WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) announced today it has elected the following individuals to serve on SEIA’s Board of Directors: Zachary Axelrod, founder and CEO of Skyline Innovations; Susan Brown, Principal at Brightenergy; Tony Clifford, CEO at Standard Solar Inc.; Todd Glass, Partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC; and Ed Murray, President of Aztec Solar Inc.
SEIA recently restructured its Board of Directors. In November, for the first time in its history, SEIA held elections for five board seats open to the general membership. Every SEIA member had the opportunity to nominate themselves or a colleague to represent the general membership on issues critical to the industry.
“The solar industry’s growth over the past several years has been reflected by the growing diversity of the SEIA membership and its Board of Directors,” said Rhone Resch, president and CEO of SEIA. “The addition of these new industry leaders, who were elected by the full SEIA membership, will help to bring an even more diverse perspective to our association from the people across the country who are building toward the industry’s goal of installing 10 gigawatts of solar each year by 2015. I look forward to them sharing their expertise and experience to strengthen the U.S. solar industry.”
The new directors will serve during a pivotal time for the U.S. solar energy industry. While the solar market has grown substantially in the last few years, it continues to face a number of challenges in 2012 including policy uncertainty at both the federal and state level, inadequate access to project finance, and a global oversupply of solar panels that is putting pressure on manufacturers throughout the supply chain. SEIA’s Board of Directors, including the newly elected directors, will guide the association’s strategic decisions during this transitional time in the solar industry.
SEIA’s new board members’ bios are below:
• Zachary Axelrod – Skyline Innovations. Zach Axelrod founded Skyline Innovations in August 2009, and is working to deliver fully-financed clean energy solutions to small and mid-sized businesses. Previously he was Director of Market Solutions for GridPoint, where he helped deliver distributed energy management and control to utilities and their residential customers. Prior to GridPoint, Zach was a wholesale power markets analyst with ICF International. He holds a BA from Macalester College and lives in Washington, D.C.
• Susan Brown – Brightergy Solar. Susan Brown has many years of experience in solar advocacy and sales in the Midwest. Susan was involved in successful net metering legislation and solar rebate initiative passage in Missouri. Susan is now a Principal with Brightergy, a solar development and finance firm, headquartered in Kansas City with offices in St. Louis and Boston. She is past Chair of Concerned Citizens of Platte County, a citizens’ group that reached a collaborative agreement with Kansas City Power & Light resulting in groundbreaking company investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency. In addition, Susan Vice-Chaired a Kansas City, Mo. Climate Protection Plan working group, is a member of the Mid-America Regional Council’s Air Quality Forum, and a member of the Greater Kansas City Chamber Energy, Environment and Sustainability Initiative.
• Tony Clifford – Standard Solar Inc. Tony Clifford has served as CEO of Standard Solar since early 2007. He began his solar career at Solarex Corporation, the world’s first manufacturer of terrestrial solar panels. That company was acquired by British Petroleum, and is now known as BP Solar, one of the world’s leading photovoltaic manufacturers. In his career, Tony has served as chief executive officer or chief financial officer of several high growth technology companies that were acquired by major corporations. He is the author of a Department of Energy report entitled Tax-Advantaged Investments in Renewable Energy Projects; and also has received a “Special Achievement Award for Technology Demonstration” from the U.S. Secretary of Energy. He currently serves as President of MDV-SEIA, the Maryland, DC, and Virginia regional chapter of the Solar Energy Industries Association. He earned his MBA at the University of Virginia’s Darden School and an undergraduate degree from Penn State University.
• Todd Glass –Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati PC. Todd Glass is a partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, where his practice focuses on the representation of project developers, utilities, investment banks, and venture capital firms in the energy and clean technology sector. Todd has extensive experience with the development, purchase, and sale of renewable and thermal generation projects; structuring, negotiation, and implementation of energy transactions and financings; and state and federal regulation of the energy industry. He served various enterprises as lead project counsel in the commercialization, project development, regulatory approvals, and financing of alternative energy projects and technologies, including solar photovoltaic, concentrated solar, and solar thermal projects. In addition, Todd represents utility-scale solar and other renewable energy clients in their power sales and renewable energy credit (REC) transactions, national and international joint ventures, mergers and acquisitions, and various equity and debt financings.
• Ed Murray – Aztec Solar Inc. Ed Murray of Aztec Solar Inc. brings 35 years of experience in solar water-heating and solar PV solutions. Aztec Solar Inc. has been installing solar PV and solar heating and cooling systems for commercial and residential customers throughout California for more than 30 years. Ed carries a California State solar license and is a NABCEP certified solar thermal installer. Ed sits on the NABCEP Board of Directors as well as SRCC Standards Committee; he is the current CALSEIA treasurer, chair of the Ethics Committee and a member of the technical committee of IAPMO 2012 Uniform Solar Energy Code. Ed actively influences both local and national solar policy, and is frequently called upon to testify with the California legislature, California Energy Commission and California Public Utility Commission.
Established in 1974, the Solar Energy Industries Association is the national trade association of the U.S. solar energy industry. Through advocacy and education, SEIA is working to build a strong solar industry to power America. As the voice of the industry, SEIA works with its 1,100 member companies to make solar a mainstream and significant energy source by expanding markets, removing market barriers strengthening the industry and educating the public on the benefits of solar energy.