USNIC Board of Directors

Jeremy Harrell, Chairman


Jeremy is a Managing Director at ClearPath, where he leads public policy development and promotion efforts. He focuses on policy levers to bolster public-private research and development, unlock private sector project financing, and reform regulations that facilitate the development and export of new technologies. He also serves on the Policy Committee of Geothermal Rising, an international association of geothermal energy professionals. Before joining ClearPath, Jeremy advised Congressional leaders, across multiple roles in the House and Senate, on energy, environmental, national security, tax, technology, and transportation policy for a decade. Jeremy Holds a B.A. in Political Science and History from Miami University, and is a M.B.A. Candidate from New York University Stern School of Business.

Eric Knox, Vice Chairman


Knox currently serves as Vice President, Strategic Development of Nuclear & Environment for Amentum. Knox has also served in senior capacities at the U.S. Department of Energy. There, he was instrumental in both the site selection process and licensing application submitted for Yucca Mountain, as Senior Advisor to the Secretary and Associate Director of OCRWM. He also served as chief of staff to the Under Secretary of Energy. In addition, Knox served as Chairman of USNIC from 2011-2014.

Dan Stout, Secretary and Treasurer

Tennessee Valley Authority

Dan Stout works as the Director of Nuclear Technology at the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). Before this, he worked as the Senior Manager, Small Modular Reactor (SMR) Technology for the TVA. He is responsible for nuclear project development including managing the scope, schedule, budget and business planning associated with licensing and potential deploying up to four SMRs at TVA’s Clinch River Site in Oak Ridge, TN. Mr. Stout has over 28 years of experience in the nuclear energy sector. He joined the Tennessee Valley Authority in April 2009 and assumed responsibility for TVA’s SMR program in 2012. Prior to TVA, Mr. Stout served as Director, Nuclear Fuel Recycling at the Department of Energy where he was responsible for planning and policy development regarding nuclear fuel recycling. Prior to that, from 1991 to 2006, Mr. Stout worked in the uranium enrichment industry, predominantly at USEC Inc., with responsibility for R&D, engineering, and licensing of advanced uranium enrichment technologies and facilities. From 1985-1991 Mr. Stout served in the U.S. Navy as a nuclear submarine officer. He also served in the Naval Reserves in the Naval Special Warfare community from 1991-2007, retiring as a Commander. Mr. Stout graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1985. He received his Master’s Degree in Engineering Management from the National Technological University in 1997.

Wendy Simon-Pearson


Wendy Simon-Pearson is General Counsel for Ultra Safe Nuclear Corporation, an advanced nuclear startup company based in Seattle, Washington. She is a specialist in International Energy Law and arbitration and received her law degree from The George Washington University Law School. In addition to serving on the Board of Directors of the United States Nuclear Industry Council, she recently led the negotiations to form USNC’s Joint Venture with Ontario Power Generation to build USNC’s first demonstration reactor at the Chalk River Laboratories in Ontario, Canada. She attended UMass Amherst for her Bachelor’s degree, and graduated from GW Law School with her JD.

Scott Kopple

BWX Technologies

Scott Kopple is the senior director of government relations at BWX Technologies,Inc. (BWXT). Mr. Kopple represents the Company’s interests on Capitol Hill andwithin the administration with a focus on the Department of Energy’s national security programs and contracts, fuel cycle programs and commercial nuclear energy issues. He is also deeply engaged in BWXT’s Naval Reactors business and the Department of Defense’s shipbuilding programs.

Mr. Kopple has extensive experience on Capitol Hill and within the nation’s nuclear weapons complex. Prior to joining BWXT in 2012, he served as a congressional liaison for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL), representing the laboratory’s interests before Congress. He was also responsible for facilitating meetings and briefings between members of Congress and LLNL leadership on issues including stockpile stewardship, conventional munitions, greenhouse gas verification and fusion energy.

Before joining LLNL, Mr. Kopple was appointed by President George W. Bush as director of congressional affairs for the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) from 2006 until he joined LLNL in 2009. In this role, he served as the senior advisor to the organization’s executive leadership on legislative and political strategy to meet the agency’s goals. He served as NNSA’s primary liaison to the Appropriations and Armed Services Committees.

Mr. Kopple also brings congressional experience to BWXT. He served as a professional staff member and as deputy communications director for the U.S. House Government Reform Committee. He also served in the office of U.S. Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA) as a legislative assistant.

Mr. Kopple also served as the Iowa executive director for President George W. Bush’s 2004 re-election campaign. He successfully led the Iowa campaign to a victory, which had not been accomplished by the Republican nominee since 1984.

Mr. Kopple earned a bachelor’s degree in government and politics from George Mason University. In 2019, the Governor of Virginia appointed Mr. Kopple to serve on the Virginia Nuclear Energy Consortium Authority. He also serves on the U.S. Nuclear Industry Council board of directors.

Jon Ball

GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy

Jon has been a leader in the nuclear industry for more than 20 years and has a wide-range of experience in manufacturing, global operations, services, quality and P&L leadership. From 2012 to 2015 Jon served as Senior Vice President, Global Supply Chain, where he led more than 1,000 employees worldwide in manufacturing and logistics. Prior to that Jon spent seven years in services where he led both the performance services and field services segments. Before that he spent seven years with Global Nuclear Fuel, a joint venture majority owned by GE, serving in several positions including global supply chain leader, quality manager and lab manager. Jon is a Six Sigma Master Black Belt with a B.S. in Chemistry from Pacific Lutheran University and a Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry from The Pennsylvania State University.

Jeffrey Merrifield


Jeffrey Merrifield is a partner in the Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP’s energy practice. Mr. Merrifield was appointed by President Clinton and reappointed by President Bush to serve on the five-member, Senate-confirmed, independent United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission. During his tenure, which was from October 1998 to June 2002 and from August 2002 to June 2007, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission had a staff of 3,250 employees with a budget of $900 million and set all policies and rules that govern the safe and secure use of nuclear materials at the 104 U.S. nuclear power plants operating at that time. Prior to joining Pillsbury, Mr. Merrifield served as President of The Merrifield Group, LLC where he provided energy and environmental consulting, advocacy and strategic advice for companies, organizations and individuals. Specific areas of focus included management, energy market analysis, nuclear, fossil and alternative energy policy and deployment, radioactive and hazardous waste disposal strategies, safety and regulatory assessment and analysis, as well as public and government engagement. Before working with the Merrifield Group, Mr. Merrifield was the Senior Vice President of Global Business Development with CB&I’s Power Business Unit. While there, he led a team of twenty-five sales and proposal staff to develop and win over $1.5 billion in annual sales, including the first competitive, EPC combined cycle gas unit in over six years. Prior to that, he was Senior Vice President for The Shaw Group, Inc.’s Power Group. As a member of the Power Group's executive team, he was responsible for overseeing the group's external relationships including nuclear business development, customer relations, strategic planning, marketing and communications, as well as government and regulatory affairs. Mr. Merrifield also served on the Board of Directors for the U.S. Ecology Corporation, which is one of the largest U.S. operators of both hazardous and low-level radioactive waste disposal facilities. He served as the Lead Director and Chairman of the Governance Committee and was a member of the Compensation and Audit Committees. Currently, Mr. Merrifield serves on the Board of the U.S. Nuclear Industry Council and is also the Chairman of its Advanced Nuclear Working Group. Composed of more than 70 companies, the Council is the leading business consortium advocate for new nuclear energy and the promotion of the American supply chain globally.

Kirk Schnoebelen


As head of sales for URENCO, Kirk Schnoebelen is responsible for marketing and sales for the largest uranium enrichment company in the western world, with more than $1.7 billion in annual revenues. URENCO’s portfolio includes contracts to supply fuel to more than 50 nuclear utilities in 19 countries, with commitments beyond 2025 having a total value of $17.5 billion. Schnoebelen played a crucial role in enabling URENCO and the energy companies it has partnered with to construct and operate the National Enrichment Facility in New Mexico—the first enrichment plant built in the United States in 30 years. This facility continues to expand and provides about one-third of nuclear fuel used in the United States, or the energy used to power about 1 out of 10 light bulbs. Enrichment facilities are extremely capital-intensive to build, and he was responsible for establishing a sufficient portfolio of contracts with U.S. nuclear utilities to support the multi-billion-dollar investment. His work on the project, which stretched over years, involved developing and executing a marketing plan, working with partners and drafting and negotiating contracts to make the world’s newest and most modern uranium enrichment facility a reality. After earning his UW-Madison bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering in 1982 and his nuclear engineering master’s degree in 1984, Schnoebelen worked in engineering roles at various utility companies. He received an MBA from the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Business in 1997 and went on to work in nuclear fuel procurement/project management at Northern States Power (now Xcel Energy) and then in technical sales and marketing at Cameco Corporation. He became president of URENCO Inc. in 2006 and head of sales for URENCO in 2014. Schnoebelen is a former board member of the Nuclear Energy Institute, a key nuclear energy lobbying group.

Mike Telson

General Atomics

Michael L. Telson is the Vice President for Energy and Electromagnetic Systems in the Washington, DC office of the General Atomics Corporation of San Diego, CA. He also has an appointment at the University of California Washington, DC Center as its Assistant Director for Science Initiatives. Before that, he served as senior advisor on energy and science programs to the University of California, as well as Director of National Laboratory Affairs, in its Washington Office of Federal Governmental Relations. From 1997-2001, he served as Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). He reported directly to Secretaries Pena, Richardson and Abraham advising them on all financial matters. Before the DOE, he served as the energy and science analyst on the staff of the Committee on the Budget, U.S. House of Representatives. He was responsible for reviewing the programs of the DOE, the NSF, and NASA, as well as government-wide R&D policy. He was with the Budget Committee from 1975 to 1995. In the 95th Congress, he served as the staff economist of the House Ad Hoc Committee on Energy, created to help enact the 1978 National Energy Act. In the 96th Congress, he served as staff coordinator of Speaker Thomas Phillip O’Neill’s Task Force on Energy created to deal with problems relating to the 1979 oil shortages that led to the enactment of the 1980 Energy Security Act. He was a member of the first class of AAAS Congressional and Engineering Fellows (1973-4) serving with the U. S. Senate Energy Committee. In 1999, he was selected AAAS Fellow “for distinguished contributions in the formulation of science and technology policies and budgets and in interpretation of these policies and budgets to the scientific community.” In 2004, he was elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society “for his contributions as both a senior congressional staffer, and a senior official in the US Department of Energy, to the support of the physical sciences in the US.” In 2002, he was elected a Senior Fellow of the U.S. Association for Energy Economics. In January of 2001, Energy Secretary Richardson recognized his contributions by giving him the “Meritorious Service” and “Superior Performance” Awards, and in October of 2001, Secretary Abraham gave him DOE’s “Gold Medal for Excellence.” He holds Ph.D., E.E., M.S., and B.S. degrees in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and an M.S. in management from the MIT Sloan School of Management. He was a Hertz Fellow throughout his graduate studies.

Mike French

Orano USA

Mike French currently serves as the Vice President of Public Affairs for Orano USA managing government affairs and communications for the U.S. region.  Mr. French rose to this position in 2017, after beginning his tenure with Orano when they were still Areva, originally joining the firm in 2009.  Mr. French has served as a senior policy advisor for the company, helping to secure a $2 billion loan guarantee from the Department of Energy, later to serve with Areva’s federal services division and also served as director of media relations for the U.S. region.  French has previously worked for the U.S. Department of Energy in both defense and commercial nuclear program offices, was a legislative fellow in the House of Representatives, and has served in advocacy roles for large engineering and construction firms.  French is a graduate of John Hopkins University and the University of Maryland, College Park.

Chip Pardee

Terrestrial Energy USA

Mr. Pardee has more than three and a half decades of electric utility leadership experience, including past operational responsibilities at a dozen U.S. nuclear power stations. From 2013 to 2017, he was executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Tennessee Valley Authority. TVA is the largest public power provider in the United States, and the sixth-largest electric utility in the country, with approximately 35 gigawatts (GW) of generating capacity. Forty percent of its capacity is nuclear generation provided by eight reactors operated at three nuclear generating stations. Prior to TVA, Mr. Pardee was chief operating officer of Exelon Generation, where he led more than 10,000 employees, and managed 30,000 megawatts of diverse generation, including the nation’s largest nuclear fleet. Mr. Pardee also served as president and chief nuclear officer of Exelon Nuclear and chairman of Constellation Energy Nuclear Group, an Exelon subsidiary. Mr. Pardee is currently a member of the Nuclear Safety Advisory Board of Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), and a member of the Committee for Nuclear Power of the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC) in the United Arab Emirates. During his long career, he has also held leadership positions at General Electric and the Institute for Nuclear Power Operations (INPO). Mr. Pardee has served as chair of the Nuclear Energy Institute’s Nuclear Strategic Issue Advisory Committee and chaired the National Academy of Nuclear Training Accrediting Board. He also led the nuclear industry’s Fukushima Response Steering Committee and served as a director of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI).

Peter Hastings

Kairos Power

Mr. Peter Hastings is the Vice President of Regulatory Affairs & Quality at Kairos Power and leads teams responsible for licensing and permitting activities, safety analysis and probabilistic risk assessment, quality assurance, and government affairs with a focus on establishing the regulatory basis for Kairos Power's reactor technology. Mr. Hastings previously ran a successful management and regulatory consulting firm and held prior positions as Director of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs for Generation Power, Licensing Manager for Duke Energy’s Nuclear Plant Development Division, and licensing and design-center lead NuStart Energy Development, LLC. Mr. Hastings’ background includes work as a reactor engineer responsible for startup testing and fuel performance monitoring, design engineer on the Monitored Retrievable Storage facility, manager in safety assurance and performance assessment for the Yucca Mountain repository, and licensing manager responsible for receipt of construction authorization for the MOX Fuel Fabrication Facility. Mr. Hastings earned his B.S. in Nuclear Engineering from North Carolina State University. He is a registered professional engineer in North and South Carolina.

Harlan Bowers


Harlan Bowers leads X-energy’s development of Xe-Mobile, a state-of-the-art, transportable nuclear power source. Harlan brings over 25 years of experience managing multi-$100M hardware-development and services programs with hundreds of personnel and team members. At X-energy, he has been in charge of business strategy analysis, design development, regulatory assessment and Nuclear Regulatory Commission engagement, and strategic partnerships. He has led X-energy’s efforts to capture multiple government contracts, including: U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) industry funding opportunity for the Xe-100 high-temperature gas reactor (HTGR); design of the commercial TRISO Fuel Fabrication Facility, also under DOE’s industry funding opportunity program; and nuclear thermal propulsion concept development with NASA. Before joining X-energy in 2015, he was Senior Vice President at Stinger Ghaffarian Technologies (SGT), where he led business development and several NASA engineering services contracts in program operations, resource management, task order management, and budget tracking. His responsibilities included being Program Manager for the NASA Omnibus Multidiscipline Engineering Services and successfully supporting various NASA Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) spaceflight and ground-systems development programs. Before that, he was the GSFC Mechanical Systems Engineering Services IIA Program Manager, with over 630 engineers, designers and technicians supporting multiple NASA programs and research initiatives. Prior to SGT, Harlan served in various director-level roles at Orbital Sciences Corporation. He holds a BS in Aerospace & Ocean Engineering from Virginia Tech and an MBA from the University of Maryland-College Park.