Charles McConnell is the energy center officer of the Center for Carbon Management in Energy at the University of Houston. Prior to joining the CCME, McConnell was the executive director of the Energy and Environment Initiative at Rice University. McConnell served as the assistant secretary of energy in the US Department of Energy from 2011-13 and was responsible for the Office of Fossil Energy’s strategic policy leadership, budgets, project management, and research and development of the department’s coal, oil and gas, and advanced technologies programs, as well as for the operations and management of the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve and the National Energy Technologies Laboratories.
McConnell also previously served as vice president of Carbon Management at Battelle Energy Technology in Columbus, Ohio and with Praxair, Inc. serving in a variety of operations, sales and global business and technology roles including hydrogen, gasification and energy as the global VP of energy and hydrogen.
McConnell is currently a board member of the Energy & Environmental Research Center (EERC) Foundation in North Dakota, is a member of the National Coal Council, has served on the Society of Petroleum Engineers and National Petroleum Council subcommittees, and has held a number of board positions including chairmanships of the Gasification & Syngas Technologies Council and the Clean Carbon Technology Foundation of Texas. McConnell holds a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Carnegie-Mellon University (1977) and an MBA in finance from Cleveland State University (1984).