2014-2015 Board of Directors

The leadership of the Algae Biomass Organization is critical is assisting the industry to move forward towards commercialization.  At this time, we are seeking nominations for the Board. Click for full description.

Mr. Tim Burns – BioProcess Algae LLC, Chairperson

Mr. Martin Sabarsky – Cellana Inc., Vice Chairperson

Mr. Thomas Byrne-Secretary – Byrne & Company Limited, Secretary/Treasurer

Mr. Mark Allen – Accelergy Corporation

Mr. Jacques Beaudry-Losique – Algenol Biofuels

Dr. John Benemann – MicroBio Engineering Inc.

Dr. Keith Cooksey –  Environmental Biotechnology Consultants

Dr. Al Darzins – Ph.D., Gas Technology Institute (GTI)

Mr. David Hazlebeck, Ph.D., Global Algae Innovations

Mr. Michael Lakeman – Ph.D Regional Director, Biofuel Strategy Associate Technical Fellow Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Mr. James Levine – Sapphire Energy

Dr. Margaret McCormick – Matrix Genetics

Dr. B. Greg Mitchell – University of California San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Mr. Joel Murdock – FedEx Express

Dr. José A. Olivares, Ph.D., Bioscience Division Leader, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Mrs. Emilie Slaby

Mr. Todd Taylor – Fredrikson & Byron, P.A.

Mr. Tim Zenk – Algenol Biofuels, Inc



Tim Burns, BioProcess Algae, LLC, Chairperson

Mr. Tim Burns is executive Chairman and Co-founder of BioProcess Algae LLC. Tim has over twenty-five years of experience in the development, treatment and filtration of industrial organic and inorganic for water reuse and purification using advanced filtration technologies. He previously founded three successful companies, the most recent being BioProcess H20 which he is currently President and CEO. Tim serves on the Boards of OceanPoint Financial, BankNewport, Bioprocess H2O and BioProcess Algae. He is an Incorporator of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute as well as a trustee of St. George’s School in Middletown, RI. Tim is an alumni of Brown University and Providence College, past president of the board of Save The Bay a nationally recognized environmental organization.

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Martin_Sabarsky Mr. Martin Sabarsky, Cellana Inc., Vice Chairperson

Mr. Sabarsky is the CEO of Cellana, Inc., a leading developer of algae-based products. Prior to joining Cellana in 2008, he led the corporate development function at Diversa Corp. (now known as Verenium Corp., a subsidiary of BASF) as Vice President of Corporate Development. Before Diversa, Mr. Sabarsky worked as an investment banker with Bear Stearns, where he focused on financings and mergers and acquisitions within the life sciences industry and was a lead banker on Diversa’s $200 million IPO in 2000. Prior to joining Bear Stearns, he worked as a transactional attorney with Latham & Watkins LLP. Mr. Sabarsky has an A.B. in Biology and Political Science from Brown University, a J.D. from Harvard Law School, and an M.B.A. from the Rady School of Management at the University of California, San Diego. 

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thomas-byrne-algal-biomass-organization Thomas Byrne, Byrne & Company Limited, Secretary/Treasurer

Thomas Byrne is one of the renewable energy industry’s most experienced project consultants. His experience dates back to 1979 when he began his career as an accountant, later becoming a consultant to the renewable energy industry. Since forming Byrne & Company Limited, he has worked on many successful projects, offering a broad array of client services including feasibility studies, financial modeling, business plan preparation, equity meetings organization, startup management assistance, project organization, and preparing grant applications.Mr. Byrne has developed a passion for the emerging algae to energy industry. His commitment began with XL Renewables, Inc., now know as Phyco Biosciences, Inc., serving as the CFO since 2007. Mr. Byrne deepened his commitment to develop an algal technology as the President of Algaedyne, Corporation in 2008. In November 2007, Byrne & Company, Limited co-hosted the inaugural Algae Biomass Summit in San Francisco, California and the 2008 Summit in Seattle, Washington. The Summits were the foundation for the establishment of the Algal Biomass Organization in 2008. Mr. Byrne was elected to the ABO’s Board of Directors and serves as Board Secretary.

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Mark Allen, Accelergy Corporation

Mark Allen is a licensed professional engineer with more than 25 years experience in the design, construction,and operation of large-scale engineering, infrastructure, and environmental projects including biological process systems of more than 500 million gallons per day capacity. He holds a Civil Engineering degree from the Rochester Institute of Technology and is a successful entrepreneur having co-founded A2BE Carbon Capture in 2007 and also founded a corporate knowledge management company in 1999. Previously he managed large engineering organizations for Rust Environment and Infrastructure, Metcalf & Eddy, SAIC, and others. Under these organizations he had full profit and loss responsibility for multiple lines of business including: water and wastewater engineering, environmental engineering, hazardous and solid waste engineering, transportation engineering, and information technology and other professional service offerings. In the algal biomass industry he focuses on process engineering, systems integration, and systems architecture for scalable algal biomass production and deployment. Mark is a founding board member of the Algae Biomass Organization and has chaired a number of committees and currently serves as Chairman and President. He is also a former Adjacent Professor of Engineering at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

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Jacques Beaudry-Losique, Algenol Biofuels

Jacques Beaudry-Losique was appointed Senior Vice President of Corporate and Business Development for Algenol on July 1st 2013.   Mr. Beaudry-Losique leads Algenol Business Development Team and also manages Government and Regulatory Affairs for the Company, working with elected officials and government agencies on policy and regulatory issues. Jacques has more than 20 years experience working in the energy and technology sectors, and was previously Vice President of Corporate Development and Strategy for Codexis, a publicly traded biofuels and biopharma company (NASDAQ: CDXS).   From 2005 to 2011, Beaudry-Losique held senior policy and management positions at the Department of Energy.   At the DOE, Jacques led efforts to build a second-generation biofuels industry across two administrations, managed three clean energy programs, and served for two years as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Renewable Energy.  Mr. Beaudry-Losique was also instrumental in decisions to invest more than $1.5 billion of Recovery Act funds in renewable energy projects, including $800 million in biofuels projects.  Additional experience for Beaudry-Losique includes senior management positions with GE Power Systems and Aspen Technologies (NASDAQ: AZPN), a process engineering software company. Jacques began his career with Shell Canada where he held senior engineering, fuel quality and process optimization roles.  Additionally, Jacques worked with and advised Fortune 500 companies while at McKinsey & Co.  Mr. Beaudry-Losique holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the University of Montreal, a Master of Science degree in Engineering Management from Stanford University and a Master of Science degree in Management from MIT.

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Dr. John Benemann, MicroBio Engineering Inc.

Dr. Benemann has both a B.S. in Chemistry and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry, both from the University of California Berkeley; in addition he spent three years as postdoctoral fellow, Dept. of Chemistry, U.C. San Diego; then rejoined U.C. Berkeley in the Department of Civil Engineering, where, as an independent researcher where he supervised half dozen Ph.D. thesis students in Civil Engineering, Biophysics and Plant Physiology. In 1980, he started a small microalgae biotechnology company and from 1983-1988 was Associate Professor at Georgia Inst. of Technology. For the past 20+ years he has been a part time researcher at the University of California Berkeley (Depts. of Civil Engineering and Plant and Microbial Biology). and at the University of Hawaii (adjunct Professor), and a full-time consultant. His current research interests are the areas of microalgae products, aquaculture, wastewater treatment, photosynthesis, municipal solid wastes management, biofuels and all aspects of greenhouse gas abatement. He is the author of numerous publications and reports and belongs to a number of professional and trade organizations. He was the manager of the “Microalgae Biofixation Network” operated by the IEA Greenhouse Gas R&D Programmer.

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Dr. Keith Cooksey, Environmental Biotechnology Consultants

Dr. Keith Cooksey has more than 40 years experience in isolating, growing and performing physiological, biochemical and ecological studies on freshwater and marine microalgae. He was a lead investigator in the DoE, Solar Energy Research Institute’s Aquatic Species Program to remediate carbon dioxide and form biodiesel. At that time, work from his lab provided the program with a way to measure triglyceride in 1 mL of culture, a new way of looking at triglyceride (TAG) accumulation not previously considered and ideas where the controls of microalgal lipid synthesis and utilization may be located. Recently he has been elected to the Algal Biomass Organization Board of Directors. His current research (with others) is funded by the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the Biomass Program of the Department of Energy. The goals of these are to examine the use of microalgae from extreme environments (e.g., Yellowstone Park) for TAG production as well as potential control points in microalgal lipid metabolism. Professional memberships include American Society for Microbiology, Psychological Society of America, Society for General Microbiology (Great Britain), and the Algae Biomass Organization.

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Al Darzins, Ph. D. , Gas Technology Institute

Dr. Al Darzins is an R&D Director at the Gas Technology Institute (GTI) which is a leading not-for-profit research, development and training organization. He is responsible for leading GTI’s biotechnology-based research efforts in alternative energy and renewable fuels development. Prior to joining GTI, Dr. Darzins was a Research Manager in DuPont’s Biofuels group where he worked on biobutanol technology development and also managed DuPont’s ARPA-e funded macroalgae to biobutanol project. Prior to DuPont he worked at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) where he managed a multidisciplinary research team responsible for developing and integrating chemical and biological technologies for the conversion of biomass to transportation fuels. While at NREL he also helped re-establish the organization’s long dormant microalgal biomass program. He was instrumental in helping to organize the National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap workshop and contributed to the DOE National Algal Biofuels Technology Roadmap document. He has also served as the Site Director for the Colorado Center for Biorefining and Biofuels (C2B2) and was a Fellow in the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI). He has more than 25 years of experience in the fields of molecular biology, microbiology, microbial genetics, protein engineering and renewable energy. Dr. Darzins began his career as a faculty member in the Department of Microbiology at The Ohio State University. He holds a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He served as Biology Track Chair for the 2013 Algae Biomass Summit (ABS), the Program Co-chair for the 2014 ABS and is the Program Chair for the 2015 ABS. 

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David Hazlebeck, Ph.D. – Global Algae Innovations

David Hazlebeck, Ph.D., founder & CEO of Global Algae Innovations, is a proven leader and innovator in the algae industry. He has over 30 years experience in chemical and biological research and development from laboratory-scale through piloting and commercial implementation. His biofuel experience includes leading the development of large-scale photosynthetic algal biofuels, sugar and waste conversion via heterotrophic algae and oleaginous yeast, cellulosic conversion to drop-in fuels, and conversion of plastics to fuel. Prior to Global Algae Innovations, he led the biofuels and algae products program at General Atomics where he was the principal investigator for the DARPA Algal-Derived JP-8 project that included collaborative algal process research and development with 28 outside organizations and culminated in the design and operation of a large-scale, advanced algae production facility. Dr. Hazlebeck has a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Delaware and a doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of California, San Diego.

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Lakeman_Michael_1922741 Michael Lakeman, Ph.D Regional Director, Biofuel Strategy Associate Technical Fellow Boeing Commercial Airplanes

Michael Lakeman is a Regional Director of Biofuel Strategy at Boeing Commercial Airplanes, where he leads and executes Boeing’s biofuel strategy across Australasia, South East Asia and Japan/Korea.  He also has lead responsibilities for shaping Boeing’s biofuel technology strategy, and in 2012 was recognized as an Associate Technical Fellow across The Boeing Company. Previous to joining Boeing, Lakeman was a Senior Research Scientist at Imperium Renewables, where he led due diligence on advanced feedstocks for biodiesel production.  He was awarded his doctorate from University of Washington’s Biology Department, where he researched microalgal evolution and ecology. A native of New Zealand, Lakeman attained his Bachelor of Science in Biological Chemistry from the University of Canterbury, and then worked on crop improvement genetics at the New Zealand Institute of Crop and Food Research.

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James Levine, Sapphire Energy

James Levine is President, CEO and a member of the Board of Directors of Sapphire Energy Inc., a venture capital backed company founded in 2007 for the purpose of growing and processing micro-algae into products that serve large and diverse markets. Sapphire’s world-leading technology uses sunlight, CO2, non-potable water, non-arable land, nutrients, and novel strains of algae in outdoor ponds to produce renewable biomass which is converted into high-value oils, aquaculture and animal feeds, fuels and other valuable products.  Prior to Sapphire, Mr. Levine was CEO of Verenium Corporation, a NASDAQ-listed industrial biotechnology company based in San Diego, until the sale of Verenium to BASF at the end of 2013. Prior to joining Verenium, Mr. Levine was a Managing Director in the investment banking department of Goldman Sachs & Co. in both New York and London, where his career focused on serving clients in the global Healthcare and Energy industries. Mr. Levine received an M.B.A. degree with a concentration in Finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in Economics from Brandeis University in Massachusetts.

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Dr. Margaret McCormick, Matrix Genetics

Margaret McCormick, Ph.D., is the Chief Executive Officer of Matrix Genetics, LLC,an advanced biology company focused on the development of superiors strains of algae for the biofuels and biobased products industries. Matrix was spun out of Targeted Growth, Inc. (“TGI”) a crop biotechnology company focused on developing products for the agriculture and energy industries. Dr. McCormick also serves as the Chief Operations Officer of TGI. Prior to joining TGI, Dr. McCormick was a partner in Integra Ventures where she led Integra’s biotechnology investment strategy. Prior to joining Integra, she was the founding president and COO of Sapphire Therapeutics (formerly Rejuvenon Corp.). Earlier in her career, she was a consultant with McKinsey & Company. Dr. McCormick earned a Ph.D. in Biology from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a BS from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is currently a director on the Board of the Algae Biomass Organization and the Washington Biotechnology and Biomedical Association.

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Dr. B. Greg Mitchell, University of California San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography

Dr. B. Greg Mitchell is a Research Biologist and Senior Lecturer at the University of California San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO). His research on algae photosynthesis and growth models, aquatic ecology, ocean optics and satellite remote sensing has been sponsored by NASA, ONR, NSF, NOAA and DOE. For more than 2 decades he has promoted mass culture of algae to mitigate CO2 and wastewater nutrient loading, and to create biomass for fuel and animal feed. Applied research currently focuses on optimization and numerical modeling of yields of bioenergy molecules from algae, and design of algae growth systems for optimized yields. Dr. Mitchell assisted in the development of the program for the first Algae Biomass Summit in 2008 and was voted onto the Steering Committee that created the Algae Biomass Organization. He has served on the ABO Board of Directors since its formation. He serves on several committees of the ABO Board including Public and Government Relations, Events, Governance and By-laws, and he served as Program Chair for the 2009 Algal Biomass Summit. Dr. Mitchell also serves on the Board of Directors of the Houston Advanced Research Center and the San Diego Center for Algal Biotechnology.

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Mr. Joel Murdock, FedEx Express

Joel Murdock is Managing Director, Strategic Projects leading an engineering team that that investigates and develops new, innovative technologies for the purpose of seeking breakthrough advancements to benefit the FedEx Express’ transportation system by capitalizing upon principle improvements in areas of cost, quality, speed, efficiency, customer service, and customer satisfaction. The types of projects vary from Alternative Fuels, to safety related projects such as Fire Suppression System, Counter MANPADS (Man Portable Air Defense System) and HUD/EFVS (HeadUp Display/Enhanced Flight Vision System), to airspace capacity and efficiency improvement programs such as LAAS (Local Area Augmentation System), CNS/ATM (Communication, Navigation, Surveillance / Air Traffic Management) and Stage IV Noise and Emissions, to projects not directly related to the aviation side of the business. Joel’s department is actively involved with ASTM in helping to establish alternative fuel certification standards and through the Commercial Aviation Alternative Fuel Initiative (CAAFI), is working to develop fuel off-take agreements to enable emerging alternative fuel companies to transition from the laboratory to production. Joel is also working with the USDA and is co-chair of the Southern Region with an objective of fostering alternative fuel development with the region. Joel earned a Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering at Christian Brothers University, a Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, and a Masters of Engineering Management at the University of Missouri – Rolla.

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José A. Olivares, Ph.D. – Bioscience Division Leader, Los Alamos National Laboratory

Dr. Olivares serves Division Leader for the Bioscience Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory. In this position, he provides strategic, technical and operational management for all activities within the Division. Major focus areas for the 150 staff within the Division include a long-standing effort in biosecurity, biosurveillance, and public health security. New areas of growth include bioenergy and biome science. He is the current Executive Director of the National Alliance for Advanced Biofuels and Bioproducts, a consortium of 40 institutions recently funded by DOE-EERE Office of Biomass Programs. Previously he served in several program and technical management positions at the Laboratory, including Biofuels Program Manager and acting Division Leader for Chemistry. In these positions he was responsible for developing strategic direction for science programs, operations, and leading specific program development efforts. Dr. Olivares has extensive experience with private industry and serves as consultant for several small companies and government agencies. One of his passions is technology commercialization. Dr. Olivares is an adjunct member of The Danforth Plant Science Center, a preeminent non-profit institution dedicated to plant research for food and energy, in St. Louis. He is also a partner of the consulting firm Biologic Energy Partners, LLC, and co-Editor-in-Chief of the scientific journal Algal Research (Elsevier Publishers). He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Wilkes College, and his Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from Iowa State University. His research focus has been primarily in instrumentation for mass spectrometry and biological and chemical sensor development for national security and health related applications.

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Emilie Slaby

Emilie F. Slaby is an independent food and agribusiness consultant specializing in new ingredient development, particularly proteins and Omega-3 oils. Emilie most recently served as lead reviewer at the 2015 Algae Feedstocks Platform Peer Review for the US DOE BioEnergy Technologies Office.  She has spoken on positioning algae products in the feed and nutraceutical markets at numerous conferences, including ABS and ABBB.  Originally a native of Upstate New York, Emilie completed her B.S. in Chemistry and B.A. in Creative Writing at Carnegie Mellon University. Emilie is an alumna of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute joint program where her research focused on the nitrogen chemistry and hydrology of sublittoral groundwater. Emilie currently lives in Minneapolis, where in her free time she enjoys yoga and paddle boarding.

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  Todd Taylor, Fredrikson & Byron, P.A.

Todd has provided legal and business counsel to clean technology companies for over fifteen years and has been involved in the ABO since 2008.  Todd was the Chairman of the 2010 Algae Biomass Summit, the Co-Chair of the 2011 Summit, and the Chairman of the 2012 Summit.  Todd is a partner in the Corporate law Department of the law firm of Fredrikson & Byron, one of the largest law firms based in the Midwest with offices in Minneapolis, Bismarck, Fargo, Des Moines, Shanghai China, Monterrey Mexico and London England.

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Tim Zenk, Algenol Biofuels, Inc.

Timothy Zenk is the Executive Vice President of Business Development for Algenol and formerly served as senior vice president of corporate development for Sapphire Energy, Inc.  At Algenol, Zenk oversees business development, government affairs, public policy, marketing and communications. Zenk has years of leadership and notable success with public and privately held companies, including Sapphire Energy, Edelman Global, and Telecommunications Systems.  In addition, he has held key roles in government, working for presidential administrations, U.S. congressional members and state governors.

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