David Barnett

David Barnett is a third generation United Association Pipeliner, who began his career in 1976 with his father in Delta Junction, Alaska helping to construct the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. Working 30 years in the field as a pipefitter, he has worked on 55 different projects in 29 states and overseas. His field career has included new construction, take up and replacement, hydrostatic testing, Smart Pigging, HDD and emergency repairs including many as Crew Forman. On January 1st, 2012 UA General President Bill Hite afforded him the opportunity to become a full time officer of the United Association of Plumbers and Pipefitters where he currently serves as a Representative in the Pipeline and Gas Distribution Department, serving UA Members in the Pipeline Industry on a National level.


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James Bradbury

James Bradbury is a Senior Policy Advisory for Climate Environment and Efficiency in the Office of Energy Policy and Systems Analysis at the U.S. Department of Energy.  James contributes to several Administration priorities, including the Quadrennial Energy Review and the Interagency Methane Strategy. Previously, James was a Senior Associate in the Climate and Energy Program at the World Resources Institute, where he testified on Capitol Hill and led research projects on strategies for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. natural gas systems and energy-intensive U.S. manufacturers.

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Timothy Butters

Timothy Butters: is Acting Deputy Administrator, PHMSA who served 10 years as Managing Director of the Chemical Transportation Emergency Center (CHEMTREC®),  Director of Government Affairs for the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and senior manager with United States Fire Administration (USFA)/Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).  Prior to his appointment at PHMSA, he served as the Assistant Chief of Operations for the City of Fairfax Fire Department, located in Northern Virginia, where his responsibilities included oversight of day-to-day fire department emergency response operations.


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Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr.

Senator Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA) fights every day for Pennsylvania jobs and families, advocating for the education and well-being of children, and pursuing a national security strategy that protects our interests and supports those who serve our country. He currently serves as the Chair of the Subcommittee on Taxation and IRS Oversight in the Finance Committee; Chair of the Subcommittee on Employment and Workplace Safety on the Health Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee; and is a member of the Joint Economic Committee; the Agriculture Committee; the Special Committee on Aging; and the National Security Working Group.

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Terri Cooper Smith

Terri Cooper Smith has a degree in Civil Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is Gas Safety

Inspector for the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission. Terri investigates natural gas pipeline safety incidents and inspects gas pipeline utilities to ensure adherence to the Pennsylvania and Federal codes on gas safety. Her territory spans most of the Philadelphia region and surrounding counties.

Karen Edelstein

Karen Edelstein is the Eastern Program Coordinator for the FracTracker Alliance, a nonprofit organization based in Pennsylvania, with staff throughout the US. FracTracker Alliance shares maps, data, and analyses to communicate impacts of the global oil and gas industry, and informs actions that positively shape our energy future. Edelstein’s office is in Ithaca, New York, where, over the past 25 years, she has worked in the environmental field as a mapping specialist and educator. She holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Cornell University.

Lynda Farrell

Lynda Farrell is Executive Director of Mayors’ Council on Pipeline Safety and Executive Director of Pipeline Safety Coalition. Both organizations are not for profit entities dedicated to improving public, personal and environmental pipeline safety.

Lynda’s interest in pipeline safety began as a farmer, when an unannounced smart pig inspection of pipes rumbled beneath her feet causing her to fear an explosion. A teacher at heart, the more she learned, the more she knew others needed to know. A graduate of Susquehanna University with a BA in English, Lynda obtained Special Education Certification and taught English at the high school level before working in marketing, management, farming, grant writing, agricultural and environmental consulting and ultimately pipeline safety.

Lesley Fleischman

Lesley Fleischman is an Analyst at the Clean Air Task Force where she focuses on reducing methane emissions from the oil and gas industry. Prior to joining CATF, Lesley worked at the Union of Concerned Scientists as an analyst in the Energy Program and the Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) Ratings team at MSCI, Inc. Lesley received a Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School and holds a B.A. from Haverford College in History and Economics. Lesley is based in Princeton, New Jersey.


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Anthony Gallagher

Anthony Gallagher was born is Darby, Pennsylvania and attended Delaware Community College. Anthony and his wife have been married for 18 years and have three children. His father was a great mentor who entered the Steamfitters in 1969. Anthony has served in various positions as an elected and appointed official and in 2013 was elected to the office of Business Manager by the members of Steamfitters Local 420.

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Kim Glas

Kim Glas is the Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance, a national partnership of labor unions and environmental organizations dedicated to expanding the number and quality of jobs while growing a clean energy economy.  Kim has served in senior leadership positions in the Obama administration and the U.S. House of Representatives, most recently serving as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Textiles, Consumer Goods, and Materials at the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Sam Hall

Sam Hall is a Program Manager for the Office of Pipeline Safety in the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and coordinates a variety of PHMSA emergency response outreach and damage prevention initiatives, including the Technical Assistance Grants program, the third-party excavation damage enforcement rulemaking, improving pipeline emergency response, and cooperative agreements with the Common Ground Alliance and the National Association of State Fire Marshals.

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Christopher A. Hart

Christopher A. Hart was sworn in as Chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board in 2015 after being originally sworn in as a Member of the Board (2009), designated by the President as Vice Chairman (2009) and nominated (2013) by President Obama for a second term as Board Member. Hart was previously Deputy Director for Air Traffic Safety Oversight and Assistant Administrator for System Safety at the Federal Aviation Administration.  Hart holds a law degree from Harvard University, Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University and is a member of the District of Columbia Bar, Lawyer-Pilots Bar Association, is a licensed pilot with commercial, multi-engine, and instrument ratings. His great uncle, James Herman Banning, was the first African-American to receive a pilot’s license issued by the U.S. Government in 1926.


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Connie Jackson

Connie Jackson has served as City Manager for the City of San Bruno, CA since 2003. She previously served in progressively responsible city management positions over 18 years in the City of Hercules, CA and as the City Manager of the City of Fort Bragg, CA.  In the wake of the San Bruno September 2010 gas transmission line explosion, Connie has provided strong leadership to emergency response, community restoration and recovery efforts while maintaining the community’s regular high standard of public service delivery.  Connie led the City’s work as a party to the National Transportation Safety Board investigation and to subsequent proceedings before the California Public Utilities Commission where the City has been a strong and effective advocate for safety and regulatory reform.  Connie was recognized for career achievement in 2011 by the California organization Women Leading Government and League of California Cities as the recipient of the 2012 City Manager of Distinction award.

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Dick Kraft

Dick Kraft is Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Endot Industries, located in Rockaway, New Jersey. Dick is responsible for national/international sales and marketing functions relating to natural gas pipe, water pipe, and telecommunications conduit. Dick is the immediate “Past Chair” of the Plastics Pipe Institutes Energy Piping Systems Division and a member of the division’s Regulatory Affairs Committee.

Bernie Labelle

Bernie Labelle is Senior National Representative for the Utility Workers Union of America.

Lee Laubach

Lee Laubach joined the Allentown Fire Department in 1993 as a firefighter and has held the ranks of Lieutenant, Fire Marshal, Captain and Assistant Chief. In 2010 Chief Laubach was awarded the State Farm scholarship for Accelerant Detection K9, promoted to Deputy Chief of Operations in 2014, Emergency Management Coordinator for the City of Allentown in 2014 by the Governor of Pennsylvania and appointed Fire Chief in 2015.

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Dr. Simona Perry

Dr. Simona Perry is Research Director at c.a.s.e. Consulting Services, VP of Pipeline Safety Coalition, and CFO of C.A. Perry Realtor, Inc. Trained as an environmental scientist, policy analyst, and ethnographer, she works in rural and urban places across the U.S. to document and raise awareness of the interconnections between ecology, psychology, politics, and culture.  She is a licensed real estate professional in Georgia. Current areas of practice include infrastructure risk and disaster communication, preparedness, and response strategies at the local and national level; land use negotiations and conflicts in the context of mineral exploration, development, and transport and psycho-social stressors and mental health disparities and outcomes in rural communities.

Ed Pawlowski

Ed Pawlowski is Mayor of Allentown Pennsylvania and a enter-city Allentown resident for over a decade who knows first-hand both the struggle and the potential Allentown faces. Ed was encouraged to run for mayor in 2005 by business and community leaders who were quick to point out that Ed’s leadership and experience were the only hope for a city that had been so recklessly managed for years. Voters in Allentown elected Ed and then showed renewed confidence by re-electing him by substantial margins in November 2009 and again in November 2013. The tenure of the Pawlowski administration has been characterized by action, purpose, a strong sense of urgency, and endless energy. Ed received his master’s degree in urban planning and public policy from the University of Illinois and his bachelor’s degree from the Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, where he met his wife, Lisa. They have two children, Mercy and Alex, who both attend Allentown public schools.

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Mike Mikich

Mike Mikich: United Association Special Representative, Gas Distribution Division.

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Nathan Phillips

Nathan Phillips is a professor in the Earth and Environment Department at Boston University.  Nathan was part of recent studies that documented thousands of natural gas leaks in Boston and Washington, DC, which included finding and reporting grade one leaks, some of which remained un-repaired weeks and months later.  Nathan’s current interest is in finding solutions to the gas leaks problem by considering them as part of a holistically-managed infrastructure ecosystem.

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Paul J. Roberti

Paul J. Roberti was appointed to the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission in 2009 and received unanimous consent by the Senate on June 24, 2009. Prior to his appointment, Commissioner Roberti served for 17 years in the Rhode Island Attorney General’s Office and as Assistant Attorney General and Chief of the Regulatory Unit. Commissioner Roberti currently serves in various capacities within the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC), including his current role as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Pipeline Safety, where he leads the States’ efforts to advance pipeline safety and infrastructure replacement in the gas industry.  In 2013, he was appointed by U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz to the Department of Energy’s Electricity Advisory Committee (EAC), where he serves on the EAC’s Subcommittee on Storage.  He is a member of the Board of Directors of NARUC and the National Regulatory Research Institute.  He also serves as Chairman of the Advisory Council for the New Mexico State University Center for Public Utilities.


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Patty Voight

Patty Voight is a marketing and higher education professional with over 6 years of experience working within the non-profit sector. Patty has received a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA and holds a Master’s of Science in Higher Education with a concentration in Institutional Research & Planning. Patty is currently working on a Master’s of Science in Organizational Leadership at Cabrini College in Radnor, PA. Her thesis topic is pipeline safety, with the hopes of creating a non-profit support group to help and assist fire victims like herself.

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Mark W. Toney

Mark W. Toney, has served as executive director of TURN–The Utility Reform Network since 2008, promoting affordable green energy and phone service through legal advocacy, grassroots organizing, and policy campaigns. His leadership defeated an anti-consumer statewide initiative, expanded LifeLine discounts to wireless phones, and included diverse communities in policy making. Mark has organized for social justice for 35 years, earned his B.A. in political science from Brown University, his Ph.D. in sociology from UC Berkeley, and he has been recognized as a Kellogg National Leadership Fellow, National Science Foundation Fellow, and Echoing Green Fellow.

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Jim Ruane

Jim Ruane is Mayor of the City of San Bruno, California. A San Francisco native and resident of San Bruno since 1976, Jim was first elected to the San Bruno City Council in 1995, served four consecutive terms on the City Council and as Chairman of the San Bruno Planning Commission before being elected to the office of Mayor in 2009.  On the evening of September 9, 2010 Jim was one of the first on scene when a 30″ Pacific Gas and Electric Company high-pressure gas transmission pipeline exploded and set one of San Bruno’s residential neighborhoods on fire.  With a steady hand and constant attention to the needs of San Bruno residents, Jim has tirelessly devoted himself to assuring the community’s full recovery from the tragic consequences of the pipeline disaster.  His calm and decisive leadership has earned him distinction both locally and nationally. Jim has testified before State and Federal legislative committees, has represented the City at the National Transportation Safety Board and the California Public Utilities Commission.   Jim is a plaster and drywall contractor and President, Board Member and Trustee for a number of trade organizations. Jim is a US Navy Vietnam era veteran. He has been married to Noreen for 41 years and has two grown children and three grandchildren.

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Carl Wood

Carl Wood: Utility Workers Union, National Director Government & Regulatory Affairs.

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Conference Highlights