Skip to content

2024 Event Advisors

RAPID +TCT Event Advisors are pivotal in assisting SME and TCT with developing and implementing the RAPID + TCT event. This advisory team represents a broad base of the AM industry to help us build a world-class event and conference that educates and inspires all participants, no matter the stage of their career or the size of their business.

The RAPID + TCT Event Advisors provide input on industry trends, technological advances and the future of AM. They also recommend industry thought leaders to present in various areas of the event.


Ted Anderson, Services Technical Leader - Additive Manufacturing Processes, GE Aerospace
Ted Anderson is a Services Technical Leader for GE Aerospace. His focus is on repairing jet engine components using additive manufacturing technologies. His previous role was in GE Additive leading a team focused on helping customers get their additive manufacturing applications to production. Prior to joining GE Additive, Ted spent five years with GE Aviation and was involved in the LEAP fuel nozzle, the GE9X TiAl blade, the 50% printed tech demonstration engine, the Catalyst turboprop engine and various R&D projects. He is also a certifying agent at GE for the laser and electron beam technologies and a special process auditor. Ted is a 2017 AMUG DINO award recipient and has led the aerospace, transportation and DoD track for AMUG since 2015.


Kevin Ayers, AM Consultant, 3D Metal Konsulting
Mr. Ayers is a graduate from the University of Illinois College of Engineering. He began his AM work with the FBI in 1989 designing and making prototypes and then quickly adding tooling and end components applications by 1993. He retired in 2014 by then designing and manufacturing over 10,000 parts. In 2014, he joined the Society of Manufacturing Engineers as the Industry Manager over Additive Manufacturing. In 2017, he accepted a job with Danfoss Power Solutions where he was responsible for implementing additive in 68 factories in 23 countries. This includes AM training, AM metal printing, plant operations, and prototypes/models. IN 2021 he joined 3D Metal Konsulting advising companies how to implement AM and providing custom AM training. He is an advisor for SME and has served many positions in the AMUG. Mr. Ayers is a Distinguished Innovator/Operator recipient (DINO Award). He has authored and presented over 40 articles and presentations in the industry worldwide. SME Member Since 2017


Yash Bandari, PhD, Director of Business Development, FasTech LLC.
Yash is an internationally recognized manufacturing professional with more than twelve (12) years of experience in metal 3D printing, especially in Directed Energy Deposition (DED) processes. He specializes in business development and commercialization of new products. He is one of the few individuals in the world to have experience with all the three (3) heat sources (arc, laser, and electron beam) in Additive Manufacture at reputed organizations in the US, UK, and India before turning 30. He published several articles, chaired various conferences, and given numerous talks on AM. He has also helped draft ASTM standards on powder-DED and wire-DED. SME Member Since 2018


Eric Barnes, Northrop Grumman Fellow, Northrop Grumman Corp.
Eric Barnes, Northrop Grumman Fellow, Northrop Grumman Corp. Eric Barnes is currently a Northrop Grumman fellow responsible for the Aeronautics System Sector Additive Manufacturing Technology portfolio and integration of additive manufacturing across Northrop Grumman Corp. Prior to becoming an NG Fellow, Eric led materials research and development for Aeronautics for approximately 14 years and M&P engineering for all aircraft programs for 4 years. Barnes has led the development, implementation and strategy for polymer and metallic additive manufacturing on multiple air and space programs. He has over 38 years of experience in materials, processes and manufacturing research and development, implementation, design and production support. Barnes has received 12 additive manufacturing patents. SME Member Since 2014


Lisa D. Block, CRO, Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies
Lisa D. Block is the Chief Revenue Officer for Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies Global and serves on the Board of Directors for the Women in 3D Printing organization. A gifted speaker, author, and entrepreneur, with a background in corporate sales and leadership, her career expands over several industries including fashion, education, automotive design, and manufacturing. With over 25 years in business, her most praised attribute is her ability to use her many gifts to shift company culture and customer experience for the better.

In addition to her natural business acumen, Lisa’s knowledge about issues of diversity, equity and inclusion have positioned her to be a key player in crucial conversations so needed in our world today. Most recently, she served a three-year term on the Diversity Advisory Committee for Plano ISD in Plano, TX. With representation of more than 35 countries, this committee serves over 65,000 students and 6,500 staff and faculty in one of the state’s most diverse school districts to date. The self-proclaimed CEO or “Chief Encouragement Officer” seamlessly integrates her passion for business and her love for people. Although she holds many titles, roles and responsibilities, Lisa is most proud to be called mom, where she serves a life sentence to an extremely talented, beautiful, and opinionated teenager.

Dan Braley

Dan Braley, FSME, CAM-T, Associate Technical Fellow, Boeing Global Services
Dan Braley, CAM-T, is a Boeing associate technical fellow and the Boeing Global Services additive manufacturing technical focal and initiatives leader. In this role, he serves sustainment of all Boeing military, commercial and derivative aircraft platforms through use of additive manufacturing technologies. Braley has more than 18 years of aerospace program and R&D experience in additive manufacturing, technical program management, materials and process engineering, composites, electromagnetic product development and manufacturing technology development. He currently holds 52 U.S. and international patents. SME Member Since 2015


Rex Brown, Principal Mechanical Engineer, Honeywell (retired)
Rex Brown is a retired principal mechanical engineer who worked in the advanced technology development department at the Department of Energy’s National Security Campus, managed by Honeywell. He has been actively involved with additive manufacturing since 1992, serving on ASTM’s Committee F42 on Additive Manufacturing Technologies, the NCMS Rare Parts Team and SME’s Direct Digital Manufacturing Advisory Team. Brown’s focus over the years includes stereolithography, fuse deposition modeling and 3D printing.


April Cooke, PhD, Principal Process Engineer, Seurat Technologies Inc.
April Cooke, PhD, has excelled in the additive manufacturing field as a two-time postdoctoral appointee at NIST; engineering R&D manager at 3D Systems; advanced manufacturing process engineer at CCAM; and additive manufacturing specialist at TRUMPF. Cooke’s past work focused on metal and polymer-based powder-bed fusion, 3D-printing, directed energy deposition, and standards development. In 2013, she received the International Freeform and Additive Manufacturing Excellence Award given at the Solid Freeform Fabrication Symposium. Currently, Cooke is Principal Process Engineer at Seurat Technologies, where she optimizes process conditions and develops parameters for Seurat’s Area Printing technology and its applications.


Denis Cormier, PhD, Earl W. Brinkman Professor, Rochester Institute of Technology
Denis Cormier, PhD, is the Earl W. Brinkman Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Rochester Institute of Technology where he also serves as director of the Additive Manufacturing and Multifunctional Printing Center. Cormier has worked in additive manufacturing for over 25 years with a specific focus on aerospace materials and applications of metal additive manufacturing. His teaching and research interests focus on additive manufacturing and direct-write printing technologies for the synthesis of novel materials and geometric structures. SME Member Since 1989


Vesna Cota, Founder and Principal Consultant, VMMI
Vesna Cota is the founder of VMMI and an additive manufacturing specialist. She spent almost 30 years working in automotive product development with Tyco Electronics Canada ULC, a TE Connectivity Co. Cota currently serves on the board of directors for NSERC-CFI Strategic Network for Holistic Innovation in Additive Manufacturing, the Canadian ISO/TC261 Additive Manufacturing Standards Committee, the SME Member Council and the TCT Expert Advisory Board. She is a longstanding advisor for SME's RAPID + TCT, RAPID Canada conferences, CMTS and FABTECH. Cota also served as an advisor for SME's Additive Manufacturing Community from 2007-16. She has been active in the additive manufacturing community since the early 1990s and is a relentless promoter of additive manufacturing in Canada. As a chapter officer for SME's Toronto Chapter 26, Cota received SME's President’s Award for outstanding service and the SME Award for Organizing and Implementing Rapid Prototyping Seminar Series 1998-99. She was also a founding member and chair of the Engineering Design & Rapid Manufacturing Program Advisory Committee at Centennial College in 1999. Cota developed and delivered additive manufacturing training courses for Magna Inc. Management Training Program from 2000-03 as well as workshops for the Industrial Research Development Institute Members’ Product Development program on Rapid Prototyping for Plastics and Rapid Prototyping for Metals. She also served on the 2003-04 Editorial Advisory Board of Design Product News. Cota became an SME master-level Additive Manufacturing Certificate holder in 2005. She received her degree in architecture from the University Of Zagreb, Croatia. SME Member Since 1995


Carl Dekker, President, Met-L-Flo, Inc.
Carl Dekker is President of Met-L-Flo Inc., an ISO 9001/AS9100D Certified and ITAR Registered contract manufacturer. Mr. Dekker has presented his work at conferences globally and has been published in various industry journals. Currently the Past President of the Additive Manufacturing Users Group (past VP and Sec), Fellow and Past Chair of the ASTM F42 Committee on Standards for Additive Manufacturing and a Past Chairperson of the SME’s Rapid Technologies and Additive Manufacturing (RTAM) Community (formerly the RPA). He is also a proud recipient of the SLA “Dinosaur” award. SME Member Since 1993


Abbey Delaney, Senior Director of Marketing, Axial3d
Abbey Delaney is an experienced marketer with more than 20 years of B2B marketing and 10 years in additive manufacturing. In 2022, Delaney joined Axial3D, a leading medical imaging and 3D printing company, and leads all marketing activities globally, responsible for creating the marketing strategy, developing partner marketing programs, overseeing tradeshows, implementing lead-gen campaigns, and growing the brand. She also volunteers her time with Women in 3D Printing as the Midwest Area Manager and local ambassador for the Detroit chapter. Prior to joining Axial3D, Abbey was the Director of Marketing for BigRep for 4 years and marketing manager for Materialise for six years. She holds a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree from Saginaw Valley State University.


Boris Fritz, Adjunct Professor, University of Southern California
Boris Fritz is an adjunct professor at the University of Southern California in the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, and at Loyola Marymount University in the Department of Mechanical Engineering, teaching additive manufacturing courses since 2015. He retired from Northrop Grumman Aerospace, formerly working in the Additive Manufacturing Technology and Development Department. He is a past chair of SME’s AM Technical Community Leadership Committee as well as chair of the RAPID + TCT conference. He has three patents and has published numerous research papers on 3D printing. SME Member Since 1993


Eliana Fu, PhD, Industry Manager - Aerospace & Medical, TRUMPF Inc.
Eliana Fu, PhD, has a master’s degree and doctorate in materials science from Imperial College. She performed postdoctoral research at Loughborough University and Clemson University. After working extensively in the traditional manufacturing world with TIMET and SpaceX, Fu jumped to additive manufacturing at SpaceX and Relativity Space. She is now an industry manager, aerospace and medical at TRUMPF. Fu served as an advisor to Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti’s Advanced Manufacturing Committee. She is currently the Women in 3D Printing ambassador for Las Vegas and is also on the Technical Advisory Board of Hyperion Metals (now called IperionX).

Giles Gaskell

Giles Gaskell, Additive Industry Specialist, Pinnacle X-Ray Solutions LLC.
Giles Gaskell has been working in the field of noncontact scanning for reverse engineering and inspection since 1997 and worked with many of Europe’s most prestigious design, engineering and manufacturing companies before moving to the U.S. in 2004. Gaskell is a recognized subject-matter expert and communicator in the field of 3D metrology and 3D scanning. He is a RAPID + TCT event advisor for SME and a presenter of educational workshops at AMUG and RAPID + TCT’s conference for over 10 years. Gaskell is now Additive Industry Specialist for Pinnacle X-Ray Solutions LLC.


Charles Gilman, Mechanical Engineer, Gilman Analytics
Charles Gilman has been working in additive manufacturing for over 25 years as an engineer, project manager and consultant. Gilman is currently a faculty member at the State University of New York at Cobleskill and a consultant. Current projects include AM subject-matter expert for Tooling U-SME course development. He has previously held positions with GE Global Research, STEP Tools, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the U. S. Air Force. Gilman has been an event advisor for RAPID + TCT since 2014 and a member of the Additive Manufacturing Certification Oversight & Appeals Committee since 2018. SME Member Since 1995


Todd Grimm, President, T. A. Grimm & Associates
Todd Grimm is 32-year veteran of the additive manufacturing industry. From his work as a consultant, writer, author, speaker, editor and advisor, he is a three-time nominee for TCT’s Hall of Fame. Grimm is president of T.A. Grimm & Associates. He is a past ARC Group Worldwide board member, columnist for “TCT Magazine” and author of the “User’s Guide to Rapid Prototyping.” Grimm served on the AMUG board as its AM industry advisor, is a member of TCT’s expert advisory board and is an event advisor for RAPID + TCT. He has also served as chair of SME’s AM Technical Community Leadership Committee.


James Harrison, Sales Manager, MELD Manufacturing Corporation
James Harrison is an accomplished Additive Manufacturing (AM) expert with 35+ years of experience. As MELD Manufacturing’s Sales Manager, he expertly aligns advanced large-format metal 3D printing solutions with client needs. His career began at Pratt & Whitney, contributing to jet engine design and leading the creation of their first Prototype Center. He introduced the first 3D Systems SLA-1 beta AM system in 1987, expanding into designing for various sectors and mastering multiple 3D printing technologies in plastics and metals.James holds patents for six Stereolithography resins, contributing significantly to AM materials. His commitment is evident through his active participation in SME/RPA, Georgia Tech RPMI, and EPRI AM Team. A key figure in the AM community, James helped establish the 3D Systems Users Group, now the renowned AMUG Conference. His roles have included Vice President, President, and Past President, earning him the DINO Award. He continues to influence the field as an AMUG committee member and RAPID tct Event Advisor.

LJ Holmes

LJ Holmes, Executive Director, Advanced Manufacturing, Research and Engineering, Harrisburg University of Science and Technology
Mr. Larry (LJ) R. Holmes Jr. is the Executive Director of Research and Engineering at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology, where he leads the development and operation of an Advanced Manufacturing Research Institute. The mission of this academic institute is to create an interdisciplinary forum for bringing materials, processing, and manufacturing together by digital design and innovative manufacturing methods. Mr. Holmes left federal service in 2018 after 15 years at the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL). His final posting there was the Director of Research Partnerships for the ARL Center for Agile Materials Manufacturing Science (CAMMS), and also the lead for ARL’s Hybrid Manufacturing research portfolio. Mr. Holmes is also the Director of Government Relations at nScrypt in Orlando, FL. nScrypt designs and manufactures high-precision micro-dispensing and direct digital manufacturing equipment with unmatched accuracy and flexibility. He is also the Chief of Manufacturing at the Applied Science and Research Organization of America (ASTRO America). ASTRO America is a non-profit, non-partisan research institute and think tank dedicated to advancing public interest through manufacturing and technology.

Olga “Dr. O” Ivanova, PhD, Director of Applications & Technology, Mechnano
Olga is the Director of Applications & Technology at Mechnano, leading the development of novel formulations and driving applications discovery for AM materials. With a background of over 10 years in AM, Olga's expertise has been honed through her experiences in academia, industry, and government sectors across multiple countries. Before joining Mechnano, Olga worked as the AM Applications Lead and Services Manager at Open Additive (OA), where she collaborated with industry, government, and academic customers to leverage OA's systems for their research and application needs. Throughout her career, Olga has delved into a wide range of projects, including the development of textiles for uniforms, silicones for medical devices, and pyrotechnics for decoy flares, all within the realm of AM. Her expertise and accomplishments are a testament to her dedication, unwavering commitment to excellence, and her ability to deliver tangible results. With her extensive knowledge and forward-thinking mindset, Olga continuously strives to push the boundaries of technology in the pursuit of innovation. SME Member Since 2017


SJ Jones, Principal Manufacturing Engineer, Northrop Grumman
SJ Jones is a Principal Manufacturing Engineer at Northrop Grumman with a passion for “Big Print Energy” and the next generation LPBF large format machines. In their role, SJ is focused on developing internal standards and requirements for additive manufacturing production as well as helping to build out the supply chain for new AM designs. Experienced in a wide array of disciplines, SJ’s technical specialties include print simulation, in situ monitoring, support design, FEA, topology optimization, light weighting, lattice work, and texturing. Prior to joining Northrop, SJ was a senior AM applications engineer for Aerojet Rocketdyne and Siemens Energy as well as a sales engineer for Velo3D.


Sheku Kamara, Dean of Applied Research, Milwaukee School of Engineering
Sheku Kamara is the dean of applied research at Milwaukee School of Engineering where he oversees the activities of the Applied Technology Center. The ATC uses MSOE faculty, staff and student expertise to solve technological problems confronting business and industry. Kamara has been involved with additive manufacturing since 1996 and was director of the Rapid Prototyping Consortium at MSOE. He received a laser-sintering DINO (Distinguished INnovator Operator Award) from AMUG for his contributions to the technology and industry. Kamara currently serves as an advisor on SME's AM Technical Community Leadership Committee. He has served as a RAPID + TCT event advisor since 2004 and is a past chair of AMUG. SME Member Since 2003


Humna Khan, CEO/Founder, ASTRO Mechanical Testing Laboratory
Humna is the CEO+Founder of ASTRO Mechanical Testing Laboratory - working closely with industry leaders to determine characteristics of 3D printed metal alloys and composites. She is also the COO of MIMO Technik - an AM company that builds production flight hardware for OEMs and new space companies. Khan has worked in the Aerospace & Defense industry for two decades at U.S. Air Force Space and Missile Systems, SpaceX, and NASA - leading the qualification of flight-critical hardware. She also served as the youngest Associate Professor at the School of Engineering at Cal State LA. Humna holds five degrees in Engineering and Business disciplines. She holds a post-grad in Strategic Business Development and is a Six Sigma Black Belt for Lean Production.


Giuseppe Lacaria, Additive Manufacturing Research Engineer, Ford Motor Company
Giuseppe Lacaria is a Research Engineer at Ford Motor Company, where he has worked for 10+ years. As part of the Research and Advanced Engineering team since 2011, he initially worked in the Polymers Research Group working on sustainable material solutions to reduce weight and Ford's carbon footprint for automotive applications. He then helped create the Additive Manufacturing Research Team focused on adapting AM technologies for automotive needs. Today he has a deep understanding of all Polymer AM modalities but focuses on polymer powder bed fusion (PBF) and validating technologies for volume production.


David Leigh, PhD, Director for the Center for Additive Manufacturing and Design Innovation - The University of Texas at Austin
David Leigh, PhD, serves as the Director for the Center for Additive Manufacturing and Design Innovation at The University of Texas at Austin. He previously served the Chief Technology Officer at 3D Systems and in the same capacity at EOS, GmbH. He has over 30 years of experience in 3D printing dating back to DTM Corp., which launched the laser sintering technology. After his employment at DTM, Leigh founded Harvest Technologies, an additive manufacturing service bureau, which was one of the first AS9100-certified AM facilities to produce end-use parts production in aerospace. Harvest was acquired by Stratasys in 2014 where he served as senior VP for emerging technologies.


Brian Levy, Aerodynamics Engineer, Joe Gibbs Racing
Brian Levy is an aerodynamics engineer with Joe Gibbs Racing, a NASCAR Sprint Cup team, and has been involved with additive manufacturing technologies since attending Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute for his bachelor’s degree. In addition to overseeing all of Joe Gibbs Racing’s additive manufacturing resources, which includes both FDM and PolyJet systems, Levy is also continuously working on developing applications of the technology to improve the designs of various parts and subsystems on the car. He has been featured in and has assisted with numerous case studies, articles and white papers on additive manufacturing. SME Member Since 2008


Sofia Lopez, Regional Head of Projects, and Implementation Americas, COBOD North America
Sofia Lopez is an Architect and holds a specialization on Additive Manufacturing for Innovative Design and Production from the MIT, she is an ASTM member for 3DCP regulation and serves as an active member of Women in 3D printing Construction. After working extensively in the traditional gas and oil construction and operations management with WATCO and ExxonMobil, Sofia transitioned to construction additive manufacturing with COBOD to shape the future of design and construction field operations. She leads a group of innovative architects, 3d printer installers and 3DCP material specialists in the adoption and implementation of the technology.


Michael Nikodinovski, Manufacturing Engineer, U.S. Army
Michael Nikodinovski is a mechanical engineer and the AM technical lead at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command Ground Vehicle Systems Center. Nikodinovski works in the field of manufacturing engineering, providing support for the broad GVSC mission. His core research is on AM, with a focus on sustainment reduction-related technologies. He serves as one of GVSC’s AM subject-matter experts and is founding member of the Army’s AM Community of Practice. Along with his colleagues throughout CCDC, Nikodinovski is tasked with growing the Army’s AM competency and transition of the technology to the warfighter.


Brandon Ribic, PhD, Technology Director, America Makes
Brandon Ribic, PhD, joined NCDMM in October 2019 as the America Makes technology director. He brings 15 years of materials processing and manufacturing experience to the organization covering a variety of applications including: railroad, oil, energy, aerospace and defense. Prior to joining NCDMM, Ribic was a joining processes and additive manufacturing materials specialist at Rolls-Royce Corp. His key contributions were concentrated in additive manufacturing of nickel superalloys for OEM and repair applications. In addition, Ribic led Rolls-Royce Corp.’s externally funded additive manufacturing research endeavors. SME Member Since 2021


Thomas Sorovetz, Owner, T.A. Sorovetz, LLC Engineering Consulting
Thomas Sorovetz retired from Stellantis N.V., formerly FCA LLC, after more than 36 years, with 24 years as supervisor of vehicle engineering development, additive manufacturing development, wood, plastic, CNC and carbon-fiber shops. He has over 36 years of experience in automotive design and engineering and more than 24 years of experience in AM. Sorovetz’s affiliation with SME includes 29 years as a RAPID + TCT event advisor, former member of SME’s AM Technical Community Leadership Committee and an executive board member for AMUG for over 29 years. In 2007, he was voted by his industry peers as one of the Top 25 Most Influential People in Rapid Product Development and Rapid Manufacturing by “TCT Magazine.” SME Member Since 2021


Mihaela Q. Vlasea, PhD, Associate Professor, University of Waterloo
Dr. Vlasea is an Associate Professor at the University of Waterloo, Canada, Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering Department and the Co-Director of the Multi-Scale Additive Manufacturing Laboratory. Her research focuses on innovative design, process optimization and adoption of new materials for powder bed fusion and powder bed binder jetting additive manufacturing processes. The research goals are to bridge the technological gaps necessary to improve part quality, process repeatability and reliability. She holds a PhD in Mechatronics Engineering, with achievements in the development open architecture binder jetting and laser-based additive manufacturing systems with custom capabilities. In recognition of her scholarly work, student mentorship, and industry outreach, she was recognized as the SME 20 Most Influential Academics in 2021 and as the SME Outstanding Young Manufacturing Engineer in 2020. She is serving as the Women in Engineering Faculty Representative, and was the chair of the SME Additive Manufacturing Advisory Committee in 2020 and an active member of the SME Advisory Community ever since.


Brennon White CAM-F, Technical Lead- AM Product Applications, General Motors
Brennon White (BSME, CAMF) is the Technical Lead For Additive Manufacturing Product Applications within the General Motors Additive Design & Manufacturing group. The group is focused on advancing additive manufacturing technologies with applications from manufacturing aids and Product development prototypes to low volume production implementation.  Brennon has over two decades of experience in automotive product design and advanced development. He holds over 20 patents and has taken product from innovation through production launch. This gives him a unique view of the entire automotive manufacturing ecosystem.  For the last decade, His passion has been to continue learning about and using Additive Manufacturing knowledge in advancement and support of automotive needs. To that end, Brennon has supported organizations like AMUG, America Makes, ASTM, and SME where he has been a RAPID Trade Show Technical Advisor, and Session Chair Since 2013.