Mike Bianco, Vice President, Operations Practice
Mike Bianco is the Vice President of the Operational Infrastructure Practice for BRIDGE Energy Group. He is responsible for defining and delivering innovative information and operational technology solutions and services for a smarter grid, including IT/OT convergence, Applied Technology, Complex Systems Integration and Managed Consulting Services. He is actively involved in BRIDGE client solutions development and delivery in grid modernization, operational infrastructure design and build, enterprise architecture, analytics, and cybersecurity programs.
Mr. Bianco’s career spans over 25 years in information technology engineering, delivery and operations, advisory services and consulting, and business development across a variety of industries. He has worked in the Electric Power Industry since 2003 delivering system operator and utility technology strategy, planning and implementation for new energy markets, smart grid solutions, and other related business transformation initiatives.
Mr. Bianco has led numerous technology strategy, business case development, program planning, and complex systems integration initiatives for ISO/RTOs and T&D utilities across North America. His IT/OT systems integration experience includes: CIS, AMI/MDM, GIS, EMS/SCADA, OMS, DMS, SOA/ESB, Historian, EAM, Mobility, Enterprise Analytics, Synchrophasor technologies, data communications for monitoring and measurement, and enhanced situational awareness.
Prior to working at BRIDGE, Mr. Bianco was the Technology Program Manager that led the grant planning and initial execution for the $108M Smart Grid Investment Grant (SGIG) for synchrophasor technology deployment throughout the west coast. This involved the planning and implementation of a new PMO to support 23 participating partner Utilities and deliver program performance management and controls to comply with DOE earned value tracking and reporting requirements.
Mr. Bianco holds a Master of Science in Engineering Management and a Bachelor of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology.
Richard Jones, Vice President, Security Practice
Mr. Jones leads the company’s Cybersecurity Practice. He has over 25 years of energy and utility industry experience providing business, technology, and management consulting based services. Prior to joining BRIDGE, he was the Senior Director with Alvarez & Marsal (A&M) Business Consulting, focused on delivering cybersecurity and compliance related performance improvement and program management services. Mr. Jones is a recognized specialist in Cybersecurity, NERC CIP and general utility regulatory compliance and reporting.
Prior to A&M, Mr. Jones was a senior member of the Energy team at SunGard Consulting Services where he led the delivery of services for their NERC/CIP compliance and ERCOT Market Support practices. Prior to SunGard, he was in senior leadership roles for various big 5 consulting firms, and was a major contributor in the restructuring efforts of the electric industry in California, Texas, the Midwest, New York and Alberta. His efforts included overall program management and program planning, provision of subject matter expertise in ISO operations and settlements, and overseeing the development of ISO financial and settlement solutions.
Mr. Jones has experience in assessing and planning for evolution of a Cybersecurity program; assessing risk and planning for compliance with Version 5 NERC/CIP requirements; and developing a Risk Management Framework for Cybersecurity and Compliance where the framework provided risk reporting and compliance support for over 40 regulations including those from FERC, CFTC/FTC, TSA, and NERC/CIP.
He also is a named inventor in patent pending: Objectively Managing Risk Application No.: 13/801,254 and has been published in the Western Energy Institute (“Three Cyber security Questions For Your Chief Risk Officer”, 2013), IEEE power & energy magazine (“Beyond the Crystal Ball – Locational Marginal Price Forecasting and Predictive Operations in U.S. Power Markets”, 2012) and authored the white paper, “Achieving Compliance in Energy and Commodity Markets” and “Predictive Operations in US Power Markets”.
Glen Sartain, Vice President, Analytics Practice
Mr. Sartain leads the company’s Grid Analytics practice. In this role, he is responsible for strategy and design of analytic roadmaps for clients and the implementation of these strategies across the portfolio. Mr. Sartain is recognized in the analytics community for his expertise in advancing analytic capabilities to help utilities improve operations, bringing new insight from the proven models used today in other industries. Throughout his career, Mr. Sartain has been involved in all aspects of Energy including Electric & Natural Gas Utilities, Consumer Analytics, and Transmission.
Prior to joining BRIDGE, Mr. Sartain led both large and small scale implementations of analytic solutions, as a Managing Partner of Manufacturing at Teradata. While at Teradata, Mr. Sartain helped build the Utilities Logical Data Model (ULDM) which has been implemented in multiple utilities across North America. Prior to that, he served as Managing Director for CIMA Energy where he was responsible for directing the effort in building the information management strategy including hardware, software systems and business processes, including SCADA systems.
Mr. Sartain’s industry experience of more than 35 years in analytics and technology innovation for the Energy sector includes work as the founder and owner of ESI (Energy Solutions Inc.) where they developed Natural Gas, Power Trading, and Transmission systems during the peak of deregulation, working with utilities including SDG&E, PECO, and SCE.
Mr. Sartain earned a Graduate degree in Education from Pacific Coast Baptist College and holds certification in Teradata 12.0, SQL DBA and AIA.
Sandy Simon, Vice President, Grid Modernization Practice
Ms. Simon leads BRIDGE’s Grid Modernization practice. In this role, she drives strategic advisory and planning initiatives for utilities developing grid modernization and transformation programs across North America. Ms. Simon brings over 20 years of experience with utilities as a results-oriented leader with extensive experience defining and leading transformation through improvement and technology optimization.
Before joining BRIDGE, Ms. Simon was the COO at USGRDCO where she was responsible for the Community Energy Infrastructure Development business, helping create sustainable and resilient energy solutions for communities. Prior to USGRDCO, Ms. Simon was a consultant at GE helping lead the design, implementation and deployment of an advanced Project Management Office to govern and manage their AMI SaaS initiatives. Her consulting experience also includes delivery and integration of strategic smart grid solutions for HCL America and EnergyGrid Networks. Ms. Simon also served as Executive Director and General Manager, West Division for Comverge, Inc., provider of intelligent energy management solutions, where she was responsible for developing demand management strategies for utility clients.
Prior to her consulting roles, Ms. Simon was the Director of Utility Innovations and Smart Grid Strategy for Xcel Energy, responsible for the integration of smart energy technologies to change how the utility produced and delivered power to consumers. Ms. Simon was instrumental in the incubation, development, launch and oversight of the SmartGridCityTM initiative in Boulder, Colorado. She has also held project management and IT integration positions at AIMCO, KN Energy, Price Waterhouse and Deloitte & Touché.
Ms. Simon holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and a Bachelor of Science from Evangel College in Springfield, Missouri as well as an MBA from the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver.
Hugo van Nispen
Hugo van Nispen is a global business executive and experienced CEO known for driving growth and business performance by applying strategic thinking and execution to deliver results. His expertise, combined with the ability to identify and develop strong global teams is evidenced by an enviable scorecard of growing profitable businesses, managing complex project assignments and driving performance improvements through successful reengineering and merger execution. He has served on many internal corporate boards in US and global companies and has provided professional counsel to many boards as a strategy consultant.
Colum Lundt is a BRIDGE Energy Group co-founder and former President, COO and Sales executive, responsible for driving the company’s strategy and execution in its first 10 years of operation. As a Board member he is helping to shape the next phase of the company’s evolution. Mr. Lundt is also a founder and current managing partner at Revenue Performance Group, a management consulting firm focused on the SaaS and Software industry.
James Socas is a General Partner at Updata and has more than twenty years of experience in the technology industries and technology investing. He previously served on the global leadership team of Symantec, as head of corporate development and strategy, and was a managing director at Credit Suisse First Boston and Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, where he worked with many of the leading software and technology companies on M&A, initial public offerings, capital raising and restructurings.
Barry Goldsmith is the current co-founder of Updata Partners and has spent more than 35 years in the information technology industry as a founder, senior executive, investor and advisor to leading software and IT services companies. Prior to founding Updata Partners, Mr. Goldsmith was the founder of CGA Computer, Inc., which became one of the top providers of information technology consulting services and software products to Fortune 500 companies. He received a B.A. from Rutgers University and has served on the boards of several publicly traded companies.
Dave Ireland is a software industry veteran with over 35 years of technology industry experience as a senior executive, investor and adviser leading mid-to-large enterprise companies and systems integration firms. His experience spans across multiple technology companies including Cullinet Software, The Data Group (formerly Verizon company), IBM Cognos and Progress Software. Mr. Ireland has had direct strategic and operational responsibilities for businesses from $10M to $400M and enjoys a solid track record of leading profitable growth strategies.