Our Team

Tom Stepien

CEO and Co-Founder

Prior to joining Primus, Stepien was a VP & GM at semi equipment manufacturer Applied Materials responsible for a $500 million division. He holds a BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering from MIT, where he sits on the advisory board for the Laboratory for Manufacturing & Productivity. He is a co-inventor on numerous patents. He serves on the Board of the Special Olympics of Northern California.

G.J. la O

VP Technology

Dr. La O' has more than a decade of experience in battery design; he is responsible for next generation electrochemical systems at Primus Power. He earned his PhD in Material Science from MIT, where he led a team researching catalysts and conducting membranes for battery systems. He has been published extensively and has numerous patents granted and pending.

Paul Kreiner

VP Engineering

Prior to joining Primus, Kreiner worked at Tesla Motors as the lead engineer for the battery module for the Model S, where he helped advance core technology and design. He has a long term interest and background in clean energy technology development. He holds a BS and MS in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University. He is co-inventor on numerous patents and co-author of published research.

Mark Collins

VP Operations

Collins has worked twenty five years in establishing and running operations and information systems for entrepreneurial and established companies. He is a veteran of new product development helping to penetrate nascent market opportunities. He gained a valuable start to his career with a ten year tenure with Applied Materials, legendary company for operational excellence.

Hossein Kazemi

VP Systems Engineering

Kazemi is responsible for control systems including software and power electronics. Formerly, he was Director of Power Systems at Greenvolts where he successfully led a team to design and manufacture inverter/motor drive products for concentrated PV application. He led a team developing inverters and converters at Satcon for battery, fuel cell, and solar applications. He holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Beheshti University of Tehran. He has been granted 4 patents with an additional 7 pending.


Elton J. Cairns

Professor at UC Berkeley

Elton J. Cairns, Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at UC Berkeley,is an acclaimed battery expert with extensive experience in research and development. He earned his Ph.D. at University of California Berkeley (1959), contributed to the development of the original Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cells while at GE Research, and founded the molten salt battery and the fuel cell groups at Argonne National Laboratory. While at General Motors he helped develop a Zn/NiOOH battery for a fleet of electric cars and pickup trucks. Following this, he joined the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab as Associate Lab Director and Director of the Energy and Environment Division (1978-1996).

Mark Dudzinski


Mark Dudzinski is a board member of All Points North Foundation, a small, private foundation based in Boston, MA. He also serves as the volunteer chairman of its Solar Subcommittee. After “retiring” from a 27-year high profile career as Chief Marketing Officer with GE Energy, he took the diverse skills he honed in the business world and now applies it to helping others through philanthropy work at APNF nationally. Internationally, he is founder of Light the World, a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing cost effective lighting to the 1.2 billion people who live by firelight when the sun sets. He is intent on changing the electricity delivery model globally.

Scott Thacker

CEO, Ivory Consulting

Scott Thacker, CEO of Ivory Consulting, a provider of software to calculate complex financing and leasing arrangements for capital equipment. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Association and has served in leadership roles there. He is the co-director of the Research Committee of the Equipment Leasing and Finance Foundation.

Prior to joining Ivory , Scott was a partner and co-leader of Accenture’s asset finance management consulting practice and was an executive at Oracle.

Scott earned an M.B.A from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and a B.S. in Accounting from Wake Forest University. He is a Certified Public Accountant.