IER Senior Management
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Mr Gordon Ewart
Chief Financial Officer
Mr Gordon Ewart, IER’s Chief Financial Officer, qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1996. Between 1990 and 2000 he worked for KPMG, a leading accountancy firm, where he specialised in conventional and renewable energy markets. Gordon’s work included greenfield project development, large-scale mergers and acquisitions, and project financing.
From 2001 to 2007 Gordon was General Manager – Commercial of Novera Energy PLC, a company previously listed on the Alternative Investment Market (AIM) in London. Novera, which was taken over by Infinis Ltd, was one of the leading independent developers and owners of renewable energy assets within the United Kingdom. Prior to joining IER in 2009, Gordon developed biofuel and biomass generation projects in the United Kingdom, completing significant capital raisings in Europe and the United States.
Human Resources Manager
Emma has over twenty five years, operational, commercial and human resources experience, including senior management, executive and HR Director appointments across a number of industries including FMCG, Healthcare and Retail in the UK, Europe and Australia.
Prior to joining Ignite Energy Resources in 2013, Emma provided HR consultancy services to entrepreneurial start-ups and small businesses.
She is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (Chartered FCIPD) equivalent to a Fellow of AHRI (Australia Human Resources Institute).
Mr John Gulbis
Mr John Gulbis, the Project Director of IER, is a chemical engineer and an experienced project manager. As head of engineering operations for two of the world’s largest IT and industrial process automation companies, Honeywell (from 1985 to 1996) and Invensys (from 1996 to 1999), John led the successful implementation of numerous major technology projects, both locally and internationally.
John has also held various senior management positions in the Telecommunications and Health IT industries. Most recently, between 2004 and 2007 John was Project Director at Australian Biodiesel Group and was responsible for the design, construction and commissioning of Australia’s largest (160 ML p.a.) biodiesel production plant at Narangba, Qld. This plant was based on technology developed at the company’s R&D facility at Berkeley Vale, New South Wales.
Prof. Dr. Thomas Maschmeyer
FAA, Technology Consultant
Dr. Thomas Maschmeyer, IER’s key technology consultant, is Professor of Chemistry and ARC Future Fellow at the University of Sydney. In 2011 he was elected youngest Foreign Member of the Academia Europea as well as Fellow of the Australian Academy of Sciences, the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering and the Royal Australian Chemical Institute.
He was one of the founding Professors of Avantium (2001), a Dutch High-tech company, 100+ employees, and is co-founder of Ignite Energy Resources (2006) and Licella (2007). He authored 240+ publications, cited 6000+ times, including 22 patents. He serves on the editorial/advisory boards of nine international journals and is President of the Catalysis Society of Australia. He received many awards, including the RACI Weickhardt Medal for Economic Contributions (2012), RACI Applied Research Award (2011) and the Le Févre Prize of the Australian Academy of Sciences (2007).
He held positions at the Royal Institution of Great Britain and the University of Cambridge (Peterhouse), and was appointed to Professor and Department Head at the Delft Institute of Chemical Technology (1998, age 31), becoming Vice-Chairman of that Institute in 2000. He returned in late 2003 to the University of Sydney as ARC Federation Fellow.
Business Development Manager, Licella
Dr. Adriana Downie has worked in private, engineering, start-up companies, on the commercialization of bioenergy technologies for the past 12 years. During this time she has successfully managed several grant funded projects and government/industry partnerships. Adriana is a Chemical Engineer with a PhD in the conversion of biomass into value-added biofuels and products. Adriana won the Eureka Science Prize for Emerging Leader in Science in 2014, and has been selected by The Australia as one of the Next 100 leaders. She has been a Senior Fellow at the University of Melbourne and published more than 15 peer reviewed papers and book chapters. Adriana is currently undertaking her MBA at Deakin University.
Mr Stuart Rayner
General Manager – Business Development
Stuart Rayner has worked in complex technology and solutions sales environments for over 20 years across multiple sectors, including IT, professional services and energy.
Stuart joined Ignite Energy Resources in 2011, with an initial focus of raising capital from appropriate government grant programs to assist with the commercialisation of the Cat-HTR technology. Stuart completed two successful capital raisings, which have enabled the further optimisation of the technology platform. Stuart now heads up all aspects of business development for IER’s Technology division.
Prior to joining Ignite, Stuart held senior positions and achieved a successful career in sales and commercialising technologies for IBM and Computer Associates, and professional services for Ernst and Young.
Mr Robert Downie
General Manager – Technology Delivery
Robert is the General Manager of the Somersby Engineering Facility and, until it was taken over by IER, he was the Managing Director of BEST Energies Australia. Robert has commercial and engineering experience across various renewable energy and low carbon technologies, including biomass gasification and pyrolysis, biomass hydrolysis, direct coal liquefaction and low emissions technology. Robert is also a director of Pacific Pyrolysis.
Robert is a Chartered Professional Engineer, a member of the Australian Institute of Engineers, and a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. He holds a Master of Business and Technology from the University of New South Wales, and a Bachelor of International Business Management and a Bachelor of Chemical Engineering (Honours) from the University of Queensland.
Marketing and Communications Manager
Andrea joined IER in 2015 with over ten years’ experience in a variety of sales, marketing and communication roles within the pharmaceutical and resources industry. Andrea is experienced leading cross functional teams and managing multimillion dollar brands including Botox, Juvederm, Nasonex, Elocon, Valtrex and Evista. Andrea has a BA Hons and a Diploma in Marketing.
After seven years working in a variety of brand management roles within the pharmaceutical industry, Andrea is now responsible for all aspects of IER and Licella’s marketing and corporate communication, including shareholder and investor engagement, digital strategy, media, corporate communications and marketing strategy.
Dr. William Rowlands
William is a highly experienced industrial scientist with expertise in the areas of high temperature reactions, colloid science and catalysis, and has been working in the field of renewable and alternative energy and materials since 2006. Prior to this he was Research and Development Manager for Colloidal Dynamics, an innovative company specializing in the design and manufacture of scientific instruments for colloid science applications and scientific consulting services. Dr Rowlands was a pioneering stakeholder in Colloidal Dynamics, which was acquired by Agilent in 2008.
Dr Rowlands has held a number of Postdoctoral positions at the University of Sydney, and was a Senior Technologist with Redland Technology (UK). He is a graduate of the University of Bristol, completing his B.Sc. in Chemistry in 1984 and his Ph.D. in 1989. In 2007 he completed an M.B.A. (Executive) degree at the Australian Graduate School of Management, a joint School of the University of New South Wales and the University of Sydney. He is an author of fourteen peer-reviewed scientific papers and several patents.
Mr Steve Rogers
Business Development Manager, Licella
Steve Rogers has spent most of the last twenty years establishing new technology companies and developing them to be commercially successful operations. Steve joined Licella in early 2008 initially focussing on the opportunities for the technology in Europe, then assisting with capital raising whilst developing the commercialisation strategy for the company which is now being implemented.
Prior to Licella, Steve has had a successful career commercialising technologies in the software and CleanTech sectors. After 10 years with IBM, he joined the fledgling Software Industry in 1987 and moved to Australia in 1989 to establish BMC Software which now has annual turnover of over $70m. Since this time Steve has been involved in two successful CleanTech start ups Energy Efficiency Ltd in the UK and Horizon Technologies in Australia who were the first organisation to receive Australian Government funding via the CVC Reef programme.
Susan joined IER in 2016 having come from a role in Canberra where she provided in-house advice to a national organisation involving a wide range of complex legal matters. Prior to moving in-house, Susan was at a mid-tier private firm in the insurance group after having worked for several years specialising as a litigation lawyer.
Susan holds a Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Laws, with emphasis on general corporate and commercial law. She is also the current President of the ACT chapter of the Association of Corporate Counsel and a non-executive board member of ACC Australia.