Dr. Amy Lucía Prieto is the Founder of Prieto Battery, Inc. She serves as the Chief Technology Officer and Chair of the Board of Directors for the Company. Dr. Prieto launched the Company in 2009 with the goal of bringing an advanced lithium-ion battery technology out of the academic lab and into the marketplace. The first funds raised went towards setting up a lab and hiring key scientists dedicated to bringing this idea to commercialization. Dr. Prieto spends the majority of her time advancing the technology and overseeing the team of scientists and researchers.
Dr. Prieto holds a Ph.D. in Inorganic Chemistry from the University of California, Berkeley and completed her postdoctoral research training at Harvard University. She was a Bell Labs Cooperative Research Fellow at Berkeley and a L’Oreal Foundation Fellow at Harvard. In 2011, she was named the ExxonMobil Solid State Chemistry Faculty Fellow, a prestigious honor given to one scientist chosen each year out of a national field. A year later, Dr. Prieto received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers at the White House, the highest honor bestowed by the United States Government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers. Her recent research includes new architectures for high surface area lithium ion batteries, the synthesis of nanoparticles of earth abundant, nontoxic elements for advanced photovoltaics and hydrogen storage, and the development of chemical vapor deposition methods for novel nanostructures. Dr. Prieto is recognized as one of the world’s experts in solid state chemistry and nanostructured materials.
Katie Hoffner has a passion for helping manifest big ideas that make the world a better place. And Prieto Battery is one of those. Katie has been with Prieto since 2011 and heads up the investment and business activities for the company. Katie is a global strategist and has a keen talent for alchemizing and gathering the right stakeholders that can hold a vision but also have the grit and heart to get things done. During her tenure at Prieto, Katie has raised significant equity funds, including securing two major strategic investors, Intel Capital and Stanley Ventures. Her sole focus in the corporate leadership role is to help the company and the technology realize its full potential by fostering a sustainable path to revenue and nurturing key relationships along the way.
Over the last two decades, Katie has solidified her expertise in the environmental and clean tech sectors. Among her notable accomplishments, Katie was part of the team that won an $11M US Department of Energy grant awarded to the City of Fort Collins to demonstrate smart grid technology. Katie also spearheaded the campaign to pass the first solar feed-in tariff policy in the State of Colorado which initially led to tripling the amount of solar energy on the community’s grid. She was also part of a leadership team that staged the first major Hydrogen Energy Education event in the US. Before joining Prieto, Katie was a consultant for family offices and ran her own conference business focused on green building and climate change issues.
Katie’s education includes an MBA from the American Graduate School of International Management (Thunderbird) and a BA dual degree from Sweet Briar College, where she graduated magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa.