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Dr. Charlie Gay is the Solar Energy Technologies Office Director for the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). In this position he is leading the SunShot Initiative, a team that is dedicated to research, manufacturing and market solutions to make solar energy cost competitive with other forms of energy by the end of the decade.
Dr. Gay is an internationally recognized pioneer in photovoltaics. After starting his career in 1975 designing solar power system components for communications satellites at Spectrolab, he later joined ARCO Solar, where he established the research and development program and led the commercialization of crystalline silicon and thin film technologies.
In 1990, he became president and chief operating officer of Siemens Solar Industries, and from 1994 to 1997, he served as director of DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory. In 1997, he was named president and chief executive officer of ASE Americas, and from 2001 to 2005 served as founding chairman of the technical advisory board at SunPower Corporation. He joined Applied Materials in 2006 as corporate vice president and general manager of the Solar Business Group. He served as president of Applied Solar and chairman of the Applied Solar Council from 2009-2013. As president, Dr. Gay was responsible for positioning Applied Materials and its solar efforts with important stakeholders in the energy industry, technical community and governments around the world.
He earned a Ph.D. from the University of California, Riverside and was elected a member of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering in 2013. He established the Greenstar Foundation in 1997 to demonstrate an economically sustainable model that delivers solar power and internet access for health, education and microenterprise projects to developing world villages.
Lynn is Chief Executive Officer of Sunrun (Nasdaq: RUN), the largest dedicated residential solar company in the United States, and the creator of the solar-as-a-service model for the residential market. Lynn co-founded Sunrun in 2007 with a passion for creating simple solutions to difficult problems. From a young age she was a competitive athlete who was also drawn to innovation, infrastructure and the environment, all of which prepared her for her current role. Lynn began her career as one of the only female venture capitalists at Summit Partners, a leading growth equity investor. While at Summit she evaluated myriad business models and financing structures and completed investments with an aggregate market value of over $900 million in the financial services and technology sectors. But it was during a summer internship in China while attending business school at Stanford University that she witnessed firsthand the magnitude of the impact that the rapid consumption of natural resources was having on the environment. She knew then there had to be a better way. While back at school Lynn and classmate/ co-founder Edward Fenster recognized the solution to this complex environmental issue could be in simply offering consumers a better choice. By enabling homeowners to purchase clean power in a simple, affordable and more efficient way, Sunrun could pave the way for a cleaner more innovative future – and disrupt the massive and archaic residential energy industry in the process. From the beginning, Lynn helped shape Sunrun’s vision and served the Company in many roles from personally selling Sunrun’s first customers to leading the Company’s growing sales and marketing operations. She subsequently became President and co-CEO and eventually was named Chief Executive Officer in February 2014. She believes in empowering individuals to reach their full potential, a theme prevalent in Sunrun’s vision to create a planet run by the sun.
Richard Swanson received his BSEE and MSEE from Ohio State University in 1969 and his PhD from Stanford University in 1974. After completing his PhD, he joined the Electrical Engineering faculty at Stanford. His research investigated the semiconductor properties of silicon relevant for better understanding the operation of silicon solar cells. These studies have helped pave the way for steady improvement in silicon solar cell performance.
In 1991 Dr. Swanson resigned from his faculty position to devote full time to SunPower Corporation, a company he founded. Today, SunPower produces the highest performance photovoltaic panels available, and has become the world’s third largest by market capitalization manufacturer and installer of photovoltaic systems.
Dr. Swanson has received widespread recognition for his work. In 2002, he was awarded the William R. Cherry award by the IEEE for outstanding contributions to the photovoltaic field, and in 2006 the Becquerel Prize in Photovoltaics from the European Communities. He was elected a Fellow of the IEEE in 2008 and a member of the National Academy of Engineering in 2009. He received the 2009 Economist Magazine Energy Innovator Award. In 2010 he was awarded the IEEE Jin-ichi Nishizawa Medal for the conception and commercialization of high-efficiency point-contact solar cell technology, and in 2011 the Karl Boer Solar Energy Medal of Merit Award.
Dr. Swanson is currently retired from SunPower. He serves on the board of the Worldwatch Institute, as well several advisory boards, and is Chairman of the Bay Area Photovoltaic Consortium Executive Board.
Ms. Palmer currently leads the team that procures energy and electric infrastructure for Google Inc. Key efforts of her team include managing the company's energy portfolio, and sourcing as much renewable energy as possible to power Google's operations. As a result of these initiatives, Google has announced over 2.6 GW of renewable energy purchases around the globe, and is the largest corporate purchaser of renewable energy.
Prior to joining Google, Ms. Palmer held several positions at PG&E, where she quickly rose to become the Director of Corporate Development. She has also worked for Goldman Sachs, serving clients in the electricity sector.
Ms. Palmer holds an MBA in Finance from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, and a BS in Civil Engineering from California Polytechnic State University at San Luis Obispo.
Mark Widmar became Chief Executive Officer of First Solar, Inc. in July, 2016. He joined First Solar in April 2011 as Chief Financial Officer, and oversaw all financial operations, including financial planning and analysis, treasury, internal audit, investor relations, accounting and tax. While in that role, he also served as CFO and as a director on the board of directors of 8point3 Energy Partners, the joint yieldco formed by First Solar and SunPower to own and operate a portfolio of selected solar generation assets. Prior to joining First Solar, Mr. Widmar was the CFO for Graftech International, and was also President of Graftech's engineering solutions business. From 2005 to 2006, Mr. Widmar served as Corporate Controller for NCR Inc. Prior to his appointment to Controller, he was a business unit CFO for NCR, with responsibility for setting the financial vision and strategy for a $2 billion global enterprise. In this position Mr. Widmar was instrumental in the establishment of strategic plans, annual operating plans and pricing strategy. Mr. Widmar has also held various financial and managerial positions with Dell, Lucent Technologies, AlliedSignal and Bristol Myers/Squibb. He began his career in 1987 as an accountant with Ernst & Young.
Abigail Ross Hopper is the President and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association, the national trade organization for America's solar energy industries. She oversees all of SEIA's activities, including government affairs, research, communications, and industry leadership.
Before joining SEIA, Abby was the Director of the Department of Interior's Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. As the BOEM's second director, she weighed complex and sometimes conflicting factors to achieve balanced federal energy policy.
She served formerly as the Director of the Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) and has broad experience in the energy sector, including working with a wide variety of stakeholders as well as legal expertise. Abby led the MEA from 2012, first as Acting Director and then as Director in June 2013. She also served concurrently as Energy Advisor to Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley since 2010. As MEA Director, Abby was pivotal in ensuring the passage of the Maryland Offshore Wind Energy Act of 2013.
She was a lead negotiator representing the State’s interests in both the Exelon/Constellation merger and the FirstEnergy/Allegheny Energy merger, securing millions in benefits for Maryland and its citizens. Abby has also focused significant resources on improving the resiliency of the State’s electric utilities in the face of major storms.
Abby previously spent over two years as Deputy General Counsel with the Maryland Public Service Commission, during which she advised commissioners on a broad range of legal matters arising from their duties as utility regulators.
Before embarking on a career in public service, Abby spent nine years in private practice where she specialized in complex merger and investment counseling and corporate law.
Abby graduated Cum Laude from the University of Maryland School of Law and earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree from Dartmouth College.
Carl Mansfield is General Manager and Founder of Sharp Electronics Corporation's Energy Systems and Services Group (ESSG), which focuses on developing innovative energy management and energy storage products for the U.S. market. Mr. Mansfield is the driving force behind the development and business roll-out of Sharp's SmartStorage® energy management product and has served as General Manager of ESSG since its formation in the spring of 2014.
Mr. Mansfield has more than 20 years of experience in the high-tech industry, with an emphasis on communications, information technology and control systems. Prior to founding ESSG, Mr. Mansfield spent eight years developing new business opportunities for Sharp, leveraging innovative technologies and business models to create new products and services. He joined Sharp in 1998 as Manager, Sharp Laboratories of America. In 2004, he was named Senior Manager of Home Networking Technologies, where he successfully led development of system and intellectual property for a powerline carrier communications system, and oversaw the successful license and royalty agreements for several patents. He has also served as Sharp's representative on the Board of Directors for HomePlug and WiMedia.
He holds a Master of Science in Telecomms Engineering degree from the University of London and an MA in Physics and Theoretical Physics from the University of Cambridge. He is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
Bryan Birsic, Cofounder and CEO of Wunder Capital brings extensive finance and capital raising expertise to Wunder, from private equity investing at Bain & Company to financing online commercial lending companies at Village Ventures. Notably, Bryan’s firm led early investments into commercial lending market leader OnDeck Capital. Along with his finance background, Bryan has built and led several companies that bring software approaches to new markets, most notably and recently SimpleReach, where Bryan was President and which has raised more than $15mm. Bryan attended Williams College, and moved with his family to Boulder from New York City several years ago.
Nate Blair is a Group Manager within the Strategic Energy Analysis Center (SEAC) at NREL. Nate has over twenty years of experience in renewable and efficiency energy systems modeling and energy analysis. He worked as the TRNSYS project manager at the Univ. of WI – Solar Energy Laboratory, briefly at Sandia National Laboratories, Global Energy Partners, and Thermal Energy System Specialists. Nate has a B.A. in physics from Gustavus Adolphus College, an M.S.M.E. and an MBA from the UW-Madison.
His 14 years of NREL activities include helping develop the Solar Analysis Model (SAM) and PVWatts as well as working with the ReEDS electric grid palnning model. He currently manages a team of system modelers and the geospatial Data Science (GDS) staff. Recently, he worked at the World Bank from 2015-2016 on assignment from NREL.
Kelsey Bobrinskoy is a Senior Analyst on Recurrent Energy’s Asset and Operations Management team. In her tenure at Recurrent Energy, Kelsey has managed over 425MW of solar projects across the US and Canada. Her responsibilities include oversight of operations, performance, financial and contract administration, and compliance for operating projects. She has spearheaded Recurrent Energy’s implementation of Asset Management software systems, alongside general process development and optimization, helping her team’s operating portfolio to grow from 160MW (2013) to 1.3GW (2016).
Prior to her work at Recurrent Energy, Kelsey was a General Engineer in the Energy Branch of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Construction Engineering Research Laboratory, where her research focused on bringing renewable and sustainable energy practices to military installations. Kelsey holds a Master of Engineering Management from Duke University, a B.S. in Mathematics and in Physics from Elon University, and a Project Management Professional Certification from the Project Management Institute.
Deep is an entrepreneurial business leader, currently leading ENACT SYSTEMS an award-winning cloud platform for the distributed energy industry, that he co-founded in 2013. Prior to ENACT, Deep was CEO of Centrosolar’s North American photovoltaic systems business that he co-founded in 2009, where he pioneered a unique business model for sales, financing and distribution of complete, packaged PV-systems configured on a unique software platform and serviced by a dealer network in 20 states.
Deep has a decade-long experience leading strategy and operations, spanning global leadership roles in US and Europe. Prior to Centrosolar, Deep led Project Management for Roland Berger Strategy Consultants at their headquarters in Munich, Germany, focusing on growth strategy, due diligence and financial re-structuring for large automotive clients. Deep’s team supported the turn-around strategies for one of the largest global automotive OEMs, as well as the re-organization of a top French global automotive supplier. Deep led the firm’s strategy on powertrain electrification where he engaged with German OEMs and utilities on electric vehicle deployment.
Deep started his career in the automotive industry at DaimlerChrysler, where he held positions of increasing responsibility in Product Engineering, Program Management and Product Strategy for the Chrysler Group headquarters in Michigan. Deep won the prestigious Lynn Tilly Award for Corporate Quality in 2005, and his earlier work on design for high-volume manufacturing of engines was awarded ‘Technology of the Year’ by Industry Week in 2001.
Deep has a Mechanical Engineering degree from IIT Kharagpur, India, Master’s degree in Engineering from Penn State University, and an MBA in Strategy and Finance from University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
As VP of Software Engineering for NEXTracker, Allan Daly leads the software team and is lead product manager on the Company's storage + solar solution called NX Fusion Plus. In this capacity, he leads a team of 10 software engineers to design and develop intelligent, connected industrial software to enhance the NEXTracker customer experience. His formative training is in mechanical engineering with over 20 years of experience in the construction industry. He has substantial expertise using complex building and system analysis and simulation software to predict building energy consumption, thermal performance, natural ventilation, and occupant comfort. He also is skilled in modern engineering design and documentation tools, such as EnergyPlus and Revit. Prior to working at NEXTracker, Mr. Daly was the Co-Founder and VP of Engineering for BrightBox Technologies, and a Principal at Taylor Engineering. He previously worked for Ove Arup and Partners, San Francisco, and was also a contractor for the Department of Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency. Mr. Daly has always been an ‘energy guy’, with a life-long interest in energy and buildings. He brings together his broad experience from policy-work, research, teaching, and consulting to inform the design and operation of innovative and sustainable mechanical systems. Allan has particular expertise in controls, energy modeling, commissioning, and low-energy high-performance buildings. Mr. Daly holds a BS in Civil Engineering and a BA in Drama from Stanford University as well as a MS in Civil Engineering (Structural) and an MS in Architecture (Building Science) from UC Berkeley. Allan serves at the Partner Vice-Chair for the UC Berkeley Center for the Built Environment, and is a past-member of the USGBC LEED Energy and Atmosphere Technical Advisory Committee.
Thomas is a passionate leader in the Solar Energy industry, and prides himself on building lasting teams and facilitating alignment and cohesion of business models across diverse projects and programs. He balances the business capability roadmap with energy sustainability and renewable technology solutions, quality, service, and process simplification to achieve a positive return on assets.
Thomas currently serves as President for Soligent Distribution and is responsible for the day-to-day operational responsibilities of the company. Prior to joining Soligent, Thomas served as a member of the Management Board and ran the Solar Energy Division at Fronius USA for over five years. Before his time spent at Fronius USA, Thomas co-founded and managed joint ventures and conducted multiple successful mergers and acquisitions.
Peggy (Hannon) Flannery is currently Head of Origination for Solar for Generate Capital, a specialty finance company that funds infrastructure assets involving the world’s critical resources: energy, water, agriculture, and basic materials. Peggy brings over a decade of experience in business development, M&A, contract negotiation, financial services, and relationship management to the Generate solar team. Prior to Generate Capital, Ms. Flannery spent 7 years at SunEdison. There, she focused on structuring project acquisitions and joint development agreements in the US Commercial & Industrial space and was responsible for over $300 million in solar C&I assets that were developed, constructed, and financed. She spent the first several years of her career at Goldman Sachs, in Sales and Trading in New York City. She holds a BA from Columbia University in New York in Environmental Science and Mathematics.
Paul Gibbs had the idea for building HelioScope while working in distributed electronics for PV arrays. Witnessing the painful process it takes to design, develop and finance a new solar project was eye-opening, and he saw the need for a better system. New and emergent technologies only appeared to confound these problems.
His unique background spanning physics, optimization and energy has enabled him to begin building the technology platform behind HelioScope. Paul received an MBA from Harvard Business School and has degrees in Physics and Economics from the University of Chicago.
Prior to attending business school he was a founder at Nodal Exchange, where he led new product development and designed a market allowing utilities to hedge electricity transmission costs in a structure that parallels the actual physical power flows.
Paul Grana is the co-founder of Folsom Labs, where he leads sales and marketing, where he has helped to grow the company to thousands of installers in over 70 countries. He founded the Solar Software Summit in partnership with GTM Events. He previously worked at Abound Solar, and led product management and technical marketing with Tigo Energy. Paul holds a BS in Mathematics and Economics from the University of Chicago, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Sheeraz Daniel Haji is the founder and managing partner of zipdragon ventures (ZDV), a San Francisco firm providing seed capital to industry cloud startups. Sheeraz is an investor passionate about the power of software-as-a-service (SaaS) to transform vertical markets such as energy, mobility, and buildings.
Sheeraz has co-founded, operated, and invested in numerous startups. As the founder and managing partner of ZDV, Sheeraz has led investments into ten industry cloud startups. He often represents ZDV on the board of portfolio companies, and he also advises a couple of funds.
Prior to founding zipdragon ventures, Sheeraz served as CEO of Cleantech Group and played a pivotal role in the transformation towards cleaner energy and resource efficiency. Sheeraz co-founded and served as CEO of GetActive Software, which pioneered SaaS for nonprofits. He led GetActive’s merger with Convio and served as Convio’s President. Convio went public on the NASDAQ and was acquired for $325m post-IPO. Sheeraz started his career as an environmental engineer at Environ and a consultant at McKinsey & Company.
Sheeraz earned degrees in environmental engineering from Brown University and Stanford University. When he’s not working, Sheeraz enjoys family time, chess, skiing and riding his bike.
Ross Heiman is the Director, Design Engineering at NRG Energy Inc. based in San Francisco where he leads a large group of engineers responsible for developing, designing, and supporting the construction DG and utility scale solar projects. Prior to joining NRG, Ross spent over 9 years at SunPower where he held various leadership roles in the Design & Engineering group of SunPower’s EPC division supporting the construction of 3+ GW of utility and commercial scale solar projects globally. He was active in the development and deployment of several iterations of SunPower’s utility and commercial racking products, and led multiple process improvement and closed loop learning initiatives. Ross holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Cal Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, CA.
Shawn Kerrigan, Ph.D., has led technology and new product development for Locus Energy since 2010. Kerrigan’s prior experience includes four years as a consultant with McKinsey & Co. focusing on the energy industry, where he worked on growth and operations strategies for utilities, solar companies, and other energy companies. He also spent two years as a Senior Investment Associate with Bridgewater Associates, a leading global macro quantitative hedge fund. He earned a doctorate in engineering from Stanford University, where he conducted interdisciplinary research across engineering, computer science and law.
Emily Kirsch is the Founder and CEO of Powerhouse, an Oakland based co-working space and seed fund that houses and invests in intelligent energy entrepreneurs. Prior to founding Powerhouse, Emily worked with Van Jones, a former advisor to President Obama turned CNN political commentator, to launch the Green Jobs Corps; Oakland's first renewables focused job training program.Emily is the founding convener of the the Oakland Climate Action Coalition which drafted and secured passage of what was the most ambitious Energy and Climate Action Plan of any city in the country. In addition, Emily worked with the solar company Mosaic to secure their first customers and launch their pilot platform. Emily is a 2012 New Leaders Council Alumni, was featured in the '15 for 2015 Women Leaders in Cleantech', was a 2015 winner of the 'East Bay Innovation Award for Cleantech', and was a 'Grist 50: The 50 People You'll Be Talking About in 2016.' Emily serves on the Board of PV Complete and is on the Advisory Board of the University of San Francisco’s Masters of Science in Energy Systems Management. Emily has guest lectured at UC Berkeley and Stanford.
Dirk Liebich was recently appointed Global Chief Technology Officer of REPOWER by Solar Universe, one of the top 10 providers of residential solar in the U.S. In his new role at this high-growth company, Dirk will drive expansion and scalability through technological innovation, enablement and collaboration. REPOWER operates across 11 states through 100+ partners that market, sell, and install solar under the REPOWER brand. Their innovative business model has created a marketplace linking specialty players including Manufacturers, Lead Generators, Sales/Origination firms, Financiers, Distributors and Installers into a cohesive network that collectively provides homeowners with the best solar solution available.
He is an accomplished senior executive and entrepreneur with over 25 years of experience driving digital transformation through strategic and technical leadership. His extensive experience across industries has focused on leading demand-driven business strategies through process optimization, advanced information modeling and deployment of cloud-based technologies. He has transformed multiple prototypes into comprehensive platforms by leveraging enhanced business intelligence and machine learning techniques.
A widely respected thought leader in the field of Digital Transformation, his bIog “Das Magazin” enjoys a global following. He is a frequent guest speaker and author - his latest book “Social goes Mobile - Kunden gezielt erreichen” is available on Amazon. A native German, Dirk speaks German, English and French. He holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Bochum.
Paul has spent more than 20 years in enterprise software consulting. Prior to founding LeanCog, Paul started his career in Accenture's Technology Labs, follow by two consulting startups in Supply Chain and CRM, helping both of them grow to successful acquisitions. Paul founded LeanCog to bring user centered and iterative development approaches to IT consulting and software development services. Paul's passion for double bottom line businesses has lead to a strong practice area for LeanCog in renewable energy, helping clients across the Solar and Storage value chain design, develop, and integrate software systems to improve their businesses.
Conlan O'Leary is Co-Founder and CEO of Sighten. Prior to Sighten, Conlan helped manage the structuring and pricing desk at Clean Power Finance, a leading residential solar financing platform. Conlan has a deep knowledge of the US solar marketplace with 6+ years working exclusively in residential solar financing and quoting software. Conlan has prior experience in technology and cleantech investment banking as well as environmental commodities trading. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College in New Hampshire and holds degrees in economics and philosophy.
Eric Reinhardt is Sunrun's Sr. Director of Software Product Management. Eric oversees BrightPath, an end-to-end automated software platform that enables Sunrun and its partners to manage every step of the solar journey from lead creation to system turn-on. He also is responsible for Sunrun's mobile apps, including BrightPath Mobile - a point of sale tool for field sales, and mySunrun - a customer portal that provides self service tools for Sunrun's 20 year customers.
Prior to Sunrun, Eric was Co-founder of Alliance Memory, a semiconductor startup, where he served as VP of Marketing and Operations. He received a degree in Mechanical Engineering and Economics from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Mccombs School of Business at University of Texas, Austin.
Tim Rochman is the Director of the Energy Markets at EagleView. His leadership in the energy market includes data solutions derived from aerial imagery in the Solar, Electric Utility, and Oil & Gas Pipeline industries. For Solar, Rochman is responsible for addressing and engaging the needs of PV Solar manufacturers and installers. Under his guidance, EagleView creates and delivers property centric data empowering stakeholders with remote site knowledge to facilitate proposal, design, survey and operations activities.
Rich Robinson is SunPower’s high-energy vice president of digital transformation (and former chief information officer) focused on deploying technology-driven solutions for the global solar company.
A Native of West Virginia, Rich graduated with honors from West Virginia University Institute of Technology where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and his commission as an Officer in the U.S. Army. As an Army Communication officer, Rich served for five years on active duty including deployments to Bosnia Herzegovina and Afghanistan, as well as three years of reserve duty.
In his civilian career, Rich has held senior leadership positions of increasing responsibility with companies including Dendrite International, NBC Universal, kgb (formerly InfoNXX), and Bazaarvoice. He is a recognized thought leader in the spaces of Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (Cloud), and the evolving discipline of DevOps.
Rich resides in Austin, Texas, with his wife Valerie and their three children. In his free time he enjoys riding his motorcycle, playing guitar, and trying to keep up with his children’s extra-curricular activities.
Michael leads commercial sales and marketing for GE’s Digital Solar Business as the Global Director of Sales & Marketing. He joined GE Power in 2010 as a Regional Sales Manager for Renewables where he led GE Solar Power Plant, inverter and photovoltaic module sales efforts targeting the US, Caribbean, Africa and Australia. In 2012, he was promoted to a Senior Manager in Market & Competitive Intelligence for Power Services where he implemented profitable deal strategies, led quantitative market modeling and provided relevant business intelligence which drove new product adoption and incremental margin dollars. Prior to joining GE, he led Global Marketing and Pricing Strategy for the microprocessor and chipset business at Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) and held leadership roles in engineering, software development, marketing, and product management during his 12 years at the company. Michael holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Texas A&M University and an MBA from the University of Texas in Austin.
Greg Sellers is Vice President of Residential Services for SunSystem Technology, a leading solar EPC, O&M and Asset Management company. Prior to joining SST, Greg spent three years as VP of Field Operations for Clean Power Finance (now Spruce Finance), overseeing a portfolio that grew tenfold during his tenure. Prior to CPF, Greg founded and led Burnham Energy, the solar industry’s leading residential inspection and permitting company. Greg’s career has focused on improving public and private sector collaboration and growth. He is a graduate of UC Santa Cruz, and has a graduate degree in Public Policy from the Panetta Institute at CSU Monterey Bay. He spent 12 years as a City Councilmember in Morgan Hill, California, where he lives with his wife and four children.
Stephen Simons is the Chief Information Officer for Direct Energy Solar, the residential and small commercial solar division of Direct Energy, one of the largest retail providers of electricity, natural gas, and home services in all of North America. Stephen has been with the business since its inception as Astrum Solar, which in 2012 was ranked #2 on the INC 500 list of fastest growing companies in the United States and is responsible for the creation and evolution of their end-to-end enterprise software platform.
A customer-driven business executive and technology thought leader with experience at every stage of the corporate lifecycle from start-up to large enterprise, Stephen not only brings his practical, visionary leadership to the energy industry, but also finds time to serve as a board member for Yet Analytics, a high growth, data-forward start-up out of Baltimore, MD that is revolutionizing the way that companies think about, manage, and motivate their people. When he is not crunching data, he and his wife provide insight on other topics like life, the universe, and everything as the founding pastors of Creation Springs Church in Carroll County, MD.
Mark Trout is the chief technology and information officer for Vivint Solar, a leading full-service residential solar provider. Mark serves as a member of the executive leadership team and is responsible for overall systems development, implementation, and information technology operations. He has spent more than 20 years in Silicon Valley, including roles serving as chief transformation officer at eBay Enterprise and managing partner at the international consultancy firm Accenture.
Abe Yokell is Managing Partner and co-founder of Congruent Ventures, an early stage venture firm that backs companies in the sustainable technology ecosystem.
Prior to co-founding Congruent Ventures, Abe spent 13 years at RockPort Capital, helping the RockPort team build nearly half of its portfolio, with a primary focus on business models and software solutions that address climate change challenges. While at RockPort, he was responsible for opening the West Coast office in 2007, where he helped lead investments in energy fintech, residential solar, companies focused on blending software and hardware, data analytics platforms, urban transportation solutions, and energy storage companies.
His RockPort board seats included Renovate America, RePower, Qnovo, Flywheel, and EcoFactor, and he was previously involved with Enphase Energy (NASDAQ: ENPH), Streetline Networks (acquired by Kapsch), Recurve (acquired by Tendril), and Eka Systems (acquired by Cooper Power), among others.
Ilén leads the Enphase Energy Management System product team, and is responsible for advancing this Enphase technology solution across all target business segments. Previously, Ilén served as Enphase’s director of product management for the residential segment and prior to that role was the principal software manager of the Enphase Enlighten product, where she led the cross-functional team of software engineers, product managers and technical writers. With 15 years of combined e-learning software, SaaS and website development expertise, Ilén has enhanced the overall Enlighten platform and its mobile installer tools that measure the output and efficiency of solar energy systems. Ilén holds a B.A. in humanities from New College of the University of South Florida.