NAFAC 2015 Speakers List

April 13th, 2015

Keynote Address: Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn, USN (Ret.) Assistant Secretary of the Navy Energy, Installations and Environment

Panel 1:  Food and Water Security

Dr. Fred Davies Professor, Texas A & M University

Dr. Robert Paarlberg - Professor, Wellesley College

Mr. David Rosenberg CEO and Co-Founder, AeroFarms

Mr. Christopher Overcash Adjunct professor of Environmental Engineering, Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering, & Associate of Johns Hopkins Environment, Energy, Sustainability, and Health Institute

Forrestal Lecture: Admiral Gary Roughead, USN (Ret.)Former Chief of Naval Operations

April 14th, 2015

Keynote Address: Mr. Robert J. (Bob) Duncan II - Senior Vice President, Nuclear Operations Duke Energy Corporation

Panel 2:  Energy Security

Dr. Christine Parthemore - Director, Climate and Food Security, Center for American Progress

Dr. Leanne Piggott  - Director, Business Education, University of Sydney Business School

Ambassador Reuben Brigety II U.S. Representative to the United Nations Economic Commission on Africa

CAPT David G. Manero, USN Chief, Regional Affairs & Integration Branches in OPNAV International Engagement Division (N52) and Navy FAO Community Senior Policy Advisor

April 15th, 2015

The Honorable Robert H. McKinney Address:  Mr. Kurt Campbell Chairman and CEO, The Asia Group

Panel 3:  Resource Conflict

Ambassador James B. Smith Former U.S. Ambassador to Saudi Arabia and Brigadier General (Ret.), USAF

Dr. Michael Klare Professor of Peace and World Security Studies

Ward E Scott II, Esq Founder & Managing Partner, Scott Advocates, LLP

Brigadier General Gregg P. Olson, USMC Deputy Director Political-Military Affairs J-5 Joint Staff

Closing Banquet & Distinguished Speaker: Major General Arthur Denaro, CBE DL 


Opening Keynote: Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn, USN (Ret.)

Mr. Dennis McGinn was appointed Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Energy, Installations & Environment) on September 3, 2013. In this position, Mr. McGinn develops Department-wide policies, procedures, advocacy and strategic plans. He also oversees all Department of the Navy functions and programs related to installations, safety, energy, and environment. This includes effective management of Navy and Marine Corps real property, housing, and other facilities; natural and cultural resource protection, planning, and compliance; safety and occupational health for military and civilian personnel; and timely completion of closures and realignments of installations under base closure laws. Mr. McGinn is the former President of the American Council On Renewable Energy (ACORE), an organization dedicated to building a secure and prosperous America with clean, renewable energy. While at ACORE, he led efforts to communicate the significant economic, security and environmental benefits of renewable energy. Mr. McGinn is also a past co-chairman of the CNA Military Advisory Board and an international security senior fellow at the Rocky Mountain Institute. In 2002, after 35 years of service, Mr. McGinn retired from the Navy after achieving the rank of Vice Admiral. While in the Navy, he served as a naval aviator, test pilot, aircraft carrier commanding officer, and national security strategist. His capstone assignment was as the Deputy Chief of Naval Operations for Warfare Requirements and Programs, where he oversaw the development of future Navy capabilities. In a previous operational leadership role, he commanded the U.S. Third Fleet. Mr. McGinn is a past member of the Steering Committee of the Energy Future Coalition, the United States Energy Security Council, and the Bipartisan Policy Center Energy Board. He earned a B.S. degree in Naval Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy; attended the national security program at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; and was a Chief of Naval Operations strategic studies fellow at the U.S. Naval War College.

Panel 1: Food and Water Security

Dr. Fred Davies

Professor Fred Davies is a Regents Professor in the Department of Horticultural Sciences and the interdisciplinary program of Molecular and Environmental Plant Sciences at Texas A&M University. After earning his doctorate in horticulture, plant physiology, and tropical agriculture from the University of Florida, he has worked with numerous research institutions, from the USDA Horticultural Crops Lab in Oregon to the Plant Biology Institute in Mexico and the International Potato Center in Peru. He has taught from Texas to Indonesia and received support for his work from NASA, the Department of Agriculture, and numerous private and public agencies. He currently serves within USAID engaging farmers and their governments on techniques to improve food security and quality of life, all the while finding time to author the standard text in the field of Plant Propagation and serve at one point as President of the International Plant Propagators’ Society. The Naval Academy is privileged to enjoy Dr. Davies’ expertise as we examine issues on which his wisdom is highly prized throughout the world, and look forward to his contribution on our panel.

Dr. Robert Paarlberg

Dr. Paarlberg is a food and agricultural policy expert with a focus on farming technologies and poverty in the developing world. He earned his PH.D. from Harvard and teaches at Wellesley College. His expertise in biotechnology, social justice and environmental stability has allowed him to give talks throughout private industry and government institutions, from Mars Candy Company to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences in Rome to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. He has multiple published works and has received funding from USAID, the International Food Policy Research Institute and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation for work in more than a dozen African countries. He teaches courses on economic policy and international relations, and his book Starved for Science contains forewords from not one, but two Nobel Peace Prize winners, Jimmy Carter and Norman Borlaug. His wide-ranging and diverse talents and expertise puts him at the center of a rapidly evolving political, humanitarian, and security environment with food and water playing an increasingly pivotal role, and the Naval Academy is pleased he could join us.

Mr. David Rosenberg

David, a serial entrepreneur, co-founded and leads AeroFarms, a clean-technology company that builds and operates advanced vertical farms in urban environments.  AeroFarms has been recognized as a Circular Economy 100 company, was voted Most Innovative Company at the Future of Agriculture conference and the Best Growth Company to invest in at the Wall Street Journal’s ECO:nomics conference.  David is also the founder of Hycrete, Inc., a cleantech nanotechnology company.  David is an active member of the World Economic Forum (WEF) and its annual meeting in Davos.  Within WEF he is honored as a Young Global Leader, where he Co-Chairs the Circular Economy Taskforce. At WEF he is also a Co-Lead for Technology and Innovation Group of The Transformational Leaders in Agriculture and was a Member of the Global Agenda Council on Water Security.  Davis is also a member of the B20 SME Taskforce, which advises the G20.  David is also a member of Young Presidents Organization.  David is a annual lecturer at Columbia Business School and a former adjunct professor at NYU’s Stern School of Business.  David received his BA from UNC Chapel Hill and holds an MBA from Columbia University.  He competed for the U.S. in Fencing where he was a finalist at a world cup and represented the NYAC, helping the club win three U.S. National Fencing Championships.

Mr. Christopher Overcash

Mr. Overcash is an adjunct professor of Environmental Engineering at the Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering and an Associate of the Johns Hopkins Environment, Energy, Sustainability, and Health Institute, specializing in water resources and supply.  He holds a Masters of Environmental Engineering from Johns Hopkins and is also a Senior Associate and Practice Leader of Water and Wastewater Infrastructure at KCI Technologies, a U.S. based engineering consulting firm.  He is a licensed professional engineer in six states, is a Board Certified Environmental Engineer of the American Academy of Environmental Engineers, and is also credentialed by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure and the U.S. Green Building Council.  He teaches courses on a wide variety of environmental engineering topics and is an expert in water resource supply and sustainability.  Mr. Overcash also leads design teams for water supply and wastewater systems and has investigated water supply technology for international markets.  As a member of the U.S. Naval Institute, he has a broad base of knowledge both in global security issues and naval affairs.

Forrestal Lecture: ADM Gary Roughead

Admiral Roughead is a 1973 graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy.  He became the 29th Chief of Naval Operations in September of 2007, after holding six operational commands.  He is one of only two officers in the history of the Navy to have commanded both the U.S. Atlantic and Pacific Fleets. Ashore he served as the Commandant, U.S. Naval Academy where he led the strategic planning effort that underpinned that institution’s first capital campaign.  He was the Navy’s Chief of Legislative Affairs, responsible for the Department of the Navy’s interaction with Congress.   Admiral Roughead was also the Deputy Commander, U.S. Pacific Command during the massive relief effort following the tsunami of 2004. As the Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Roughead successfully guided the Navy through a challenging period of transition in fiscal, security and personnel matters.  He stabilized and accelerated ship and aircraft procurement plans,  accelerated the Navy’s capability and capacity in ballistic missile defense and unmanned air and underwater systems, and directed the service’s investigation of climate change and alternative energy.  He reestablished the 4th and 10th Fleets to better focus on the Western Hemisphere and cyber operations respectively. Admiral Roughead introduced bold programs to prepare for the primacy of information in warfare, and was in the forefront in using social media within the Navy.  He also led the Navy through changes in law and personnel policy to draw more inclusively than ever before upon the Navy’s greatest strength, its Sailors. Admiral Roughead is the recipient of the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, Navy Distinguished Service Medal, Defense Superior Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Meritorious Service Medal, Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal and various unit and service awards.  He has also received awards from several foreign governments. In retirement, Admiral Roughead is an Annenberg Distinguished Fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University and serves on the boards of directors of the Northrop Grumman Corporation, Theranos, Inc. and the Center for a New American Security.   He is a Trustee of Dodge and Cox Funds and The Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia, .   He advises several companies in the national security and medical sectors and is the Co-Chair, with his Canadian and Mexican counterparts, of the North American Forum. 


Keynote Address: Mr. Robert J. (Bob) Duncan II

Mr. Duncan has more than 30 years of experience in the nuclear field. He most recently was senior vice president of nuclear operations for Duke Energy, providing oversight for the safe and reliable operation of two Duke Energy-operated nuclear plants – Catawba in York, S.C., and McGuire in Huntersville, N.C. Previously, he served as vice president of nuclear operations for Progress Energy, from 2008 to 2010, and again from 2011 to July 2012. Duncan graduated from the University of Florida in Gainesville with a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering. He earned a master’s degree in business administration from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He currently serves as chair of the University of Florida Nuclear Engineering Advisory Board and is a member of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering Advisory Board.

Panel 2: Energy Security

Dr. Christine Parthemore

Christine Parthemore is a director for climate and food security at the Center for American Progress. She served as the Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Nuclear, Chemical, and Biological Defense programs in the U.S. Department of Defense from 2011 to 2015. In that capacity, she advised and assisted in managing more than $3 billion per year in research and development, acquisition, treaty compliance, and international partnership programs. She managed major projects focused on the Asia-Pacific and Middle East regions, including a multi-year effort contributing to the international mission to remove and destroy Syria's chemical weapons. Since 2010, she has also served as an Adjunct Professor in the Global Security Studies Program at Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C., where she designed and teaches and graduate course in Energy and Environmental Security. 

Dr. Leanne Piggott

Dr. Leanne Piggott is a graduate of the University of Oxford and the University of Sydney and currently is the Director of Business Education at the University of Sydney Business School. There, she teaches political risk management as well as the relationships in energy, environment, politics and business, coinciding with her research interests, described as “the nexus between energy, food, and water security”. Her talents are in high demand today, and her expertise in the geopolitics of oil markets and off-shore investment strategies for food security ensures that NAFAC ’15 will certainly not be her last speaking engagement. Dr. Piggot is also a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, and has published works in national security and in conjunction with the RAND Corporation. We thank her for joining the panel.

Ambassador Reuben Brigety II

The Naval Academy welcomes back Ambassador Reuben Brigety II, a 1995 distinguished graduate and former Brigade Commander who earned a Pownall Scholarship, studying and earning his Masters and Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge, England. He is a member of the International Institute for Strategic Studies and a Life Member of the Council on Foreign Relations, where he earned the Council’s International Affairs Fellowship. He served as an assistant professor of government and politics at George Mason as well as the School of International Service at American University. He has researched with the Arms Division of the Human Rights Watch, and has been on research units within Afghanistan and Iraq. Most recently, he has served as the Representative of the United States to the African Union, and Permanent Representative of the United States to the UN Economic Commission of Africa, following stints as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State in the Bureau of African Affairs and in the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration.

CAPT David G. Manero, USN

Captain David Manero is the proud son of Carmen and Rosemary Manero, and a native of Highland Park, New Jersey. He was awarded a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in 1988, designated a Naval Aviator in July 1989, and is now a Navy Foreign Area Officer (FAO).  CAPT Manero has made numerous operational deployments to the Middle East, Asia, and South and Central America. A Developmental Test Pilot, he has accumulated over 3900 flight hours in over 35 different aircraft types, and 69 combat missions during Operation Desert Storm.  He completed his Command Tour with the VT-2 “Doerbirds” where his squadron earned the Chief of Naval Education and Training (CNATRA) 2006 Training Excellence Award, the 2006 Vice Admiral Goldthwaite Award for the best training squadron in the Navy (out of 27), and the 2006 Chief of Naval Operations Aviation Safety Award.  CAPT Manero completed an afloat staff tour as Flag Lieutenant for Commander, Carrier Group ONE where he was a member of the Pacific AOR flyaway Joint Forces Air Component Commander.  He also served as Legislative Fellow and later as Military Legislative Assistant to United States Senate Minority Leader Trent Lott.  He successfully guided two major divisions at the US European Command in Stuttgart, Germany, first as Chief, Security Cooperation Programs (ECJ5-SCP) where he was responsible for oversight of $200 million in annual security assistance, and finally as Chief, European Division (ECJ5-E) where he coordinated US military policy for Western European nations, the Baltic states, and the Balkans.  He recently completed a tour in Moscow as the U.S. Naval Attaché to the Russian Federation. In addition to graduate level flight training at the United States Naval Test Pilot School, CAPT Manero has earned advanced degrees centered on international affairs and strategy from Harvard University, and the Air War College where he graduated with academic distinction. He is a designated Acquisition Professional.  His personal awards include the Defense Superior Service Medal (2), the Meritorious Service Medal (2), Air Medal (2 - Strike Flight), Navy Commendation Medal (6; 2 with Combat V), Navy Achievement Medal, and the Combat Action Ribbon.  CAPT Manero is currently dual-hatted as Chief of the Regional Affairs and Integration Branches in the OPNAV International Engagement Division (N52), where he also serves as the Navy FAO Community Senior Policy Advisor.  He resides with his family in Northern Virginia.


Keynote: Dr. Kurt Campbell

The Naval Academy is honored to present Dr. Kurt Campbell, Chairman and CEO of The Asia Group, and former Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs. Amidst his work at think tanks and within the United States Government, including as CEO and co-founder of the Center for a New American Security and Director of the Aspen Strategy Group, Dr. Campbell has seen firsthand the wide-ranging security challenges and obstacles in today’s international affairs. Kurt Campbell was a “central figure in advancing the US-China relationship and was a key player in the historic normalization of bilateral ties between the United States and Burma/Myanmar”, and has been a strong advocate of the primacy of the resource and climate battles that face the United States and societies around the globe.  He has published numerous studies and books, and was appointed an Honorary Officer of the Order of Australia for service to strengthening bilateral relations between Australia and the United States of America, as well as an honorary Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit. He has served as Henry A. Kissinger Chair in National Security Policy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and taught public policy and international relations at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. The Naval Academy is proud to have him present our third day’s Keynote Address.


Panel 3: Resource Conflict

Ambassador James B. Smith

James B. Smith is the former United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia.  He was sworn in by President Obama on September 16, 2009 and he left his post on September 27, 2013.  Prior to his appointment, Ambassador Smith worked for the Raytheon Company on corporate strategic planning, aircraft manufacturing, and international business development.  Ambassador Smith graduated is a distinguished graduate of the United States Air Force Academy’s Class of 1974.  There, he was awarded the Richard I. Bong award as the Outstanding Cadet in Military History and he went on to receive his Masters in History from Indiana University and later attended the Naval War College, the Air Command and Staff College and the National War College.  Ambassador Smith spent 28 years in the United States Air Force and as a fighter pilot he logged over 4000 hours of flight time.  He commanded the 94th Fighter Squadron, the 325th Operations Group and the 18th Fighter Wing and served as the Air Force Chair and Professor of Military Strategy at the National War College.

Dr. Michael Klare

Michael Klare is a prolific author on resources, conflict, and the environment. He is the Five College Professor of Peace and World Security Studies (a joint appointment at Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke, Smith Colleges and the University of Massachusetts at Amherst), and director of the Five College Program in Peace and World Security Studies at Hampshire College in Amherst, Massachusetts. Beyond his books and monographs, Klare also serves as the defense correspondent for The Nation and has written for Current HistoryForeign AffairsLe Monde Diplomatique, the Los Angeles TimesNewsweek, the New York TimesScientific American, and Technology Review. He received a B.A. and M.A. from Columbia University and a PhD. from the Graduate School of the Union Institute, and is highly cited and respected in this ever-growing field examining the connections and expanse of resources, scarcity, and conflict. The Naval Academy is privileged to have him join this panel.

Ward E Scott II, Esq

Ward Scott is the Founder and Managing Partner of the international commercial law firm Scott Advocates LLP, based in Kabul, Afghanistan, with offices in Washington, DC, USA. He is a member of the New Hampshire Bar Association, the American Bar Association, and the International Bar Association, and is a highly respected and experienced litigator, appellate counsel, and negotiator. He works in white collar crime, commercial, land use, real estate, and many successful state Supreme Court appeals and jury trials and investigative inquiries. In Afghanistan, Mr Scott has served as NATO Senior Advisor for Parliamentary Affairs to the Minister of Interior, and successfully developed, in collaboration with his Afghan colleagues, a newly structured Department for Parliamentary Affairs. He subsequently appeared before the Internal Security Commission of the Wolesi Jirga, to brief the Commission on the new, best practices scheme. He has served as Chairman of the Legal Committee of the International Reform Working Group and Chairman of the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) of the American Embassy in Kabul, and has 34 years of active and reserve service as a retired Marine Infantry Colonel. 

Brigadier General Gregg P. Olson, USMC

Brigadier General Gregg P. Olson grew up in Cumberland, RI, Montreal, Canada and Westlake Village, CA. He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant following graduation from the United States Naval Academy in 1985. Brigadier General Olson is a career infantry officer who has commanded rifle platoons, rifle, weapons and headquarters companies, an infantry battalion and a Marine Expeditionary Unit. He holds a secondary Military Occupational Specialty as an embarkation officer and is a graduate of the Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron One Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course. In 1986, he was assigned to 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, where he served as a Rifle Platoon Commander, Battalion Embarkation Officer, Rifle Company Executive Officer and Rifle Company Commander. He deployed with BLT 2/1 with both the 13th Marine Amphibious Unit (MAU) and the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, Special Operations Capable (MEU(SOC)). In 1989, then-First Lieutenant Olson was assigned to Marine Barracks, Washington, D.C., where he served as Ceremonial Platoon Commander, Ceremonial Company Executive Officer and on both the battalion and parade staffs. In 1992, then-Captain Olson attended Amphibious Warfare School. Upon graduation in 1993, he was assigned to 3rd Battalion, 2nd Marines, where he served as Headquarters and Services Company Commander, Weapons Company Commander and S-3 Operations Officer. While with 3/2, he deployed as part of 26th MEU(SOC) and conducted migrant relief operations in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba with Joint Task Force 160. Then-Major Olson was assigned to duty as a Faculty Advisor at Amphibious Warfare School in 1996. In 1999, he attended the College of Naval Command and Staff in Newport, Rhode Island. Upon graduation in 2000, he was assigned as the S-3 Operations Officer for 15th MEU(SOC). While with the 15th MEU(SOC), he deployed to Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom in 2001 and to Iraq for Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003. Then-Lieutenant Colonel Olson took command of 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines in July 2003; the battalion deployed to Fallujah, Iraq in February, 2004. Upon relinquishing command of 2/1, he was assigned as G-3 Operations Officer for 1st Marine Division. In 2005, then-Lieutenant Colonel Olson attended the National War College. Upon graduation, he was assigned as the Director for Senate Liaison, Office of Legislative Affairs, Headquarters Marine Corps. Then-Colonel Olson assumed command of the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) in June, 2008. Upon return from deployment to the Western Pacific, he relinquished command and reported to the Joint Staff for duty as Assistant Deputy Director for Regional Operations (J-33). Brigadier General Olson’s decorations include the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star with "V" device and one gold star, the Meritorious Service Medal with three gold stars, the Navy Marine Corps Commendation Medal, the Combat Action Ribbon and the Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with one silver and two bronze stars in lieu of 8th award. Brigadier General Olson is married to a former Navy Nurse Corps officer. During July 2012, he assumed his current duties as the Deputy Commander for Marine Forces Central Command.

Closing Speaker Major General Arthur Denaro, CBE DL

Major General Arthur Denaro was born in Sungei Patani, Malaya and raised in County Donegal, Republic of Ireland.  His distinguished career began when he was commissioned into the Queen's Royal Irish Hussars; his life as a young officer included commanding tank troops in the British Army and being involved in clandestine operations worldwide with UK Special Forces. Prestigious appointments during his career included commanding his Regiment in the War to Liberate Kuwait, and becoming Chief of Staff of 44,000 troops during the Balkans conflict. (The troops were drawn from no less than 31 different nations and they had to operate in a particularly complex and often cruel environment. Major General Denaro's role included ensuring international relations were maintained despite fraught and often dangerous events.) Towards the end of his career, he became Commandant of the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst for three years where he trained international graduates in the art of leadership and the skills of management. He was also the Middle East adviser to the Secretary of State for Defence for six years until 2002. After retiring from the British Army, Major General Denaro served as Adviser to the Crown Prince of Bahrain, Salman bin Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa, from 2003 to 2007.  In 2007, he joined the Strategic Real Estate Advisors and the Inspirational Development Group. Major General Denaro is now a motivational speaker, mentor, advisor and consultant.

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