New Faces: CEE celebrates Energy Efficiency Day with bigger team this year
Early in Energy Awareness Month (aka October), Thursday the 5th is Energy Efficiency Day — a collaborative effort among regional and national organizations, business, utilities, and individuals to promote energy efficiency as the cheapest, quickest way to meet energy needs, cut consumer bills, and reduce pollution.
This year, thanks to the Neighborhood Energy Connection’s merger with Center for Energy and Environment, we're celebrating the big day with our biggest team ever. On the 5th — and every other day of the year — we now have more dedicated colleagues working to provide practical energy solutions for our region’s homes, businesses, and communities.
CEE is growing as our field demonstrates its impact. In Minnesota alone, energy efficiency:
- Amounts to about 14% of the state’s energy system resources.
- Is cost-effective, saving households more than $6 billion dollars since 1995.
- Annually provides over 47,000 jobs at about 500 businesses statewide.
- Cuts carbon while preserving productivity.
And according to the just-released annual scorecard from ACEEE, Minnesota is an enduring leader among states doing the best work in energy efficiency. ACEEE's latest analysis moves our state up one slot this year, now ranking us 9th nationally — and we're still the only Midwest state in the top 10.
Energy Efficiency Day 2017 website
New Faces: Former NEC colleagues expand and strengthen CEE's team (Part 1)
ACEEE State Energy Efficiency Scorecard
As CEE contributes to the state's energy efficiency leadership and fulfills its own nonprofit mission, we are now able to reach further because we have gained the skills and wisdom of 22 terrific new colleagues who join us after years of prior service at the NEC. This month we conclude a two-part post introducing our new co-workers, wrapping things up here with 11 field professionals who contribute to our residential efforts, from customer engagement to outreach and crucially important field work. (See last month's "Part 1" post here.)
Danielle Butenhoff, Customer Engagement Manager. Danielle started work at the NEC in 2009, and now manages the Energy Advisor Service which helps Home Energy Squad and home energy audit customers implement recommendations from their home energy visit. Danielle has a bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies, and she is a certified energy auditor from the Dunwoody Institute.
Terry Cagle Kemp, Senior Residential Energy Specialist. Terry has been with NEC since 2001, following an earlier stint from 1993 to 1998. A certified BPI Building Analyst Professional, Terry conducts single and multi-family home energy audits, and inspects insulation and HVAC improvements. Previously, Terry conducted indoor air quality tests for the Metropolitan Airport Commission’s Sound Insulation Program, managed by CEE.
Terry Chaney, Outreach Specialist. In his role as outreach specialist, Terry helps strengthen relationships with community partners. Previously, Terry worked for the Service Employees International Union and Clean Water Action. Terry holds undergraduate degrees from Metropolitan State University and the University of Minnesota, and a Master of Public Policy from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota.
Mike Childs, Field Supervisor. Mike has more than 25 years’ experience conducting energy audits, weatherization inspections, and HERS (Home Energy Rating System) ratings. Mike is an expert at explaining the nuances of home energy conservation in language that home owners can understand, including how to best achieve the maximum energy savings and home comfort.
Josh Davis, Program Manager. Having started at the NEC in 2009, Josh now manages technology in CEE’s St. Paul office. Previously, he worked on targeting and data systems for Clean Water Action, and he was also as an organizer for forest and wildlife protection at Sierra Club. Josh holds a master’s degree in urban and environmental policy and planning from Tufts University.
Phil DeJarlais, Crew Leader. Phil joined the Home Energy Squad as an Energy Counselor in 2016. In his work with the squad, Phil helps homeowners in the Twin Cities save money by installing products that reduce energy use. Phil previously worked as a senior survey research analyst at Food Perspectives, Inc., a market research taste test company.
Andy Nail, Crew Leader. Andy is an Energy Counselor for the Home Energy Squad program. He consults homeowners on energy efficiency tips and installs energy efficient products. After graduating from St. Olaf College with a degree in philosophy, Andy spent two years volunteering in the Conservation Corps, working on a field crew in Greater Minnesota.
LeAnne Karras, Senior Loan Officer. LeAnne joined the NEC as loan manager in 2004. Prior to that she served nine years as the loan manager for another Twin Cities environmental nonprofit, and she was also a mortgage loan processor. All told, LeAnne has 30 years experience helping lend tens of millions of dollars to Minnesota homeowners for home improvement projects.
Becky Olson, Director of Residential Programs. Becky joined the NEC in 2012 as the residential energy program manager. She oversees the residential energy programs including the Home Energy Squad, Energy Audit programs, and New Construction Energy Consulting. Previously she worked as an energy auditor and directed a low-income weatherization program. Becky has served as president of the Minnesota Building Performance Association, and now chairs the Building Performance Institute’s Standards Technical Committee.
Michael Rehm, Energy Advisor. As an Energy Advisor at CEE, Mike works directly with homeowners to review their audit report, evaluate possible rebates, and connect them to contractors and financing options. Mike earned his Bachelor of Science degree from the U of M in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management, with an emphasis on resource management. Previously he interned through Conservation Corps at the NEC before joining the staff.
Jake Selstad, Inspector/Rater. As an inspector/rater, Jake advises new home builders and residential contractors in energy efficient design and home performance applications. Jake joined the NEC in 2012 as a Conservation Corps volunteer with the Home Energy Squad, and soon after transferred into a crew leader role. Jake then worked as a residential energy specialist performing residential energy audits, before taking his current position.
Energy Efficiency Day is a great day for us at CEE to recognize all our colleagues who contribute to our mission pursuits through programs and operations. Together, we’re working to provide great energy solutions for a broader range of homes, businesses, and communities across the Twin Cities — doing our best to celebrate the value of energy efficiency 365 days a year.