Advisory Board

Steve Tarnowsky

Steven Tarnowsky has over 30 years of EV experience with General Motors (GM). From 2016 through 2022, Steven progressed through the following executive positions before retiring in August: Director of Global Transmission & Electrification Advanced Engineering, Director of EV Charging and Infrastructure, Chief Engineer of Global Electric Propulsion Systems and Director of Global Battery Cell Engineering. Steven has held various electrified propulsion engineering and leadership roles across numerous vehicle programs, including the EV1, Chevrolet Volt and Chevrolet Bolt. Prior to GM, he was a Systems Engineer with GM Hughes Electronics which included four years on the NASA Magellan mission to Venus and four years as a system engineering consultant to GM. Steven has a BSEE from University of Michigan an MSEE from USC and is a Michigan licensed Professional Engineer.

Alireza Khaligh

Director of the Maryland Power Electronics Laboratory (MPEL) at the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) Department and the Institute for Systems Research (ISR) in the University of Maryland at College Park (UMCP).

Prof. Alireza Khaligh is a Professor and the Director of the Maryland Power Electronics Laboratory (MPEL) at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) and the Institute for Systems Research (ISR) in the University of Maryland at College Park (UMD). He is also the Founder and President of AmpX Technologies, Inc., a cutting edge technology development company, committed to design and develop highly reliable and cost-effective power electronic systems for automotive, industrial and consumer electronics sectors.

Prof. Khaligh’s major research interests include modeling, analysis, design, and control of power electronic converters for transportation electrification, renewable energies and wearable electronics. He is an author/co-author of more than 200 journal and conference papers, two books, as well as over 20 patents and invention disclosures. He has graduated 14 Ph.D. students and 10 M.Sc. students, who have shown remarkable success and secured key positions in prestigious institutions and R&D organizations such as DOE’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Tesla Motors, QualComm, Apple, Texas Instruments, Infineon, GE Global Research, Rivian, Seres (former SF Motors), Arizona State University, and Regal Beloit, among many others.

Prof. Khaligh is a recipient of various recognitions including 2020 Jimmy Lin Award for Innovation from Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UMD, 2019 Outstanding Systems Engineering Faculty Award from the Institute for Systems Research at UMD, 2018 Jimmy Lin Award for Innovation from ECE at UMD, 2017 Overall Invention of the Year Award from Office of Technology Commercialization at UMD, 2016 E. Robert Kent Junior Faculty Teaching Award from Clark School of Engineering at UMD, three Best Vehicular Electronics Awards from IEEE Vehicular Electronics Society (VTS), and 2010 Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award from Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), among many others.

Prof. Khaligh was the General Chair of the 2016 IEEE Applied Power Electronic Conference and Expo (APEC), the Global Premier Event in Applied Power Electronics. He was also the General Chair of the 2013 IEEE Transportation Electrification Conference and Expo (ITEC), and the Program Chair of the 2011 IEEE Vehicle Power and Propulsion Conference (VPPC). Prof. Khaligh was the Area Editor for “Vehicular Electronics and Systems Area” of IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology, an Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Power Electronics, and an Associate Editor for IEEE journal of Emerging and Selected Topics in Power Electronics. He is currently the Deputy Editor-in-Chief for IEEE Transactions on Transportation Electrification (TTE).

Douglas Nelson

Ph.D., Virginia Polytechnic Institute

Douglas J. Nelson received the B.S.M.E. degree in 1978 and the M.S.M.E. degree in 1979 from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. He then worked for two years as a systems engineer for Exxon Corporation, Solar Thermal Systems Division before returning to full-time graduate study. He received the Ph.D. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Arizona State University in 1986 where he worked on research applied to open cycle solar absorption cooling systems.

He is currently Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Virginia. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in Fuel Cell Systems, Hydrogen Energy Systems, Advanced Technology Vehicles and Design. He is the co-director of the Dept. of Energy GATE Center for Automotive Fuel Cell Systems, a multidisciplinary graduate automotive engineering program that focuses on technologies critical to the development of fuel efficient/low-emission vehicles. He has expertise in modeling, testing, and validation of a fuel cell and hybrid and electric vehicles and components. He is also working on hydrogen energy systems and well to-wheels analysis of transportation fuels. He consults for industry on the design and simulation of hybrid and electric vehicles.

Jason Heron

Peachtree Power

Jason is also CEO of Peachtree Power Inc. who are currently engaged in Solar, biofuel and hydrogen technology development. Jason has over fifteen years of experience in new product development and market commercialization. His career started in high volume battery manufacturing where he held engineering and management roles within Quality, Sales, Engineering and New Product Development. Within that industry Jason was responsible for the startup of the world’s first high volume Lithium Polymer battery production line.

More recently Jason’s career branched into renewable energy, where he was part of the team that developed the ENV, the first hydrogen powered motorcycle.

Jason holds an MBA from Cranfield School of Management (UK), a Post Graduate Diploma in Quality & Reliability and an Electrical and Electronic Engineering Degree from the University of Abertay, Dundee(UK).

Dr. Jewel B. Barlow

Director of the Glenn L. Martin Wind Tunnel, Department of Aerospace Engineering, Associate Professor Aerospace Engineering, The University of Maryland

Research in applied aerodynamics, experimental aerodynamics, flight mechanics and control, and the vehicle design process. He has published research at numerous automotive and aerospace conference proceedings.


  • B.S., Auburn University Engineering (Physics)
  • M.S., Auburn University (Aerospace Engineering)
  • Ph.D., University of Toronto (Aerospace Engineering)


Member of SAE Road Vehicle Aerodynamics Committee

​John H. Hornbostel

Director of Business Development, Dana Holding Corporation

John H. Hornbostel has worked in business development within the global automotive supply industry for more than 25 yrs. His experience includes management of and participation in cross-functional, global customer focused teams for development of engine, chassis and drivetrain product opportunities.

John also brings a global perspective and knowledge of the vehicle industry based on development of long-term face-to-face relationships with industry leading OEM’s, suppliers and joint venture partner companies.

Most recently, John's activities have also included development of sustainability initiatives for small business applications such as renewable energy, recycling and energy efficiency improvements for rural based facilities.

His passion for all things automotive includes a steady list of classic car restoration projects as well as the occasional vintage sports car race.

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