Utilities Advisory Commission Biographies

DANAHER, Michael Biography not yet available.

Lisa Forssell


Lisa Forssell has served on the Utilities Advisory Commission since 2016.

Lisa lives in Palo Alto with her family. Their roof sports a 3.6 kW solar system that helps power their home and electric vehicles. Lisa has served on the PTA and has been an active participant in community sustainability events over the years.

Lisa worked at Pixar Animation Studios from 1995-2012 as a technical director and senior manager. She returned to graduate school in 2012 to pursue an MBA and an MS from the School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences at Stanford University, receiving both degrees in 2015. Her masters project was a study of the effects of electric vehicle charging on the power grid.

Lisa is a producer in the design studio at Apple. She also holds a BS and MS in Computer Science. 

Donald Jackson


Don Jackson began serving on the Utilities Advisory Committee in 2019, and has lived in Palo Alto with his family since 2011.

Don is a computer engineer, working for a number of Silicon Valley companies over his career, including Sun Microsystems, Tellme Networks, and is currently employed at DriveScale.  Don has a longstanding interest in communications technology and policy. Don double-majored in electrical engineering and computer science at Vanderbilt University.

In his spare time, Don works on a project to objectively measure and analyze aircraft flight paths and the resulting generated noise over the SF Bay Area, in active collaboration with a team of colleagues that includes other Palo Alto residents and a group at Stanford University.

A.C. Johnston


A.C. Johnston has been a lawyer in Palo Alto for over 30 years.  He was the founder and served for two terms as the managing partner of the Palo Alto office of Morrison & Foerster LLP.   His law practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, particularly patent infringement and trade secret litigation, for electronics, laser diode, and semiconductor companies.  He has also worked with alternative energy producers, particularly co-generation facilities and wind farms, in negotiating power purchase agreements with utilities and in regulatory proceedings before the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC).

In addition to the Utilities Advisory Commission, he serves on the Palo Alto Sustainability/Climate Action Plan (S/CAP) Citizen’s Advisory Committee.  He has previously served on the board of directors of the Silicon Valley Campaign for Legal Services and in the U.S. Navy as an officer aboard a diesel-electric submarine.

A.C. and his wife have lived in Palo Alto since 1990.

Greg Scharff


Biography not yet available.

Lauren Segal

SEGAL, Lauren

Biography not yet available.


SMITH, Loren

Loren was appointed to the Utilities Advisory Commission in June 2019. He enjoys volunteering for the community and has previously served as a Community Fellow for the Cubberley Community Center Master Planning initiative as well as the Citizen Advisory Committee (CAC).

Loren is a Construction Program Manager and has delivered planning, design, program, project and cost management services for large property developers and owner occupiers in the United States and Asia Pacific over his 30-year career. His interest in serving the Palo Alto community in this capacity stems from his historical experience in telecommunications where, in addition to assisting a regional telecommunications company in the Midwest, he served as General Manager of a Hong Kong-based telecommunications service provider delivering commercial and consumer broadband services through fiber and wireless services.

Loren has post-graduate studies in the field of Civil Engineering from CalPoly, San Luis Obispo and a bachelor's degree in Political Science from the University of California, Los Angeles, and resides in Palo Alto with his wife and son.

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