Offshore Wind Skills Academy

The University of Delaware and the Danish Energy and Climate Academy (ECA) have jointly created an Offshore Wind Skills Academy (OWSA). OWSA builds on both the ECA’s experience training over 2,000 European wind power professionals and UD’s College of Earth, Ocean, & Environment’s research and graduate education in U.S. offshore wind power.

The OWSA is targeted for professionals from traditional energy industries, supply chain companies, regulators, investors, consultants and any others who may be new to the offshore wind industry. (OWSA is not targeted to trades, vessel operators and craftsmen; training for them is being developed at the local level.)  OWSA will draw lecturers from industry experts, including project developers, original equipment manufacturers and engineers, all with European or North American experience.  The OWSA fills an important gap in the path to develop and rapidly expand this new industry in North America.

Instructors’ brief bios:

The OWSA draws on experienced wind industry professionals from Denmark and the United States who have contributed to building projects and developing the industry. The instructors listed below have taught in previous sessions.

Lars Høst Johansen, M.Sc. International Technology Planning
Before joining the Ørsted wind department, where he serves as senior WTG development specialist, Lars Høst Johansen spent close to 10 years as a product engineer at Vestas.

Deniz Ozkan, Ph.D., MBA, Invenergy
Senior commercial director at Invenergy, leading the commercial strategy for project contracting, economic modelling, and project valuation. Previously worked at Shell Renewables and Energy Solutions as senior valuation lead and at Atlantic Grid Development as director of research, analysis and systems engineering focusing on energy investment, cost of electricity and system design analysis. Extensive technical knowledge and 17 years of experience in energy and power markets, utilities, RTOs, transmission planning and grid integration. Analyzed transmission and interconnection for AGD, and cost of energy projections for New York and Massachusetts.

Jordan R.P. Shoesmith, Business Development & Bid Director at Vineyard Offshore, Business Developer for Copenhagen Offshore Partners
Jordan R. P. Shoesmith has expertise in U.S. offshore wind, New England Class I REC markets, large-scale renewables, renewable energy procurement and contracting, and ISO New England-administered wholesale markets.

Stephanie McClellan, Ph.D., Executive Director and founder of Turn Forward
Stephanie McClellan founded Turn Forward, a new nonprofit organization advancing an ambitious vision for American offshore wind power that meets today’s climate, economic, equity and environmental challenges. She is a 12+ year U.S. offshore wind veteran, having held leadership roles in offshore wind across philanthropy-funded initiatives, industry and state government. She is the founder and former director of the Special Initiative on Offshore Wind, which played an instrumental role in initiating the policy pipeline for offshore wind power in the U.S.

Kris Ohleth, Executive Director, Special Initiative on Offshore Wind (SIOW)
Kris has been a leading member of the U.S. offshore wind sector for over 20 years, including as senior manager of stakeholder engagement at Ørsted; environmental specialist at Ecology and Environment; executive director of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Council on the Ocean; and director of environmental programs at Deepwater Wind. Ms. Ohleth has a master’s degree in ocean and coastal policy from the University of Rhode Island.

James Bennett, Senior Advisor, Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM)
Jim Bennett has more than 42 years of federal experience working through the challenging issues of resource management on the U.S. outer continental shelf (OCS). Previously, Jim served over seven years as program manager for Federal Offshore Renewable Energy, overseeing the responsible development of offshore wind energy in the Atlantic. BOEM’s renewable energy program now manages 27 active leases on the OCS from Massachusetts to North Carolina. Jim has also led BOEM’s Division of Environmental Assessment, overseeing compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and other environmental laws focusing on federal OCS programs. His experience encompasses events such as the Exxon Valdez and the Deepwater Horizon oil spills, and the Cape Wind energy project.

Richard Palmer, Vice President of Weeks Marine, Inc.
Currently serving as vice president of Weeks Marine, Inc., Richard Palmer provides project oversight and market development in the areas of offshore wind energy, tidal energy and marine pipelines, as well as leadership in strategic heavy civil and marine partnerships. He holds a master’s degree in civil engineering from Texas A&M University.

Hans Schneider
Hans Schneider has been a top executive and board member within the offshore wind power business for 16 years. He has deep experience in the offshore wind sector and formerly served as CEO of ALL NRG A/S and chief operating officer of A2SEA A/S. Schneider has also worked as an advisor for Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners in relation to the development of U.S. and Canadian offshore wind.

C.P. (Sandy) Butterfield, CEO of Boulder Wind Consulting
Sandy has been in wind research since 1975, starting as a graduate of University of Massachusetts’ wind energy program, co-founder and vice president of engineering at ESI. Sandy has also served as the chief engineer at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory where he was leading research in all aspects of turbine technology, including drivetrain reliability; co-founder and CEO of Boulder Windpower, a direct drive manufacturer. He has served as chairman for IECTC88 responsible for IEC wind turbine standards as well as the founding chair of IECRE, IEC renewable energy certification.

Mary Boatman
Environmental studies chief for the Office of Renewable Energy Programs within the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM). Mary coordinates the scientific studies funded by BOEM in support of renewable energy along the Atlantic. She coordinated the environmental review of the South Fork Wind Farm, the second project approved in the United States. Her area of expertise is chemical oceanography, but she has worked in a multi-disciplinary capacity at BOEM for over two decades.

Bonnie Ram
Director, Ram Consultancy and associate director of CReW (Center for Research in Wind, University of Delaware). Bonnie led scientific teams and action research in environmental permitting and community engagement for governments in the U.S. and Denmark, including IEA and EERA. For 10 years, she had a leadership role working with DOI, DOE, and NREL and helped launch the nation’s offshore wind program. Now she focuses on local community benefits.

Willett Kempton, Ph.D.
Professor at the University of Delaware, and affiliated professor at Danish Technical University. He is co-founder and associate director of UD’s Center for Research in Wind. He lectures widely and publishes scientific and technical articles on offshore wind power, electric transportation, and energy analysis. He has led pioneering analysis on the U.S. offshore wind resource, transmission, low-cost deployment, marshaling ports, and state procurements to manage cost of electricity. He is also known for developing the concepts, technology and patents for using EV’s to balance grid fluctuations with “V2G” and subsequently co-founded Nuvve Corp which is commercializing this technology. Professor Kempton is co-founder and co-director of UD’s Offshore Wind Skills Academy.

John Madsen, Ph.D.
University of Delaware, associate professor and chairperson, Department of Earth Sciences, associate director of education of CReW (Center for Research in Wind). Academic research in wind energy focused on the geological and geotechnical aspects of offshore wind projects. He is also co-director of the KidWind Offshore Wind Academy funded by the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center providing high school teachers and students with a summer camp experience in STEM-based activities that model careers in the offshore wind industry.


For more information or questions regarding the Offshore Wind Skills Academy, please contact Rebecca Cox at or 302-831-2336.

OWSA: 2023 Information


April 24 – 28, 2023 – Project Development from A to Z; 8:30 am – 1:30pm

Key Topics Covered

Advanced development permitting, vessels, supply chain, deployment, operations and maintenance, and decommissioning.


$1,800. Cost includes course materials and interactive discussion with instructors and participants.


A limited number of support scholarships are available. Please contact Rebecca Cox ( to see if you qualify and to receive the discount code.


ONLINE – Participants will receive access details upon successful registration.

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