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Bromilow Distinguished Lecture at NMSU to feature clean energy economy

Release Date: 31 Mar 2022
Bromilow Distinguished Lecture at NMSU to feature clean energy economy

The New Mexico State University College of Engineering will host the 2022 Bromilow Distinguished Lecture from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Feb. 22. The virtual event will feature a moderated conversation between Kelly Speakes-Backman, principal deputy assistant secretary for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy, and NMSU Chancellor Dan Arvizu.

The pair will discuss the opportunities and challenges involved in “Transitioning to a Clean Energy Economy,” including efforts across the NMSU system to support New Mexico’s transition to a clean energy economy. The free Zoom event can be seen at

At the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Speakes-Backman focuses on creating and sustaining American leadership in the transition to a global clean energy economy. She oversees the planning and execution of the organization’s $2.8 billion portfolio of research, development, demonstration and deployment activities in energy efficiency, renewable energy and sustainable transportation. Speakes-Backman has more than 20 years of experience in energy and environmental issues in the public, non-governmental organization and private sectors. 

An NMSU engineering graduate, Arvizu returned to NMSU as chancellor in 2018. With experience in advanced energy research and development, materials and process sciences, and technology commercialization, Arvizu worked in the public and private sectors. He served as the chief technology officer for CH2M Hill Companies, Ltd. and was the eighth director of the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. Arvizu was appointed by two presidents to serve on the National Science Board, and he chaired the board that oversees the National Science Foundation his last four years. Arvizu is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and the National Academy of Public Administration.

In September 2021, Arvizu was named to the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology, better known as PCAST. The group advises President Joe Biden on matters involving science, technology, education and innovation policy. PCAST is the sole body of external advisers charged with making science, technology and innovation policy recommendations to the president and the White House.

Joshua Epel, former chair of the Colorado Public Utilities Commission and current adviser to NMSU on energy and sustainability, will moderate the virtual event. If time allows, a question and answer session will be held. 

This is the 46th Bromilow Distinguished Lecture, an annual event held during National Engineering Week in honor of Frank Bromilow, who came to NMSU in 1951 as professor and department head of civil engineering. In 1961, he became dean of the college and director of the Engineering Experiment Station, positions he held until his death in 1974. The lecture honors Bromilow’s leadership and enhancement of the quality of faculty during his tenure as dean.

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