Dana Harmon has 13 years of leadership and management experience in the energy and consumer products industries. As Executive Director of TEPRI, Ms. Harmon has overall strategic and operational responsibility for execution of TEPRI’s mission to collect actionable data that industry partners can utilize to mitigate the energy costs of low-income consumers across Texas. Ms. Harmon brings experience from two prior start-ups, an engineering background, and a broad skillset in project management, operations, marketing, business development, and technology commercialization.
Prior to joining TEPRI, Ms. Harmon spent seven years in the oil and gas industry. She led the marketing and business development functions for an Austin Technology Incubator start-up providing geophysical technology to upstream operators. In this role, she drove the company’s first successful product launch, developed a robust opportunity pipeline, led demand generation activities, and managed several research projects with academia and industry in the United States and the Middle East.
Ms. Harmon worked previously in Houston, Texas where she managed the global marketing activities for a laboratory start-up bringing to market new exploration technologies serving oil and gas clients. In this role she was responsible for product management, market intelligence, brand development, and financial reporting for offices in the US, Colombia, Brazil, and the Middle East. She led joint industry projects focused on solving common challenges for operators and worked closely with clients, R&D, and operations teams to deliver value to her clients.
Ms. Harmon spent several years in management consulting, advised her clients on supply chain solutions including performance management programs, network strategies, and facilities and systems implementations across the United States.
Ms. Harmon earned a B.S. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta. She has received a Texas Venture Labs Award for Excellence in Energy Innovation, a certification in Marketing Strategy for Business Leaders from Cornell University, and is a Prosci™ certified Change Management Instructor. Her volunteer work includes serving on the advisory board for a local private school, serving on her neighborhood’s community enhancement committee, and volunteering with Child Advocates.
A native of Mississippi, Ms. Harmon enjoys live music and all things outdoors and is now very proud to call Austin home.
Samantha has been with TEPRI since our formation. She worked with TEPRI founder Becky Klein at the organizations predecessor Power Across Texas. Samantha manages TEPRI’s general operations and supports TEPRI projects, events and communications initiatives.
Samantha is no stranger to wearing many hats and running multiple projects. She oversees TEPRI business operations by mixing her talent for strategy development and problem solving with a unique spirit of excellence. By combining her strengths in communication, campaign management, and organizational and strategy development, Samantha creates results and provides focus and execution to deliver high return on engagement. Samantha’s reputation is defined by her ability to help lead an organization to succeed by understanding unique needs and developing strategy and implementation plans.
In addition to TEPRI, Samantha manages an association of the nation’s largest public power utilities, works with a higher education research center in Texas and a runs a small public affairs firm.
Prior to joining the TEPRI, Samantha was an account manager in the interactive industry where she successfully ran local and state-wide interactive campaigns. Samantha has over 10 years of experience in business management including communications, development, event planning, nonprofits and public relations.
A native Texan, Samantha was raised on the Gulf Coast before moving to Austin to attended the University of Texas where she received her bachelor of science in public relations. In her spare time, Samantha owns and operates a wedding and special events venue in Buda, Texas.
Graduate Research Assistant
Michelle Plunkett is a second year graduate student in the Master of Public Affairs program at the The University of Texas at Austin’s Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs. She plans to graduate in May of 2018.
Prior to starting her master’s degree, Michelle completed a Bachelor of Arts in Music Technology degree at The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She graduated with highest honors (Summa Cum Laude) and Bronze Tablet Honors (top 3% of the entire university graduating class) as well as completed the program in only three years. Her interests in public policy and research were discovered while studying music through seeing the impact that policy has on public arts programs and how reductions in funding for these programs negatively impact communities.
During the Summer of 2017, Michelle worked as a Research Intern in Washington, D.C. at the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) in the Office of Research & Analysis. At the NEA, Michelle gained firsthand experience working and conducting research in a federal agency. Her work as an intern involved combining internal agency data with other federal datasets to inform members of Congress of the economic impact of the NEA’s grant-making at the state- and congressional district-levels.
Michelle’s current research interests include using data to inform decision-making through statistical analysis, visualization, and GIS mapping.