John D. McDonald, P.E.

John D. McDonald, P.E.

GE-Grid Solutions / Global SmartGrid Strategy Group


John D. McDonald, P.E., is Smart Grid Business Development Leader – North America, Global Smart Grid Strategy Group, for GE Energy Connection’s Grid Solutions business. John has 44 years of experience in the electric utility transmission and distribution industry. John received his B.S.E.E. and M.S.E.E. (Power Engineering) degrees from Purdue University, and an M.B.A. (Finance) degree from the University of California-Berkeley. John is a Life Fellow of IEEE, and was awarded the IEEE Millennium Medal, the IEEE Power & Energy Society (PES) Excellence in Power Distribution Engineering Award, the IEEE PES Substations Committee Distinguished Service Award, and the IEEE PES Meritorious Service Award. John is Past President of the IEEE PES, the VP for Technical Activities for the US National Committee (USNC) of CIGRE, and the Past Chair of the IEEE PES Substations Committee. John was elected to Chair the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) Board from 2010-2014. John received the 2009 Outstanding Electrical and Computer Engineer Award from Purdue University. John teaches a Smart Grid course at the Georgia Institute of Technology, a Smart Grid course for GE, and Smart Grid courses for various IEEE PES local chapters as an IEEE PES Distinguished Lecturer. John has published eighty papers and articles and has co-authored four books.



Cyber Security – Introduction and Two Case Studies

The introduction to cyber security will discuss failure mode and effect analysis of security, understanding the threat, understanding consequences and risks, and factors of authentication. The first case study was the hacking of a GE industrial Ethernet switch, and this talk will discuss vulnerability messages and response, lessons learned, and a secure development lifecycle for product development. The second case study is a detailed anatomy of the Ukraine power outage on December 23, 2015, resulting in 225,000 end customers with three regional utilities losing power, and the three regional utilities losing remote control capability for many months. The detailed anatomy will discuss the 23 steps the hackers took over a nine-month period leading up to the attack, as well as the attack itself.