Director, Global Engine Engineering Ford Motor Company
Frank Abkenar has served as Director of Global Engine Engineering at Ford Motor Company since January 2018. Prior to that, Frank was the Director of Global Powertrain Strategy and Sustainability. Abkenar has over 27 years of experience in Powertrain at Ford and has held several leadership roles in Engine Engineering and Manufacturing, Powertrain Installation and Integration, and Powertrain Programs. Abkenar started his Ford career in the US in Engine Engineering. He has also held several leadership positions in Europe and Asia Pacific, which included launching several Engines and Transmissions in new manufacturing facilities in Brazil, India, and China. In his last international assignment as the Director of Asia Pacific Powertrain, Abkenar developed a strong team to deliver regional and global Powertrains and Programs for Ford. This included working extensively with Ford Joint Venture Partners in China. These experiences have provided a strong foundation for team building across geographic locations with deep awareness, sensitivity and appreciation of cultural norms and differences.
In addition to his professional experience, Abkenar has earned:
Vice President AVL North America
In his current role, Ray is responsible for strategic planning and industry relations for AVL North America. From 2003 to 2012, Corbin served as President of AVL Powertrain Engineering, Inc. where he was responsible for the Company’s powertrain engineering consultancy activities and the growth of the Company’s North American simulation software sales.
Prior to joining AVL, Corbin served as COO of Quantum Technologies, a Tier 1 supplier of alternative fuel and fuel cell technologies. He has also held senior management positions with Calsonic-Kansie and General Motors.
He is an active member of the SAE International including the NAIPC Leadership Team as well as the WCX Executive Planning Team. Corbin also is active as a volunteer with the Michigan Science Center located in Detroit, MI. He is a 2019 Recipient of SAE Forest R. McFarland Award.
Director of Advanced and SRT Powertrain FCA US LLC
Chris Cowland is currently Director of Advanced and SRT (Street and Racing Technology) Powertrain at FCA US LLC. He is responsible for future FCA powertrain technology and high performance powertrains for the SRT brand, including the 707 horsepower supercharged HEMI® Hellcat engine – winner of a 2015 Wards 10 Best Engines award, and also the 840 bhp Demon.
Prior to this role, Cowland was the Chief Engineer and Platform Director for the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine, the recipient of three Wards 10 Best Engines awards.
Previous to his tenure at FCA US, Cowland held the position of Technical Director at two of the major global powertrain consultants - AVL and Ricardo.
Cowland started his career in the automotive industry in 1981 as an apprentice at Perkins Engines. He held a number of engine design and development positions at Perkins and Lotus before moving to the US in 1996.
Cowland graduated with a Master of Science degree in Automotive Engineering from Cranfield University, Bedfordshire, England.
Vice President, Ford Global Powertrain Engineering Ford Motor Company
Mr. Filipe is Vice President, Global Powertrain Engineering since September, 2017.
He is responsible for the design and development of all powertrain engineering programs around the globe including Engine, Transmission, Driveline, Powertrain Installations, and Electrification programs.
In his 27 years with Ford, Mr. Filipe has held various positions within Product Development including several global leadership roles. Recent positions include Director of Global Engine Engineering where he helped develop Ford’s Ecoboost engines in North America and Europe. He also served as the Director of Transmission and Driveline Engineering where he led the initial development of the new 8 and 10 speed transmissions.
Mr. Filipe also served as Vehicle Line Director, North America trucks, large SUVs and commercial vehicles which included responsibility for overseeing the development of the 2017 Super Duty pickup truck, the 2018 Ford F-150, the all-new 2018 Expedition, 2019 Ranger, and the all-new Bronco.
Earlier positions within the company included Chief Engineer large gas engine programs, Chief Engineer small gas and diesel engine programs in Europe, and Assistant Vehicle Line Director for B-car vehicles in Asia Pacific.
Mr. Filipe graduated from Drexel University with a Master of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering and joined Ford as a Ford College Graduate. He also earned a Master of Business Administration from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.
Executive Director, Global Fuel Cell Business General Motors Company
Charlie has over 30 years of experience in propulsion systems, automotive, military, and aerospace businesses. At General Motors, he leads GM’s Global Fuel Cell Business unit– responsible for research, development, application engineering, laboratories, manufacturing and strategic external business initiatives. Charlie manages GM’s collaboration with Honda, established in 2013, to develop hydrogen fuel cell automotive products. On January 30, 2017, GM and Honda announced the establishment of the automotive industry’s first high volume fuel cell manufacturing joint venture, Fuel Cell System Manufacturing LLC, to mass produce an advanced hydrogen fuel cell system, for use in future products for each company. Charlie serves as a board member for this venture. During his career at GM, Charlie also served as Executive Director for Global Diesel Engine Engineering, and as the Chief Executive Officer of GM Defense LLC – GM’s new business structure that was formed to enhance productivity, agility, and affordability for the very dynamic defense industry.
Charlie is currently Chairman of H2USA – promoting hydrogen refueling infrastructure development for fuel cell electric vehicles in the United States. He also serves as Chairman of the Hydrogen Technical Advisory Committee, advising the Secretary of Energy and The United States Congress on hydrogen fuel cells and refueling infrastructure.
He began his career at Detroit Diesel Corporation in 1989, where he held multiple positions in the Advanced Engineering, Product Engineering, and Sales organizations. In 2001, he became Chief Engineer–Diesel Engines for Ford Motor Company. In 2003, he moved to General Motors Corporation as Executive Director for Global Diesel Engineering.
Charlie holds three degrees from the University of Michigan:
Charlie published multiple technical papers in the fields of internal combustion engines and fuel cells. He holds 16 U.S. patents with multiple additional patents pending. In 2000, he was honored by the Automotive Hall of Fame with the Young Leadership and Excellence Award. In 2018, Charlie received the SAE Edward N. Cole Award for Automotive Engineering Innovation.
Manager, Powertrain Performance Planning and Market Insights, Nissan Technical Center North America Nissan North America
David Ganss is manager of powertrain research and strategy activities at Nissan Technical Center North America in Farmington Hills, MI. In this role, Ganss is responsible for researching and analyzing trends in new powertrain technologies, consumer acceptance, and regulatory requirements to support management of Nissan’s North American vehicle and powertrain portfolio.
Previous to Nissan, Ganss was a Technology Advisor at the US EPA for 9 years, where he was extensively involved in development of the Light Duty GHG regulations. At EPA, he earned several awards including the Science Achievement Award and Gold Medal for Exceptional Service.
Ganss started his career at Chrysler, where he held positions in Emissions Certification and Advanced Engine Systems Development. In these positons, he was responsible for advanced emissions control development, benchmark testing, and certification development.
Ganss holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Detroit. In his spare time, he enjoys teaching high school students about engineering and fabricating by mentoring FIRST Robotics teams. He lives with his wife and kids in South Lyon, MI.
President LG Chem Michigan Inc. Tech Center
Denise Gray is President LG Chem Michigan Inc. Tech Center. (LGCMI TC), the North American subsidiary of lithium-ion battery maker, LG Chem (LGC), Korea. In this position, she has overall responsibility for strategic direction, engineering, and business development. Additionally, she is a member of LGCMI Board of Directors.
Prior to joining LG Chem, Gray served as Vice President of Electrification Powertrain Engineering at AVL List, GmbH, in Austria, where she was responsible for leveraging AVL’s global capability to provide electrification engineering services to the automotive industry. Prior to that, Gray was Vice President of Business Development for an electrified powertrain battery startup company in California targeting China’s New Energy Vehicle Market. The majority of her over 30-year professional career was spent at General Motors, where she spearheaded efforts in vehicle electrical, powertrain controls systems and software, including battery systems.
She also is active in several charitable organizations, including The March of Dimes, where she served as the organization’s chair in 2016, 2017 and 2018 for the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) Charity Preview.
Gray has been a proponent of the academic disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), and is a frequent participant at STEM events. Her strong support of the STEM curriculum has played a role in her appointment to Kettering University’s College of Engineering Dean’s Advisory Council.
Gray received a Master of Science in Engineering Management of Technology from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Kettering University.
Chief Technical Officer, Americas Schaeffler Group USA, Inc.
As chief technical officer for Schaeffler in the Americas, Jeff Hemphill is responsible for research and new product development for automotive transmission, engine, chassis as well as industrial components and systems. His scope of responsibilities also encompasses IT and digitalization functions, which include facilitating the integration of digital capability into Schaeffler’s new products and business models.
Jeff started his career at Schaeffler as a machinist and co-op student while earning a BSME from The University of Akron. He also holds an Executive Certificate in Strategy and Innovation from MIT. Jeff has over 30 years of experience in automotive and industrial product development, including manufacturing, product design, testing and vehicle development.
To date, Jeff has 79 patents filed or issued.
President Means Industries Inc.
In this role Jeremy steers and oversees the Propulsion Systems and Transform Products business units at Means globally. His broad and deep experience in the powertrain sector is helping ensure the execution of Means core technologies in today's high efficiency transmissions. In addition, a driving focus on technology development and application of leading-edge clutching products and driveline solutions for the future electrified propulsion systems including hybrid, EV, and eAxle systems. In addition as a member of the Amsted Industries leadership team Jeremy contributes to group strategy.
2012-2018 Global Vice President for business development, marketing, sales, application engineering and strategy at TREMEC SA de CV, as well as head of TREMEC’s U.S. business.
2007-2012 President, Technology Management Consulting LLC
2007-2011 President and CEO at NxtGen Emission Controls+
1997-2007 President Ricardo Inc and Executive Director at Ricardo PLC
Jeremy Holt has a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering, and a Master of Business Administration, both from the University of Bradford, England. He is a long-term member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), presently serving as a member of the leadership committee for the SAE North American Powertrain Conference.
Vice President of eMobility Navistar
Gary Horvat has over 35 years of experience in the automotive industry, with an educational background in both industrial and manufacturing engineering, including a Ph.D. in industrial engineering. Gary started his career at Eaton Corporation working on Heavy Duty Truck Axles and Transmissions. The majority of his career was at General Motors where he was responsible for the engine controls on the third-generation small block V8 and as assistant chief engineer, launched the 3900 V6 Engine, winning the Popular Mechanics “Breakthrough” Award. Gary’s last position at GM was as Executive Director of engineering operations, managing powertrain global development, testing and validation facilities. After his GM career he was Vice President of Product Development at Fisker Automotive as well as Vice President of Powertrain at DENSO International. Gary was the CTO at Proterra from 2015 through 2018. At Proterra, Horvat was responsible for all engineering and technology development for that company’s electric bus product line. Accomplishments included setting a world record of 1101.2 miles for the longest range of any electric vehicle on one charge. At Navistar, Horvat is responsible for augmenting and aligning Navistar’s eMobility team in all commercial, technical, and implementation activities for Navistar’s various product lines.
Director, 21st Century Truck Partnership U.S. Department of Energy
In the Vehicle Technologies Office, Mr. Howden is Director for the 21st Century Truck Partnership with four federal agencies and eleven heavy duty truck manufacturers and major suppliers. He manages Class-8 tractor-trailer development under the SuperTruck initiative with five OEM teams. In the light-duty area, he manages advanced engine development with the USCAR OEM partners and emission control development with the national laboratories and universities. He is a member and former co-chair of the USDRIVE Advanced Combustion and Emission Control Tech Team.
As a project leader with U.S. Army, Mr. Howden managed a multi-disciplinary team of scientists and engineers in the successful accelerated development, testing, production, and deployment of HEMMT 10-ton trucks with integrated power units for the PATRIOT Missile System. As a member of two NATO working groups, he also developed thermal infrared and millimeter wave countermeasures for tactical vehicles. He holds a BSME from Virginia Tech and an MEA from George Washington University.
President and CEO FEV North America, Inc.
Dr. Hupperich joined FEV in 1989 at the company’s headquarters in Germany. He earned his doctorate degree in Mechanical Engineering from Aachen Technical University in 1995. In 1998, Dr. Hupperich joined FEV North America where initially he became the program manager of a global engine development program for locomotive applications. Dr. Hupperich was assigned responsibility for FEV North America’s production development group in 2004, overseeing the development of various powertrain development programs for automotive, rail and marine application. In 2007, Dr. Hupperich was promoted to vice president with responsibility for commercial engines, advanced applications and testing solutions business units, and in 2013 was named president and CEO of FEV North America. With a total 500 employees at its Technical Center in Auburn Hills, Michigan, and an office in Sunnyvale, California, FEV North America provides engineering services that range from engine and transmission development, vehicle integration, calibration and homologation of vehicle powertrains to development of hybrid and electric propulsion systems. Expanding FEV’s engineering support towards full vehicle development from concept to production, Dr. Hupperich plays a key role championing the company’s rapid growth in consulting, optimization of electronic control systems, design and testing of connected vehicle systems as well as the development of autonomous vehicles.
Since 2017, Dr. Hupperich is also a member of the Operative Council of FEV Group GmbH. The FEV Group employs over 6,000 highly qualified specialists in modern development centers close to its global customers at more than 40 locations on four continents.
Chief Technology and Innovation Officer Ricardo plc
Professor Neville Jackson is responsible for the future vision for mobility, energy & resource efficiency technologies at Ricardo and the associated research agenda and strategy to deliver this vision.
A graduate of Imperial College, London, his career has included 37 years at Ricardo focused on research and technology demonstration programmes covering advanced combustion engines, hybrid and electric systems and energy recovery technologies. He is also responsible for a wide range of Technology Roadmaps to define future technology and R&D needs to meet environmental and socio-economic goals. His work at Ricardo has included many initiatives to create new innovative technologies and research collaborations with government, academia and industrial partners.
Neville Jackson was awarded a Doctor of Science degree from City University London in 2012 and has been a visiting Professor at the University of Brighton since 2007. He serves as Chair of the Advisory Board for the UK Advanced Propulsion Centre, Deputy chair for the UK Auto Council Technology Group, Vice Chair of the European Road Transport Research Advisory Council (ERTRAC) and a member of the Advisory Board for the European Green Vehicles Initiative (EGVI). He is also a Fellow of the UK Royal Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the US SAE.
President, Powertrain Solutions North America; Market Segments of Passenger Cars & Electric Vehicles Robert Bosch LLC
Sujit Jain, president Powertrain Solutions North America, leads Robert Bosch, LLC’s market segments of Passenger Cars & Electric Vehicles. He is responsible for the business activities in North America -- including manufacturing, engineering, finance and sales. Previously, he served as regional president of the gasoline systems division from December 2006 and held the position of senior vice president, powertrain – gasoline and transmission systems, Robert Bosch Corporation Automotive Group beginning July 2000.
Prior to joining Bosch, Jain served as director, engine management systems and components group, for Denso America. He has also held positions at Walbro Corporation, Unidynamics Corporation, Carter Carburetor, and Gabriel India Ltd.
Jain holds a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering from Visvesvaraya Regional College of Engineering, Nagpur, India, and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Florida Institute of Technology.
He is a member of the University of Michigan College of Engineering’s Visiting Committee; a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE), and has been a member of the Executive Leadership Team and Organizing Committee for the SAE North American International Powertrain Conference since 2005.
Bosch designs and produces precision automotive components and systems sold to vehicle and powertrain manufacturers worldwide. These include systems and components for gasoline and diesel injection, airbag components, ABS and conventional brake systems, as well as small motors, electrical and electronic equipment.
Robert Bosch LLC, the wholly owned subsidiary of Robert Bosch GmbH, is responsible for North American operations. Robert Bosch GmbH is headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany.
Director, North American Powertrain Hyundai/Kia America Technical Center Inc.
John Juriga, Director of Powertrain North America, oversees North American:
Powertrain operations include conventional Powertrains as well as Eco friendly vehicles such as HEV/PHEV/EVs and Fuel Cell electric vehicles.
John, began his professional career at General Motors Chevrolet Engineering in 1983 after graduating from the University of Michigan with a BSME focusing on Internal combustion engine design. He spent the first 9 years at GM in the engine development laboratories and design teams. In 1992 he became the V8 passenger car design and development manager. Over the next 6 years he would hold several positions focusing on the Powertrain development and integration into the vehicle. In 1999 he was promoted to the position of Assistant Chief Engineer for the Passenger Car V8 engines at General Motors. In 2003 Mr. Juriga joined the Hyundai Motor Group as Sr. Manager for Engine Development at the Hyundai/Kia America technical center in Ann Arbor Michigan. In 2006 he was promoted to Director of Powertrain at Hyundai/Kia. He oversees the Powertrain development activities in North America including the Ann Arbor Powertrain Laboratory, Engineering support for American manufacturing plants in Alabama and Georgia. He is also responsible for Powertrain Development in the California Labs. California is the center for the Powertrain North American “Eco” vehicle development. This development includes tuning and validation for all of the Hyundai / Kia HEVs, PHEVs, EVs and FCEVs.
Vice President and Head of Transmission and Driveline Powertrain FCA North America
Jeff Lux was appointed Vice President and Head - Transmission and Driveline Powertrain, FCA - North America in March, 2014. In this role he has responsibility for the design, development and release of all transmissions and driveline systems for FCA’s North American products. Recent products include the eFlite transmission used in the Pacifica Hybrid which won Ward’s 10 Best in 2017 and 2018. In April, 2019 Lux was also asked to lead Powertrain Coordination globally for FCA.
Lux joined FCA from General Motors, where he was responsible for Global Powertrain Quality. Prior to this, he held a series of powertrain engineering positions in engines, transmissions and calibration/controls. Lux has worked overseas for much of his career with assignments in Japan, Australia, China and Germany, where he was Vice President of Powertrain Europe. Lux is an active member of SAE and has been a member of the Executive Committee for the SAE Global Leadership Conference since 2015.
Lux holds a Master of Business Administration from Michigan State University (2002), a Master of Science in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (1989) and a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Cornell University (1986).
Senior Manager, Powertrain Performance Planning and Market Insights, Nissan Technical Center North America Nissan North America
Richard Madden is a senior manager at Nissan Technical Center North America where he leads powertrain technology, market research and performance design. This role includes powertrain technology research, regulatory research, and fuels research, as well as setting the powertrain direction for drivability, acceleration performance, NVH, fuel economy, and 4WD/AWD performance.
Madden’s interest in the automotive industry started in the back of a speed shop balancing and building high-performance engines. Driven by his desire to know more, he received a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Trine University in Angola, Indiana.
Before Nissan, Madden held engineering and design positions at Eaton Corporation, where he developed concept valvetrain systems and led structural and kinematic analysis activities. Both included development and analysis of cam phasing, multi-valve lift, engine braking, and cylinder deactivation devices for passenger car and heavy-duty powertrains.
In his previous roles at Nissan, Madden has held responsibilities for powertrain systems development, engine component design and testing, as well as 4WD/AWD systems design and performance.
Vice President, Global Electrification, Controls, Software and Electronics General Motors
Dan Nicholson was appointed General Motors Vice President, Global Electrification, Controls, Software and Electronics in January 2019. He is responsible for all electrified propulsion products including batteries and electric drive units. He is also responsible for all electronic control systems and strategies, software and associated electronic hardware for all General Motors products globally. Prior to that, Dan was General Motors vice president, Global Propulsion Systems. In that role he was responsible for all propulsion products including engines, transmissions, fuel cells, electric drive units and batteries.
Nicholson began his General Motors career as a co-op student at Buick Motor Division in 1982. He has an extensive background in product engineering at GM and has progressed through a series of leadership positions including director of controller integration, director of engine calibration, chief engineer for V-8 engines, managing director of GM Powertrain-Germany GmbH, executive director for global powertrain embedded controls, vice president of Global Quality and vice president of Global Powertrain.
Nicholson earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from General Motors Institute (now Kettering University), a Master of Science in mechanical engineering from Texas A&M University and a Master of Business Administration from Stanford University.
Nicholson is a registered professional engineer in the state of Michigan. He is an SAE Fellow, president of the Engineering Society of Detroit, chair of the Trustees for the SAE Foundation, past president of FISITA and was recognized as a 2019 Automotive News All-Star.
Jupiter Consulting LLC
Doug Patton currently runs his own consulting company Jupiter Consulting LLC. In 2018 he was Sr Technical Advisor at DENSO and prior to that he was Executive VP Engineering and NA CTO at DENSO, where he directed product development and research activity in North America. He was President of the Engineering Society of Detroit 2016-2018, President of the DENSO Foundation (2007-2018) and the 2017 President of SAE International. He has 30 plus years of automotive experience including sales and marketing; engineering management including both product development, R&D; and innovation road mapping. The product ranges include thermal, Powertrain, electrical (including power electronics, motors and battery management for HEV, PHEV and BEV), electronic, hybrid and autonomous drive related products (including sensing systems, HMI and intergration I to the vehicle).
Patton earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering in 1977 and a Master of Business Administration degree in 1984, both from Bradley University in Peoria, Illinois.
Director, Automotive Business SAE International
David Porreca is the Director of Automotive Business for SAE International and also serves as the Executive Director of the Defense Automotive Technologies Consortium (DATC), which is part of SAE-ITC and SAE International.
Dave is responsible for the establishment and maintenance of positive and productive working relationships with key automotive executives at corporations, government entities and sister engineering societies around the world. Additionally, Dave is responsible for identifying new products and business opportunities for SAE.
Prior to serving in this position at SAE, Dave was the Manufacturing and Technical Program Manager and then later the Engineering Meetings Manager for SAE. As the Engineering Meetings Manager, Dave had responsibility for the technical content and organization of all SAE Technical Conferences, to include the SAE Congress.
Before joining SAE, Dave was the Executive Director of the National Coalition for Advanced Manufacturing (NACFAM) in Washington, D.C.
Dave’s spent fourteen years working in the private sector. He was the President and Chief Executive Officer of Anderson Mavor, an international manufacturer of longwall mining machinery. He also served as Chief Executive Officer of Mountaineer Euclid, a heavy equipment distributor for Ingersoll Rand, Komatsu, Euclid, O&K, Trojan and Grove products.
Dave is a 1970 engineering graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point and received his Masters Degree in Business Administration from Augusta College, in Augusta, Georgia.
Senior Vice President, Research and Development and 2019 NAIPC Chairperson Nissan Technical Center North America
Chris Reed is senior vice president, Research and Development, Nissan Technical Center North America (NTCNA), a position to which he was appointed in April 2019. In this role he is responsible for all vehicle engineering and development operations in North America.
Previously, Reed was vice president, Platform and Technology Engineering, where he was responsible for Powertrain, Electrical, and Audio/IT engineering groups. He also served as the Overseas Chief Vehicle Engineer (OCVE) for Nissan LEAF, Murano and Pathfinder as well as the INFINITI QX60, at NTCNA.
Reed joined Nissan North America in 1988 as an entry-level engineer in the body design group. From 2011 to 2013, he worked in safety and then exterior/accessories while being OCVE of trucks. He also spent more than two years in Japan to help lead development on an all-new Nissan Murano. From 1999 to 2007, Reed was self-employed as a home builder and ran a small automotive parts supplier.
Reed holds a mechanical engineering degree from Virginia Tech. He is based at NTCNA in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
Vice President, Advanced Technology Roush Industries Inc.
Gary W. Rogers is currently Vice President, Advanced Technology at Roush Industries, Inc. He was previously, Director of Research at the Oakland University School of Engineering and Computer Science, following his retirement after an almost 29 year career as President and CEO of FEV, Inc. He also served as Executive Vice President of FEV GmbH, Aachen Germany. He recently completed two terms on the Board on Energy and Environmental Systems at the National Academies and has served on many technology assessment committees for the National Research Council of the National Academies. He is an SAE Fellow and was a founding member of the NAIPC Executive Leadership Team.
Powertrain Executive Program Manager, Powertrain Planning & Research, Corporate Strategy & Planning Toyota Motor North America Inc.
Ben Schlimme is the Executive Program Manager with Toyota Motor North America. There he leads a team overseeing Powertrain Planning & Research within R&D and Corporate Strategy & Planning.
Mr. Schlimme’s responsibilities include development of Toyota’s North American long term powertrain strategy as well as overseeing powertrain research.
Mr. Schlimme began his career at Toyota in 1991, when he joined Toyota Motor Sales in their Finance Division responsible for daily cash management. From there he has held various positions including the launch of Lexus’s Certified Used Car Program, Lexus Product Planning and Toyota Truck Product Planning. In 1997 Mr. Schlimme joined Toyota Technical Center to support the development of the first V8 truck engine. In this role he was responsible for ensuring the calibration and tuning met North American market needs. In 2003 he was promoted to lead their Powertrain Planning function which he grew into to the development of Powertrain Planning & Research Department in 2013. Most recently his role was expanded to bridge R&D and Corporate Strategy within North America in development for powertrain strategy.
Mr. Schlimme relocated his family to North Dallas, coinciding with Toyota corporate headquarters relocation in 2016. Having spent the previous 28-years in Southern California, earning a Bachelor of Science degree in International Finance from the University of Southern California, the change from the beaches of Southern California to the expansiveness of Dallas has been “a refreshing change”.
Senior Sales Manager, Powertrain Systems BMW North America
Dietrich Sneideraitis is the Senior Sales Manager for Powertrain Systems Business Customers and is responsible for all BMW Powertrain Systems sales in North America. Dietrich joined the BMW Group in 2009. Dietrich has over 30 years of experience in Engineering, Sales and Management positions within the Automotive Powertrain Sector. He began his career at Chrysler Corporation in 1983 in Automatic Transmission Development. Additional Powertrain related experience was gained with various companies, including ZF North America and Behr America.
Dietrich earned a Master of Business Administration degree from Wayne State University in 1989 and a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Oakland University in 1983, and has been a member of SAE since 1983.
Chief Scientist Mobility and Director Shell Global Solutions
Dr. Wolfgang Warnecke was appointed Shell’s Chief Scientist Mobility in May 2011. His expertise in all forms of mobility, vehicle technology, fuels and lubricants sees him advising on technology strategy, championing science, R&D and innovation, enhancing Shell’s technical reputation in the fast-changing area of mobility and looking ahead to future solutions.
Wolfgang studied mechanical engineering at the Technical University of Hannover, specialising in automotive combustion engines, and gained a PhD in automotive engineering from Hamburg Technical University in 1987.
Since joining Shell on graduation, Wolfgang has gained extensive experience in Germany and the UK as a scientist and business leader in the fields of lubricant development, engine testing and vehicle technology, technical services for lubricants, and fuels marketing.
In 2005, Wolfgang, together with Dr Wolfgang Steiger of Volkswagen, was awarded the “Professor Ferdinand Porsche Prize”, considered by many to be the world’s most prestigious award for automotive engineers, for their work on synthetic fuels development.
Senior Vice President, Powertrain Continental North America
Kregg Wiggins is Senior Vice President of Continental’s Powertrain Division and is responsible for overseeing the three business units in North America: Engine & Drivetrain Systems, Powertrain Components, and Hybrid Electric Vehicles. Wiggins is located in Auburn Hills, Mich., where the team focuses on aligning innovative and efficient system solutions that impact every aspect of a vehicle’s drivetrain.
Previously, Wiggins held a variety of assignments including Global Key Account representative for worldwide sales for the General Motors account and Vice President of Powertrain – North America, responsible for all powertrain activities, including sensors, electronic controls, drivetrain and transmission.
Wiggins began his career with Siemens in 1985 and has held various positions with the company including a long-term foreign delegation at the company’s headquarters in Regensburg, Germany, as the Powertrain division’s program manager. He also held engineering and management positions related to engine, advanced technology, powertrain and vehicle electronic systems products.
Wiggins earned a master’s degree in Business Administration from The College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Va., and a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind. He is a member of the North American International Powertrain Conference (NAIPC) leadership team, and a visiting committee member for the University of Michigan – Dearborn College of Engineering and Computer Science.