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Our Team

Our Team
Richard A. Marin

Chief Executive Officer

Rich is a 42-year finance, real estate, and venture capital industry executive. He was previously a senior executive at three major financial institutions; Bankers Trust Company, Deutsche Bank and Bear Stearns. Later in his career he focused on building and running large asset management businesses in both the traditional and alternative spaces and in the institutional and high net worth markets. He also served as Chairman and CEO of AFI (USA), a major distressed commercial and residential property developer. Most recently he served as CEO of the New York Wheel.

Dr. Lauren Sammes

Co-Founder & Chief Technology Officer

Lauren has worked in the field of solid state electrochemistry for over 30 years. She started her academic career at the University of Waikato in New Zealand, where she eventually became the head of the department of Materials and Chemical Technology. She then became Distinguished Professor of Materials Science and Coors Professor of Ceramics at the Colorado School of Mines, from which she spent many years in Korea as a Visiting Professor. She has published extensively in solid state electrochemistry, holds numerous patents, and has presented at many conferences as the Keynote or Plenary speaker. Recently, she was given the honor of being appointed as an Honorary Professor in the School of Chemistry for the University of St. Andrews.


Fernando Alvarez

Founder & Chairman

Fernando is the Co-Founder and Chairman of LERC, and has continued to work closely with Dr. Sammes to successfully develop the electrochemical systems. He has led the way in realizing a number of applications for the LERC technology.

Deron Pearson

Co-Founder & Vice Chairman

Deron was CEO and Co-Founder of Nexus IS. Inc. He was responsible for strategy, leadership, growth and development of nexus as it grew into a $600 million business. In 2004, Deron led the management buy-out of the former operations of Nexus from Expanets, and acted as President and Chief Operating Officer through 2008.


Russ D. Gerson

Managing Director, Business Development

Russ is a 35-year corporate and business development and executive recruiting professional. He has led strategic advisory, corporate development, corporate governance and recruitment projects for leading global corporations, financial firms and sovereign entities. He served as the CEO of a leading corporate development, sovereign advisory and executive recruiting firm and led A.T. Kearney’s Global Financial Markets practice. Russ headed up Presidential Appointments for Senator John McCain’s Presidential transition planning operation and advised Governor Mitt Romney’s Transition Planning efforts. He is the former chairman of AIESEC-United States, a student run, global nonprofit organization.

Joshua Persky

Vice President of Process & Design

He has developed high tech ceramic solutions for turbine blades for Pratt and Whitney, and high temperature ceramic applications and fuel cells at CoorsTek. In his previous role as the Director of Fuel Cell Materials at Protonex Technology, Joshua developed and managed innovative material solutions and processes for solid oxide fuel cells with a primary focus on cell and stack components. He has managed multiple government funded product development programs including a very successful phase I and phase II SBIR from NASA, where he created innovative high surface area lamellar structured SOFC anode support. Joshua holds multiple patents in his field. He is passionate about bringing new energy solutions to market and electrifying rural and impoverished areas.


Marc X. LoPresti Esq.

General Counsel

During his 19+ years of practice as a securities attorney, Marc has structured and launched numerous ventures. In addition to his role of General Counsel of LERC, Marc is the Founder of LoPresti Law Group, P.C., co-founder of BattleFin Group, LLC and a recognized authority on alternative investments, appearing regularly on CNBC and other news outlets. He now serves on various advisory boards and management committees, including an innovative renewable energy company, an emerging hedge fund manager investment platform and an SEC-registered investment adviser with over $500 Million AUM.

John P. Hughes

Vice President of Engineering

John is a seasoned business executive with more than 35 years of experience in operations, manufacturing, engineering, business development and product management. Prior to joining LERC, he spent 25 years with PNY Technologies, Inc., a global manufacturer and distributor of computer-related technology products, most recently as Senior Vice President of Business Development. John served as Vice President of Operations and Director of Manufacturing with PNY. During his career at PNY, he was responsible for the design and management of a high-volume manufacturing plant, the management of all US operations, and the executive management of international operations in Asia Pacific and Latin America.


Tim Flanagan

Vice President of Finance

Tim is a CPA, has an MBA in Taxation, and has extensive experience in all aspects of finance and administration. He began his career with Ernst & Young, and then spent the next 10 years working for the New York Times where he held a wide variety of financial positions. For the next 16 years Tim worked at International Creative Management (ICM), a full service major talent agency, where he was Senior Vice President of Finance and Administration, functioning as Administrative Head of the New York office. Tim then served as the CFO for various organizations. Most recently, he served as partner for CFO Consulting Partners LLC and as Director of Finance for the New York Wheel.

Jeff Olear

Vice President of Procurement & Logistics

Jeff is a seasoned executive with more than 25 years of manufacturing, sales, material handling and supply chain management. Most recently he held several positions for PNY Technologies, Inc. in Parsippany NJ, including VP of Supply Chain. In this role Jeff oversaw the development and management of a global forecasting and inventory control system, a freight and logistics management system and customer report card communication process.


Charles Meade

Vice President of Security

Charlie has been in the business and law enforcement fields for 35 years. Before joining LERC, he was President of Firrin Associates. Charlie has investigative experience on five continents and has a Master’s Degree in International Business. He is a licensed private investigator in New York, Certified Fraud Examiner, and member of the ASIS Investigations Council.

Dale Bernstein

Vice President of Human Resources

Dale is an experienced Chief Human Resources Officer. Ms. Bernstein serves as a trusted confidant and advisor to Board members, senior management, and employees. Dale has founded Uncommon Human Resources. Prior to founding Uncommon Human Resources, Dale was the Global Chief Human Resource Officer for NYSE Euronext. Dale is also a member of several professional organizations and an elected member of the President’s Council of Cornell Women.



Our Team