Key Staff

Sean I. Plasynski, Ph.D.—Director (Acting)

Sean I. Plasynski Photo

Sean Plasynski is the acting director of the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) of the Department of Energy (DOE). In this capacity, he manages the complete NETL complex, including delivery and execution of the Laboratory’s mission. Plasynski leads NETL’s national programs, in fossil energy and other DOE mission areas, with industry, universities, and national laboratories. Over his 26-year career with NETL, Plasynski has held numerous management and technical positions, including executive director of the Technology Development and Integration center, acting deputy director and 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 has been involved in a wide spectrum of energy technology development, including advanced power and environmental systems, solids transport, biomass co-firing, and carbon capture and storage. 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.

Randall W. Gentry, Ph.D.—Deputy Director, Science and Technology Strategic Plans and Programs, Research Innovation Center

Randall Gentry

Randall Gentry works to build upon the success of NETL’s collaborations with DOE on strategic initiatives like the Annual Laboratory Plan, and the Fossil Energy Roadmap and Grand Challenges endeavors. He has more than 20 years’ experience in environmental science and engineering with a focus on water resources. He came to NETL after serving as deputy division director of the Argonne National Laboratory’s Environmental Science Division. He has also served as an associate editor of the Journal of Hydrologic Engineering and an honorary scientist at the Institute of Soil and Water Conservation within the Chinese Academy of Sciences and Ministry of Water Resources. Gentry’s research occurs at the intersection of science and engineering with a goal of attaining a better understanding and ability to better characterize natural water resource behavior. Gentry earned his doctorate and master’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Memphis, and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Memphis State University. Before joining Argonne National Laboratory, he was director of the Environmental Sciences Division, National Exposure Research Laboratory, Research and Innovation Center, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. He has also served as the president and CEO of the University of Tennessee Research Foundation and director of the University’s Institute for a Secure and Sustainable Environment.

Bryan Morreale, Ph.D.— Executive Director, Research and Innovation Center


Bryan Morreale is the executive director of the Research and Innovation Center (RIC) at NETL. Morreale 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 locations in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Morgantown, West Virginia; and Albany, Oregon. As executive director, Morreale leads 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 computer science and engineering, materials engineering and manufacturing, energy conversion engineering, geological and environmental systems, and systems engineering and analysis.

In nearly 19 years of service to NETL, Morreale has pursued gas separations and membrane-reactor research, led strategic technical and organizational initiatives, and served in senior leadership positions within RIC. As a researcher, Morreale has earned an international reputation for his work in the development and characterization of hydrogen selective membranes. He has served as director of the Molecular Science Division and focus area leader for Materials Science and Engineering, as well as deputy director of RIC.

Charles M. Zeh —Executive Director (Acting), Technology Development and Integration Center

Charles Zeh

Chuck Zeh manages NETL’s national programs, in fossil energy and other DOE programs, with industry, universities, and national laboratories. In this role, he leads integrated technical and business teams in managing federally sponsored, extramural research in coal, oil and gas, and energy technology development, with a focus on delivering research and development benefits to the nation. Over his 35-year career, Zeh has held numerous management positions administering the research, development, and commercialization of new and emerging technologies at NETL. He supervised and was responsible for developing technology for vehicles, buildings, gas turbines, fuel cells, reciprocating engines, and environmental restoration. Zeh holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the State University of New York at Buffalo.

James E. Wilson—Executive Director and Chief Financial Officer, Finance and Acquisition Center; Chief Operating Officer (Acting)

James Wilson

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 25 years of management and finance experience in the energy industry. Prior to joining NETL, he served as president of Wholesale and Retail Energy Trading Businesses within PJM Interconnection, and he served as corporate controller for a public electric utility. Wilson also previously worked 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.

Antonio M. Ferreira, Ph.D. — Chief Information Officer

Antonio Ferreira

Antonio Ferreira oversees NETL’s information technology and computing systems and works to develop strategic planning in support of research computing at NETL. Ferreira has more than 20 years of experience as a researcher, software developer, and senior manager. Prior to joining the Lab, he served as executive director of the Center for Simulation and Modeling at the University of Pittsburgh and manager of the High-Performance Computing Facility at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis, Tennessee. He has an extensive background in high-performance computing and high-performance storage systems for Big Data applications and has served as a grant reviewer for the Advanced Cyberinfrastructure Division of the Computer & Information Science & Engineering Directorate of the National Science Foundation. As a researcher, Ferreira has published more than 30 scientific papers in materials science, quantum chemistry, propagator theory, molecular biophysics, and computer-aided drug discovery. He is a Scholar in Residence at Duquesne University and co-inventor on three patents in chemotherapeutics. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Syracuse University and a doctorate in theoretical chemistry from the University of Memphis.

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. Prior to joining NETL, among other roles, Malie served as deputy general counsel for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the solicitor for the City of Pittsburgh Department of Law. Malie joined NETL in 2010 and has served as attorney advisor, chief operating officer (acting), supervisory attorney-advisor, and Legal Division director, in addition to her current role as NETL chief counsel. Malie holds a bachelor’s degree from Duquesne University and a Juris Doctor from Duquesne University School of Law.