Keynote speakers 

Anne Ellis

 Anne Ellis is Founder and CEO of Ellis Global, consultants assisting those harnessing the power of technology and innovation to transform engineering and construction in the built world. Prior to launching her own company, Anne was Vice President, Innovation + Knowledge Share Director at AECOM and responsible for the development and shaping of an innovation portfolio that benefitted AECOM’s clients located in more than 150 countries.
Recognized in the field of concrete, Anne served as President of the American Concrete Institute (2013-2014). “Concrete Construction” magazine named her one of the most influential people in the concrete industry in 2013, chosen in part because of the changes she advanced at ACI involving “a new global approach to building and sharing information.” Anne began her career in structural engineering practice followed by roles with the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association and Portland Cement Association advancing new technologies, approaches and industry collaborations. She is coauthor of the “Concrete Design and Construction” chapter of the Standard Handbook for Civil Engineers, Fifth Edition.
An industry leader, Anne serves on the Board of Directors of the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) established by the U.S. Congress. By appointment of the U.S. Secretary of Commerce, she serves on the Environmental Technologies Trade Advisory Committee (ETTAC) providing private-sector advice to 19 federal departments and agencies on federal trade policies and programs. Anne also serves as the Executive Director of the Charles Pankow Foundation, funding industry collaborations that provide the architecture, engineering and construction industry with a better way to design and build.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Christoph Gehlen

Christoph Gehlen is the Director of the Center for Building Materials of Technical University of Munich.
Prof. Gehlen is an active researcher in civil engineering materials. His research mainly focuses on life prediction and description of materials under different exposure conditions. Prof. Gehlen obtained his doctoral thesis degree at RWTH Aachen University in 2000 and then founded, together with two partners, an international engineering consulting company in Munich. He was appointed by University of Stuttgart as full professor in 2006. Prof. Gehlen has been professor at TUM since 2008. He holds the chair of Materials Science and Testing. In June 2016 he was elected as Dean of TUM Department Civil, Geo and Environmental Engineering. His research interests are special concretes, durability of concrete, life cycle assessment of reinforced concrete members, repair/ rehabilitation of reinforced concrete structures, corrosion of reinforcing steel and its monitoring, fatigue of reinforcing steel and development of proper material test methods.

Michelle L. Wilson

Michelle L. Wilson, FACI, is Director of Concrete Technology at the Portland Cement Association (PCA), Skokie, IL.
She has over 20 years of experience relating to concrete materials, specifications, performance, troubleshooting, and repair. She is responsible for the development, content, and delivery of PCA’s educational programs and products covering the entire spectrum of concrete technology, and is co-author of PCA’s Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures. She has given numerous workshops and presentations around North America including the World of Concrete, International Builder’s Show, and CONAGG/CON-EXPO.

Wilson, a member of ACI’s Board of Direction, is Chair of ACI Committee 301, Specifications for Structural Concrete, and a voting member of ACI Committees TAC Construction Standards Committee, 201, Durability; 329, Performance Testing Requirements; and E707 Specification Education; and serves as a consulting member on 117 Tolerances and 311 Inspection of Concrete. She received the 2008 ACI Young Member Award for Professional Achievement and became a Fellow of the Institute in 2010. Wilson is a member of ASTM International Committee C09, Concrete and Concrete Aggregates, and serves on the C09 Executive Committee.

Prior to joining PCA in 1999, she worked for Construction Technology Laboratories, PCA’s sole subsidiary, specializing in concrete evaluation and troubleshooting on various projects throughout the United States. Wilson has also worked as a field inspector performing quality control for STS Consultants, Ltd. in Milwaukee, WI.

Wilson received her BS in architectural engineering from Milwaukee School of Engineering, Milwaukee, WI, with an emphasis in structural engineering and concrete materials.


David Polkinghorne

David Polkinghorne is currently Design Manager for the Sydney Metro City & Southwest Tunnel and Station Excavation (TSE) Project, a joint venture between CPB Contractors, John Holland and Ghella.  He commenced with the John Holland Group in 1978 after graduating from the University of Melbourne with first class honours.  He has progressed within the company to become one of its most experienced managers and has held senior positions in the delivery of major infrastructure projects with nearly 42 years’ experience in design and construction. His experience includes the WestConnex 1B, Sydney Metro Northwest Tunnels (TSC), Glenfield to Leppington Rail Line, Lane Cove Tunnel, ANSTO Replacement Research Reactor, Prospect Water Filtration Plant Structures, MCG Southern Stand, 530 Collins Street, Reliance Rail Project, the Friendship Bridge between Thailand and Laos and the Homebush Sydney Showground.

David has a proven track record in managing the design of diverse, multi-faceted projects to achieve quality, cost and time targets. He is experienced in forming and leading teams that include design management, construction techniques, multiple contractors and trades. This has required a high level of communication skills, extensive technical expertise as well as a sound knowledge of industrial relations and the OHS&R Act.  Further to this, David has direct experience on the use of concrete in all its forms and the important role the material plays in the delivery and management of infrastructure. Challenges experienced with the design and construction of concrete on major projects are issues he has extensive experience with.

In 2016, Engineers Australia awarded David the “Australia Civil Engineer of the Year” for services to engineering and the community.

Em Prof Elizabeth Taylor, AO

Elizabeth spent 10 years in design and construction management. She then joined UTS as Women in Engineering Coordinator before moving into academe. During that time she completed a law degree. In 2009 she resigned as Pro Vice-Chancellor and Executive Dean, Faculty of Sciences, Engineering and Health, CQUniversity. Presently she consults with the Defence Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group.

She has always engaged in diverse pro-bono work. Within Engineers Australia this has included Accreditation Board Chair, Sydney Division President, Chair of the National Women in Engineering Committee and of Engineers Media and membership of two Code of Ethics reviews.

She chaired the Board of Professional Engineers of Queensland for 8 years. Currently she is Chair of the Cambodian Children’s Trust Australia, RedR Australia and RedR International.

She is Deputy Chair, Washington Accord, International Engineering Alliance. In 2004 she was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia. In 2018 she was UNSW Engineering Alumni of the Year and her work recognised with an Honorary Doctorate in Engineering.

Elizabeth is an Honorary Fellow of Engineers Australia, Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and 2015 was elected to Fellow, Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering.

Invited speakers 

Jeffrey Coleman

Jeffrey W. Coleman, FACI, is a licensed professional engineer and Attorney at Law and Principal Partner of The Coleman Law Firm, LLC, Minneapolis, MN. He has been an ACI member for over 37 years. Coleman is the author of the book Legal Issues in Concrete Construction, published by ACI in 2004 (second edition published in 2014), and previously authored the “Concrete Legal Notes” section of Concrete International.

Coleman currently serves as an ACI Vice President on the Board of Direction and is a past Chair and current member of ACI Committee 132, Responsibility in Concrete Construction. He is Chair of the ACI Foundation Board of Trustees, and a member of the ACI Financial Advisory Committee, TAC Construction Standards Committee, and ACI Committee 563, Specifications for Repair of Structural Concrete in Buildings. He has also served on the ACI Board of Direction and has been a member of the ACI Construction Liaison Committee, TAC Specifications Committee, Convention Committee, and ACI Committees 215, Fatigue of Concrete, and 301, Specifications for Structural Concrete. He received the 2016 ACI Delmar L. Bloem Distinguished Service Award.

Coleman received his BS in civil engineering in 1976 and his MS in structural engineering in 1977 from Iowa State University, Ames, IA. He is a licensed engineer in Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, and a lawyer in Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, and Iowa; he practices regularly in other states through admission “Pro Hac Vice.”

After completing his law degree in 1984, Coleman served as General Counsel for Ellerbe Associates, Inc. (later Ellerbe Becket, Inc., and now part of AECOM). He started his own firm in 1991, which was quickly merged and renamed Coleman, Hull & van Vliet, PLLP. In 2013, he founded The Coleman Law Firm, LLC—committed to continuing his representation of engineers, architects, and the concrete construction industry.

Coleman represents engineers, architects, concrete contractors and suppliers, and building owners in all aspects of construction. He is a Past President of the Minnesota Concrete Council (MCC) and a former Board member. He is also a Sustaining Member of the American Society of Concrete Contractors (ASCC). Coleman served five terms on the Board of Directors of the American Council of Engineering Companies, Minnesota, and has recently been appointed to a sixth term. He is one of the only two nonpracticing engineers to receive the Tom Roach Award for Outstanding Service and Motivation to the Consulting Engineering Professional Community. Coleman is a past member of the Minnesota Board of Architecture, Engineering, Land Surveying, Landscape Architecture, Geoscience, and Interior Design (the Minnesota Licensing Board), and the University of Minnesota Concrete Conference Planning Committee. He is a frequent lecturer on topics involving construction law but is also a regular practitioner involved with construction disputes involving concrete.

Dr Lawrence Sutter

Lawrence L. Sutter is a Professor in Materials Science & Engineering at Michigan Technological University. He also serves as the Director of the Michigan Department of Transportation’s Transportation Materials Research Center at Michigan Tech. Dr. Sutter has worked in the area of materials engineering for 40 years, specializing in concrete-making materials for the past 25 years. His areas of expertise include materials characterization, concrete durability, and use of industrial residuals in concrete.

He is a Fellow of the Institute and currently serves as Chair of Committee 232 Fly Ash in Concrete; Secretary of Committee 201 Durability; and Chair of the Strategic Development Council (SDC) Accelerated Technology Implementation (ATI) team for Alternative Cements. He is a Voting Member of Committees 130 Sustainability of Concrete; 211 Proportioning; 221 Aggregates; 233 Ground Slag; 240 Pozzolans; 242 Alternative Cements; E701 Materials for Concrete Construction; and SDC-06 Technology Transfer Advisory Group (TTAG). He is an Associate Member of Committees 225 Hydraulic Cement and 239 Ultra-High Performance Concrete. He is the past-Chair of ITG-10 Alternative Cements and a past-Member of the Educational Activities Committee (EAC). Dr. Sutter is a Fellow of ASTM Committee C09 Concrete, and a Member of Committees C01 Cement and D04 Road and Paving Materials. He is the Chair of Subcommittees C09.24 Supplementary Cementitious Materials, C09.65 Petrography and C01.14 Non-Hydraulic Cements. In addition, he serves on numerous other ASTM technical subcommittees.

Dr. Sutter received an A.A.S in Electrical Engineering Technology in 1976 from the Ohio Institute of Technology. He received a B.S. in Metallurgical Engineering in 1991, a M.S. in Environmental Engineering in 1995, and a Ph.D. in Civil Engineering in 2001, all from Michigan Tech. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in Michigan.

Professor Alessandro Palermo

Alessandro is a professor in structural engineering, academic researcher and lecturer at the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, in structural and earthquake engineering. Alessandro’s research areas of interest are mainly focused on structural bridge engineering, where he is currently course coordinator of a post-graduate course. His expertise is particularly focused on implementation of seismic low-damage technologies for precast concrete bridges and buildings; His research varies from monitoring and seismic assessment of existing bridges to the use of novel materials such glass reinforcing and ultra-high performance concrete.
He has always been passionate about history and aesthetics: he runs a very popular bridge building competition within the University of Canterbury undergraduate programme and supervises research projects on innovative pedestrian bridge design using novel materials, technologies and 3D visualization.
Within the last National earthquakes he has been heavily involved in reconnaissance of the Canterbury and Kaikoura bridges and he is launched and currently supports the coordination of the SESOC Canterbury Bridge Group. Alessandro is author of more than 340 international conference/journal papers and 3 patents. He is recipient of several research and teaching awards including the 2013 Ivan Skinner award for his recent advancements in earthquake engineering, University of Canterbury Innovation Medal (2013), 2016 Best Lecturer of the Year at the University of Canterbury (Student vote) and 2019 University of Canterbury Teaching Award.

Andreas Tselebidis

Director, Sustainable Concrete Technology and Solutions at BASF (USA). In his role, Andreas is responsible for the initiation, evaluation and implementation of sustainable concrete solutions such as Green Sense Concrete technologies that address wide-spread concrete performance issues in Sustainable Superstructures. Andreas’ presentation will focus on new innovations that are occurring in concrete construction and sustainability in building.

John Glumb

John C. Glumb, FACI, CAE, is Senior Managing Director of Operations at the American Concrete Institute (ACI). He is responsible for ACI’s strategic and operational planning, publishing, conventions & events, customer service, order fulfillment, and information systems. John is also publisher of the monthly magazine Concrete International. He has been an employee of ACI for over 22 years and has held a wide variety of positions at the Institute. John also serves on the Board of Directors of Advancing Organizational Excellence (AOE), an association management and public relations consulting firm. John holds a Masters Degree in Organizational Development from Eastern Michigan University and the Certified Association Executive credential from the American Society of Association Executives.

Mike Schneider

Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer at Baker Concrete Constructions and Past President of the American Concrete Institute (ACI).

Past President of the American Concrete Institute (ACI), Mike Schneider is Senior Vice President and Chief People Officer at Baker Concrete Constructions. With over 30 years’ experience in the concrete construction industry Mike is also an active member of the American Society of Concrete Contractors, has served on numerous ACI committees and in 2005 was named as one of the ten most influential people in the concrete industry.

Mike will present on some of the more interesting concrete construction projects that Baker Concrete Constructions has been involved in recently, the challenges they have experienced, and how they have overcome them to construct innovative buildings and infrastructure in the USA.

Presentation: “Concrete construction case studies in the USA”