Vision and Mission

Developing leaders to energize the future of nuclear…

NAYGN provides opportunities for a young generation of nuclear enthusiasts to develop leadership and professional skills, create life-long connections, engage and inform the public, and inspire today’s nuclear technology professionals to meet the challenges of the 21st century.

Our Core

Abbey J. Donahue

Abbey J. Donahue

Past President

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Abbey J. Donahue is an Engineering Manager  for SHINE Medical Technologies in Janesville, Wisconsin.  SHINE is innovating the way medical isotopes are produced using a first-of-a-kind particle accelerator technology.  Abbey spent the first seven years of her career at AREVA, where she completed the Voyager Program, a development program designed to give engineers in-depth technical knowledge by exploring different business sectors and leading projects. Abbey worked in PWR and BWR core design, fuel transportation, and in dry cask storage groups.

Abbey holds a B.S. in Nuclear Engineering from Purdue University and an M.S. in Nuclear Engineering from the University of Tennessee. Abbey is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of Maryland.

Christine Johnsen

Christine Johnsen

President

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Christine Johnsen is a Duke Energy Nuclear Fuels Engineer who provides clean air energy to her neighbors in the Carolinas.  She is the current President of NAYGN.  Her passion lies in the essential role that nuclear plays in our continent’s diverse energy mix.

Johnsen joined NAYGN in 2010 after graduating North Carolina State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Nuclear Engineering.  She began her NAYGN leadership as the Public Information Chair of her local Chapter and has since served as a Chapter Lead, Carolinas Regional Lead, USA Affairs Chair, and Vice President.  Grateful for the development opportunities and inspiration that NAYGN has provided in her career, Johnsen is excited to see where we can take NAYGN next.

Lee Causey

Lee Causey

Vice President

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Lee Causey has been an NAYGN member since 2010, serving as Duke Energy’s site programs chair, fleet programs chair, and chapter lead. Lee served as a key player in Duke’s SMEs of the Future program, chapter conferences, and KT&R efforts that led to numerous awards for the Duke Energy Chapter.

He has worked in the nuclear industry since 2008, with time split between Duke Energy’s Shearon Harris and McGuire plants. He is a licensed Professional Engineer and a degreed mechanical engineer from NCSU, but his favorite titles are husband (Carrie) and father (Julie and Claire). He is a (very) amateur guitarist and is known to travel with a yoga mat.

Cayla Thompson

Cayla Thompson

Professional Development Chair

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Coming soon!

Chris Wolfe

Chris Wolfe

Public Information Chair

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Chris Wolfe works in the Corporate Resource Planning department for SCANA. Chris started her career in nuclear as a Structural Design Engineer with the Shaw Group in Charlotte, NC, designing site specific structures for the VC Summer 2 & 3 nuclear project.  Her responsibilities included project engineering scheduling and cost management, 10CFR21 and 10CFR55(e) programs, engineering design changes to support construction, subcontract management, and civil/structural design specifications.  Chris continued her career on the VC Summer project in the Nuclear Operations Department for SCE&G.

Chris has a double major in Civil Engineering and Economics from Vanderbilt University. She was an NCAA All American golfer, team captain of the Vanderbilt Women’s golf team and played on the LPGA tour prior to joining the nuclear industry.  She has been the NAYGN US Government Outreach lead from 2014-2016 on the PI committee as well as the VC Summer NAYGN Chapter President.  Chris resides in Blythewood, SC with her husband and two children.

Steven Bullock

Steven Bullock

Communications Chair

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Coming soon!

Maria Pfeffer

Maria Pfeffer

US Affairs Chair

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Maria Pfeffer began her NAYGN leadership in 2013 when she joined GE’s Chapter’s Core. Later, she assisted conference planning and the photo contest with the Professional Development committee. Maria considers her biggest NAYGN accomplishment is co-chairing the 2016 Nuclear Science Week Big Event, hosted in Wilmington, NC (GE’s 2016 NAYGN Impact Project). The 3-day event was hugely successful in engaging 1,500 members of the public and educating them on the benefits and contributions that the nuclear sciences and technologies bring to our society.

Maria is a Quality Lead Auditor at GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, responsible for performing NQA-1 audits and assessments. Previously, she was a Transient Analysis Engineer, also at GE Hitachi. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Aerospace Engineering in 2009 from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering in 2013, from North Carolina State University. Maria currently resides in Wilmington, NC where she enjoys sailing, volleyball, running, and her new addiction to triathlons.

Matthew Mairinger

Matthew Mairinger

Canadian Affairs Chair

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Matthew Mairinger was elected as NAYGN Durham vice-president from 2015-2017 and was elected NAYGN Durham president in 2017. He is currently on the benchmarking committee and is the Canadian regional lead.

Matt graduated from University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) with a degree in Nuclear Engineering in 2014. He now works full time for Ontario Power Generation (OPG) at the Pickering nuclear plant as the Senior Advisor – Stakeholder Relations. He resides in Ajax, Ontario and enjoys water sports such as surfing, skimboarding, and windsurfing.

Amber Von Ruden

Amber Von Ruden

Treasurer

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coming soon!

Core Committee Leads

Open Positions

Core positions available!

Join the NAYGN Core and take your involvement to the next level!

Committee volunteers needed!

Contact president@naygn.org if you’d like more information on opportunities to get involved.
NAYGN is run entirely by volunteers; there is always a chance to get involved!
Let us help you find the right opportunity.

Founders

The founders of NAYGN received the first Founders Award at the
2009 NAYGN Annual Professional Development Workshop.

Paul Wilson

Paul Wilson

Founder

President (1999-2001)

Sama Bilbao y León

Sama Bilbao y León

Founder

Public Information Chair (1999-2005)

Nicole Faulk

Nicole Faulk

Founder

Treasurer (1999-2002)

Emmy Ross

Emmy Ross

Founder

Vice President (1999-2001)
Professional Development Chair (2001-2002)

Undine Shoop

Undine Shoop

Founder

Professional Development Chair (1999-2001)
President (2001-2002)
Past President (2002-2003)

Sonja Simmons

Sonja Simmons

Founder

Alumni Relations (1999-2002)

Mark McIntyre

Mark McIntyre

Canadian Affairs Chair (2000-2005)

Shannon Bragg-Sitton

Shannon Bragg-Sitton

Founder

Communication Chair (1999-2003)
Vice President (2003-2004)
President (2004-2005)
Past President (2005-2006)