Jatila grew up in Sri Lanka, the small island nation in the Indian Ocean, where his mom encouraged the value of a solid education. That’s exactly what he received, with a solid focus on mechanical engineering from his bachelor’s degree from the University of Moratuwa to his master’s and doctorate from Oregon State University.
After working for six years as a senior heat transfer engineer in the oil and gas division at the Parsons Corporation, Jatila was ready for a change.
“I love solving tough problems, learnings new things, and being part of great teams,” he recalls. He spent the next 23 years at General Electric and Power, applying his engineering expertise to problems ranging from developing the first H class combined-cycle gas turbine power plant in Japan, to handling quality assurance related to a major fleet issue, to designing power generation systems, to heading General Electric and Power's product line for gas turbines and combined cycles. He has been awarded 43 patents – so far.