About Sierra Energy

Sierra Energy is committed to innovation that leads to a zero waste future.

Since 2004, Sierra Energy has focused on the development of FastOx® gasification, a technology that turns trash into energy without burning. This sustainable solution is commercially available to meet the needs of the modern waste industry.

The company continues to advance its technology and test new applications for gasification at the Sierra Energy Research Park in Davis, California. Sierra Energy’s commercial facility is located in Monterey County, California.


  • Biofuels Digest Hot 40 Emerging Companies in the Advanced Bioeconomy for 2017
  • Grant Award from The Roddenberry Foundation, $150K
  • 2016 Sacramento Region Innovation Awards—Sustainability Award
  • The Reinventors, Upstart Business Journal
  • Environmental Recognition Award, City of Davis
  • Eco-Hero, Cool Davis
  • Grant Award from Defense Logistics Agency, $100K
  • Biofuels Digest Top 100 people in the Advanced Bioeconomy for 2015
  • Grant Award from Department of Defense, $3MM
  • Grant Award from California Energy Commission, $5MM
  • Top 150 Biofuel Companies, Biofuels Digest
  • Most Innovative New Product in Environment and CleanTech 2012
  • Top 200 GoingGreen Company


Mike G. Hart, President & CEO
Mr. Hart, CEO of Sierra Energy, has over 24 years of active entrepreneurial experience in forming and running industrial companies with a proven track record of success. Mr. Hart has served as Sierra’s CEO since he founded the company in 2004. He also serves as President of Sierra Railroad, a company he has expanded from four employees to over 140 since 1994 when he started the company.Hart was named an “Environmental Hero” by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for his work in biodiesel and was recently named a “Champion of Change” by the White House.

Prior to joining Sierra and Sierra Railroad Company, Hart acted as a management consultant for FMC, NASA (Mars Mission), TRW, Boeing, McDonnell Douglas, GMMVO, ARS, and Hay Systems, and worked as a developer for Apple Computers Federal Systems. He led the platform development for the Intelligence All Source Analysis System for the DOD, DIA, CIA in a joint project with Steve Job’s NeXT Computers. Hart has also created a variety of software tools for the analysis of future weapon systems and operational impacts, including developing advanced weapons systems for the Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps. He holds a B.A. in political science from the University of California at Davis and a Stanford Advanced Management Program Certificate.


Dr. Rob White, DPPD,CA PG, Chief Strategist
Mr. White brings with him a wealth of knowledge and more than 25 years of professional experience. This experience includes executive leadership and management positions in public administration, the nonprofit sector, and the private sector. Most recently, Rob served as chief innovation officer for the City of Davis. Before that, he served as the director of economic development for the City of Livermore while simultaneously holding the post of CEO of The i-GATE innovation Hub.


Daniel Mark Dodd, Chief Technology Officer
Mr. Dodd has been working for Sierra Energy since 2007 and has been responsible for the R&D and commercialization of the FastOx gasification technology platform. Mr. Dodd earned a Masters of Engineering, with first class honors, in aerospace and mechanical engineering from the University of Bristol in England, with joint studies at the University of California, Davis. Prior to joining Sierra Energy, Mr. Dodd worked for Goodrich Aerospace, The European Space Agency (ESA), Atkins Engineering Consultants and TGL (later acquired by Alstom).


Torgny Nilsson, COO, Secretary & General Counsel
Mr. Nilsson has been with Sierra Energy since 2004 and has extensive intellectual property, corporate governance, and corporate finance experience. Prior to joining Sierra, Mr. Nilsson worked for various law firms and companies including Thelen Reid & Priest LLP, Gartenberg, Jaffe, Gelfand & Stein LLP, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, and NASA. After earning two B.A. degrees from the University of California, Davis, Mr. Nilsson received his law degree from Santa Clara University School of Law, where he was an editor of the Santa Clara Law Review and received the American Jurisprudence Award. Mr. Nilsson has also completed studies in comparative law at Magdalen College, Oxford University.


Lisa Sorvari, Director, Human Resources
Ms. Sorvari’s background includes over twenty years of experience working in for-profit, non-profit and government organizations. She earned a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration with a concentration in human resources from Sacramento State University and a Master's degree in Human Resources Management from Chapman University. She holds Senior Professional HR and California Certifications from the HR Certificate Institute and a Senior Certified Professional certification from the Society for HR Management.


Michael Kleist, VP of Sales & Marketing
Michael brings more than 17-years’ experience in building B2B revenue streams. Prior to joining Sierra Energy, he was the founder and COO of Tradesparq.com, a B2B platform focused on international trade and licensing that he helped grow to hundreds of thousands of members worldwide and millions in revenue. He also has served as General Manager at Globalsources.com, a NASDAQ-listed company also focused on B2B global trade.