Keynote Speakers

Keynote presentations summarize the core message of the conference. These distinguished experts in industrial engineering, management, healthcare and academia, set the tone for the various sections of the conference and provide a learning opportunity for attendees.

Morgan SmithMorgan Smith

Retired President and Chief Executive Officer of Consolidated Nuclear Security LLC

Morgan Smith retired as the president and the chief executive officer of Consolidated Nuclear Security LLC (CNS) in late 2020. CNS is responsible for the management and operation of the Pantex Plant in Amarillo, Texas, and the Y-12 National Security Complex in Oak Ridge, Tennessee. A Bechtel executive, Smith joined CNS in 2014 to serve as the CNS chief operating officer and manage the operations of both sites.

Smith has more than 36 years of prior technical and managerial leadership experience within the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program. He performed significant roles in planning and implementing the consolidation of the Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory and Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory into a single organization and, in 2014, applied that experience to initiate the consolidation of Pantex and Y-12 under one U.S. Department of Energy contract.

As general manager of Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory from 2009 through June 2014, Smith had direct management of that laboratory and co-managed the Bechtel Marine Propulsion Corporation in partnership with the general manager of the Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory. He and his co-manager led approximately 7,000 employees — who performed nearly $2 billion of work annually at five sites for the Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program — under a joint contract with DOE and the Navy.

Smith also served as president of Bechtel Bettis Inc., and as general manager of Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory. He managed contracts with DOE and the Navy that had combined revenues of more than $600 million and approximately 3,500 employees at three main sites and eight major field offices. He also managed and oversaw resources for new reactor and propulsion plant design, component design and testing, materials development and testing, technical support for procurement of all Navy reactor cores, placement of spent fuel into dry storage, and new ship construction and operating fleet support.

As president and general manager of Bechtel Plant Machinery Inc., Smith managed approximately 900 employees at multiple sites with an annual operating budget of $110 million and annual subcontracts averaging approximately $600 million. Smith’s career focused on leading disciplined nuclear work and improving performance in high-risk environments. His technical background includes design; development; and fabrication of reactor control drive mechanisms, steam generators and refueling equipment. Smith holds a B.S. in civil engineering from The Pennsylvania State University and has completed various project management and leadership development programs with Westinghouse, Bechtel and the University of Michigan.

Michael Pyrcz, Ph.D., P.E.Michael J. Pyrcz, Ph.D., P.E.

Associate Professor, The University of Texas at Austin

Michael is an associate professor in the Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering and the Jackson School of Geosciences at the University of Texas at Austin, where he investigates and teaches data analytics, geostatistics and machine learning.

Michael is also the principal investigator of the freshmen research initiative and a core faculty in the Machine Learn Laboratory in the College of Natural Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin, an associate editor for Computers and Geosciences and a board member for Mathematical Geosciences, the International Association for Mathematical Geosciences. Michael has written over 55 peer-reviewed publications, a Python package for spatial data analytics and a textbook on spatial data analytics. Michael’s university lectures are available on his YouTube channel.

Joyce Siegele, FACHE, FIISE, DSHSJoyce Siegele, FACHE, FIISE, DSHS

Director of Productivity Management, Northside Hospital (Atlanta)

Joyce T. Siegele is the director of productivity management at Northside Hospital in Atlanta. She has a bachelor of science in industrial and systems engineering and a master of science in industrial and systems engineering with a specialization in engineering management from the University of Florida.

Joyce is a Fellow with American College of Healthcare Executives and with Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers (IISE). She is a past president of Society of Health Systems (SHS) and is a Diplomate in SHS. Joyce is also an instructor for IISE’s Healthcare Labor Management training.