Industrial Session Keynote

Elif Balkas, Ph.D., Chief Technology Officer


As Chief Technology Officer at Wolfspeed, Elif Balkas is responsible for building upon the company’s strong technology foundation in wide bandgap (WBG) materials, driving technological improvements and coupling them with manufacturing excellence to yield products with high quality and reliability as Wolfspeed continues to grow as the leader in Silicon Carbide (SiC) and gallium nitride (GaN) materials for power and RF device applications.

Elif has more than 20 years of experience in the WBG materials field in the technology industry. Prior to her current role at Wolfspeed, she served in variety of leadership positions in R&D and operations, dedicating most of her time to developing Silicon Carbide crystal growth and surrounding technologies that are scalable for manufacturing purposes and that enable more efficient and powerful electronic systems.

Prior to Wolfspeed, Elif served as a scientist at Intrinsic Semiconductor where she was responsible for GaN and Silicon Carbide epitaxy products development with a focus on high-quality, efficient and effective processes.

Elif co-founded the Women’s Initiative at Wolfspeed to encourage, develop and support women who will lead the way in innovation and execution in every aspect of the business and community, and served as the leader of the Professional Development Focus to create an environment where everyone’s perspectives, ideas and contributions matter. She continues to serve on the Women’s Initiative Steering Committee to foster diversity at all levels to create better results for Wolfspeed and its community.

Elif has a Ph.D. in Materials Science with a minor in Electrical and Computer Engineering. She earned her degree from North Carolina State University in GaN crystal growth via physical vapor transport. Elif also completed executive education at The Wharton School, focusing on product management and strategy, scaling a business, and leadership development.