Ameren Vice President and CIO Mary Heger was named a leader in STEM by STEM Connector for her success within the company. In her essay for STEM Connector, Mary highlights how the University of Illinois and Research Park have helped Ameren to continue to excel and grow.
Writes Mary Heger: “The Research Park provides an opportunity for technology-based businesses to collaborate with students and faculty. The University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign’s College of Engineering is among the highest ranked in the nation, and is highly sought after as a partner for pursuing information security for the energy industry. Since its opening, the Ameren Innovation Center has been collaborating with university students and faculty and other companies across multiple industries at the Research Park.
“This really is all about our customers: The goal is to foster an exploratory environment that focuses on innovations to help Ameren better meet the future needs of our customers in Missouri and Illinois. It can’t be overstated why we are doing this: By fostering an innovative and collaborative environment at a world-class research university with access to top students and faculty, we can better leverage information technology to seize business opportunities and improve our customer satisfaction.”
Mary also discussed Ameren’s plans to expand their research at their Innovation Center at Research Park.
“We also plan to grow our projects at the Innovation Center to expand data analytics research. There are several active projects that can be applied immediately to enhance both customer and operational insights. A mobile application development center will be created to support our customer’s needs of getting information in real-time and on the go. And we’ll continue research in cybersecurity to ensure the safety and security of our assets and our customer data, as we all know data security is paramount in today’s environment.
“Ameren has long backed a variety of academic research around energy-related technologies, and we’re pleased to support an acclaimed institute such as University of Illinois. Its special interest in science, engineering and business curricula intersects with our goal to support the development of tomorrow’s workforce in the energy sector.”
This is not the first time Mary has been recognized for her career excellence. She has received the “Leader of Distinction” from the YWCA in 2010, and was recoginized by Diversity Journal as among their list of “Women Worth Watching” in 2011. In 2013, she was named one of the most influential business women in St. Louis by the St. Louis Business Journal, and received Maryville University‘s Deans’ Award in the School of Business in 2014.