Every day, we work with our partners to push advanced clean energy technologies forward
The VERTical innovation cluster was established in January 2022 and is administered by Port of Benton. Washington State Department of Commerce has invested in VERTical as part of its first cohort for funding through its Innovation Cluster Accelerator Program.
The industry-led coalition forges collaborative strategies that solve supply chain, workforce, capital and other barriers impeding the widescale deployment of next-generation nuclear and other advanced clean energy technologies.
VERTical’s efforts facilitate a thriving industry able to lead the transition to a zero-carbon future and stimulate economic growth first in the Northwest and then across the U.S.
Become a Partner Today
Submit the form below to become a VERTical partner and join our growing coalition of businesses, labor, government and public agencies, tribes, K-12 to higher education institutions, utilities, research institutions, investors and entrepreneurs, and others. We look forward to speaking with you further about collaborating to advance the priorities of this flourishing innovation cluster.
Partnership Request Form
VERTical Board of Directors
The VERTical Board of Directors was formed in October 2023, and the inaugural members hail from coast to coast. These leaders will help shape the board will expand to include additional representatives from industry-leading organizations and cutting-edge technology companies.
Board Chair Ken Langdon
Energy Northwest General Manager for Nuclear Development
Langdon is a U.S. Navy veteran with extensive experience in nuclear operations, site readiness and supply chain. Langdon lives in Washington.
Frederick P. Hughes, PMP
Fluor Corporation Vice President Project Direction, Mission Solutions Nuclear & Civil Group
Hughes has vast experience assembling and directing high-performance project teams and delivering projects on schedule and budget. Hughes hails from Idaho.
President of Framatome U.S. Government Solutions
Whitt has extensive experience in nuclear reactor fabrication, design and technical management, and expanding U.S. infrastructure and capabilities. Whitt is based in Virginia.
Diahann Howard, PPM®, PPX®
VERTical Acting Director & Port of Benton Executive Director
Diahann Howard serves as the acting director of the VERTical Advanced Clean Energy Innovation Cluster.