Executive Team

PhD – Science and Technology Studies (Economics and Mathematics Stream), University of Edinburgh

M.Sc. – Science and Technology Studies (Economics and Mathematics Stream), University of Edinburgh

M.Sc. – Political Science and Public Policy, London School of Economics and Political Science

BJ – Political Science and Journalism, Carleton University

Josipa Petrunic is the President and CEO of CUTRIC. She is leading the formulation of several national transportation technology trials related to zero-emissions transportation and “smart vehicles” innovation, including the Pan-Canadian Electric Bus Demonstration & Integration Trial, the Pan-Canadian Hydrogen Fuel Cell Demonstration & Integration Trial, and the National Smart Vehicle Demonstration Project. Dr. Petrunic has built up CUTRIC’s consortium to include more than 100 private and public sector companies and organizations across Canada. Previously, she served as the lead researcher in electric vehicle policy studies at McMaster University, and as a senior research fellow in the history and philosophy of mathematics at University College London (UCL) in the United Kingdom in Science and Technology Studies. Dr. Petrunic continues to lecture in Globalization Studies at McMaster University. She currently sits on the Board of the Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS) Foundation and Women’s Transportation Seminar – Toronto (WTS Toronto).  In 2018, she was named as one of Canada’s a Top 40 Under 40 by Bloomberg News and Canada’s Top Clean 50. In 2019, she was named Aspioneer Top 10 Influential Women Leaders.

Research Team

Parvathy Pillai

Project Manager: ZEB Simulation & Commercialization

Project Management Professional (PMP®)

Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®)

M.Sc. – Global Health, McMaster University

Hon. B.Sc. – Life Sciences, McMaster University

Hon. B.Sc. – Chemistry, McMaster University

Parvathy Pillai works as the Project Manager: ZEB Simulation & Commercialization at CUTRIC, based in the Toronto office. In this role, Parvathy manages a diverse portfolio of zero-emission bus simulation projects and research studies that CUTRIC leads in Canada and the U.S. Parvathy also supports the organizational project management of CUTRIC.

Parvathy is a certified project management professional (PMP®) and holds the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®) designation from PMI. Prior to CUTRIC, Parvathy has worked in project management, environmental consulting, quality control, research, teaching and knowledge translation at various organizations. Parvathy earned her Master of Science from McMaster University, following her undergraduate studies in Chemistry and Life Sciences.

BA – Urban Planning, Concordia University

AdvDip – Architecture, BoxHill Institute

Shervin Bakhtiari is the Team Lead: ZEB Simulation & Research with CUTRIC in eastern Canada based in Montreal. As a member of the modelling team, he is responsible for geospatial data analysis to assess the potentials of bus network electrification. He also examines the development of RoutΣ.i ™ modelling tool for potential opportunities regarding the automatization and optimization of the modelling process. 

His greatest interest lies in transportation planning and network analyses with the aim to bring sustainability and GHG emission reduction to public transportation. Shervin holds a Bachelor’s degree in Urban Planning from Concordia University and an Advanced Diploma in Architecture from Box Hill Institute, Australia.

PhD – Physics, Electromagnetism and Measurement Theory

M.Sc. – Electrochemistry, Impedance Spectroscopy, Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG)

Roberto Batista Sardenberg previously worked with electrical measurement techniques in order to retrieve microscopic information on electrochemical cells and nano-structured samples. His research interests include the electrical characterization, modelling and simulation of electrical devices, sensors, and electrochemical cells. He contributed with the development of the measurement theory of Impedances by investigating constrains imposed on measured data by physical principles such as causality relations.

Anand Pariyarath

Zero-Emissions Bus (ZEB) Simulation Modeller & Data Scientist

Commercialization Team

MBA – Gies College of Business, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

M.Eng. – Mechanical Engineering (Automotive) – The University of Nottingham

Aditya (Adi) Ramesh is the Project Manager: Electric Bus and Coach Bus with Cutric, based in the Toronto office. In this role, Adi manages CUTRIC’s commercialization projects, showcasing the technology of our members, and demonstrating the means to move people faster, smarter and greener.

Prior to CUTRIC, Adi spent many years working as a design engineer in the Automotive sector and has a keen interest interest and love for all things transportation. Adi received his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where He trained as a project manager and worked on sustainable marketplace projects. Adi received his Masters in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Nottingham and spent a number of years living in Europe and SouthEast Asia, where he developed a fascination for public transport systems and how they could drive the future of sustainable mobility.

Dr. Abhishek Raj

National Electric Bus Project Lead & Researcher

PhD – Mechanical Engineering, University of Waterloo

M.Sc. – Mechanical Engineering, Masdar Institute of Science and Technology

B.Tech. – Mechanical Engineering, VIT University

Abhishek is the National Project Lead for CUTRIC’s Pan-Canadian Electric Bus Demonstration and Integration Trial and is based out of CUTRIC’s Toronto office. He is responsible for the project-management of the Phase I and II of CUTRIC’s Electric Bus Project, which strives to deploy multi-manufacture-built standardized electric buses and chargers across various jurisdictions in Canada. This involves participating in strategic planning, resource sourcing, operational evaluation and coordination among internal and external project stakeholders with regards to time bound project delivery within prescribed budgetary limits. He also oversees the program management of the National Academic Advisory Committee associated with the E-Bus project. 

Abhishek has completed his Doctorate of Philosophy in Mechanical Engineering  from the University of Waterloo. He had previously worked as a Researcher at the University of Waterloo, Canada and at Masdar Institute of Science and Technology, Abu Dhabi, UAE in the field of Sustainable Energy and Clean Combustion. His interests lie in the interdisciplinary domains of Policy, Energy, Engineering and Environment. 

Dr. Mahmood Nesheli

Smart Vehicle & Rail Innovation Project Lead

Mahmood Nesheli (Toronto office) is the Smart Vehicle & Rail Innovation Project Lead at CUTRIC.  Mahmood leads CUTRIC’s national Smart Vehicle projects through management and strategic development. Mahmood will also lead CUTRIC’s national rail innovation efforts to support the development of CUTRIC’s national business strategy. Mahmood is a member of Professional Engineers Ontario, and holds a P.Eng certificate. He is also a postdoctoral fellow of transportation engineering at the University of Toronto.

Prior to CUTRIC, Mahmood previously worked as a Senior Public Transport Analyst at Auckland Transport.

Mahmood received his PhD in Transportation Engineering from the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Auckland, New Zealand focusing on Public Transit systems.

Saumya Bhavsar

Project Manager: Pan-Canadian Hydrogen Fuel Electric Bus Demonstration & Integration Trial

Operations and Membership Team

B.Sc. – Environmental Science and Health, University of Toronto

Adriana Shu-Yin is the Digital Business Development Lead at CUTRIC in Eastern Canada, based in Toronto, Ontario.  Adriana leads CUTRIC’s major digital conferences and events. She will also lead CUTRIC’s digital membership strategy efforts to support the achievement of CUTRIC’s national business strategy.

Ms. Shu-Yin is passionate about smart and sustainable solutions to enhance greenhouse gas emissions reductions. Her education and prior work experience has focused on the acceleration towards a low-carbon economy using clean technology and policies that promote economic, social, and environmental benefits. Previously, she completed climate change and sustainability projects with ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability as well as the University of Toronto Sustainability Office.

Grace Reilly is the Government and Public Relations Officer with CUTRIC, based in the Toronto office. In this role, Grace leads CUTRIC’s national, provincial and municipal government relations efforts through coordination, outreach and strategic development. Grace also leads CUTRIC’s national public relations efforts to support the achievement of CUTRIC’s national business strategy.

Prior to CUTRIC, Grace worked as an Executive Assistant and Office Manager in Toronto and was previously an ESL Teacher in Austria, Scotland and Spain. Grace received her Master of Arts Degree in Spanish and German from the University of Glasgow, and is currently enrolled in the Paralegal Program at George Brown College.

Melissa Heynes is the National Administrative Coordinator with CUTRIC, based in Alberta. 

In this role, Melissa provides administrative support to the CUTRIC team across Canada. Melissa is responsible for accounts payable, accounts receivable, coordinating the CEO’s calendar, internal communications and all other administrative and executive assistant functions.

Prior to CUTRIC, Melissa worked as a Professional Officer at the City of Cape Town (South Africa) and completed her Diploma in Public Management at the University of South Africa.