Board of Directors
Ross M. Patten
Ross M. Patten is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Agilyx. He brings more than thirty-five years of executive experience in the solid waste, wastewater, and waste-to-energy sectors. Most recently, Mr. Patten served as President and Chief Executive Officer of MaxWest Environmental Systems, a leading renewable energy company specializing in wastewater to energy systems.
Mr. Patten is the former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Synagro Technologies. During his tenure with Synagro Technologies, he grew the company to become the largest publicly-traded processor of sewage sludge in the United States. Synagro was later sold to the private equity firm, The Carlyle Group, and taken private in 2007. Since 1994, Mr. Patten has also been a Partner of Bedford Capital, a merchant banking and advisory firm with expertise in the waste management and forest product industries. He has also held executive leadership positions with CDR Industries, Resource NE, Browning-Ferris Industries and Wheelabrator Technologies (a division of Waste Management).
Mr. DeWhitt is the Chief Technology Officer of Agilyx Corporation. Prior to founding Agilyx, he worked for 20 years in the analytical chemistry industry for a number of independent laboratories. Having worked in the field of thermolytic/pyrolytic science for the past 10 years, he has been able to leverage his education and experience to invent and further develop the (now patented) Anaerobic Thermal Reclamation (ATR) process. He has been working exclusively on perfecting the ATR process for the past four years.
Mr. DeWhitt holds two Bachelor of Science degrees in Chemistry and Physics from Oregon State University, spent an additional year studying Physics at the University of Stuttgart in Germany and returned from Germany to study Chemistry in Oregon State University's graduate degree program for one year before beginning his professional career.
Saffron Hill Ventures
Prior to co-founding Saffron Hill Ventures, Mr. Bhatia worked as Advisor to the Chairman of Loot Ltd. where he advised on e-commerce strategy and investment and in a venture capital capacity for Lord Rothschild, evaluating technology venture opportunities. While at Loot he worked closely with business partners and financiers to structure Loot's strategic and financial requirements in preparation for sale. Mr. Bhatia has had a long term interest in environmental technology and policy, and worked in the environment and energy consulting groups at Booz-Allen & Hamilton, and Dyncorp-Meridian, and as an intern in Vice President Al Gore's White House Office on Environmental Policy.
Mr. Bhatia earned an MBA from UCLA's Anderson School of Business, an MA in International Relations and Economics from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), and a BA in Environmental Science from Occidental College.
Chrysalix Energy Capital
Michael Brown is an entrepreneur who has been in the Canadian venture capital industry for more than 40 years. He is Co-Founder (in 2001) and Chairman of the Board of Chrysalix Energy Venture Capital. Mr. Brown was previously co-founder and President of Ventures West Capital Ltd., which became Canada's largest private early-stage technology fund.
Mr. Brown has been directly invovled in several early-stage companies in this mandate area. Notably, he was the first venture investor in Ballard Power Systems, Inc. in 1987 and remained on its Board until 1998. He was co-founder and Director of Cellex Power Products, Inc., and was a Director of Questair Technologies Inc. and other private companies, some of which he also co-founded. He was also the first venture investor and Chair of MDI Mobile Data International Inc., an early wireless data products company, a Director of MacDonald Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. and several other public companies. He was a co-founder of Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Canada, and of the Canadian Task Force on Early Stage Funding, and has been on several government committees on technology and securities matters. Mr. Brown is a published author and speaker on topics such as climate change, alternate energy technology, and venture capital.
Mr. Brown graduated from UBC in 1960, BA (Hons Economics). He attended Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar (BA (PPE) 1962). In 2000, the Science Council of BC named Mr. Brown as the winner of the Cecil Green Award for Entrepreneurialism, and the following year the Vancouver Board of Trade named him one of eight B.C. Pioneers of Innovation. In 2005 he received the "Pioneer Award" from the Cleantech Venture Network.
Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers
Mr. Deshpande joined KPCB in April 2008 and focuses on Greentech with special emphasis on technologies related water, waste, fuels/chemicals and sustainable agriculture.
At KPCB, Mr. Deshpande serves on the board of directors of Harvest, a company focused on next generation waste management technologies. Mr. Deshpande is also on the board of directors of the KPCB's first water investment, APTwater. Mr. Deshpande is also on the board of directors 3 other ventures all in the water or waste sectors and closely involved with KPCB investments in Siluria, Hara Software and Next Autoworks.
Prior to KPCB, Mr. Deshpande spent 3 years at Black River and Cargill Ventures, both investment oriented business units of the private agribusiness, Cargill, Inc. While at Cargill, Mr. Deshpande focused on Greentech investment throughout the energy, water and agricultural supply chain. Mr. Deshpande was directly involved with investments and initiatives in multiple Greentech verticals including solar, next generation fuels, sustainable agriculture, industrial biotech, waste/environmental sciences and carbon markets. Mr. Deshpande was also responsible for maintaining relationships with key innovative business units within Cargill and tracking innovation in Greentech both inside and outside of the organization. Prior to Cargill, Mr. Deshpande was an entrepreneur having founded an agricultural biotechnology company focused on novel germplasm in high value vegetable crops as well as companies in the water sector and educational services sector. In this, Mr. Deshpande has extensive experience in writing business plans, fundraising and guiding strategy for new enterprises at all stages of development.
Mr. Deshpande has a BS in Chemical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign. Mr. Deshpande also has an MBA from Cornell University where he was a Park Fellow, receiving a full tuition merit based scholarship based on future leadership potential in business world.
Bob Simpson comes to Agilyx with a strong financial background. Before retiring in late 2011, Simpson served as both Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Waste Management. He was responsible for the Company’s accounting, strategy, business improvement, internal audit, investor relations, tax, treasury, risk management, real estate and financial analysis functions. Prior to being elected CFO in March 2004, Simpson was Waste Management’s Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer.
Ram G. Narula
Narula Energy & Environment Consultants
Ram Narula brings nearly 50 years of Engineering, Procurement and Construction experience in conventional power generation, alternative energy and waste to energy projects. After 38 years with Bechtel Power Corporation, Mr. Narula recently retired as Vice President/Principal Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. He was responsible for technology risk assessment and mitigation, establishing performance guarantees and positioning the company for emerging technology, regulatory and public policy trends. He championed innovation and technical excellence, and provided functional oversight of over 150 distinguished senior technical specialists and scientists.
Mr. Narula was elected a Bechtel Fellow, a rare distinction, based on his contributions to the company as well as to the engineering profession through his leadership roles in professional societies and industry forums. He also served for four years as chairman of Bechtel Fellows, who collectively serve as a think tank and an advisory body to the company’s executive management.
Mr. Narula is also a Fellow of American Society of Mechanical Engineers where he serves as member of the advisory board on energy and environment. Previously, he served for eight years on the ASME Board of Directors for standards and certification. Mr. Narula is member of National Coal Council, an advisory body to US Secretary of Energy. He has served in this position under presidents Obama, Bush and Clinton.
Mr. Narula has a BS in mechanical engineering from Thapar University, India, MS in nuclear engineering from University of Michigan and an MBA from Eastern Michigan University. He had also received specialized training in design of power plant equipment at LMZ in the former USSR. He has also authored or coauthored over 100 technical papers, a book chapter and holds a US patent on LNG vaporization.