Strategic Advisory Board

The Strategic Advisory Board plays a major role in setting directions for ECE research and education as well as providing a source of new partnerships with industry. We recruit members from corporations and academia that are well connected with the industry and can provide the insights necessary to keep the ECE department current and vital.

picture of Caren Anders

Caren Anders

Vice President, Transmission Operations & Planning Progress Energy Carolinas

Caren Andersis vice president, transmission operations and planning for Progress Energy Carolinas. She is responsible for operations, maintenance, testing, construction, engineering, planning and asset management of the transmission system, including substations. 

Anders joined Progress Energy in March 2007.  She brings 28 years of engineering, managerial and leadership roles to the position. She previously served in numerous leadership roles at Exelon Corporation in both the generation and transmission businesses.
Anders earned her bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania and received an MBA at Drexel University in Philadelphia. She also is a graduate of the Columbia University Senior Executive Program. She is a licensed professional engineer in the state of Pennsylvania and a Fellow of ASME International.
picture of Don Broeils

Don Broeils

Vice President , Solid Fuels and Environmental Compliance Fluor Corporation - Power Group

Don Broeils is Vice President of the Solid Fuels and Environmental Compliance Business Line within Fluor Corporation’s Power Group.  The Business Line provides engineering, procurement, construction and commissioning services to power producing clients for greenfield solid fueled power plant projects and environmental control retrofit projects around the world.  The business is based in Greenville, South Carolina with operations at multiple domestic and international Fluor offices.

Don began his career in 1975 as a plant electrical engineer in the pulp & paper business with assignments in Alabama and Oregon.  He later joined Duke Energy in Charlotte, North Carolina where he spent twelve years in a variety of engineering roles with responsibility for scoping, estimating and engineering capital upgrade projects for Duke’s nuclear, coal and hydroelectric generating assets.  In 1989 Don joined Duke/Fluor Daniel, a partnership formed by Duke Energy and Fluor Corporation to provide EPC services to power clients.  He remained in this partnership for fifteen years, serving in engineering management and project management roles.  Don subsequently joined Fluor Corporation in 2004 where he has since served as a Business Line manager.

Don attended North Carolina State University where he received his B.S. degree in electrical engineering.  He is a licensed Professional Engineer and is the Fluor Foundation Executive Sponsor for NCSU.

picture of Dean H. Hering

Dean H. Hering

Vice President NetCentrics Corporation
Dean Hering is the Chief Innovator at NetCentrics Corporation.

During his career, Dean has designed products, including one celebrating its tenth successful year this month, helped commercialize NASA technology, designed biomedical device interfaces, and served as the director for the engineering center of a large R&D organization. His articles have been included in publications such as the Harvard Management Update.

Dean has worked internationally to produce award-winning innovations for Michelin, Volvo, KLM Airlines, John Deere, IBM, and others. Over the last eight years Dean’s team at NetCentrics has donated over 2500 hours to develop and host the organizational system used by the Jimmy V Golf Classic, part of the V Foundation, which has raised over $100 million to fight cancer.

Dean has a BS in Electrical Engineering from Virginia Tech and a Masters in Electrical and Computer engineering from Carnegie Mellon University. He is a business owner and patent-holding inventor. Outside the office, Dean is Mr. Science for several elementary schools - running science demonstration assemblies, science fairs, lofting objects with helium, making hovercrafts, and the usual other stuff dads do.
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Susan Horn

IBM site executive, IBM Software Group Development Lab RTP and Vice President Development, retired IBM

Susan Horn retired as IBM’s site executive and vice president, IBM Software Group Development Lab, Research Triangle Park, IBM’s largest software development lab worldwide and leader of software development locations in the southeastern US.

Coincident with the above responsibilities, Horn led several major software efforts and teams worldwide during her tenure, including vice president of Client Experience and Development Transformation (including customer technical support, IBM’s user technologies, software globalization, quality and the information experience); VP driving IBM’s transition of Software Services from labor intensive to asset-based; VP defining and implementing initiatives to drive integration across IBM software middleware products and offerings, which was the top client inhibitor to solution deployment and time to value; and various software development and support efforts. She held several executive and management positions in software development, support, engineering, and cross-functional businesses, at several locations, over the course of her career.

Horn led joint research activities across several domains, including improving K-20 education, working with the College of Engineering and NC State’s Friday Institute for Educational Innovation, among other educational entities. She was a member of the Education Committee of the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce.

She holds BS and MS degrees in mathematics from Queens College of the City University of New York and the State University of New York, respectively.

picture of Serge Leef

Serge Leef

Vice President Mentor Graphics Corporation

Serge Leef serves as the Vice President of New Ventures, responsible for identifying and developing product opportunities for systems markets adjacent to EDA. Most recently, he was General Manager of the System-Level Engineering Division at Mentor Graphics. In this role, Serge led three business units focused on markets where system-level design plays a pivotal role: 1) product lines that focus on next-generation EDA technologies for advanced functional verification and test; 2) a business unit that concentrated on applying advanced system-level design automation techniques to the challenges associated with functional design of automotive distributed systems and 3) a third business unit focused on analysis and verification of multi-physics systems where software and electronic hardware interact with hydraulic, magnetic, thermal, fluidic and mechanical components.

 Prior to joining Mentor Graphics in 1990, Leef was responsible for design automation at Silicon Graphics, where his team created revolutionary high-speed simulation tools to enable design of high speed 3D graphics chips that defined state-of-the-art in visualization, imaging, gaming and special effects for a decade. 

Prior to 1987, Leef managed a CAE/CAD organization at Microchip Inc. From 1982 to 1987 he worked at Intel Corp. developing functional and physical design and verification tools for major 8- and 16-bit microcontroller and microprocessor programs. Serge holds a BSEE and MSCS from Arizona State University.
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Steven W. McLaughlin

Steve W. Chaddick School Chair & Professor, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering Georgia Institute of Technology

Steven W. McLaughlin received the B.S.E.E. degree from Northwestern University, the M.S.E. degree from Princeton University, and the Ph.D. degree from the University of Michigan. He joined the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Georgia Tech in September 1996 where is now Steve W. Chaddick School Chair for the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering.

From 2007-2012 he was Vice Provost for International Initiatives and Steven A. Denning Chair in Global Engagement. As Vice Provost he was responsible for Georgia Tech's global engagement in research, education, and economic development. He was also President of GT Global, Inc. a not-for-profit corporation created to manage select Georgia Tech international initiatives. He was President of the IEEE Information Theory Society in 2005 and is a Fellow of the IEEE. In 2011 he was awarded the honor Chevalier dans l`Ordre Nationale de Merite, (Knight of the National Order of Merit) from the President of the Republic of France. His research interests are in communication and information theory, has published more than 250 conference and journal papers in those areas and holds 32 US patents. He is a co-founder of Whisper Communications, a physical-layer security company established in 2009.

picture of Tony Montalvo

Tony Montalvo

Director Analog Devices

Tony Montalvo joined Analog Devices in 2000 and founded the Raleigh design center on NCSU’s Centennial Campus.  He earned a B.S. in Physics from Loyola University in 1985 and an M.S.E.E. from Columbia University in 1987.  From 1987 to 1991 he was with Advanced Micro Devices where he was involved in the design of flash memories.  He received the Ph.D. degree from North Carolina State University in 1995.  

He was with Ericsson from 1995 to 2000 where he led the RF IC design group.  He has been an Adjunct Professor in the ECE department at NCSU and was named the Outstanding Teacher in 1995.  He served on the technical program committee of the International Solid State Circuits Conference from 2000 to 2008.  He has 25 patents granted or pending.

picture of Nelson Peeler - Strategic Advisory Board Chair

Nelson Peeler - Strategic Advisory Board Chair

Vice President Duke Energy Corp.


Nelson Peeler is vice president of system planning and operations for Duke Energy’s U.S. Franchised Electric and Gas organization. He leads the group responsible for the real-time monitoring and control of the bulk electric transmission and distribution systems, as well as transmission system planning for Duke Energy. He was named to his current position in January 2010.  Previously, Peeler served as vice president of performance support. He led the power delivery support team for five states served by the company, including the areas of business planning, contract management, IT integration, training, labor strategy, resource planning and process improvement.  He joined Duke Power in 1988 and  has held a variety of leadership roles within the power delivery and engineering departments.

The Faith, N.C., native graduated from North Carolina State University with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and an MBA from Queens University. He is a registered professional engineer in North Carolina and South Carolina.

Peeler serves on the board of directors of the North American Energy Standards Board and is a member of the Edison Electric Institute’s Distribution Executive and Reliability Executive Advisory Committees. He chairs the Carolinas Energy Workforce Development Consortium and serves on the board of directors of the North Carolina State Engineering Foundation and the advisory board of the Computer, Electrical, Electronics, Engineering Technology (CEEET) department at Central Piedmont Community College.

He and his wife, Lorie, have a son and a daughter.

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Andy Rindos

Head, RTP Center for Advanced Studies (CAS) & WW CAS Coord. IBM

Andy Rindos is the head of the RTP Center for Advanced Studies (CAS), which coordinates university relations for the IBM community in NC. Andy is also the World Wide CAS Strategist, responsible for creating new centers - with currently 26 centers across the globe. Previously, Andy has headed Tivoli performance, as well as the WebSphere Technology Institute. Andy is an IBM Senior Technical Staff Member (STSM), an executive technical resource, as well as an adjunct professor at NC State. He joined IBM in 1988, after receiving his PhD in Electrical Engineering (Control Theory) from the University of Maryland (College Park). Prior to IBM, he was a neurophysiologist at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda MD.

picture of Laura Schoppe

Laura Schoppe

President Fuentek
Laura A. Schoppe is president of Fuentek, LLC, a consulting firm she established in 2001 that provides intellectual property and technology management services with a specialization in technology commercialization. In her role as president, Laura is responsible for managing relationships as well as establishing strategic client plans and conducting training workshops for clients. She has an extensive background in all aspects of intellectual property management, particularly leading license negotiation activities from transition innovations to new products. She has led major technology transfer projects at leading universities and government agencies, and Fortune 500 companies have sought her advice on strategic planning related to their intellectual assets. Prior to establishing Fuentek, Laura spearheaded successful research for several defense contractors. Laura has been selected to speak at several national and international conferences and has published many papers and book chapters. She was elected to the board of the Association of University Technology Managers as the Vice President of Strategic Alliances, and also serves on the NC State University Electrical and Computer Engineering advisory board. In 2008 Laura was recognized as one of the Triangle’s top 25 businesswomen with Triangle Business Journal’s prestigious Women in Business Award for her exemplary leadership skills in the innovation category.
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Anders Sjoelin

Region Division Manager, Power Systems Division ABB North America

Anders assumed the role as President and Division Manager for the Power Systems Division in North America on May 1, 2010.  He formerly held the position of Senior Vice President & General Manager for Business Units Grid Systems and Substations within the Power Systems Division in North America.  Anders has more than 21 years with ABB, working in several countries in different management positions. Before moving to US in late 2004 Anders worked in Switzerland at ABB’s headquarters.

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E. C. Sykes

Principal Sykes Consulting Services, Inc.

EC Sykes is an Executive in Residence at North Carolina State University where he is assisting with the launch of the Power America Institute. He is also the principal officer of Sykes Consulting Services supporting a number of early growth stage companies and top tier Asian companies to improve their operational and managerial performance.

Prior to these roles, EC was CEO of SWITCH Lighting, an LED lighting solution that was scaling into the large and rapidly growing LED lighting market. SWITCH won the most awards in the industry for innovation and design.

Prior to SWITCH Lighting, EC was a Named Executive Officer and Group President of Flextronics, a $28B Fortune 500 company. Part of his responsibilities included leading the Industrial and Emerging Industries Group which included $4B in revenue from 400 customers and managing 35,000 people in 30 international sites. Prior to the President role, EC was Vice President of the Guadalajara, Mexico campus and General Manager at the North Carolina site.

Prior to Flextronics, EC was CEO of Circuit Board Assemblers, a design and manufacturing service provider which was recognized as one of the 500 fastest growing technology companies in the nation.

EC holds a BSEE and Masters in Management from North Carolina State University and holds several board positions and is an active supporter of a number of charitable organizations.

picture of John A. Toebes

John A. Toebes

Director, Patents, Cisco Intellectual Property Group Cisco Systems, Inc.

John Toebes, Director, Patents Effectiveness, Tools and Processes at Cisco is responsible for evaluating patents and encouraging innovation at Cisco.

John has been awarded 54 US patents for his work in MPEG video and XML compression, IP telephony, distributed computing and distributed network services. He currently has over 60 additional patents pending with the U.S. PTO.

Previously at Cisco, John was the Chief Architect of the Cisco Media Solutions Group, responsible for evaluating technologies, both internal and external to improve the content experience for consumers. Prior to that, he was a Senior Manager in Cisco’s Technology Center, where he managed a team of software engineers who evaluated, designed, and developed innovative technologies. John and his team worked at the bleeding edge on a wide variety of technologies, including Network Search, Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), Network Gaming, and XML Applications.

John joined Cisco in December of 1999. Prior to this, he was Founder and Vice President of Research & Development for SouthPeak Interactive, a division of SAS Institute. While at SouthPeak, John was the Producer for Men in Black: The Game.

John received a BS in Computer Science from North Carolina State University and went on to be stationed at the Pentagon as a 2nd Lieutenant in the Air Force. He has also worked at SAS Institute and Nortel Networks as a Manager and Systems Developer.

John resides in Cary, NC with his wife where he likes to tinker with electronics and help coach high school Robotics and Science Olympiad teams. John was honored as the 2011 FIRST Tech Challenge Volunteer of the Year for development and support of their robot communications system.

picture of Robbie Troxler

Robbie Troxler

Director; Advanced Technology Troxler Electronic Laboratories

Robbie is the Director of Advanced Technologies at Troxler Electronic Laboratories in Research Triangle Park, NC.  Troxler Electronics was founded by Robbie\'s father, William Troxler, a 1953 NC State graduate.  Robbie received his BS in Electrical Engineering from NC State in 1983 and his MS/PhD in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.  The Troxler Family has been a long time supporter of the ECE Department making major donations the Troxler Design Center, the ECE Department and the College of Engineering. 

picture of Jan van Dokkum

Jan van Dokkum

Operating Partner Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield & Byers

Jan van Dokkum is an Operating Partner with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers with the specific task of assisting the Greentech ventures toward commercialization. He brings many years of experience in building organizations to achieve rapid growth in the areas of sales, marketing, manufacturing, product development, quality and supply chain development.

Prior to his role at KPCB, Jan served as president of UTC Power, a division of United Technologies, Inc., for 7 years and was instrumental in advancing UTC Power's on-site power generation product and service offerings. These include stationary fuel cells, renewable power solutions, such as geothermal and solar, and combined cooling, heating and power applications for the commercial building markets. He led United Technologies’ effort to improve and optimize energy use in commercial buildings by offering in depth analysis of a building’s electrical and thermal systems. In addition, he focused the company's fuel cell activities toward transportation, working closely with the world\'s leading automotive manufacturers and seeking out other early uses for fuel cells in transit buses.

Before joining UTC Power, Jan was with Siemens for 17 years where he served the last 6 years as president and chief executive officer of Siemens Power Transmission & Distribution, Inc. In those years he augmented the company’s traditional power equipment such as switchgear, power breakers, transformers and regulators with intelligent systems and controls. His vision was to create a smart electrical power delivery system to provide greater reliability and functionality, while at the same time adapt to deregulation and improve competitiveness. Under his leadership, the product lines expanded to include metering and billing systems, power system information technology, distribution automation and high voltage controls.

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