controls for 23,000 tons of cooling and 115,000 lb/hr of steam capacity, scoped and led replacement of 25,000 lights, and optimized HVAC controls. 400 air handler units were returned to basic conditions and upgraded with demand control ventilation, economizing, and supply air pressure and temperature resets. Since 2016, the project has delivered $3,000,000 in savings and reduced energy usage at Hartsfield-Jackson by 11%, or 28,000,000 kWh annually. In 2017, AATC was Georgia Power’s largest efficiency rebate recipient receiving nearly $650,000.  AATC’s CEO presented this story as a keynote speaker, opening for George W. Bush, at the most recent WEEC. Energy One Consulting is very involved with AEE, including participating on the CEM exam committee, CEM JTA task force, chairing WEEC sessions, and conducting presentations.


Energy Project – International
Cradle of Humankind
Watch Acceptance Speech
The Cradle of Mankind is a World Heritage site and popular tourist attraction in Gauteng, South Africa. Energy Cybernetics was awarded the contract for implementation of reducing their environmental footprint. The comprehensive energy project included an energy efficient lighting upgrade, smart metering installation, heat-pump installation, solar PV, a bio-gas plant and a rain-water harvesting system. Energy Cybernetics project managers worked in close collaboration with the client to manage the impact of the work on tourists visiting the site. Energy Cybernetics delivered six different projects simultaneously: 1. The deployment of a 40 kW solar PV plant using thin film technology. 2. The upgrade of 1650 lights to energy efficient LED lights. 3. The installation of 8 energy metering points and linking these meters to an on-line web based energy monitoring system (PowerWatch). 4. The installation of 5 heat pumps in the main building and kitchens for the energy efficient generation of hot water. 5. The installation of a 10 cubic meter rainwater harvesting plant to store run-off rainwater from the rooftops for use as irrigation water. 6. The installation of a 6 cubic meter bio-digester to convert kitchen waste to methane, which will be used for on-site cooking. Water is a by-product of this process and this water is used to irrigate the on-site vegetable garden. The installation of these various energy efficiency and alternative energy solutions is expected that the site’s total energy bill should reduce by at least 30%, or an estimated 300 000 kWh per annum.

Innovative Energy Project
DirectLink LNG
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Naturgy, formerly Gas Natural Fenosa, one of the largest LNG suppliers in the world, in collaboration with Connect LNG, have developed the first ever-floating LNG ship to shore system, DirectLink LNG. The system is a game changing floating solution for LNG transfer between ship and shore that replaces the need for cost and environmental intensive harbor and jetty structures. This solution allows the access of natural gas to cover the needs of those customers that until the past few years, using traditional solutions, were not able to switch, and a rapid expansion of the value chain and transfer of LNG at locations where it was previously not possible due to environmental and economic constraints. The solution is a plug & play product which requires no modifications to the LNG carrier. It could be fitted to any port and any vessel worldwide. The design and fabrication of this floating platform has involved the highest safety standards, including the first floating cryogenic hoses ever and the first ever automatic vacuum offshore attachment system of the platform to the LNG vessel. The time from finalization of the detailed design to successful hook-up of the terminal took less than 6 months. Construction at the yard started April 2017 and the solution was installed at the Herøya terminal in Norway 1 day after arrival. The complete system has undergone an extensive classification process by DNV GL. This integral solution is driven exclusively by Naturgy. Directlink LNG was established on the belief that cleaner and cheaper energy should be accessible worldwide.

Energy Innovator of the Year
Yolanda de Lange
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Yolanda de Lange is a mom of 2, loving wife, a devoted worker during her 23 years in the energy industry, and – as you will see – a true innovator.  Yolanda works for the Faculty Training Institute in South Africa and is passionate about leading and growing the Association of Energy Engineers (AEE) in Sub-Saharan Africa through the Energy Training Foundation (EnTF) which is based in South Africa. As Training Manager for EnTF and in partnership with the Limpopo Economic Development, Environment & Tourism (LEDET) Government Department of South Africa, Yolanda and her team have been instrumental in helping grow energy professionals in Southern Africa, and at the same time, making a difference in the lives of the youth of the Limipopo Province. This innovative program upskills disadvantaged students who grew up without formal housing, sanitation, and no access to running water or electricity. The Limpopo is one of the provinces with the most challenging rural schooling system with few teachers, often no classrooms, no desks or chairs, and often one teacher has the responsibility to teach well over 60 children in one group with varying ages and varying grades. The Limpopo Province also has no energy companies that are indigenous to them, and most work related to energy has to be sourced-in from other provinces. As part of the Province’s Green Strategy, LEDET felt the need to develop its own skills in order to uplift the economic contribution opportunities for their own population by developing skills and thereby being able to provide job opportunities through energy savings to the youth of the province. CEM was chosen as the most suitable outcome of the program to provide the service assurance to industry.

Over the past 3 years, 52 students with suitable backgrounds of tertiary study have been trained and mentored in the basics of energy towards the skills levels required for the CEM syllabus. So far 6 students have passed CEM, 3 achieved CEM status, 3 have applications in process, and with another 9 to write the examination that show potential to pass. For students that were not able to achieve the CEM outcomes and pass the examination, the local accredited certificate available was pursued through assessment of Portfolio of Evidence assignments. LEDET hopes to be able to lure the developed students back to the Limpopo Province with the aim of ensuring the Province’s Green Strategy to be realized through using local skills. During the mentorship phase at workplaces the students in the second round of intakes (in their first 6 months of mentored employment) already identified R1.4 billion (USD98,000-00) in energy and cost reduction opportunities for their host sites that are being implemented. In addition, some of the CEM students are tendering for projects in the Limpopo province leveraging assistance from existing more experienced CEMs to implement in their own province. The project involves not only training students, but assessing them, managing their monthly stipend payments, sourcing sponsorships and funding, managing their human resources, and applying innovative new ways to enhance the student’s experience.  

Yolanda also manages 10 internationally accredited trainers to deliver CEM, CEA, CMVP, CWEP, REP, BEP and CRM training, local accreditation requirements for AEE in the Sub-Saharan African region, 13 practical workplaces for students to gain experience, 20 mentors all AEE professionals in South Africa which is a requirement to mentor a LEDET student. Yolanda helps develop training requirements and solutions for clients to achieve energy targets through building innovative incorporation of practical work, educational excursion, sponsorship opportunities for delegates, as well as assist with Chapter support and development in the region. 


Young Energy Professional of the Year
Katie Dimmer
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Katie Dimmer is an Energy Engineer at Charter Steel. She helped maintained an ISO14001 environmental management system and was the radiation safety officer for 6 years. Katie has been working in the energy field for 2 years and was an integral part in establishing an energy program and achieving ISO 50001 certification, the first steel mill in the US to be certified. She led teams in the melting, rolling and processing plants to measure and monitor energy use, complete efficiency improvement projects and improve employee awareness. She worked with local and state agencies to obtain over $300,000 in grants and incentives over a 2-year period. When Katie is not working on saving energy, she volunteers her time for a non-profit called Reflo. Reflo’s mission is to become a leader in sustainable water use, green infrastructure and water management in urban environments.  Katie also worked with other members of Engineers Without Borders to design a gravity fed water distribution system that supplied water to 46 taps in Quejchip, Guatemala.



Young Energy Professional of the Year
Maher Maymoun
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Maher Maymoun, energy efficiency consultant at Izzat Marji Group, performs energy audits and energy management services to commercial and industrial facilities. Prior to this career, Maher invented a solar panel, self-cleaned by the sound of water, to solve environmental challenges and climate change, which was registered as a US provisional patent. Maher has a Master’s in Energy Engineering from the University of Illinois at Chicago where he received the highest grade ever achieved during this masters program, graduating with a GPA of 4.0. He holds 5 AEE certifications, is certified from Lloyds Register as a Lead Auditor for ISO 50001 EnMs, and a Certified IR Thermographer, where he performs thermal imaging to building envelope to detect any anomalies to keep the buildings green. Maher is dedicated to raising public awareness about the energy & environment through volunteering to schools. Maher was selected by the US Department of state to be one of the mentors for GIST Tech-I competition in 2018, to help educate and mentor youth leaders. Also, Maher represented Jordanian youth leaders and entrepreneurs during the World Economic Forum 2017.



Young Energy Professional of the Year
Shutaro Takeda
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Shutaro Takeda is a Ph.D, student and research fellow at Kyoto University. Shutaro served in the Japan Ground Self Defense Force for three years, ranking to Sergeant First Class. He received his Bachelor of Engineering from Kyoto University and is currently pursuing the Master of Liberal Arts in Sustainability at Harvard and the Ph.D. degree in Energy Science at Kyoto University. He is a young and aspiring energy scientist who has made outstanding contributions to the renewable energy research in developing countries. His recent publication, “The Success of Link Model in Rural Bangladesh”, was a four-week field study with a 16-researcher team, where he studied the local language and then ate and slept with villagers to gather first-hand data.  Shutaro has published more than a dozen of journal articles, conference proceedings and presentations, and despite his age, is already showing prominent leadership in the university as principal researcher of the Policy Recommendation Project on ASEAN Power Grid for Renewable Energy Development, a collaborative research project with Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA). His accomplishments have been recognized with multiple honors and awards.

Distinguished Service
Ian Boylan
Watch Video Acceptance Speech
Ian Boylan, C.E.M., C.M.V.P., C.E.A., is Director of Target Energy, an Irish based independent energy services company. Ian was the 2017 AEE President. His areas of expertise are energy management systems (ISO 50001), measurement and verification of energy savings, energy training services, and energy utility systems. He also provides specialist services and investigations for his clients on other areas of energy management. Ian previously was Energy Services Manager with Eirdata Environmental Services Ltd and prior to that served for 20 years with the Dept. of Defense Naval Service. Ian was the founding president of the Irish Chapter and now serves as the Associate Director for International Member Development for Western Europe. Ian has delivered energy training for AEE in Ireland and other European countries. development and delivery of various trainings to over 2,200 facility owner and management, facility maintenance and operations staff, trade contractors, as well as other energy and engineering professionals. Ian currently serves as the Chairman for the AEE International Certification Board and also the Assistant Director for International Member Development for Western Europe.