New colleagues rise up as the leaves fall down
You may know from our previous posts that October is Energy Awareness Month. It’s a time to learn about the many types and sources of energy, its environmental and economic impacts, and how you can reduce your energy use — and spending — at home.
You know who spends a lot of time thinking about such things? CEE’s recent hires! All of these employees were hired after we had started working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but though they may not have spent much time together in person, they are united in their focus on various aspects of energy and efficiency.
Andres Alvarez, Energy Counselor
Andres was one of our first new hires during the pandemic. Before working at CEE, Andres attended Luther College where pursued his degree in environmental studies, and he loves spending his free time outside.
Melissa Anders, Research Analyst
Before working at the CEE, Melissa spent five years working in high-tech research and development and the last four years working on an organic farm. She is working on finishing her thesis for her master's in mechanical engineering through the University of Kentucky.
Tony Beman, Lighting Consultant
Before working at CEE, Tony was the regional manager for a LED distributor focused on the retrofit market and prior to that was at Xcel Energy as the team leader of a department focused on customer and contractor education.
Suhaila El Banna, Energy Counselor
Prior to CEE, Suhaila worked as an environmental educator as well as a community outreach organizer with multiple nonprofit and government organizations that focused on creating environmentally aware communities through home visits, public presentations, and classes.
Peter Gephart, Account Manager
Peter has worked in the energy field since 2012. He holds a master’s of applied science degree in environmental policy and management from the University of Denver and also serves as vice president for the Association of Energy Engineers Twin Cities Chapter’s board of directors.
Gillian Molland, Office & Administrative Specialist
Gillian has experience in community organizing, outreach, and research, with emphasis on environmental activism and justice. In 2018, she graduated with a bachelor's in history and Chinese from Hamline University, where she concentrated in women's and legal history.
Will Nissen, Program Development Manager
Prior to joining CEE, Will led and supported development of utility-scale wind and solar energy projects across the upper Midwest at Apex Clean Energy. Prior to Apex, he led the energy efficiency and rate design policy work at Fresh Energy in St. Paul.
Arbor Otalora-Fadner, Program Coordinator
Arbor comes to CEE with a background of mission-centric work in housing, youth education, and corporate training. He is a lifelong environmentalist and looks forward to bringing his personal passion into the energy efficiency field.
Talia Sheldon-Desjardins, Loan Officer
Prior to joining CEE, Talia worked as a mortgage consultant, helping homeowners to reach their financial goals through refinancing and qualify to purchase a home. Talia completed her BS in recreation resource management at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.