Humanitarian Activities

Panel Discussion #3

Humanitarian Opportunities in Power and Energy in the African Continent

Date: April 30, 2021, Time: 7 AM US Pacific (GMT -7)


Oftentimes Africa is spoken about like a monolith, as if it were one country with one people and one culture. The diversity and size of Africa is often forgotten, and the mistake is often made of presenting its problems in a very stereotypical one dimensional way. In this panel, IEEE PES African female leaders from various countries in Africa will discuss their perspective on how to think about Humanitarian opportunities in power and energy in the African continent. Hailing from different African countries they will talk about the diversity and range of the issues and where they have visions of how the problems could be solved. Bai Blyden, with his own family roots in west africa and one of the highly respected African American leaders in IEEE PES will moderate the panel


Janati Nakimera

Janati is also co-founder and CEO of Solar Net metering Uganda, a solar energy startup company for rural Uganda. Janati Nakimera is a steering committee member of (IEEE) Uganda Section, and a student pursuing a Master’s degree in power systems engineering of Makerere University, Kampala.
Visit @


Mercy Chelangat K

Mercy is pursuing a Masters in Development Practice student at Regis University.. She works as a Business and Fund Development Consultant in partnership with the IEEE Foundation to craft business and fund development strategies for IEEE Smart Village energy entrepreneurs.


Likonge Makai Mulenga

Eng. Likonge is an Electrical Engineer with 15 years of professional experience. She is in her 2nd year of Doctor in Engineering study at Tshwane University of Technology in South Africa. She is passionately involved in research and development of Renewable Energy Technologies that has seen her form a NGO to provide clean and affordable energy systems in rural communities since 2014. At the moment she is vice chairperson for Chingola EIZ branch and chairperson For Copperbelt province ZNSF.


Bai Blyden

Bai K Blyden Over his 40 year professional career has contributed his expertise to over forty power plant projects and their associated interconnections around the world. He is a Senior Member of the IEEE and serves as Chair of the IEEE PES International Practices subcommittee for Africa and is an IEEE Smart Village Global Ambassador. He is the founder of the Strategic consulting group BBRM Group, LLC.

Panel Discussion #2

Face of Energy Poverty in US, Canada and Europe

Date: April 11, 2021, Time: 7 AM US Pacific (GMT -7)


Often Energy Poverty is thought of as a problem in South Asia or Africa. Little do people acknowledge energy poverty in the developed world. In this panel the panelists will talk about the often forgotten topic of face of energy poverty in the US, Canada and Europe.


Ahsan Upal

Ahsan is the national business development leader with Burns & McDonnell. Ahsan has 20 years of experience in engineering and projects leadership roles. Ahsan worked with AltaLink managing transmission projects in northern Alberta, with Enbridge leading development and execution of Canadian pipeline expansion projects and then consulted with the AESO on the 500kV Fort McMurray West Transmission project before joining Burns & McDonnell in 2015. Ahsan has also served on boards at Industrial Power Consumers Association of Alberta (IPCAA).


Adam Bad Wound

As Vice President of Philanthropy, Adam leads GRID Alternatives’ organization-wide strategies to advance philanthropic partnerships and promote a culture of philanthropy. Adam is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE), a certified naturalist from the University of California, and is currently pursuing an Executive Certificate in Nonprofit Leadership at Harvard University. Adam holds a master’s degree from Columbia University, and two master’s degrees in education policy and sociology from Stanford University, where he serves on the board of directors of the Stanford Alumni Association.


Marilyn Smith

As a writer/editor, photographer and multimedia producer, Marilyn draws attention to the story of energy – a resource that shapes societies and has direct impacts on people’s daily lives. Marilyn directs EnAct as a journalistic entity that focuses on the global challenge of energy poverty. Through her roles, she strives to ensure that content is engaging and informative, thereby empowering individuals, in whatever sphere they operate, to make better decisions in relation to energy.


Nirupama Prakash Kumar

Nirupama Prakash Kumar, SMIEEE earned her MS in Energy Systems from the University of Washington in Seattle and completed her MBA from Cornell University where she was recognized both as an ‘Environmental Finance and Impact Investing Fellow’ as well as an ‘Emerging Markets Fellow’. She has worked for the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, NextEra Energy, and a FACTS startup called Smart Wires. Currently, she is Senior Product Manager in Microgrids with Bloom Energy. Niru is the IEEE Region 6 Humanitarian Activities

Panel Discussion #1

Engaging IEEE PES Members in Humanitarian Activities

Date: April 2 2021, Time: 7 AM US Pacific(GMT -7)


This session would focus on the importance of engaging IEEE PES members in humanitarian activities and the means by which this can be achieved. The speakers collectively bring forth decades of experience working in IEEE and beyond, and their talks would potentially include concrete ways to enable attendees to embark on humanitarian activities within IEEE PES.


Dr. Henry Louie

Dr. Henry Louie received his B.S.E.E. degree from Kettering University in 2002, his M.S. degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2004, and his PhD in Electrical Engineering from the University of Washington in 2008. He is a Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Seattle University. He is the President and Co-founder of KiloWatts for Humanity, a nonprofit organization providing offgrid electricity access and business opportunities in sub-Saharan Africa. Dr. Louie is an Associate Editor for Energy for Sustainable Development and is a founding member of the IEEE PES Working Group on Sustainable Energy Systems for Developing Communities (SESDC). Dr. Louie is recognized as an IEEE Distinguished Lecturer for his expertise on energy poverty.


Dr. Shaikh Fattah

Dr. Shaikh Fattah received a Ph.D. degree in ECE from Concordia University, Canada and later he was a visiting postdoc at Princeton University. He received B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees from BUET, Bangladesh, where he is currently serving as Professor, Department of EEE. In his more than 21 years of professional career, he has been extensively involved in several humanitarian technology projects and research. He was the Education Chair of IEEE Humanitarian Activity Committee (HAC) from 2018 to 2020. He also served IEEE EAB, IEEE SIGHT, and various subcommittees of IEEE R10. Currently, he is the Chair of IEEE PES-HAC and committee member of IEEE Public Visibility Committee, IEEE PES Long Range Planning Committee, and IEEE Smart Village Education Committee.


Dr. Robin Podmore

Dr. Robin Podmore received his PhD in electrical engineering from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand. Dr. Podmore has dedicated his career to development of computer applications for power system operations with a strong focus on Operator Training Simulators. Dr. Podmore founded Incremental Systems Corporation (IncSys) in 1990. Dr. Podmore has championed Generic, Custom, and Replica Simulators as effective training tools for power system operators since 1978. In 2013, he was elected to the National Academy of Engineering for the development of modeling and simulation tools for power system operation.


Hassaan Idrees

Hassaan Idrees holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in electrical engineering from National University of Sciences and Technology (NUST) and Arizona State University (ASU), respectively, the latter on Fulbright scholarship. Hassaan is an active member of IEEE, having served in various capacities locally and internationally, including Regions 6 and 10. He has been associated with the IEEE Power and Energy, and has worked in different projects around the world with Engineers Without Borders USA and IEEE. He is passionate about bringing renewable energy to those without access to power.

IEEE websites place cookies on your device to give you the best user experience. By using our websites, you agree to the placement of these cookies. To learn more, read our Privacy Policy.