Chief Executive Officer
Prior to joining GreenFire, Joe spent 33 years as an attorney at Cooley LLP and headed the Credit Finance practice, including project financing, there for the last 27 years. His financing experience includes representation of a wide range of established to emerging companies and their financing sources ranging from venture capitalists to money center banks. Joe took a leave of absence from Cooley in 1986-1987 to work as a project developer and acted as Project Counsel for cogeneration projects with International Power Technology. He has substantial project finance experience both international and domestic, including projects in wireless telecom, conventional cogeneration energy projects and renewable energy projects employing various biogas, biowaste, wind, hydro, agricultural waste, geothermal and solar technologies.
Joe received a JD in 1982 from the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Law, where he was associate editor of the UCLA Law Review and graduated in the top 10 percent of his class. Joe concurrently earned an MBA from UCLA's Anderson Graduate School of Management, where he concentrated in finance and earned membership to the Beta Gamma Sigma scholastic honor society. At UCLA, Joe was selected each year as the recipient of the John M. Olin Fellowship for law and economics. He earned his undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of California, Davis, where he graduated Phi Beta Kappa.
Brian Higgins, Ph.D.
Chief Technology Officer
Brian Higgins graduated from the University of Colorado, Boulder, and then received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, both in Mechanical Engineering. He then studied fundamental flame chemistry at Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS) at École Centrale Paris. Following this, he researched diesel spray phenomena at the Combustion Research Facility at the Sandia National Laboratory. As an assistant professor at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, he directed the Engines Laboratory and worked on hybrid vehicle design and emerging engine technologies. Eventually leaving academia, Brian took a VP of Technology position at Mobotec, leading the design of more than $200M of NOx and SO2 reduction equipment for coal-fired boilers throughout the US, China, and Poland. Subsequently, as CTO for EnviroCare he has designed scrubbers, spray towers, mercury adsorbers, and wet electrostatic precipitators. Now with GreenFire Energy, he is chiefly involved with producing the process and mechanical design of our novel technology. Brian has published numerous technical papers and delivered too many conference presentations to count.
John R. Muir
Senior Vice President, Business Development
John R. Muir has more than 25 years of senior management experience in both public and private cyber security companies. A strategic thinker, he helped create two security technologies – large scale user authentication via dynamic passwords and enterprise software for full hard drive encryption – that have become foundational in security architectures worldwide. He was also co-inventor of an advanced user authentication device, which was awarded a U.S. patent.
John has served as the Managing Director of SINET Group, a private entity that foments innovation in cyber security, where he manages the company’s strategic research operations and oversees the SINET Member program. John was the Managing Partner of Trusted Strategies (2002-2013) spearheading advisory services and consulting to companies seeking investment and product development expertise in the IT security sector. Trusted Strategies is an alliance partner with SINET and cooperates closely in many SINET event and research activities.
John was President of Pointsec USA (1998-2001) where he directed Pointsec’s ascent as the world’s most widely deployed enterprise hard drive encryption product, leading to a high-valuation acquisition by Check Point Technologies. In 1982, John was co-founder and President of Enigma Logic, one of the pioneering firms in enterprise scale user authentication, which was later acquired in a $73 million transaction by Secure Computing Corporation. John has a degree in International Economics from UC Berkeley and an MBA from the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration.
Vice President Marketing
Hollis Chin is a strategic, results-driven leader and has built marketing strategies for B2B technology companies for 20+ years. Hollis knows how to jumpstart marketing activities in technology companies to drive growth and revenue. Hollis is skilled in articulating the value proposition of technology solutions to business customers. She has expertise in go-to-market strategies, digital marketing, content writing, and public relations.
As the VP Corporate Marketing for 7.ai, Hollis rebranded the company from a contact center services provider to a customer experience solutions company and implemented a new website that grew visitors to 25k/month. She led digital marketing programs and ran executive events, which resulted in the sales of 20% of the accounts. At Art.com, Hollis ran email marketing automation, paid media (LinkedIn, Google Display Network), and direct mail catalogs, which drove $1.2M in revenue annually.
Hollis was a marketing lecturer at the Haas School, U.C. Berkeley. She has a B.S. from the Haas School, U.C. Berkeley, and an M.B.A. from the Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration.
Alvaro Amaya, Ph.D.
Chief Modeling Engineer
Alvaro Amaya is an expert in geothermal modeling. He has been the Geothermal Professor at the University of El Salvador for the last 7 years with research in geothermal modeling, chemical thermodynamics, and the transport of fluids and dispersion modeling. Alvaro studied geochemistry, geothermal exploration, and reservoir modeling at Tohoku University where he completed his Ph.D. thesis applying novel geothermal modeling methodology to the Kakkonda geothermal field in Japan. Alvaro has held prior roles as a researcher in water quality at the Environmental Resources Ministry of El Salvador and a Geothermal Consultant Specialist at LaGeo.
Alvaro holds a Ph.D. from Tohoku University, Sendai, Miyagi, Japan, in geochemistry and geothermal exploration. He holds a Masters in hydrogeology and an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from the University of El Salvador.