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Key Staff

Brian J. Anderson, Ph.D., Director

Brian Anderson

As director of the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL), Brian J. Anderson, Ph.D., manages the complete NETL complex, including delivery and execution of the Laboratory’s mission and national programs in carbon-based energy and program support to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Offices of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy; Electricity; and Cybersecurity, Energy Security and Emergency Response. Anderson leads NETL’s more than 1,300 employees and guides more than 1,000 R&D projects in 50 states with a total award value of $5 billion. As director, Anderson fosters strategic relationships with utility and academic institutions, state and local governments, and important carbon management stakeholders. Under Anderson’s leadership, NETL initiated critical technology development and deployment projects including direct air capture technologies for decarbonization, chemical looping combustion with potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and non-variable renewable energy for future low-carbon power systems. Anderson also guided the development and maturation of key technologies proven to have significant industry impact including microwave ammonia synthesis and carbon nanomaterials manufactured from coal. In April 2021, the Biden Administration named Anderson executive director of the Interagency Working Group on Coal and Power Plant Communities and Economic Revitalization. In this role, Anderson strategically leverages NETL’s resources and expertise to help ensure the shift to a clean energy economy creates good-paying union jobs, spurs economic revitalization, remediates environmental degradation and supports energy workers in coal, oil and gas, and power plant communities across the country.

Anderson is the recipient of the 2020 Federal Laboratory Consortium Laboratory Director of the Year award, and Secretary’s Honor Award and Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers for his research. Anderson earned his bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering at West Virginia University and his master’s and doctorate in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Sean I. Plasynski, Ph.D., Deputy Director and Chief Technology Officer

Shean Plasynski

As deputy director and chief technology officer for NETL, Sean I. Plasynski, Ph.D., is responsible for managing the Lab’s national programs with various DOE national laboratories, universities and industrial partners. The focus surrounds the development of technology primarily for coal, oil, and gas in addition to technologies implemented by NETL for other parts of DOE. Over his 28-year career with NETL, Plasynski has held numerous management and technical positions, including acting director of NETL, chief operating officer, director of the Strategic Center of Coal, director of the Office of Coal and Power R&D, and Sequestration technology manager. He holds a bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh’s Katz Graduate School of Business.

Bryan Morreale, Ph.D., Associate Laboratory Director for Research and Innovation


As associate laboratory director for Research and Innovation for NETL, Bryan Morreale, Ph.D., is responsible for all aspects of NETL’s internal research efforts, valued at approximately $120 million per year and involving about 500 multidisciplinary federal and contract research staff at the Lab’s three research sites. Morreale leads NETL’s Research and Innovation Center (RIC) in developing and implementing a dynamic research portfolio that effectively addresses DOE and other customer goals by effectively exercising NETL’s core competencies. In nearly 19 years of service with NETL, Morreale has pursued gas separations and membrane-reactor research, led strategic technical and organizational initiatives, and served in senior leadership positions within RIC. Morreale holds a doctorate in chemical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh.

Michele Ostraat, Ph.D., Chief Operating Officer

Michele Ostraat

As chief operating officer for NETL, Michele Ostraat, Ph.D., provides strategic direction, leadership and management of NETL’s support functions and services, including cybersecurity and information technology infrastructure. Ostraat has more than 20 years in research, including more than 15 years’ experience in leadership. She previously served as senior downstream research center leader at Aramco Services Company in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she championed the launch, growth and expansion of Saudi Aramco’s Global Research Center. Ostraat holds a doctorate and master’s in chemical engineering from California Institute of Technology and a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Trinity University.

James E. Wilson, Chief Financial Officer

James Wilson

As chief financial officer (CFO) for NETL, Jim Wilson is responsible for planning, direction and coordination of the Laboratory’s CFO, procurement and financial assistance functions; he provides effective oversight and stewardship of the Laboratory’s financial resources. Wilson has more than 30 years of management and finance experience in the energy industry, including serving as president of Wholesale and Retail Energy Trading Businesses within PJM Interconnection, corporate controller for a public electric utility and working as a management consultant in the energy industry and as an auditor with a Big Four accounting firm. Wilson holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Saint Vincent College and an MBA from the University of Pittsburgh..

Susan E. Malie — Chief Counsel

Susan Maile

As chief counsel for NETL, Susan Malie is responsible for the management and oversight of the complete portfolio of NETL legal matters. An accomplished legal executive, she leads the Office of Chief Counsel and administers expert guidance concerning legal authority for and implementation of all activities related to execution of NETL’s mission, including multiple R&D programs and projects, science and technical research, and management, business, strategic, financial and operational functions. Malie has decades of experience as senior in-house government corporate counsel managing full-service legal organizations engaged in a broad spectrum of legal practice. Malie holds a bachelor’s degree from Duquesne University and a Juris Doctor from Duquesne University School of Law.