2023 Agenda

The 2023 panels explored policies, programs and incentives to increase the role of hydrogen in meeting decarbonization, air quality, and energy resilience goals while spurring economic development.

Monday, June 19

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Kick-off Reception & Networking at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel

Tuesday, June 20

7:30 AM

Registration Begins

7:30 AM – 8:25 AM

Networking Continental Breakfast

8:25 AM – 8:30 AM

Welcome Remarks

  • Speaker: Alberto Ayala, Executive Director and Air Pollution Control Officer – Sacramento Metropolitan AQMD

8:30 AM – 8:35 AM

Introduction to California Hydrogen Leadership Summit

  • Speaker: Katrina Fritz, Executive Director – California Hydrogen Business Council

8:35 AM – 8:45 AM

Legislative Keynote

The California legislature is considering several hydrogen-related bills this session, some of which will help the industry, while others may impede progress. State Senator Josh Newman, a long-time clean hydrogen advocate, will provide his perspective on the current debate taking place in the legislature and provide insights on how issues may be resolved.

  • Speaker: Josh Newman, State Senator, 29th District – California State Senate

8:45 AM – 9:00 AM

Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Don Boyajian, Director, Government Affairs & Counsel – Plug Power

9:00 AM – 9:15 AM

Keynote Remarks

9:15 AM – 10:00 AM

Clean Hydrogen to Decarbonize California’s Energy Systems Across the Value Chain

Low carbon and renewable hydrogen can play a crucial role in helping California clean up difficulttodecarbonize sectors of the economy. It can also help the state harness existing infrastructure and/or decentralize power generation so as to reduce the costs associated with building completely new capital assets. Speakers on this panel will provide recommendations to policymakers on how they can facilitate efforts to utilize hydrogen across the value chain to accelerate decarbonization of California’s energy systems. 

  • Speaker: Michael J. Galvin, Director of Waterfront & Commercial Real Estate – Port of Los Angeles
  • Speaker: Michael Hoban, General Manager, Hydrogen – Chevron
  • Speaker: Jack Hedge, Vice President of Hydrogen Hub Development – BayoTech
  • Speaker: Serj Berelson, Senior Manager of Policy, West – Mainspring Energy

10:00 AM – 10:15 AM

Networking Coffee Break

10:15 AM – 10:25 AM

Transportation Keynote

California’s bold but necessary decarbonization and air quality goals cannot be met without diversity of low or zero carbon energy solutions that are dispatchable across the state. Renewable hydrogen can deliver for the power, industry, and transportation sectors and fills gaps in our current renewable energy strategy, including much needed long-term energy storage capabilities.

  • Speaker: Lori Pepper, Deputy Secretary for Innovative Mobility Solutions – CalSTA: California State Transportation Agency

10:25 AM – 10:40 AM

Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Christine Cowsert, Senior Vice President – Gas Engineering, Service Planning and Design – Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

10:40 AM – 11:25 AM

Hydrogen for Reliable and Resilient Electrical Grids

California’s electrical grid has suffered from multiple failures in recent years. Problems such as safety shutoffs, insufficient summer power, and the inability to build transmission all add to California’s grid strain. Hydrogen can be utilized to improve the long-term reliability and resilience of California’s energy system. This panel will describe to policymakers how they can help improve prospects for microgrids, fuel cell deployment, and the introduction of hydrogen-fueled linear generators that can immediately enhance stability and improve air quality, particularly for disproportionately impacted disadvantaged communities. 

  • Speaker: Christine Cowsert, Senior Vice President – Gas Engineering, Service Planning and Design – Pacific Gas & Electric Co.
  • Speaker: Thomas R. Brill, Shareholder – Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Speaker: Bobby Cherian, Senior Vice President Government Affairs – Hyliion
  • Speaker: Tim Sasseen, Director, Market Development and Public Affairs North America – Ballard Power Systems, Inc.
  • Speaker: Jeffrey Benoit, Vice President of Clean Energy Solutions – Power Systems Mfg. (PSM)

11:25 AM – 11:35 AM

Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Bob Archuleta, State Senator, 30th District – California State Senate

11:35 AM – 11:50 AM

Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Neil Navin, Chief Clean Fuels Officer – Southern California Gas Company

11:50 AM – 12:35 PM

Project Development: Building Successful Hydrogen Projects

Clean hydrogen is crucial for California to be successful in meeting its climate protection, air quality, energy resilience and sustainable economic development goals. Unfortunately, hydrogen projects development is disproportionately difficult. This panel will explain to policymakers the financial and regulatory barriers that hydrogen projects face and what they can do to improve prospects for investment and project financing. 

  • Speaker: Tanya Peacock, Managing Director / Chair of the Board – EcoEngineers / CHBC
  • Speaker: JuliAnne Thomas, Director External Affairs – Raven SR
  • Speaker: Seth Harris, Director of Sustainability, Americas – Emerson
  • Speaker: Melanie Davidson, Hydrogen Commercial Development Manager – SDG&E
  • Speaker: Alexus Merino, Hydrogen Director – City of Lancaster

12:35 PM – 1:25 PM


1:25pm – 1:30pm

Chair’s Remarks

  • Speaker: Tanya Peacock, Managing Director / Chair of the Board – EcoEngineers / CHBC

1:30 PM – 2:15 PM

Federal Fireside Chat

Over the last two years the Federal government has recognized the importance of the U.S. becoming a leader in developing a clean hydrogen energy economy. This has led to the passage of major legislation/ incentives, such as those found in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and the Inflation Reduction Act. Speakers on this panel will review these important new bills, their benefits to the hydrogen industry and what California policymakers can do to both capture and magnify these incentives to the betterment of all Californians. 

  • Speaker: Frank Wolak, President & CEO – Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association
  • Speaker: Gia Vacin, Deputy Director of Zero Emission Vehicle Market Development – Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz)
  • Speaker: Barbara S. de Marigny, Partner – Baker Botts L.L.P.
  • Speaker: Grant Zimmerman, Chief Executive Officer – Amp Americas

2:15 PM – 2:25 PM

Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Blanca Pacheco, Assemblymember, 64th District – California State Assembly

2:25 PM – 2:40 PM

Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Amy Adams, Vice President, Government Partnerships and Funding – Cummins Inc.

2:40 PM – 3:25 PM

Meeting California’s Zero-Emission Transportation Goals With Hydrogen

No segment of the economy better exemplifies the benefits hydrogen can deliver than transportation. Hard to electrify onroad vehicles and off-road equipment. Hydrogen fuel cells can be deployed in equipment and vehicles that have operated in historically polluted areas (densely populated and rural areas within the Central Valley) and in duty cycles that disproportionately impact communities of color and low income (agriculture, construction, aviation & marine ports). This panel will explore the importance of supporting all zero-emission technologies within transportation, what California can do to accelerate investment in and development of a resilient and robust statewide hydrogen fueling network, and help the development in the near term of on-site hydrogen generation and mobile refueling. 

  • Speaker: Patrick Charette, Director – Hydrogen Fueling and Distribution Solutions – Nikola
  • Speaker: Amy Adams, Vice President, Government Partnerships and Funding – Cummins Inc.
  • Speaker: Thiemo Schalk, BMW Group Representative – BMW of North America
  • Speaker: Rick Breunesse, Business Development Director – Symbio North America
  • Speaker: Pat Griffin, President of North America – Hyzon

3:25 PM – 3:35 PM

Networking Coffee Break

3:35 PM – 3:45 PM

Hydrogen and Climate Keynote Remarks

  • Speaker: Matthew Botill, Chief, Industrial Strategies Division – California Air Resources Board

3:45 PM – 4:35 PM

Hydrogen at the Local and Regional Level: An Air Quality Perspective

The state’s air quality management and pollution control districts are at the forefront of the struggle to improve air quality and reduce exposure to toxic air contaminants. As the agencies primarily responsible for compliance with both state and federal air quality standards, air districts have a unique perspective on the role that clean hydrogen can play in helping them meet air quality mandates. This panel of leaders of the state’s largest air districts will share their perspectives on what state policymakers can do to help them achieve their obligations to make the air safe to breathe for all California residents. 

  • Speaker: Dr. Aaron Katzenstein, Deputy Executive Officer, Technology Advancement Office – South Coast AQMD
  • Speaker: Alberto Ayala, Executive Director and Air Pollution Control Officer – Sacramento Metropolitan AQMD
  • Speaker: Tung Le, Executive Director – California Air Pollution Control Officers Association (CAPCOA)
  • Speaker: Bill Magavern, Policy Director – Coalition for Clean Air

4:35 PM – 5:00 PM

Closing Remarks

  • Speaker: Katrina Fritz, Executive Director – California Hydrogen Business Council

5:00 PM – 7:00 PM

Day Of Reception & Networking at the Sheraton Grand Sacramento Hotel