2018 Excellence in Environmental Engineering and Science Awards Luncheon and Conference

Apr 19, 2018 08:30am -
Apr 19, 2018 03:00pm

Event Type: Annual Awards
Category: Awards Luncheon & Conference

Speaker Information
Paul Zofnass

Paul Zofnass
Environmental Financial Consulting Group

Paul Zofnass is President of the Environmental Financial Consulting Group (EFCG), a firm he founded in 1990 to provide strategic and financial advice to the environmental and infrastructure engineering/consulting ("e/c") industry. EFCG currently serves as a retained advisor to over 50 major e/c firms, working primarily with their CEO's. They have served as a strategic and financial advisor to over 300 e/c firms over the past 27 years. In his role as an industry 'knowledge node' Paul has provided over 100 presentations to environmental and engineering firms, groups, and organizations over the past 30 years.

Paul and EFCG are perhaps best known in this industry for their annual EFCG CEO Conference held in NYC. Now in its 28th year, the Conference brings together 230 CEOs of the major and midsize e/c firms from North America and around the world. Each firm is required to complete a very detailed, confidential, financial and business survey of key performance metrics and trends for each of its sectors, which EFCG compiles, analyzes, and summarizes for the Conference.

Paul's presentation will recap that overview with particular focus on the key changes taking place in this industry. He will review the factors driving change, the challenges to be met, and what will likely distinguish the successful from the unsuccessful firms going forward.

In addition to his role as an environmentalist in his professional life, Paul is an environmentalist of long-standing in his personal life as well. Among his many accomplishments are: having assisted Harvard in establishing its Environmental Studies Program in the 1990's; initiating and contributing the Zofnass Tree Identification Program to NYC's Central Park; creating the Zofnass Family Preserve/Westchester Wilderness Walk, a 250 acre nature preserve with a 10-mile long hiking trail in Pound Ridge, NY, 45 miles from NYC; donating a permanent New England Forest Exhibition at the Harvard Museum of Natural History; and creating the Zofnass Sustainable Infrastructure Program at Harvard to develop a rating system to evaluate sustainability as it applies to major civil infrastructure projects. This rating system has been adopted by ASCE, ACEC, and APWA, the three founders of the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure ("ISI"), and marketed as "Envision" and used by over 50 city and state agencies in the US and abroad, including the new airport in Istanbul, expected to be the largest in the world.

He is an alumnus of Harvard College, Harvard Law School and Harvard Business School.

Deb Frodl

Deb Frodl
DF Strategies, LLC.

Prior to founding her own strategy consulting firm, Deb Frodl led GE Ecomagination, the company's business strategy to accelerate innovation and growth in a resource constrained world through efficient and intelligent solutions. In this role, Deb was named the Women's Council on Energy and Environment (WCEE) 2014 Woman of the Year.

She held previous executive marketing, sales, and CEO roles for GE's Capital Fleet Services, Capital Public Finance, Commercial Equipment Finance and Dealer Financial Services. In 2010, she was named Chief Strategy Officer for GE Capital Fleet Services and Global Alternative Fuels Leader.

Deb is on the Board of the Advanced Energy Economy, US DOE Clean Energy, Education & Empowerment for Women and Masdar's Women in Sustainability, Environment & Renewables.

She earned her MBA at the University of St. Thomas and her Bachelors in Business from Minnesota State University.

Under Deb's leadership, GE committed itself to Ecomagination, its business strategy to deliver clean technology solutions that drive positive economic and environmental outcomes for GE's customers and the world. Ecomagination's success has been and will continue to be based on a relentless focus on results derived from investment in clean technology.

Since launching Ecomagination GE has invested a total of $20 billion in cleaner technology solutions that have yielded $270 billion in incremental revenues. In addition to its augmenting its product portfolio, GE has enhanced its productive efficiencies by reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 42% since 2004, and reducing its freshwater use by 53% since 2006. And that is just the beginning. GE has committed itself to investing another $5 billion in Ecomagination solutions by 2020.

Karl Rockne

Karl J. Rockne, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE
Program Director, Environmental Engineering
National Science Foundation (NSF)
Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental, and Transport Processes (CBET)

Karl J. Rockne is currently on leave from the University of Illinois, Chicago where he is a Professor of Environmental Engineering and former Interim Department Head of the Department of Civil and Materials Engineering.

As is customary with program directors at the NSF, Karl is on-loan to serve as the Program Director for the Environmental Engineering program which is part of the Environmental Engineering and Sustainability cluster. The cluster also includes research being sponsored in environmental sustainability, and investigates the biological and environmental interactions of nanoscale materials. Karl's research Interests include: sediment science and remediation technology, environmental forensics, water chemistry, fate and transport, and environmental microbiology.

The goal of the Environmental Engineering program is to support transformative research which applies scientific and engineering principles to avoid or minimize solid, liquid, and gaseous discharges resulting from human activities in the air, on land, traversing inland and coastal waters while promoting resource and energy conservation and recovery. The program also fosters cutting-edge scientific research for identifying, evaluating, and monitoring the waste assimilative capacity of the natural environment. This enables developing informed options for removing or reducing contaminants from polluted air, water, and soils. The program continually receives proposals focused on investigating sensors, materials or devices that integrate these products with an environmental engineering activity or area of research.

Major areas of interest include:

  • Enhancing the availability of high quality water supplies: Development of innovative biological, chemical and physical treatment processes to meet the growing demand for water; investigation of processes that remove and degrade contaminants, remediate contaminated soil and groundwater, and convert wastewaters into water suitable for reuse; investigation of environmental engineering aspects of urban watersheds, reservoirs, estuaries and storm water management; investigation of biogeochemical and transport processes driving water quality in the aquatic and subsurface environment.
  • Fate and transport of contaminants of emerging concern in air, water, solid waste, and soils: Investigate the fate, transport, and remediation of potentially harmful contaminants and their by-products.


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