Last week, California Public Utilities Commission President Michael Picker gave out fliers in front of the Washington, D.C. offices of the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Energy. The fliers pointed to a webpage listing openings at California's PUC, Air Resources Board and Energy Commission.
Picker said, “On climate action, there’s a dark cloud hanging over Washington right now. If climate scientists and experts want the opportunity to continue doing important work for the good of our planet, my message is simple: Come West; California is hiring.”
President Trump intends to nominate Scott Gottlieb, a partner at venture capital firm New Enterprise Associates, to lead the Food and Drug Administration, according to Reuters. Trump intends to nominate Kevin McIntyre, a lawyer at Jones Day in Washington, D.C. to be chair of FERC, according to Bloomberg.
Bruce Sohn, former president of First Solar, joined CIGS solar startup Siva Power as CEO after joining as vice chairman late last year. Under Sohn, First Solar was the first firm to build PV modules at below $1.00 per watt and the first to ship more than 1 gigawatt of PV modules annually. Sohn is on the board of Phononic Devices and 1366 Technologies and, until recently, was president of QuantumScape.
Travis Bradford, president of the Prometheus Institute for Sustainable Development and director of the Energy and Environment graduate program at Columbia University's School of International Public Affairs, is now the new chairman of Watt Fuel Cell Corp, a developer of a solid oxide fuel cell that runs on propane, natural gas and diesel. According to the company, the entire fuel cell tube is manufactured using an automated printing process.
SMA promoted Charles Ellis to VP of distributed sales. Andrew Mears, most recently with SunPower, and with SMA America from 2009 to 2013, is now VP of strategic sales. SMA "will be launching a massive hiring effort" in key U.S. regions such as California and the Northeast.
Brian Asparro is now CCO at behind-the-meter energy storage firm Demand Energy. Asparro "supported Demand Energy with financing expertise and guidance through the acquisition of the company by Enel Green Power North America." Previously, Brian served as CFO at Green Charge Networks.
Gregg Sayre, on New York’s Public Service Commission since July 2012, will replace Audrey Zibelman as interim chair to oversee NY REV, according to Microgrid Knowledge. The REV program is building a policy framework for a distributed grid in New York state. Zibelman is moving on to lead the Australian Energy Market Operator.
Enertech Search Partners, an executive search firm with a dedicated cleantech practice, is the sponsor of the GTM jobs column.
Among its many active searches, Enertech is looking for a VP of Sales -- Distributed Energy.
The client provides software and business solutions to design, connect, and operate energy storage and microgrid systems. Their suite of products creates an ecosystem where project developers, OEMs, financiers, and project operators can deploy advanced energy projects using a seamless hardware-agnostic software platform.
Currently they are seeking a VP of Sales who has superior communication and management experience, is comfortable selling and partnering with big integrators (SW) and is a strategic tactical player/coach.
Lightsource Renewable Energy, a European solar energy developer, named James Brooks as chief strategy officer, and as a member of the board. Most recently, Brooks was the co-head of energy investments in the merchant banking division of Goldman Sachs within EMEA.
Sense named Marshall Chapin as chief strategy officer. Chapin joins Sense from EnerNOC, where he served as VP of sales, responsible for utility sales, strategic alliances, and sales operations. Sense is a "platform that interprets the power usage and activity of devices in the home."
From the previous jobs column:
David Danielson is now managing director for science and Eric Toone is executive managing director and science lead -- the first employees on the Breakthrough Energy Ventures science team. Danielson was most recently a Precourt Energy Scholar at Stanford. Before that, he served as the Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. He was the first program director hired by the DOE's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E), which focuses on high-risk clean energy technologies. Toone was most recently the leader of the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Initiative at Duke University. In 2009, he was a founding member of ARPA-E, where he led the electrofuels program.
On the relatively rare topic of investors focused on energy and sustainability:
- Dick Kramlich, co-founder of New Enterprise Associates, founded Green Bay Ventures, a $130 million early-stage fund, with partner Anthony Schiller. The fund looks at artificial intelligence applications in energy, transportation, manufacturing and logistics, according to a TechCrunch source.
- Abe Yokell, a partner at RockPort Capital, along with Joshua Posamentier are listed as co-founders and managing partners at Congruent Ventures -- "Investing in Early Stage Sustainable Technology" according to the website. The firm has filed for two funds, a $50 million seed and Series A fund, and a $40 million follow-on fund. According to the firm, they are fully subscribed on their follow-on fund and will hold a second close for the early stage fund in Q2. They expect to make their first investments in the coming months.