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Allan Connolly – CEO & President
Connolly oversees the strategic direction of Aclara, which has 500 employees in St. Louis, Cleveland and Boston. He joined the company as the President and CEO in May 2014, when Sun Capital purchased Aclara from ESCO Technologies. He was instrumental in establishing Aclara as a stand-alone, privately-held company with strong financials and executing a strategic plan that positions Aclara for growth. Connolly previously served as chief operating officer of Culligan International, a world leader in the water treatment industry, where he was responsible for day-to-day operations of the $500 million business as well as the fast-growing Industrial Water Treatment business. As the COO, he oversaw Culligan’s engineering, research and development, manufacturing, quality and supply chain functions. Connolly earned his bachelor’s degree and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from the University of Wollongong, in Australia and holds a doctorate in control systems engineering from the Australian National University.
Kurt Bruenning – Chief Financial Officer, Senior Vice President of Finance, Accounting, Information Technology and Legal
Bruenning leads the finance, accounting, information technology and legal functions of Aclara. He has an extensive leadership background in water and energy, with more than 18 years of experience in corporate finance, accounting, capital markets, treasury, mergers and acquisitions, risk management, public reporting, financial planning and analysis, operations finance and private equity transactions.
Most recently, Bruenning was vice president finance and treasury at Foresight Energy LP, a leading coal producer with $1 billion in annual revenue, where he was responsible for all aspects of corporate finance. He also led a $350 million initial public offering including selecting and negotiating with underwriting banks, overseeing the review process with the SEC and developing company messaging.
Bruenning holds a Master of Business Administration from St. Louis University and a Bachelor of Science in business administration from University of Missouri St. Louis.
Michael Garcia – Senior Vice President, Human Resources & Organizational Effectiveness
Garcia is the senior vice president, human resources and organizational effectiveness for Aclara. He also leads the facilities, environmental health and safety and administration functions for Aclara. He is an experienced chief human resources officer, having developed his skills in Fortune 100 organizations, start-ups and in both public and private equity environments. Before joining Aclara, he was vice president, human resources for SSM Health Care, where he led the human resources and clinical education team for four hospitals in St. Louis. Prior to SSM, Garcia was the senior vice president – chief human resources officer for RehabCare, a publicly traded healthcare company. Garcia holds both master’s and bachelor’s degrees from the University of Missouri – Columbia.
Dave Hakala – Senior Vice President, Manufacturing and Quality Assurance
Hakala oversees all manufacturing, product and technology development, product assurance and quality for the endpoint communications modules and data concentrator equipment for Aclara. He has over 35 years of experience in diverse electronics industries in manufacturing operations, quality, product and process development materials, process development and R&D. Hakala is experienced in use of lean manufacturing and six sigma approaches for operational excellence, successful operations of a multi-plant organization on an international basis. Before joining Aclara he was director of operations for ITW Rippey, supplying critical cleaning materials to the semiconductor wafer fabrication and hard disk drive media industries. Hakala holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and a doctorate in physical chemistry from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, New York.
Kumi Premathilake – Senior Vice President, Marketing
Premathilake is responsible for driving growth in smart infrastructure solutions and advancing marketing capabilities across Aclara. She leads the product management, marketing communications and proposal functions. Premathilake has over 15 years of multi-industry experience that spans product management, marketing and engineering. Prior to joining Aclara, she worked at Johnson Controls, where she was responsible for the Power Solutions product portfolio, a $7 billion business. She started her career at Culligan International’ s commercial and industrial division, serving the water treatment needs of the energy and power, oil and gas and food and beverage industries. Premathilake holds a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from the University of Mississippi and a Master of Business Administration from the Kellstadt Graduate School of Business at DePaul University, Chicago.
Rick Riccardi – Senior Vice President, Major Projects
Riccardi is an experienced senior executive in the AMI industry with more than 15 years managing the development, sales and marketing of advanced metering systems. He was president of Hexagram, one of the early leaders in development of fixed network AMI systems and now part of the Aclara portfolio. Riccardi has held several other executive positions with Aclara, including strategic account management, marketing and technology.
Rick holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Case Western Reserve University and a Master of Business from Cleveland State University.
Stephen Smith – Senior Vice President, Sales and Account Management
Smith has accumulated a strong background in sales and business development. Before joining Aclara, he was vice president of sales for EcoFactor, and prior to that spent 20 years with Honeywell Utility Solutions, leading sales teams focused on the utility space. At Honeywell he led grew business in his area of responsibility to over $200 million in sales. Smith has experience working with a wide spectrum of utility organizations, municipalities and ISO’s, as well as a deep understanding of energy conservation, demand response, smart grid and water efficiency programs for utilities. Smith earned his master’s degree in business administration from Northeastern University, and his bachelor’s of electrical engineering degree from the University of New Hampshire.
Greg Wilson – Senior Vice President, Engineering and Technology
Wilson is Aclara’s senior technology executive and creative strategist. He is responsible for aligning engineering development with industry best practices, emerging technologies and consumer trends to generate long- and short-term plans for Aclara. He has an extensive background in product development and technology, with a track record of success in creating efficiencies, optimizing profitability and producing quality consumer and technology products..
Most recently, Wilson was vice president of engineering and advanced development at Harris Corporation, where he worked to ally product strategy with overarching business objectives. He was also a director of product development at Sony Ericsson and senior director software and systems for Skyworks Solutions, Inc.
Wilson holds a Master of Business Administration degree from Dominican University in River Forest, IL and a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Marquette University, Milwaukee.