16th Annual AESP-NEEC Conference Speaker Biographies

Infrastructure Modernization Affects Us All

Richard Hepp, C.E.M. from AEE and NY EIT, began his career at Schneider Electric in 1987 and since has served the company in a variety of roles. His past responsibilities have included serving the NYC market to create custom Medium Voltage, Low Voltage, and Control equipment solutions for NYC agencies and end user customers. For the last 18 years, Rich led the team responsible for specification, promotion, and delivery of Power Monitoring and Control systems, along with custom control schemes and advanced engineered systems in the eastern half of the United States. Rich now serves as the North American Microgrid Competency Center Director for the East. He’s a graduate of the New Jersey Institute of Technology in 1987 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering and also has a Master of Business Administration in Finance from Hofstra University.

Ross Kiddie is Vice President and Officer at ICF working as an executive in their energy practice. As a senior business leader in their practice, Ross has been instrumental in expanding ICF’s traditional business lines to include Utility of the Future and Distributed Energy Resource offerings to utilities.

In addition to holding a degree in Electrical Engineering, he is an industry thought leader on the, business, policy and technology aspects of a more distributed power system and a modernized grid. As an invited speaker he has moderated panel sessions and offered insights on several topics such as looking at the distribution system operator idea under a new utility paradigm such as NY REV and the different dimensions of grid modernization being addressed in North America.

Ross is a dynamic, highly credible leader who has had increasing administrative responsibility throughout his career and has demonstrated success in leadership roles. He possesses exceptional leadership and diplomatic skills; a strong expertise and appreciation of the energy business, and proven capability as a “deal closer”. In addition, he has held leadership positions with US based energy software, consulting and technology companies with responsibilities for sales strategy and execution, partnership development, marketing and operations and start-up mobilization and growth.

Carlos Nouel Nouel is the Leader of National Grid’s New Energy Solutions (NES) team. NES is an agile team focused on developing and launching innovative solutions and technologies that unlock value for National Grid’s customers and communities and accelerate progress towards a sustainable future.

Before becoming its leader, Carlos was the Director of Partnerships for the NES team. In that role, he was responsible for identifying customer’s energy needs and determining the most comprehensive, cost effective and sustainable strategies to fulfill those needs through the creation of innovative partnerships and alliances with key industry players. In addition, he also leads the development and execution of strategies and tactics for our smart grid programs. Before coming to New Energy Solutions, Carlos developed sourcing strategies to support all the requirements for National Grid’s energy efficiency portfolio valued at $400m per year.

Prior to joining National Grid, Carlos worked for companies such as Pfizer, British American Tobacco, IBM and AES in the supply chain area. Carlos holds an M.B.A. from Hult International Business School, and a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Andres Bello Catholic University in Venezuela. He is also a Certified Energy Manager.

Arah Schuur is the Director of the Massachusetts Department of Energy Resources’ (DOER) Energy Efficiency Division. In this role, she leads DOER’s energy efficiency-related policy and program development including building energy codes, finance programs, peak demand reduction strategies, Zero Energy Buildings, innovative technology and program design models. DOER also chairs the Energy Efficiency Advisory Council, which advises the Commonwealth’s utility program administrators in the development and execution of their statewide energy efficiency programs, Mass Save®. Prior to the DOER, Arah led a U.S. Department of Energy program to develop and deploy energy efficiency technologies, solutions, and tools for commercial buildings across the US. Arah has real estate development experience in both the public and private sector. Arah has Master’s degrees in City Planning and in Real Estate Development from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She lives in an insulated and air sealed home in Somerville, MA.

I Can See Clearly Now: Making the Value of Energy Efficiency More Visible to Communities and Buildings

Diana McCarthy-Bercury is a program administrator for municipal engagement, education and work force development programs for EnergizeCT and Eversource. Some her programs include the Clean Energy Communities, GreenSTEP & eeSmarts K-12 education initiative. Clean Energy Communities program is designed to help Connecticut municipalities develop the best course of action to achieve sustainable energy goals by reducing their energy consumption and increasing their use of renewable energy. Diana works every day with municipal leaders and community stakeholders to redefine our relationship to energy and incorporate innovative resources to become more sustainable and resilient. Diana has a Masters of Science in Sustainability Management at Columbia University in New York City. Diana has a background in renewable energy design of solar, thermal, hydro and wind energy for residents, business and municipalities.

Matthew Ray is a Senior Strategic Business Analyst for National Grid where he works on the development of energy efficiency strategies and solutions for the State of Rhode Island. Matthew focuses on behavioral energy efficiency programs such as the Home Energy Reports, community engagement and educational projects for municipalities, and all facets of Multifamily energy efficiency services. Matthew is also a licensed attorney with a background in the creation of clean energy programs across multiple states.

Laura Rodomer has been a leader at the intersection of energy efficiency and green buildings for more than 25 years. Laura began her career with 10 years at Booz Allen Hamilton in Washington, DC providing project management to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency focused on Agency-wide energy and water conservation programs and hazardous waste and Superfund technical support. During her 14 years in San Francisco, she managed the Community Relations Program for the San Francisco BART-SFO Extension project; served as San Francisco’s Commercial Green Building Coordinator where she developed the LEED Gold Priority Permitting program; worked as the Director of Corporate Citizenship at McKesson Corp and Co-Chaired the San Francisco Existing Buildings Task Force, which created the guidance for city’s current green buildings requirements.

She is a skilled leader who inspires and motivates diverse constituencies to work effectively together to produce extraordinary results. Laura received a B.S. in Biology and Environmental Science from St. Lawrence University.

Charlie Taylor works with the High Performance Buildings Team at NEEP to provide research and analysis on programs and policies that drive energy efficiency in the built environment. In this role he convenes stakeholders, analyzes data, and develops resources to advance energy efficiency in the region. Charlie works on initiatives accelerating multifamily housing energy retrofits, building energy rating and labeling, and streamlining energy data access and management.

Prior to joining NEEP, Charlie worked as a BPI certified Building Energy Auditor in the Boston area and conducted energy assessments on over 400 homes. He holds a Bachelor’s in Economics from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

overcoming Barriers to Energy Efficiency With Innovative Financing Approaches

Andrea Colnes currently serves as Executive Director of the Energy Action Network (EAN), a systems-based effort to transform Vermont’s energy economy to one based on efficiency and renewables. She also serves on the board of the Coalition for Green Capital, working to accelerate the growth of clean energy markets through establishing Green Banks at the local, state, federal, and international levels. Andrea has led strategic energy and environment campaigns over a 30 year career at the regional and national levels. Prior to joining EAN, Andrea worked on natural resource public policy and coalition building in New England and nationally, focused on large-scale land conservation, sustainable forestry and energy. She co-authored Vermont’s first Comprehensive Energy Plan under Governor Madeleine Kunin, served as policy director for the Biomass Energy Resource Center with a focus on community-scaled biomass and atmospheric carbon research, was the founding executive director of the Northern Forest Alliance, policy director of the Northern Forest Center, policy leadership director for the Carsey Institute at the University of New Hampshire, and deputy director of the Vermont Natural Resources Council. She co-founded “Americans for Our Heritage and Recreation” and the “Eastern Forest Partnership” and helped launch the “National Rural Assembly.” She currently serves on the Board of Directors of the New England Forestry Foundation.

Andrea holds a BA in Political Science from Williams College and Master’s in Wildlife Conservation from the University of Maine.

John D’Agostino is a Senior Manager at the Connecticut Green Bank where he is responsible for Green Bank multifamily energy financing strategy, operations, and engagement. Prior to joining the multifamily team, John managed the Green Bank’s single family residential solar lease product and coordinated a range of the residential team’s marketing and outreach campaigns. His interests include clean energy finance and deployment, industrial organization and ecology, resource efficiency, and urban and regional systems. He graduated from the Yale Schools of Management and Forestry & Environmental Studies in 2013. He also holds an M.S. from the University of Vermont, and a B.S. from Rutgers, the State of University of New Jersey.

Maria Fields leads development efforts for Joule’s Energy Reduction Asset (ERA) Fund, a first-in-kind energy efficiency and demand management project finance fund. In addition to managing investor relations with family offices, endowments, and institutional investors, Fields pursues market opportunities in Distributed Energy Resources, broadly including energy efficiency, demand response, storage, and microgrids. Fields works closely with Joule’s key partners, providing counsel and business strategy solutions to address their specific needs.
Prior to joining Joule Assets, Maria led smart grid programs for Northern Westchester Energy Action Consortium (a precursor of Sustainable Westchester), creating innovative energy procurement models and community microgrids, to address common interest energy issues. Earlier in her career, Maria held leadership roles in strategy, business development, and venture capital across a range of industries, including aerospace, biotech, medical devices, and non-profits. Maria earned a Master of Business Administration degree with high honors from Columbia University. She also holds Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees, both from Lehigh University.

Life After Lighting

Emily Levin is the Manager of the Program Strategies group at the Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC). Her group provides comprehensive energy efficiency and renewable energy program design, planning, and review services to utilities, regulators, and consumer advocates. VEIC specializes in designing next generation energy efficiency programs that transform markets and reach all customers, including low income households. Emily has reviewed energy efficiency programs in Maryland, New Jersey, Florida, New York and other states. In a previous role at VEIC, Emily led strategic planning for the residential portfolio of Vermont’s energy efficiency utility, Efficiency Vermont, and managed Efficiency Vermont’s Existing Homes Program.

Claire Miziolek is the Market Strategies Program Manager at Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships (NEEP). Her role is to help speed the adoption of efficiency solutions in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. Claire manages NEEP’s work in Consumer Electronics, Home Energy Management Systems, and Residential Lighting and is working to develop strategies and recommendations to bring these efficient technologies to broader scale and ultimately decrease the amount of energy homes and businesses use.

Matt Nelson is the Director of Electric Power for the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities (DPU). He works responsible for the team that is working on a variety of electric industry issues including Net Metering, Grid Modernization, Long Term Renewable Contracts, Competitive Supply, and Energy Efficiency. Previously Matt worked for Eversource Energy in the Regulatory and Evaluation Energy Efficiency team, was the chair of the Massachusetts Evaluation Management Committee and was the lead evaluator for the Residential Lighting Program.

Chris Plecs Prior to joining NSTAR in 2007, Chris worked as a data warehousing consultant, a private equity investment professional, and as a consultant to the consumer goods industry. Within Eversource and its predecessors, he has worked in regulatory requirements, transmission business planning, forecasting, and most recently as the Director of Regulatory Planning, Support and Evaluation within energy efficiency. He holds a degree in Public Policy from Hamilton College, a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, and is a CFA® charterholder.