A Letter From Our Chair

Michael Corradini

Director, Wisconsin Energy Institute

Thanks to the support of our members, partners and sponsors the Midwest Energy Research Consortium has accomplished a great
 deal in the past year. M-WERC has opened the Energy Innovation Center, worked with regional partners to secure Milwaukee’s Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) designation, sponsored $650,000 in research, and grown our membership to over 80 companies and academic institutions within the Energy, Power, and Controls space.

The Energy Innovation Center hosted ver 200 guests for a holiday event in December, showcasing not just a beautiful physical space but also offering a glimpse into the possibilities for open innovation that will soon occur there.

The EIC is now home to three tenants as well as of business service providers including the accounting firm Komisar Brady, the law firm Whyte Hirsch Dudek SC and the Angel Investor Network Silicon Pastures. Together this group will offer support for young startups, allowing them to focus on growing their business and technologies.

With buy-in from the community, elected leaders, and our industry and academic partners, the EIC has and will continue to be the gold standard for collaborative efforts in the EPC space throughout the Midwest region.

The IMCP designation was awarded to the Milwaukee region as a result of collaborative efforts between M-WERC and other regional organizations, a success that we are very proud of. The U.S. Commerce Department-led program is designed to accelerate the resurgence of manufacturing in communities nationwide, which highlights our success as a region to become a center of excellence in advanced manufacturing – of which the energy, power and control sector plays an important role.

Thanks to our robust ties to industry-leading EPC companies and brilliant talent from our academic partners, M-WERC is creating a truly one of a kind network for open innovation to advance EPC technologies regionally and provide answers for some of humanity’s most pressing energy dilemmas.

In 2011 M-WERC started with eight members. We continue to expand the number of academic partners in our membership base, balanced with our corporate members to help drive research around our research focus areas. As we grow, so do the market opportunities in EPC, which will drive economic success throughout the region.

Our goals for 2015 are largely driven by our collaborative strategy. Success for us will be defined by our ability to attract additional academic institutions and use the IMCP designation to bring growth opportunities to the region. Expanding the EIC will play a role in drawing more academic partners into our innovation network, particularly as we complete the next stage of construction on the 2nd floor startup space and begin work on a proposed medium voltage test lab.

The Midwest Energy Research Consortium is successful only because of the support from our members, our partners, and our sponsors.
As the Chair of M-WERC’s board I thank you all for the effort and time you give us and ask that you continue to help us become the region’s leading EPC thought leadership group.

A Letter from Alan Perlstein

Executive Director, M-WERC

Milwaukee’s heritage as a center for energy, power, and controls (EPC) technologies and industry is a proud legacy that we at the Midwest Energy Research Consortium diligently pursue even now. Our successes in 2014 are due to support M-WERC has been fortunate to receive from our industry and academic partners, community leaders, and other regional and local sponsor organizations that see the vast possibilities for growth driven by these new technologies.

We have completed the first phase of building our Energy Innovation Center, an open innovation space that will solidify M-WERC’s role as a global hub for EPC research, talent and workforce development, and industry expansion. The new EIC establishes a vibrant space for both corporate product development and open innovation within the EPC ecosystem. The uniqueness of the EIC building is a strategic asset that can play a role in not only our technological advancement but also the health and development of the local community.

Our recently completed roadmaps on Distributed Energy Resources and Systems and Increasing Energy Efficiency have already yielded information that will help our corporate and academic members fill product, technology, and research gaps that drive our region’s economic success. Our next roadmap, the Energy Water Nexus will help to cement Milwaukee’s role as not only a center for advanced water technologies but also their interrelated relationship with efficiencies in the EPC space.

In 2014 M-WERC grew not only physically through the EIC but also in terms of organizational strength and knowledge. We have been joined by some of the foremost minds in the start-up sector to provide our first cohort of early-stage companies with what they need to be successful, both in tools and mentorship.

A few highlights of the regional and national expansion of our activities include webinar use for member meetings, national speakers at our open member meetings, such as Bonneville Power and EPRI, our partnership with a Boston Based Incubator, Greentown Labs, partnerships with the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance and the Unites States Energy Association, and the opening of a satellite office in Boston to increase collaborative activities with one of the strongest entrepreneurial and clean energy regions in the US.

We are grateful for the continued support of our members, partners, and supporters. Together, we are Putting Energy to Work.

The Energy Innovation Center

The Energy Innovation Center is poised to become the center of efforts to foster the resurgence and expansion of the energy, power, and control (ECP) sector. The public-private partnership will bring together entrepreneurs, corporations, and leading research universities to solve the world’s energy challenges.

Our unique approach leverages open innovation as a growth engine while focusing on aligning M-WERC member’s growth needs in EPC cluster. The EIC will work with companies and entrepreneurs to address opportunities from each of the following three stages of development:

Start Up Business Acceleration – For early stage new businesses looking to enroll in an accelerator program during the summer of 2015.

Product Acceleration and Commercialization – For mid-stage new businesses by providing access to partners and services at prototype stage.

Technology Acceleration – By looking to co-located academic and industrial Research & Development labs.

This approach allows us to leverage the strategic technology road map efforts to meet business challenges for tomorrow’s growth. Join us to lead the energy revolution and the revitalization of our region.

As a recipient of the Manufacturing Community Partnership Initiative, the EIC has access to preferential consideration for up to $1.3 billion in federal grant money. Join us to lead the energy revolution and the revitalization of our region.

The physical space in the Energy Innovation Center is being built out and prepared for occupancy:

Initial 7th Floor space completed, December 2014

Designing 2nd Floor for Additional Business Start-Ups for Mid-2015 Occupancy

Securing Discovery Labs for 3rd Floor and 2015 Build-Out

Lower Level Build-Out to Follow in 2016

Success in 2014

Patents Filed

Patent Application 1

Submittal for Hybrid Magnetostrictive-Oprtical Current Sensor. Current sensor provides wide bandwidth and wide dynamic range for high voltage and power measurements. Utilizes inventive combination of hybrid configuration of optical gratings and magnetostrictive transducer elements.

Patent Application 2

Submittal for related optical networking means for connecting large number of current and voltage sensors based on variants of optical grating technology combined with digital modulation and demodulation schemes.

In 2014 M-WERC Sponsored $650,000 in Research

In addition to the funding for our Industry Roadmap research, M-WERC has contributed to two major research programs:

A grant from M-WERC funded a 10-kilowatt wind turbine at UWM’s maintenance and research facility in Milwaukee. The wind turbine provides power for UWM’s micro-grid research and is the only project of its kind in Wisconsin. – June 2014

M-WERC awarded six researchers from local universities grants of $75,000 to continue their cutting edge work in (EPC) systems here in Wisconsin. – May 2014

Technology Innovation

Six new projects launched based on Tech Roadmap

New Technology Roadmap developed for Industrial Energy Efficiency

Developed IP Exchange

Research Completed

Industry Road Map progress in 2014

Distributed Energy Resources Systems

CY12-CY17 Growth $1B-$3B
Markets: Hospitals, Campuses, Bases, Municipalities

Energy Efficiency

CY12-CY17 Growth $149B-$209B
Markets: Building Management Systems, Motor Control Systems, System
, Building Retrofit, Self-Gen., Energy Storage

Snapshot of Events

2014 Programming Included

January 30, 2014

Building Energy Efficiency Roadmap update and Energy Efficiency Midwest policy update

– Hosted by AO Smith

March 20, 2014

Building Energy Efficiency Roadmap update and guest presentation by Bonneville Power Administration

– Hosted by M-WERC

May 15, 2014

Introduction to D2P and updates from WEDC and UW-Madison College of Engineering

– Hosted by Wisconsin Institute for Discovery

July 24, 2014

Distributed Energy Resources Roadmap update and advanced electrical distribution systems

– Hosted by We Energies

September 18, 2014

Energy Storage Industry Roadmap kickoff and Energy Storage Research update from Lux Research

– Hosted by Rockwell Automation

November 20, 2014

Future Vision of Research at UW-Milwaukee and updates on M-WERC-funded UW research

– Hosted by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

December 18, 2014

Our M-WERC Holiday Party welcomed over 200 guests from our membership and supporters.


Alan Perlstein

Executive Director and CEO

John Bobrowich

Director, Market and Industry Expansion & Executive Director Emeritus

Elliot Berman

Deputy Executive Director

Jeff Anthony

Director, Energy Innovation Center

Thomas Fehring

Director, Special Projects

Bruce Biehoff

Director of Technology Innovation

Joshua Morby

Director of Public Affairs

Greg Meier

Managing Director of Innovation

Nick Wichert

Managing Director of Innovation

Michael Hanson

Administration Coordinator

Gustavo Lopez

Public Affairs Associate

Board Members

Michael Corradini, Chair

Chair, Wisconsin Energy Institute, UW-Madison

Mike Lovell, Chairman Emeritus

President, Marquette University

William Weber, Secretary

Vice-President Design Engineering, DRS Power & Control Technologies, Lead, M-WERC Technology Innovation

Michael Krauski, Treasurer

Director of Corporate Relations - College of Engineering and Applies Sciences, UW- Milwaukee / Lead, M-WERC Workforce Development

Alan Perlstein, Board Member

Executive Director and CEO, Mid-West Energy Research Consortium

John Bobrowich, Board Member

Director, Market and Industry Expansion, Mid-West Energy Research Consortium / M-WERC Executive Director Emeritus

Tom Bray, Board Member

Dean of Applied Research, MSOE

Mark Felsheim, Board Member

Vice-President, Oak Creek Campus, Milwaukee Area Technical College / Lead, M-WERC Workforce Development

Kevin Fletcher, Board Member

Senior Vice President, Customer Operations, We Energies Lead, M-WERC Market and Industry Expansion

Hal Karas, Board Member

Attorney, Whyte Hirschboeck & Dudek S.C.

Patrick O’Brien, Board Member

President, Milwaukee 7

John Marino, Board Member

Manager, LEM USA

Michael Rowe, Board Member

EVP & COO, American Transmission Company

Tom Otterlee, Board Member

Attorney, Michael Best & Friedrich LLP

Lee Swindall, Board Member

Vice President Business and Industry Division, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation / Lead, M-WERC Market and Industry Expansion

Doug Weber, Board Member

Business Development Manager, Alternative Energy, Rockwell Automation Lead, M-WERC Technology Innovation


  • Aerotropolis
  • Alberta Canada, Chicago Office
  • Alliance Federated Energy
  • AO Smith
  • ATC
  • Boldt Construction
  • Briggs and Stratton Corp.
  • City of Milwaukee
  • Colliers International
  • ComAp LLC
  • DRS
  • EME Associates
  • Energy Law Wisconsin
  • Engengren Corporation
  • EnvironmentalResources Management
  • Franklin Energy Services
  • Freedom Field Renewable Energy
  • Gateway Technical College
  • Gehrs Consulting
  • General Capital Group
  • Global Services & Solutions LLC
  • Godfrey &Kahn
  • GRaEF Engineering
  • Greenfire
  • Johnson Controls
  • Jonco Industries
  • Kahler Slater
  • Kohler
  • Lakeshore Technical College
  • Law office of Mary Ann Christopher
  • M&M Interiors
  • M7
  • Manufacturing Diversity Institute
  • Marquette University
  • MATC
  • MEEA
  • MGI Communications
  • Michael Best& Friedrich
  • MicroCogen Partners LLC
  • Milwaukee Institute
  • Miron Construction
  • MSOE
  • North West Side Community Development Corporation
  • Regal-Beloit
  • Renew Now Facilities LLC
  • Renew Wisconsin
  • Rockwell Automation
  • Rockwind LLC
  • S &C Electric Co.
  • Shamrock Energy Corp.
  • Silicon Pastures
  • The New North
  • TM3 Systems
  • Tristate Alliance
  • University of Illinois at Chicago (College of Engineering, ECE Department)
  • University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
  • ViZn
  • WCTC
  • We Energies
  • Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek
  • Wisconsin Bioenergy Initiative
  • Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation
  • Wisconsin Housing and Economic Development Authority
  • Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership
  • Wisconsin Wind Works
  • ZBB Energy


Program Expenses - Total Expenses Ratio

The Better Business Bureau recommends at least 65% and Charity Navigator recommends at least 75%.

Organizational Growth

2011-20128 to 26Members
2013-201456 to 76Members

Total Contributions


2015 Goals

“Contributions and Awards”$2.4m
Member Growth25%