Dr. Maa received his Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering at Michigan State University and has filed over 10 patents related to LED light engines, luminaires and lumen monitoring systems.  Dr. Maa has in-depth knowledge on LED tube design, application and industry trends.  He regularly provides training to that ask and serves as the go-to expert for lighting agencies, distributors and other lighting professionals. 

Mr. Ahrens, holds a BS in Electronics Engineering Technology from DeVry University and a MS degree in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical.  Mr. Ahrens is the lead product development engineer for Leader and its affiliate, Differential Energy Global Ltd., for the development of its LED replacement lamps product line.

Phil brings more than 19 years of industry experience with device conception and early development, IP strategy/patent writing, joint-development project structure, system-level engineering and an in-depth level of moving from concept to finished product through all stages of product development.

Mr. Park is a Senior Project Manager for PLanLED.   He has hosted multiple seminars, conferences regarding Human Centric Lighting (HCL).  John is a passionate evangelist for the HCC Society, where he learns from researchers and professionals in the neuroscience field to communicate to Professional Sports teams, Universities, School Districts and Fortune 1000 companies the immense benefits that Human Centric Lighting can bring.   

Sessions and Presenters:

Session 3
Human Centric Lighting -- Optimizing Lighting for Student learning
Presenters: John Park

Lighting has always been about illuminating sufficiently to see in a certain area.  Within the past 15 years, we’ve discovered that the proper spectrum of light can boost mood, productivity, learning and also help reset our circadian rhythms.  The time has come to implement lighting solutions that not only illuminates classrooms but to also consider the implications to the human physiology.

Session topics covered:
Discuss Biologically effective lighting

Examine Lighting for Learning

Inform attendees about Human Centric Lighting rather than building centric lighting 


Session 1
LED 101 - What you should know before buying any LED lighting products
Presenters: Richard A. Flaherty & Phil Ahrens​

With the advent of LED Lighting, a major paradigm shift that is still very much in its infancy, many early product offerings have proven less than reliable. The critical void is not necessarily in the LED products themselves but a tremendous gap in knowledge and understanding of the nuances and differentiating factors between old lighting technology and this new and exciting energy-saving innovation: LED.

In presenting LED 101: What you should know before buying LED lighting products, we hope to enlighten purchasers, specifiers and end-users to the basics of LED technology, offer critical knowledge from more than a decade of experience and learning as a leading small manufacturer of niche and custom LED lighting products, and provide a foundation from which to make informed purchase decisions.

LED lighting presents a never before imagined enhancement to lighting spaces that will have the potential to improve health, Increase learning ability, reduce workplace injuries, substantially reduce energy costs by controlling when, how and what colors the light will emit.  Educational, health and workplace spaces will be enhanced as never before using the vast rainbow of color-rendering, dimming and information obtainable using LED technology.  LED 101: unleashing just the basics!

​Session topics covered:
Help with differentiating the "Lifetime Claims": Understanding the major difference between the 'diode chip' and the LED light product. "Controls" and their effect and potential benefits.

Discuss component failures and the difference between the old 'filament' technology and the innovation and unlimited benefits for lighting with 'light emitting diodes'.

Critical Knowledge: environmental effects to LEDs (i.e.: color shifting) and other components: chemicals, heat/cold and water, electrical transients/over-voltage irregularities and fixtures.


Mr. Flaherty has owned/operated more than a dozen successful businesses since 1974.  From building condos and commercial buildings to investment banking, M&A, owning an investment banking firm and currently serving as President & CEO of LEADER INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION and DIFFERENTIAL ENERGY GLOBAL Ltd. (DEG), Port Orchard, Washington.  LEADER operates two divisions: commercial & institutional site furniture, LED accent/area landscape lighting and retail fixtures & displays. 

In late 2010 Mr. Flaherty started DEG to commercialize a series of replacement LED lamps he and his team invented to replace HID bulbs (outdoor street, wall packs, parking and interior high/low bay fixtures).   

Overall, Mr. Flaherty has designed several hundred products now in use in more than 63 countries throughout the globe.  

What you didn't know about LED Retrofits. Some can help you Learn and some can really Burn!

March 1, 2016

Hosted at: University of Washington, Tacoma 

Session 2


Presenter: Dr. Matthew Maa

Energy efficient lighting solutions that can reduce an educational facility’s lighting energy consumption by more than 50% are readily available.  However, not all LED lighting products are made equal.    They vary in design, quality, safety installation costs and maintenance labor expenses down the road.  Selecting the right LED lighting solution requires a good understanding of these issues.  This presentation will cover these topics and allow the attendees to gain a better understanding of the principles applicable to all energy efficient lightning applications.  If you are interested in assisting your institution to achieve the best ROI (return on investment) on any energy efficient lighting projects, you should NOT miss this presentation!  

Session topics covered:
Review and demonstrate different types of LED tube designs,

Examine pros and cons,

Look at industry trends,

Identify safety issues,

Provide critical criteria for selecting the right LED tubes for energy efficient lighting retrofit projects