Madhu Rao, Ph.D.
Belcan Engineering, LLC
Dr. Rao joined INCOSE in 2015. With an undergraduate and graduate education in Chemical Engineering, he shaped himself as a strong Systems Engineer at UTC Power working on the design, development and engineering of fuel cell power plants for over 8 years. Skills that he acquired help him transition seamlessly into Aerospace industry and he currently serves as a Section Leader for the Systems & Software Engineering group at Belcan Engineering, leading a team of over 130 professionals in the development of aerospace systems.
Dr. Rao has over 16 years of product design and engineering experience in diverse areas such as polyester manufacturing units, refinery process modeling and optimization, fuel cell power plants and aerospace systems. The underlying thread seaming through these areas of his experience is systems engineering. His current interests lie in supporting the growth of Systems & Software discipline at Belcan with special emphasis on continuous learning and training. With his engagement in INCOSE, Dr. Rao would like to expand his outreach in the Systems Engineering community through networking with experts and help grow the community and the discipline.
Dr. Rao earned a Bachelors in Chemical Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai, India and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Clarkson University, NY.
Haifeng Zhu, Ph.D.
Smart Machinery Lab
Haifeng Zhu, Ph.D., is currently with Otis Elevator Company. He has extensive experience in multiple sectors in manufacturing industry, and led or contributed to many projects. Haifeng is interested in advancing system knowledge and technologies for humanity. It is important to promote awareness of technologies' different effects, and use technologies wisely to help human lives and society. He is also an advocator of engineer education, including promoting the awareness of importance of education and course training to entry level engineers and the correlations between quality education and the quality outcomes from work. He is also a warm-hearted volunteer to a certain charity events and organizations, sometimes helping those using technologies. He devoted some of his time in helping cross-organizational public domain knowledge sharing and stimulating possible collaborations to better serve the local community.
Pratt & Whitney
Rachel A. McGrath is a Systems Engineer at Pratt & Whitney currently leading MBSE deployment across jet engine programs. She earned her BSE in Mechanical Engineering from Loyola University Maryland and her MEng in Advanced Systems Engineering from University of Connecticut.
Rachel has worked at Raytheon Technologies since 2013, first at Missile Systems in Arizona before moving back to New England to work at Pratt. Her experience in manufacturing, design, analysis, and project spans the full product lifecycle, from concept development, through detailed design, production, repair, retrofit, to retirement. Systems Engineering is a natural fit for her experience and skillset, and she is an enthusiastic advocate for using MBSE models to enforce and enhance good SE.
Rachel has been an INCOSE member since 2019 and is an OMG Certified Systems Modeling Professional – Model Builder Fundamental. She lives in Hartford, CT with her husband.
Mike Tymm is a Principal Systems/Software Engineer with over 30 years of experience as an individual contributor, manager and director in the design and development of medical devices in addition to defense work on Army and Air Force programs. Mike has worked for an Army R&D center, GE Aerospace (Over-the-Horizon radar), Siemens Medical (patient monitors), Summit Technology/Alcon (laser vision correction), Hemedex (measuring blood flow in tissue for reconstructive and transplant surgery as well as for brain injury monitoring and treatment), Corindus Vascular Robotics/Siemens Healthineers (robotic vascular surgery) and currently with Vicarious Surgical (robotic general surgery).
He has a Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering from Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT, 1983), a Masters of Science in Computer Systems Engineering from Northeastern University (1992), has taken many computer and premed courses at Harvard Extension School, and a professional certificate program in Architecture and System Engineering from MIT (2018). He has been a member of INCOSE since 2018 and continues as secretary of the INCOSE NE chapter since 2019.
His passion is applying system engineering to startup medical device companies developing high quality, safe, reliable and effective products and the application of Model Based System Engineering (MBSE) towards this end.
Past President, 2021
Eric Dano, Ph.D.
Dr. Dano has been working in the areas of systems architecture and engineering at Sanders/BAE Systems in Nashua, NH for over 22 years. During that time he has served in numerous systems engineering roles including systems engineering lead, design lead, IV&V lead, and principle investigator on multiple internal R&D efforts.
Over the past 8 years he served as System Architect/Chief Engineer on multiple advanced defense systems. He currently serves as a Technical Director in the Electronic Combat Solutions business area and is lead of the System Architecture Community of Practice. In this capacity, he teaches four core systems architecture courses, has created all systems architecture process artifacts, and has created the current BAE Systems SE Handbook given out to all new employees.
Prior to BAE Systems, Dr. Dano was a 1987 graduate of the United States Naval Academy, majoring in Physics, and served in the United States Marine Corps as an Electronics Counter Measures Officer (ECMO) flying in the EA-6B Prowler. In 1997, he received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in Electrical Engineering and Atmospheric, Oceanic, and Space Sciences, focusing on modeling E-M scattering from oceanic breaking waves.
Dr. Dano has been an INCOSE member since 2011, and is a member of the Physics Honor Society (ΣΠΣ), a Senior member of IEEE, and serves on the NDIA system architecture committee.
Amy Thompson, Ph.D.
University of Connecticut
UTC Institute for Advanced Systems Engineering
Dr. Thompson joined INCOSE in 2008 and has been teaching systems engineering and coordinating systems engineering education programs for 14 years at the University of New Haven and most recently, at the University of Connecticut. Over the past 28 years, she has held engineering and management positions in several industries, including gaming, agricultural chemicals, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, software, building energy efficiency, and engineering consulting. Her current research focuses on applying an MBSE approach for designing complex products, manufacturing systems, manufacturing facilities, maintenance and support systems, and supply chains.
Dr. Thompson's systems engineering education interests lie in developing effective online systems engineering teaching programs, developing best practices for teaching systems engineering at the graduate level, and developing best practices for infusing systems engineering education into undergraduate engineering curriculum. She earned a B.S. in Industrial Engineering, M.S. in Manufacturing Engineering, and Ph.D. in Industrial & Systems Engineering from the University of Rhode Island. She currently works as the Associate Director at the UConn UTC Institute for Advanced Systems Engineering directing the graduate education programs and outreach activities. She also leads the SmartBuildings CT program at UConn and serves as the Operations Director for the new US Department of Energy Industrial Assessment Center at UConn. Her research and projects have been funded by the Navy NIUVT program, AFRL, Pratt & Whitney, US Department of Energy, Eversource, and United Illuminating-Avangrid.
Pratt & Whitney
BS Mathematics – Cleveland State University 77
• Computer Programmer – Computer Consultant 1979 – 1998
For various companies including Digital Equipment Corporation and BEA Systems
• Independent Consultant and Owner – Skelding Engineering 1998 – 2001
• Manager – Computer and Electrical Engineering Department – Pratt & Whitney Cenco
2001 – 2003
• Real Time Embedded Systems – Computer Programmer – Systems Engineer – Pratt & Whitney
Controls & Diagnostic Systems – 2003 - 2018
Randy led Pratt & Whitney’s contribution to DARPA META II, a “DARPA hard” systems engineering research project in 2011. The project was a collaboration between UTRC, P&W, and MIT with Brian Murray from UTRC as PI, and Oli DeWeck from MIT.
Randy is now working in Pratt’s “Core Methods and Tools” group, introducing Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) into Pratt & Whitney Engineering.
He is leading Pratt & Whitney research projects at UCONN IASE into MBSE practices including connecting SysML and Modelica.
Sikorsky, A Lockheed Martin Company
Jim Garman is a Senior Manager for the System Engineering Department at Sikorsky Aircraft a Lockheed Martin Company. He has 38 years of experience in the Aerospace Industry and has been with Sikorsky Aircraft for the last 30 years. In this capacity Jim provides leadership as the Functional Manager for the System Engineering Department. Jim’s role involves leading and managing a diverse team of approximately 100 system engineers assigned across all Sikorsky Military and Commercial aircraft programs. Responsibilities include System Engineering Process Development, Personnel Management and Project Management. This includes managing and implementing system engineering process across all programs, as well as, developing the system engineering skill set at Sikorsky. Certified as a Six Sigma Greenbelt Jim also has a focus on continuous process improvement for the organization.
Prior to joining Sikorsky Aircraft Mr. Garman served on active duty in the United States Marine Corps for 8 years as a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter pilot, a qualified Weapon and Tactics Instructor and an Aviation Safety Officer/ Mishap Investigator. After joining Sikorsky Jim continued his affiliation with the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves and he continued to fly H-53 helicopters. Jim accumulated over 3100 flight hours and was the Commanding Officer for HMH-772, a reserve CH-53E helicopter squadron that was activated for 2 years in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Operation Noble Eagle and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Jim was promoted to the rank of Colonel in July of 2004 and was then assigned as the Northeast Region DoD Senior Marine Emergency Preparedness Liaison Officer assigned to work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) in Boston and New York City. Jim retired from the Marine Corps in 2008.
Mr. Garman is a member of New England Chapter of the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) and sits on the chapter Board of Directors, he is a member of the Vertical Flight Society (VFS) and sits on the System Engineering Technical sub-committee, additionally Jim is a member of the Marine Corps Aviation Association, the Marine Corps Association, and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). Jim earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy and has earned a Certificate in Aviation Safety Programs from the Naval Postgraduate School.
Dan Burbank is a Senior Technical Fellow and the Systems Engineering Discipline Lead for Collins Aerospace. In this capacity he provides leadership in advancing execution excellence across Collins Aerospace through quality assurance reviews, new technology and methods development and employee development. Quality assurance reviews include non-advocate reviews, technology readiness reviews and design assurance reviews across the entire business. Mr. Burbank is a leader in Collins Aerospace’s Mission Systems SBU’s spaceflight hardware design and development efforts for spacesuits and spacecraft systems, including for the International Space Station (ISS), Orion, Space Launch System, Boeing CST-100 Starliner, Gateway and other Artemis platforms.
Prior to joining United Technologies in July 2018, Mr. Burbank served for 22 years as a NASA Astronaut. During his NASA career he flew two Space Shuttle missions (STS-106 and 115) to assemble and outfit the ISS. He also flew aboard Soyuz 28 and served as Flight Engineer during ISS Expedition 29 and as Commander of ISS Expedition 30 with a combined spaceflight mission duration of over six months. Other NASA assignments included Chief, Vehicle Integration Test Office, NASA Director of Operations – Russia, and Chief, Astronaut Office EVA (spacewalk) and Robotics Branch. Prior to his NASA career, Mr. Burbank served in the U.S. Coast Guard as an aviator and aeronautical engineer for 11 years, logging over 4000 flight hours in Coast Guard H-60 and H-3 helicopters including over 300 search and rescue missions.
Mr. Burbank is a member of the Association of Space Explorers, the U.S. Coast Guard Aviation Association, the Daedalians Society, the International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) and the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA). Mr. Burbank earned a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy and a Master of Science in Aeronautical Science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
David Finigan is a member of the BAE Systems Model-Based Systems Engineering Capability Group, located in New Hampshire.
David is a graduate of the University of Colorado, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. David’s post-graduate work includes a graduate certificate in MBSE from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and a professional certificate in Architecture and Systems Engineering: Models and Methods to Manage Complex Systems from MIT.
David currently serves on the International Council on Systems Engineering New England Chapter Board of Directors, representing BAE Systems as a corporate advisor.
A career engineer working in the defense industry, David is the author of a number of technical white papers on subjects ranging from System Architecture to Diagnostic and Prognostic Methodologies.
Bao Truong, Ph.D.
Dr. Truong is a Senior Systems Engineer at Malta Inc., working on long duration thermal energy storage systems using molten salt. He has a background in nuclear engineering thermal systems and a decade of experience in developing and implementing systems engineering strategies in a startup environment. Dr. Truong is a Certified Systems Engineering Professional (CSEP) with broad experience in system requirements development, system design and integration, verification & validation, and operational excellence.
Creating sustainable clean energy solutions to improve the quality and equity of life around the world has been the animating purpose of Dr. Truong's professional journey. Prior to joining Malta Inc., Dr. Truong worked at TerraPower, an advanced nuclear energy startup. His work there spanned all aspects of systems engineering, including requirements development, integrated system analysis, testing, safety analysis, engineering processes, verification & validation, training and mentoring, and product development. He spearheaded the application of formal systems engineering to the development of advanced nuclear reactors, managed the Design Integration group, and served as the company’s go-to expert on systems engineering. Before TerraPower, Dr. Truong was a Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) certified Senior Reactor Operator for 6 years at the MIT research reactor.
Dr. Truong has earned many prestigious honors throughout his career, including being among the top 80 young STEM leaders in the U.S. selected to attend the Frontiers of Engineering and the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative conferences. During his graduate studies, he received the Nuclear Engineering University Program and NRC graduate fellowships. Dr. Truong holds BS degrees in Physics and Nuclear Engineering and MS and PhD degrees in Nuclear Engineering, all from MIT. He also holds Professional Engineering licenses in Mechanical Engineering in Massachusetts and Washington.
Worcester Polytechnic Institute
As Senior Manager of Corporate Partnerships at WPI, Peter has opened many doors of collaboration between industry and academia. He is passionate about helping corporations achieve high levels of innovation and productivity through WPI’s cutting-edge research, educational and training programs, and access to the university’s talented students and faculty. Peter has been successful at helping companies transition from Systems Engineering awareness to expertise in the field, by facilitating and developing tailored Systems Engineering degree programs for their engineers. He has also been influential with the development of custom Systems Engineering short courses and technical training, based on the needs of industry. Peter has been an INCOSE member since 2011.
Stephen R. Nichols
Schindler Elevator Company
Stephen R. Nichols is a systems engineering, product and technology leader with cross-functional interest in research and development, product strategy, architecture and innovation. He is currently a Senior Product Manager for Schindler Elevator Corporation responsible for developing and managing product strategy and implementation for the North American market with end-to-end product ownership across the full product range focused on customer facing new installations (NI).
Stephen joined Schindler in November 2021 after more than 15 years in the elevator and escalator industry at Otis Worldwide Corporation. Stephen’s relationship with the Otis started as a four-year student member of the Otis F.I.R.S.T. Robotics Team. He interned both with UTC Power and Otis Global Engineering while pursuing his Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Tufts University. He joined Otis after graduating in 2006 and for more than fifteen years held positions of increasing responsibility as a mechanical, systems engineer, program manager, discipline and team leader. His experience included roles in Otis WHQ Operations Finance, supply chain, innovation and R&D. Stephen is a named inventor on more than 100 invention disclosures and more than 30 granted patents related to elevator technology, systems, APIs, robotics and more. His work has been at the intersection of passenger experience, mobility, vertical transportation technology, building ecosystems, and urban environments. Throughout 2020, as an innovation leader, Stephen was focused on helping lead engineering, R&D, innovation, integration, and product management work for Otis’s global cross-functional rapid response task force focused on improving passenger health and confidence to ride elevators amid the COVID-19 pandemic, including leading research into airflow in elevators and the relative risk of exposure. The work won Otis’s Global Engineering’s 2020 EPIC Award for Innovation and has been published internationally and partially contributed to Stephen being featured in the 2021 People Issue of “Elevator World” magazine.
While at Otis, Stephen earned his Master of Engineering degree in mechanical engineering in 2009 from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (Hartford, CT campus) and was a 2012 graduate of the Otis University leadership program focused on global manufacturing and supply chain. Stephen is also a two time National Academy of Engineering (NAE) Frontiers of Engineering (FOE) alumni, having been a speaker at the 2017 US FOE symposium and he was invited back to participate in the 2019 China-America FOE Symposium as well as being named a 2019 Gilbreth lecturer. In addition to NAE events, he has been invited to speak at American Architecture Foundation, INCOSE events, the International Facilities Management Association (IFMA), the Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat (CTBUH) as well as guest lecture at several universities in the northeast U.S.A. He has been interviewed by the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), National Public Radio (NPR) and several other news outlets. He has completed a professional certificate in Architecture and Complex Systems Engineering from MIT, an executive certificate in cybersecurity from Ithaca College and a certificate in public health from University of California at Berkeley and a professional certificate in leadership and communication from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. He has served as both a member of the Board of Directors for Ithaca College’s Cybersecurity Program and the New England Chapter of INCOSE.
For more information see also: https://www.linkedin.com/in/stephenrnichols/ and https://twitter.com/SRNICH0LS
Avanade, an Accenture Company
Diane Alsing, PMP, PMI-ACP, MCP is a strategic global technology consulting operations leader and change management innovator who is directing business-centric roadmaps, enabling business transformation and inspiring the next generation of enterprise growth in multi-billion dollar organizations. Ms. Alsing is an experienced strategist for business systems and platforms, solution delivery, governance, process improvement, and enterprise transformation; a visionary who serves as a catalyst for sustainable change by empowering enterprise clients through data-driven impact. A driver of continuous improvement, she is rethinking what's possible, transforming complex obstacles into tangible and profitable solutions.
Ms. Alsing has been delivering complex technology solutions for over 25 years and has held leadership roles in software engineering and transformation program management, currently a Senior Director in Finance and Operations Solutions for Avanade/Accenture. She has held various volunteer leadership roles in Project Management Institute (PMI) including Chair and Vice Chair of PMI’s Ethics Review Committee and Director of Communications for Organizational Project Management Community of Practice.
Ms. Alsing graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Management from Southern New Hampshire University, is completing her Master of Science degree in Engineering Management from The George Washington University – School of Engineering and Applied Science and is starting the Doctor of Engineering program at The George Washington University – School of Engineering and Applied Science in the fall of 2021.
Brian M. Sheehan
Charles Stark Draper Laboratory Inc.
Brian is a Systems Engineer at the Charles Stark Draper Laboratory Inc., a not-for-profit research and development institution located in Cambridge, Massachusetts. He specializes in Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) methods as well as the execution of Systems Engineering (SE) activities from concept to deployment for new technologies in aerospace systems. He has been a member of the Draper team since June 2019. In his primary role Brian supports Draper’s largest U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) customer, the Department of the Navy, as a Systems Engineering Lead for Reentry Flight Systems and as a MBSE Subject Matter Expert for Strategic Guidance, Navigation, and Control Systems. Brian also supports other DoD and Strategic Programs in standing up MBSE framework and the curation of system models and model data. He is a thought leader for Draper’s Digital Engineering Roadmap and consults R&D proposal submittals in the field of Digital Engineering.
Brian’s enthusiasm for Systems Engineering continues beyond his professional role. He was recently appointed to the International Council of Systems Engineering (INCOSE)’s New England Chapter Board of Directors. In that role, he provides and collects insight on Systems Engineering across industry and academia. Additionally, he enjoys mentoring new staff and students in the discipline and is regularly emphasizing systems thinking and the importance of good verifiable requirements. Brian is committed to thought sharing and cultivating an inclusive workspace to arrive at the best solution possible for customers. Brian also engages with academia and is a member of a Draper working group dedicated to strengthening ties between Draper and top engineering universities across the country.
Prior to joining Draper, Brian was a Performance and Diagnostics Engineer for Belcan Engineering LLC, an outsourcing firm headquartered in Cincinnati Ohio. Brian joined the Windsor Connecticut team in May 2016 and was partnered with Belcan’s main customer in that area, Pratt & Whitney. In that role Brian developed and executed performance simulations for Pratt’s Next Generation Propulsion Family (NGPF) of engines to understand new engine design, test data anomalies, and fielded system performance. Additionally, he developed and tested system health diagnostics algorithms for predictive maintenance and sustainment of Pratt’s F135 military engines.
Education wise, Brian received a Master’s of Engineering in Advanced Systems Engineering from the University of Connecticut in 2019. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering and a Bachelor’s of Art in German which were both awarded in 2016 from the University of Connecticut.