Kenneth W. Davis Jr. Leaders in Energy Speaker Series

Shaping the future of energy innovation.

The Kenneth W. Davis Jr. Leaders in Energy Speaker Series brings energy experts to TCU to share cutting-edge research and insights, and discuss the latest industry trends in energy management, emerging technologies, innovative solutions and policies, to help deepen our understanding of the evolving energy economy.

Our speaker series is made possible through the Kenneth W. Davis Jr. Endowed Lectureship at TCU (The Davis Lectureship) and hosted by the Ralph Lowe Energy Institute at the TCU Neeley School of Business.

Past Events

Energy and Blockchain: One Sustainable Future

October 2021

This event explored the interdisciplinary partnership of energy and blockchain. Our guest speaker and expert panel discussed how blockchain may disrupt the energy industry, allowing for new forms and parties of transacting - supporting carbon tracking, and decentralizing production and trading. Additionally, these leaders discussed the concerns around energy usage for blockchain-supported bitcoin, the degree to which we should be concerned, and what remedies may be in waiting.

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Keynote Speaker

Photo: Geoffrey Cann

Geoffrey Cann

Author, Educator and Speaker
"Bits, Bytes and Barrels: The Digital Transformation of Oil and Gas"

Geoffrey Cann is an author, educator, podcaster and inspiring professional speaker. Cann’s passion is the oil and gas industry, essential to our modern industrial society and its imperative to exploit digital innovations as we slowly transition to new fuels. He has worked around the world, including Canada, United States, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, China, Australia and the Caribbean over a 35-year career. Cann teaches a seminar on digital oil and gas, and produces a weekly article and podcast on digital issues in energy. His first book, “Bits, Bytes, and Barrels: The Digital Transformation of Oil and Gas,” is being translated into Russian and his next book, a study of the leading practices for digital in oil and gas, will be published in early 2022. Learn more about Cann here.


Photo: John Di Donato

John Di Donato

Vice President, Renewable Development and Origination
NextEra Energy Resources, LLC

John Di Donato is the National Vice President of Renewable Development and Origination for NextEra Energy Resources, LLC. Di Donato has been involved with the company's renewable development program since its inception. He served as a tax manager after he joined the company in 1996 and then through various roles in Renewable Development with increasing responsibility since 2000. Di Donato and his teams have developed more than 150 energy development projects throughout the United States and Canada. He currently leads origination for NextEra Energy's renewable energy projects (wind, solar and energy storage) across the United States. Previously, Di Donato was with Sensormatic Electronics Corporation, a security company based in Boca Raton, Florida (now part of The ADT Corporation). While at Sensormatic, he worked in the London office on international tax matters. A native of northeastern Ohio, John holds a bachelor's degree in accounting from Kent State University. He earned a master's degree in accounting and tax from Florida Atlantic University.
Photo: Todd Fitzgerald

Todd Fitzgerald

Chief Executive Office and Founding Partner
Roxo Energy

Todd Fitzgerald is the CEO and founding partner of Roxo Energy, a privately-held oil and gas production and acquisition company. In his role, Fitzgerald provides strategic direction and oversees oilfield operations, finance and analysis, and the development of oil and gas properties, assets and interests.
Photo: Aaron Grieshaber

Aaron Grieshaber

Co-founder and Managing Partner
Zenith Ventures

Aaron Grieshaber is the co-founder and managing partner at Zenith Ventures. Grieshaber has been an active investor in the blockchain ecosystem since 2015. He was a founding investor of the Zerocoin Electric Coin Company (dba Electric Coin Company) and Zcash protocol. Previously, Grieshaber was an executive in the energy industry as CFO of Pneumatic Technology, which sold in 2017. He has a BBA from the TCU Neeley School of Business.
Photo: Kelly Slaughter

Kelly Slaughter

Associate Professor of Professional Practice
Information Systems and Supply Chain Management Department

Kelly Slaughter, director of the TCU Neeley Business Information Systems undergraduate program, holds a PhD in Information and Decision Sciences from the University of Minnesota, and an MBA with a concentration in economics from the University of Chicago. Slaughter has 15 years of industry experience, working with PricewaterhouseCoopers and a start-up consulting company, which later sold to Grant Thornton. Today, he continues to consult in analytics modeling. Slaughter leads the TCU Fintech initiative, teaching blockchain, machine learning and artificial intelligence classes as part of the new Fintech Certificate at the Neeley School. His current research projects include examining retail traders’ use of a Fortune 500 brokerage platform to explore trading decisions, and examining commercial borrowers’ acceptance of AI transparency conducted in cooperation with Vantage Bank.


Photo: Ann Bluntzer

Ann Bluntzer

Acting Director, Ralph Lowe Energy Institute
Associate Professor of Professional Practice, Management and Leadership

Ann Bluntzer currently serves as the acting director of the TCU Energy Institute and is an associate professor of professional practice in TCU’s management and leadership department. Bluntzer is also the program director for the TCU Energy MBA and has served on the TCU Energy Institute board since 2013. She has taught Geopolitics of Energy, Energy in the 21st Century and Renewable Energy Viability at the TCU Neeley School for the past eight years. In addition to teaching, Bluntzer consults and contributes research in the global energy industry. She has a PhD from the University of South Carolina and an MEd from Texas A&M University.


Photo: Daniel Pullin

Daniel Pullin

John V. Roach Dean of the Neeley School of Business
Professor of Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Daniel Pullin is the John V. Roach Dean of the Neeley School of Business at TCU and a professor of entrepreneurship and innovation. Pullin is responsible for enhancing the profile of TCU Neeley undergraduate and graduate programs to maintain the school’s upward trajectory. He also serves as a steward to TCU and its business community partners. He focuses on defining and cultivating academic excellence among students and faculty, and enhancing diversity and inclusion initiatives.

Pullin came to TCU in May 2019 from the University of Oklahoma, where he was Dean of the Price College of Business since 2014. He has won awards for teaching, innovation in business and academic integrity, and was honored as OKC 40 Under 40.

Prior to joining OU, Pullin worked for global consultancy McKinsey & Company and the private equity firm Hicks Muse Tate & Furst and its portfolio companies.

He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Oklahoma and MBA from Harvard Business School before returning to Oklahoma to earn a Juris Doctor.

Climate Change and Effective Policy: Is Alarmism Wasting Trillions?

April 2021

In this virtual speaker event, Dr. Bjorn Lomborg discussed policy-making decisions surrounding climate change, the adverse effects of alarmism on that process, and alternative solutions to this ongoing predicament.

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Photo: Dr. Bjorn Lomborg

Dr. Bjorn Lomborg

Copenhagen Consensus Center

Dr. Lomborg is a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution and Stanford University and a visiting professor at the Copenhagen Business School. He was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in the World and works with many of the world’s top economists, including seven Nobel Laureates. Lomborg frequently provides expertise and insights to various media outlets, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, CNN and the BBC. He has published several books, including “False Alarm: How Climate Change Panic Costs Us Trillions, Hurts the Poor, and Fails to Fix the Planet,” “The Skeptical Environmentalist” and “Cool It.”

A Conversation on Natural Resources in a NetZero World

November 2021

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Photo: Ashley Zumwalt-Forbes

Ashley Zumwalt-Forbes

Co-founder, President and CEO
Black Mountain Metals