The biographies and position statements of the 2018 IEEE Vice President and Vice-President Elect, Member and Geographic Activities candidates are listed below.
Francis B. Grosz, Jr.

Headshot of Francis Grosz


Francis Grosz is a lifelong resident of New Orleans, LA. He received BS degrees in Physics and Engineering Sciences and an MS in Engineering from Louisiana State University in New Orleans and a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois. He joined IEEE as an undergraduate in 1967. He has been employed at several firms, primarily in defense work, and taught as both an adjunct and full-time faculty member at UNO and Tulane University, is a registered Professional Engineer (Electrical) in both Louisiana and Mississippi, and has served on two NCEES Committees. He received the 2008 Region 5 Outstanding Member Award, the 2007 New Orleans Section Freitag Award, and the 2001 UNO Distinguished Engineering Alumnus Award. He holds two U.S. Patents, Extra Class Amateur Radio License K5FBG, and a General Radiotelephone Certificate with Radar Endorsement. He is retired and currently serving as IEEE Region 5 Director.


IEEE-USA Awards Committee, 2001; IEEE Student Activities Committee, 2004- 2007; MGA Nominations & Appointments Committee, 2010-2011; Young Professionals Committee, 2015- 16; Audit Committee, 2016-17; GUOS Committee, 2017.

Region 5: ExCom, 2001-present; Awards Chair, 2001; East Area Chair, 2002-2003; Student Activities Coordinator; 2004-2007; Candidate for Director-Elect, 2005; Educational Activities Chair, 2008; Conferences Committee Vice-Chair, 2009-2011; East Area Chair, 2010-2013; Director-Elect, 2014-15; Director, 2016-17.

New Orleans Section Secretary, 1995-1996; Vice-Chair, 1996-1997; Chair, 1997-2000; Past Chair, 2000-2001; Student Activities Chair, 2001-2003; Awards Chair, 2002-2014; Director, 2008-2009; Secretary, 2010-2013.

University of New Orleans, Counselor, 1985-1988

Member, Hospitality Committee, IEEE/PES T&D Conference and Exhibition, 1989;
Conference Vice-Chair, IEEE ISCAS, 1990; Member, Local Arrangements Committee, ICC/Supercom, 1994; Chair, Internet and Computer Services Committee, IEEE/PES T&D Conference and Exhibition, 1999; Chair, Computer and Internet Committee, ICC, 2000; Chair, Publications Committee, IEEE I&CPS Conference,
2001; Co-Chair, Student Design Contest, IEEE R5 Conference, 2003; Assistant Treasurer, IEEE/PES T&D Conference and Exhibition, 2005/06; Local Committee Chair, IEEE IAS Annual Meeting, 2007; Technical Program Co-Chair, IEEE Globecom, 2008; Technical Program Co-Chair, IEEE/PES T&D Conference and Exhibition, 2010; Volunteer, Wireless Communications and Networking Conference, 2015.

OTHER: Member: CAS Society, PES, Computer Society, Communications Society, IAS, BTS, Solid-State Circuits Society, AESS, and the UFFC Society; Member, Eta Kappa Nu.


I am currently serving as the Region 5 Director, Audit Committee Chair, and member of the GUOS Committee. I have served in many positions in the New Orleans Section (and am still involved there) and on the Region 5 Executive Committee since 2001. I have also served in various positions for a number of IEEE Technical Conferences. I believe that I have a broad background in IEEE that will help in whatever I do. I am interested in and committed to IEEE and since I am retired I have the time to devote to my volunteer activities. I enjoy working with people and prefer to try to build consensus wherever possible. I believe I have the necessary skills and qualifications to be an effective volunteer leader in these positions and would enjoy the opportunity to help create a better IEEE for all of our members.


  1. As Region Director, I have focused the Region and its Executive Committee in supporting and training local Geo Unit volunteers so that their units may become more active and effective.
  2. As Section Chair, I believe I helped revitalize the New Orleans Section. Activity had dwindled and when I took office, the average Section meeting was around 15 people. When I left, average attendance had more than tripled and we had one meeting with 80 attendees.
  3. I led an effort by the Section to make use of distinguished speakers who come to the area for conferences. To cite two examples, Dr. Rosalind Picard of the MIT Media Labs, and Dr. Heinrich Stuttgen of NEC Labs Europe both presented talks to the Section during or immediately following their conferences.
  4. The 2005 IEEE/PES Transmission & Distribution Conference and Exhibition was scheduled for October, 2005 in New Orleans. Following Hurricane Katrina, which devastated the New Orleans and the Morial Convention Center, the event had to be cancelled. Members of the New Orleans Organizing Committee joined with members of the 2003 T&D Organizing Committee from Dallas to plan a rescheduled conference. Through a lot of hard work by a lot of people, a very successful conference was held in Dallas in May, 2006. I was proud to be a small part of that.
  5. I have been an active volunteer for numerous IEEE Conferences, including serving as Technical Program Co-Chair of two significant IEEE Conferences (the 2008 Global Communications Conference and 2010 PES Transmission & Distribution Conference and Exhibition). I believe we arranged two very successful technical programs which met or exceeded all of the expectations of the sponsoring societies and contributed to the technical community and the finances of the societies and the Section.


I have always felt that for many of our members the local Geo units provide the value they find in IEEE. In particular, these local geographic units provide the connection for many members in industry. Almost half of our members do not belong to Societies, never attend an IEEE Conference, or become involved with the Region. The technical programs, networking opportunities, and chance to socialize with other engineers are where many of these members find their value.
As a Region Director, I have focused the Region and the Executive Committee on supporting our Sections and Chapters and getting them the information and tools they need to become more active and effective. Training local volunteers is a particular focus of the Region.

I would like to help MGA continue and increase our support of local Geo units while continuing to lead the MGA system. In particular, I believe that MGA has to be more attentive and responsive to requests for help from local Geo units. We have to continue to support the Student Branches and our specialized constituencies such as YP, WIE, and LM. We need to continue and increase our staff-volunteer partnerships so that we can all work together and contribute to the common goal of a more effective IEEE, providing more value to our members.

Our members should be our most effective recruiting tool, encouraging others to join IEEE. But sadly, this is not often the case. If we can succeed in providing more value to our members in the local Geo units, then I think our members will solve our recruitment goals for us.

There are many things that MGA does well. But there are also areas where we can do a better job, and I would like to help us improve in those areas.


I am currently serving as Region 5 Director and am on the GUOS Committee and am the Audit Committee Chair. I am retired, consult occasionally, and do not believe that there are any conflicts of interest with my IEEE activities.

Francisco Martinez

Headshot of Francisco Martinez


Francisco R. Martinez is the CEO of Sistemas Azteca S.A. a company he founded in 1994 in Guadalajara, Mexico dedicated to integrating automatic data systems based on barcode and RF technology (hardware/software).
He is also a system integration consultant for electronics manufacturing companies.
He received the B.S.E.E. degree from the University of Guadalajara (1982) and had a Managing Diploma from ITESO University in 2008.  His career includes experience as practicing engineer and designer in the electro medical industry and plant manager for the plastics industry. He has been a professor in the University of Guadalajara and ITESO University. He has been a speaker in conferences related to automatic data collection for engineers and students.
In 1998 he was recognized as outstanding engineer by the governor of the State of Jalisco, México.


  • Future Directions Committee member 2016-2017
  • IEEE Conference Committee member 2017
  • Signature Program Evaluation Committee (SPEC) 2016-2017
  • MGA Vice Chair-Information Management 2015-2016
  • IEEE AB Joint Awards with National Societies Committee Chair 2017
  • IEEE Awards member
  • IEEE AB OpCom member 2017
  • IEEE Service Awards Committee member 2017
  • IEEE Governance member 2014-2015-2016
  • MGA Vice Chair Information Management 2015-2016
  • MGA ITCO Committee Chair 2015-2016
  • FDC Industry Advisory Board (IAB) member 2015-2016
  • Signature Program Evaluation Committee Member 2016
  • Ad Hoc on Holistic IT Development Member 2015
  • MGA ITCO Committee member 2014
  • MGA Liaison to TAB 2014
  • IEEE AB Joint Awards with National Societies Committee Member 2013-2014
  • IEEE Admission and Advancement (A&A) Committee Chair 2012-2013
  • IEEE N&A member 2011-2012
  • IEEE Awards Board Member 2010-2011
  • IEEE Career Services Committee Member 2010-2011
  • IEEE Admission and Advancement Committee Member 2010-2011
  • IEEE Globalization of Professional Activities Co-Chair 2009
  • IEEE N&A member 2006-2008
  • IEEE BoD member 2004-2005
  • IEEE Compensation Committee Member 2005
  • IEEE Governance Working Group Member 2003
  • MGA Liaison to TAB 2009
  • MGA N&A Chair 2008
  • RAB N&A Chair 2006-2007
  • Member Activities Committee member 2006
  • RAB Board Member 2004-2005
  • RAB liaison to EAB 2002-2003


  • R9 History committee Chair 2014-2015-2016-2017
  • R9 Strategic Planning Chair 2008
  • R9 Past Director and N&A R9 Chair 2006-2007
  • Region 9 Director 2004-2005
  • R9 Membership Development Chair 2002-2003
  • R9 Secretary 2000-2001


  • Computer society Chapter Chair 2014-2015
  • Guadalajara Section Chair 1996-1997
  • Mexico’s Council Secretary 1996-1997
  • Guadalajara Section Vice Chair 1995
  • Guadalajara Industrial Electronics Chapter Chair 1991-92
  • Guadalajara Sub-Section Secretary 1988-1989
  • Guadalajara Subsection Treasurer 1987


  • Member of Computer Society,
  • Systems, Man, and Cybernetics,
  • Society on Social Implications of Technology,
  • Communications Society


  • 2014 Guadalajara First Smart Cities Conference steering committee
  • 2014 Section Congress Speaker (“Member Grade Elevation Recognition” )
  • 2013 Guadalajara Smart City Kick Off steering committee
  • 2011 Section Congress Speaker for A&A


I have acquired significant experience and understanding not only the MGA activities but also of the IEEE Organization responsibilities throughout my latest different positions in the Institute.

I understand MGA Vice President Elect /MGA Board Chair Elect duties and know how to perform the tasks because of my active involvement in MGA through my recent position as MGA IT Vice Chair. For the IEEE Board business, I have the understanding and knowledge of how to interact with other OUs to always positioning our members as the top priority.   
Having served as IEEE Director, MGA Vice Chair and recently being member of the Governance committee I have stayed up to date to give a continuity in all IEEE activities, and at the same time to perform the MGA Vice President duties, but above all in a context of a global understanding of the members’ needs.

If elected as MGA Vice President Elect, I can highly contribute thanks to the experience I have acquired and the results I have obtained in IEEE. In every committee I have volunteered, either as member or as Chair, I have left evidence of teamwork, fostered the development of new volunteers and achieved the goals. I have acknowledged the work of the staff, whom I consider fundamental and whom we should truly value and make an integral part of our volunteer work. I appreciate and take into account everyone’s point of view, with responsibility and tolerance always prevailing, and build bonds among the people involved. I set my own bars high but remain realistic, and I always stay aligned with IEEE’s mission and vision.


  • As the 2015-2016 Vice Chair of Information Management:
    • Prioritization of all IT MGA projects, focusing on ensuring that volunteers/members have products and services of true value.
    • Quick responses on all projects, especially for the two SC Recommendations: “Promotion tool for local events” and “Enhancing vTools”.
  • As IEEE Admission and Advancement (A&A) committee Chair:
    • The SM elevation approval was raised from 80’s% to above 90%. SM elevation goal for 2012 achieved 113% of its objective.
  • As IEEE N&A member, I was leader of a project to develop an automation method and the required software to reduce the workload of N&A Committee members
  • As RAB N&A Chair, I collaborated in the transition from RAB to MGA. The committee worked quickly, managing to find the candidate with the right profile for each new position. We had the challenge of adjusting to new characteristics, core competencies, abilities and responsibilities.
  • As IEEE Globalization of Professional Activities Ad-Hoc committee Co-Chair, I was co-responsible to respond to SC recommendation #7.
  • As Region Director, Region 9 was able to increase its membership, elevate members to SM and affiliates to member grades significantly, above the goals suggested by MD.


  • As MGA Vice President Elect /MGA Board Chair Elect and Board member, I will devote the time and commitment to make the best decisions.
  • I will get up to date with past and ongoing activities.
  • I will contribute with my IEEE knowledge and experience to reach the objectives and actions, according to IEEE’s strategic vision
  • Human relations and teamwork are fundamental to reach the goals among all people involved in the IEEE Board, which I will foster as a priority to get consensus and positive results.
  • I will consider the management of all human and economic resources a priority so all the discussions about plans and strategies have the proper balance between technology, workforce and finances, aligned with the bylaws and IEEE’s constitution.
  • I will work with all MGA Board members and staff nurturing communication, and offering the information needed for daily MGA Board members’ responsibilities.
  • To carry out the MGA Vice President Elect /MGA Board Chair Elect responsibilities, it is fundamental to work in an environment of trust, open communication, and teamwork; this is another roll I will boost to benefit the decisions and actions.

Lastly, to accomplish the IEEE MGA Vice President Elect /MGA Board Chair Elect responsibilities is not one person task; it is a team work, so I will foster collaboration with MGA board members and staff to assure we reach the best outcomes in benefit of IEEE and its members.


No conflict of interest

Karen Sue Pedersen

Headshot of Karen Pedersen


Karen’s has a BSEE, Iowa State University, Iowa and an MBA(economics), Bentley College, Massachusetts.  Over 35 years in the Utility Industry; Iowa Power & Light Co. (IP&L), Boston Edison Co. (BECo) and MidAmerican Energy Co. (MEC).   Worked in the Rate Department and Electric System Planning Department (IP&L).  Evaluated the consequences of unbundling electric rates and the consequences of selling generation to third parties at BECo., both of which were implemented.  Served seven years as a Trustee At Large on the National Society of Professional Engineers(NSPE) Educational Foundation Board.   She served one year on the NSPE Executive Committee as Vice President (Professional Engineers in Industry), and two years as the North Central Vice President on the NSPE Board of Directors.  Served as Chair of Products and Services and on Member’s Needs Task forces focusing on the member and the member’s needs and how better to serve the member.


IEEE-USA President 2017                                                   1/1/2017-12/31/2017
IEEE-USA President-Elect 2016                                           1/1/2016-12/31/2016
IEEE-USA Awards Committee member                      1/1/07–12/31/10
IEEE-USA Board of Directors, Director Region 4                    1/1/13-12/31/14
IEEE-USA ad-hoc External Award Chair                1/1/11-12/31/11
MGA Awards and Recognition Committee corresponding member 1/1/07-12/31/08
MGA Awards and Recognition Committee member             1/1/09 –12/31/10
MGA Strategic Direction and Environmental Assessment Committee 1/1/10–12/31/10
MGA Member Engagement and Life Cycle Committee, Member 1/1/11-12/31/12
MGA Awards Policy and Planning Committee, Member         1/1/11-12/31/12
MGA Awards Board, MGA Chair                         1/1/11-12/31/12
MGA Awards Board, Board of Director Liaison                 1/1/13-12/31/13
MGA Metro Area Workshop (MAW) Project Lead             1/1/13-12/31/13
MGA Ad Hoc: Smart Tech Workshop in an Box, Project Lead  1/1/13-12/31/15
MGA GUOS Committee                             1/1/15-12/31/2015
MGA Board of Directors, Region 4 Director                            1/1/13-12/31/2014
MGA “Practitioners” Ad Hoc, Member                     1/1/15-12/31/15
IEEE Brand Ambassador                                                      1/1/12-Present
IEEE AdHoc Ethics and Compliance Management Committee  1/1/13-12/31/2013
IEEE Awards Board- IEEE BOD Liaison                                  1/1/13-12/31/2014
IEEE AdHoc Code of Conduct and Policy Review Committee    1/1/14-12/31/2014
IEEE Ethics and Member Conduct Committee-IEEE BOD Liaison 1/1/14-12/31/2014
IEEE Board of Directors, Region 4 Director                             1/1/13-12/31/2014
IEEE Ethics and Member Conduct Committee             1/1/15-12/31/2017

Region 4 Awards and Recognition Committee Chair,          1/1/07-12/31/10
Director-Elect Region 4                             1/1/11-12/31/12
Director Region 4                                 1/1/13-12/31/14
Past Director Region 4                             1/1/2015-12/31/2015

Central Iowa Section Member                        7/1/75-12/31/84
Central Iowa Section, Secretary/Treasurer                 7/1/81-6/30/81
Central Iowa Section, Vice Chair                     7/1/82-6/30/83
Central Iowa Section, Chair                         7/1/83-6/30/84
Boston Section s. Member                        1/1/85-3/1/98
Iowa-Illinois Section, S. Member                            3/1/98-04/1/09
Iowa-Illinois Section, Secretary                         1/1/00-12/31/00
Iowa-Illinois Section, Treasurer                        1/1/01-12/31/01
Power and Energy Chapter Chair                     1/27/07-12/31/09
Women in Engineering, Member                     1/1/01-12/31/07
Iowa-Illinois Section, Vice Chair                     1/1/02-12/31/02
Iowa-Illinois Section, Chair                         1/1/03-12/31/03     
Cedar Rapids Section S.L.Member                    4/1/09-present


IEEE Computer Society, Member                    1/1/84-12/31/95
Power and Energy Society, Member                     1/1/86-Present
Women in Engineering, Member                     1/1/01-12/31/07
Communications Society, Member                    1/1/05-12/31/06




I am currently IEEE-USA President.  I am Past Director of Region 4 and as such on the IEEE-USA Board of Directors, MGA Board of Directors, and IEEE Board of Directors.  I was Chair of the MGA Awards and Recognition Committee 2 years.  I was IEEE Board of Director liaison on the IEEE Awards Board.  I was IEEE Board of Directors liaison on the Ethics and Member Conduct Committee (EMCC).  I was Chair of the AdHoc Code of Conduct and Policy Review Committee.
Outside of IEEE, I was Member-at-large on the NSPE Educational Foundation for over 6 years.  I was the President of the Massachusetts Society of Professional Engineers.  I was Vice President of Professional Engineers in Industry one year and Vice President of Northwest two years on the National Society of Professional Engineers Board of Directors.


As IEEE-USA President, I have created an AdHoc on Diversity to address how IEEE-USA can better serve the women, industry engineers, blacks, American Indians, and other under-served engineers.

I also created an AdHoc on strategic Streamling/prioritization.  This AdHoc will be presenting a recommendation to the Board for the consideration in June.

  • I served as a member of the 2010 Strategic Management and Analysis Committee.  I served on the GUOS committee.
  • Served as the Chair of the Code of Conduct and Policy Review Committee in 2014.  We produced a new Code of Conduct Committee and set in place training to be used by all volunteers.  The policies related to ethics and Code of Conduct are now consistent and duplications have been removed.


IEEE needs to offer more value to the Young Professionals, industry engineers/scientists and their employers.   The Young Professionals are the future of IEEE.  In order to compete, their career must be focused on the future.  If MGA does not adjust to the needs of the world of the future, there will be no need for IEEE.
IEEE needs to change, the members and employers won’t change.  IEEE needs to offer leadership opportunities to a relevant work force.   If the member receives value that serves the employer, the employer will have a reason to encourage the employee to belong to IEEE.


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Learn more about the qualifications, roles and responsibilities of the IEEE Officers, and other members of the IEEE Board of Directors.