Proven Management Team

We are experts in water electrolysis. We’re also scientists, and business people. At Next Hydrogen, we believe strongly in the greening of industrial processes, transportation systems, and energy systems and we know our on site hydrogen generators can help us all get there.

Walter Howard, M.Eng, MBA

Executive Chair

Walter brings extensive experience in operations, business development, finance, and M&A in the utility industry. He’s held CEO, EVP and SVP positions with innovators in related syngas, wind energy, and cogeneration firms including Westinghouse Plasma Corp (TSX: “NRG”), Zegen, Noble Environmental Power (developer/owner of 486 wind turbines), General Electric Capital, and US Generating, as well as water industry experience.

Walter’s career spans more than 35 years of successfully executed technology development and implementation, project development, execution and project finance. His projects have won multiple industry awards. He holds a Master’s degree in Engineering from Cornell University and an MBA from Harvard University.

Matthew Fairlie, M.Sc, DBA

Vice Chairman

Matthew is the former CTO and Executive VP of Stuart Energy Systems where he pioneered new concepts in water electrolyzer systems. He is also a former Vice Chair of the NHA in Washington and the former Chairman of the Hydrogen Business Council of Canada.

Raveel Afzaal, B.Math, B.Econ, CFA

President & CEO

Raveel brings deep capital markets expertise through a distinguished career in Equity Research over the past decade with a focus on Sustainability and Industrial Technologies. Prior to joining Next Hydrogen, he led the Canadian Sustainability and Special Situation verticals for Canaccord Genuity. During his Equity Research career, Raveel was ranked in Brendan Wood surveys based on Buy Side nominations as well as by Thomson Reuters for estimates accuracy. Prior to joining equity research, he worked in venture capital with XPV Capital. He graduated with a Bachelors of Mathematics and a Bachelors of Arts (Economics) from the University of Waterloo. He is also a CFA charterholder.

Jim Hinatsu, Ph.D

COO & Executive Vice President

Jim has more than 20 years of experience designing and developing electrochemical and hydrogen systems. He was the VP of Advanced Engineering for Stuart Energy Systems, where he led both R&D and IP development. Jim has also worked in the areas of fuel cells, electrochemical synthesis and corrosion protection. He holds a Ph.D, a M.A.Sc, and a B.A.Sc in Chemical Engineering from the University of Toronto.

Michael Stemp, Ph.D


Michael has more than 20 years of experience designing and developing hydrogen systems, including as Director of Advanced Engineering for Stuart Energy systems. He holds a Ph.D in Materials Science from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne, Switzerland, and a M.A.Sc and B.A.Sc in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Toronto.

Kasia Malz, CPA, CA, CPA(IL), MAcc


Kasia brings over 10 years of diverse financial leadership experience working in start-up and high-growth environments.  Previously CFO of Titanium Transportation Group Inc., she took the company public and grew the business from $40 million to $200 million in revenue.  Kasia has her CPA, Chartered Accountant designation and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in the state of Illinois.  She holds a Masters of Accounting and an Honours Bachelor of Mathematics from the University of Waterloo.

Jason Van Geel, B.Sc

Manufacturing Partner & Board Member

Jason brings to Next Hydrogen over 20 years of management experience in the energy sector as an engineer, project manager, contractor and owner of Carlsun and 7GFUEL.