Lauren is a lifelong environmentalist whose passion started with the Chesapeake Bay here in Baltimore. A graduate of St. Mary’s College of Maryland with a degree in Biology and Environmental Studies, she has been working with the energy industry for the last ten years. Lauren was a compliance specialist for MDE for over 6 years before she moved into private consulting, and for the last two years She has been the Program Manager for Solar United Neighbors of Maryland. In that role she has focused on expanding solar in Maryland through education and advocacy at both the local and state-wide levels. Recently she has focused on expanding solar in low-income communities in Maryland and is excited to continue that very needed work through community solar and the Solar Democracy and Equity Collaborative. She currently lives in Baltimore City with her wife, son, and their two rambunctious mutts.
Lorig Charkoudian represents District 20 in the Maryland General Assembly, where she serves on the Economic Matters Committee. In Lorig's first session (2019), she was a strong advocate for legislation fighting climate change and promoting economic justice, criminal justice reform, consumer rights, environmental protection, and a sustainable food system. In addition to her role as Delegate, Lorig is the Executive Director of the Community Mediation Maryland. Her work includes developing partnerships with state agencies to bring collaborative conflict resolution to new and unique forums. Lorig’s research focuses on a cost-benefit analysis of community mediation. Community Mediation Maryland and Lorig have received national attention for the innovative work on prisoner re-entry mediation. Lorig received her PhD in Economics from Johns Hopkins University and has been honored three times as Maryland’s Top 100 Women by the Maryland Daily Record. She lives in Takoma Park with her two children, Aline and Raffi.
Mr. Dobbs began his solar career at SunEdison, where he held various positions in finance, marketing and product management before leaving to co-found Solar Grid Storage. In his position as CFO of the company, he developed the finance and operations models that created the first third-party financed storage-as-a-service business. Solar Grid Storage was acquired in 2015 by SunEdison, bringing Dobbs back to lead the company’s storage operations center. From SunEdison, Dobbs moved to Anbaric Development Partners, an early stage developer of large-scale electric transmission systems, transformative campus energy systems and storage-based microgrid solutions, where he was Vice President of Distributed Energy. Dobbs holds an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He holds a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering and Technology & Policy and a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from MIT.
Nitzan Goldberger is ESA’s State Policy Director. In that capacity, Nitzan drives and designs storage policy through regulatory and legislative advocacy at the state level. Before joining ESA in 2017, Nitzan served as Borrego Solar’s Director of Policy & Business Development for California, where she advised and shaped Borrego Solar’s unique business strategies and product offerings in California. Prior to Borrego, Nitzan worked as a renewable energy policy expert for Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E)—one of the largest investor owned utilities in the US-- where she developed renewable energy policy strategy on RPS implementation, compliance, and legislation impacting PG&E's energy procurement. Nitzan’s experience in energy policy and strategy spans beyond renewable energy and the power sector. She spent nearly three years as an associate with the Eurasia Group where she advised corporate, financial, and government clients on US federal and state-level natural gas, oil and electric sector policies. Nitzan earned her MS in foreign service from Georgetown University and her BA in political science from the University of California at Berkeley.
Matt is a renewable energy and environmental attorney specializing in solar transactions, permitting, and compliance. He represents clients before administrative agencies and has successfully argued at all levels of courts in Virginia. Prior to moving to private practice, he served as an Assistant Attorney General of Virginia where he served as counsel to the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality's Air and Renewable Energy Division, including its permit by rule (PBR) program. He clerked for Virginia Supreme Court justice William C. Mims after law school at the University of Richmond.
Eric Hurlocker has spent 25 years practicing business law and advising energy industry clients in the areas of energy law, commercial energy project financing, and renewable and retail energy corporate matters. His law practice is closely aligned with renewable energy development companies, in addition to companies employing renewable energy in their operations.
He is a frequent speaker and panelist and has moderated panels of experts at a number of industry meetings, most recently at the NCSEA’s legal CLE in Raleigh, NC. He served two terms on the Board of Directors for the Maryland-DC-Virginia Solar Energy Industries Association and represents the Association and other energy industry firms in solar development projects, in project sales and acquisitions and in administrative matters before the Virginia State Corporation Commission.
After graduating from the University of Richmond School of Law, Hurlocker began working on energy-related client matters for a large Virginia-based international law firm. Later, he was in-house lawyer at Dominion Virginia Power and, eventually, a senior in-house corporate and energy attorney at PPL Corporation in Allentown, Pennsylvania. During his ten years within those legal departments, he was responsible for non-regulated activities, energy project development, asset acquisition and disposition, and energy trading.
In 2006, Eric returned to private practice in Richmond and practiced at two large Richmond-based firms until 2012. In 2012, he formed GreeneHurlocker, an energy law boutique firm, with expertise in energy regulation, rates, transactions, development, financing, litigation and distribution.
Eric is a member of several important advocacy and energy-related organizations including the North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association (NCSEA) and the Commonwealth of Virginia Small Solar Working Group (SSWG) Stakeholder Group on Distributed Solar Generation and Net Metering.
His community roots run deep, as well, and he is the past Chair of the Richmond/Petersburg United Way Income Action Council. In addition, he has worked closely with Commonwealth Catholic Charities in organizing and implementing programs for the representation of juveniles in foster care in immigration matters.
Eric, his wife and two children live in Richmond, Virginia.
Pari Kasotia serves as the Mid-Atlantic Director for Vote Solar. In this role, she advocates for equity-focused solar policies. Pari was instrumental in providing advocacy, outreach and communications support for the successful passage of MD Clean Energy Jobs Act in 2019 by leveraging her organizations resources as well as external resources. In 2018, Pari played an integral role in getting the Community Solar Pilot Program passed in New Jersey as part of the Clean Energy Act of 2018. Prior to Vote Solar, Pari served as the Deputy Director of The Solar Foundation where she provided leadership and oversight, and was the lead author of the 2017 US Solar Industry Diversity Study. Pari is listed in Renewable Energy World’s Solar 40 under 40 Professionals and Midwest Energy News 40 under 40 Emerging Clean Energy Leaders. In 2019, Pari was selected as one of the Advisory Council members of the Maryland Clean Energy Center and was also voted in to serve on the Board of Director of Maryland, DC, Delaware, and Virginia’s Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA). She also serves on the Board of Directors of Women’s Council for Energy and Environment (WCEE).
Pari began her clean energy career at the Iowa Office of Energy Independence (OEI) as Statistical Research Analyst for energy programs in 2009. She was promoted to leadership roles at OEI as well as at the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA). During her tenure, she administered multi-million-dollar clean energy and energy efficiency programs.
She holds two Master’s degree; an MBA and an MPA. She has a BA in Environmental Policy and Politics.
Lauren Miller helps manage regulatory affairs work across Sol Systems’ business lines. She oversees relationships with industry associations as well as interactions with state public utility commissions and legislatures. Ms. Miller is focused on promoting Sol Systems’ policy objectives and actively advocates across the United States for sound solar policy.
Prior to working at Sol Systems, Ms. Miller used her background in environmental and energy policy to perform research and counsel on state and federal bills. Previously, she worked at the White House Council of Environmental Quality in the Office of Federal Sustainability, where she focused on the implementation of Executive Order 13693 Planning for Federal Sustainability in the Next Decade, developing mechanisms to ease the procurement of renewable energy for federal agencies.
Ms. Miller graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University with a Bachelor of Science in Science, Technology and International Affairs with a concentration in Energy and the Environment.
Chinyere Osuala is a senior associate attorney at Earthjustice focusing on Clean Energy. After attending NYU and Temple University’s Beasley School of Law, she did a fellowship at the Clean Air Council in Philadelphia, an environmental advocacy organization that advocates for the rights of all Pennsylvanians to breathe clean air. Her interest in energy law sprouted there as she worked on environmental impact statements for pipelines, Pennsylvania’s methane rules, and PUC jurisdiction over pipelines in the state. She started at Earthjustice in 2014 and has since focused on distribution side utility regulation in Maryland, DC, New York, Arizona, Michigan, Kentucky and West Virginia. She has been engaged in the PC44 grid modernization docket in Maryland, especially on electric vehicles, off-shore wind, the Exelon-Pepco merger case, as well as the Empower dockets in collaboration with Susan Stevens Miller, current staff attorney at Earthjustice and former general counsel of the Maryland Public Service Commission. Her clients include the Sierra Club, Solar United Neighbors of Maryland and Fuel Fund of Maryland and she has frequently collaborated with Pace Energy and Climate Center to promote integration of DERs onto the grid, grid modernization generally, and energy efficiency for all.
Jim Rice is the co-CEO of Nautilus Solar Energy, LLC which he jointly founded in December 2006. Under his leadership, Nautilus Solar has grown from a start-up to a leading solar company which has developed and managed over $1 billion of solar projects. Jim is an energy industry professional with over 30 years of experience. During his career, he has operated, financed and invested in energy assets. Jim’s experience includes founding another energy company, leading Carlyle/Riverstone’s power sector private equity efforts, and leadership positions at several major financial institutions.
Jim served his country as a nuclear-trained U.S. Naval Officer; during which, he spent over half a year underwater, on strategic patrol. He also lead the refueling of a submarine’s nuclear reactor while in the shipyard. He has an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a BS from the United States Naval Academy.
Nicole Sitaraman serves as a Senior Manager of Public Policy at Sunrun, Inc. and spearheads Sunrun’s engagement in legislative and regulatory policy initiatives in the Mid-Atlantic region. In this role, Nicole advocates for policies that enable increased and equitable access to solar and battery storage to facilitate a more decentralized energy grid powered by the people, for the people.
Nicole serves as Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Maryland-DC-Virginia Solar Energy Industries Association (MDV-SEIA). She is a proud member of the American Association of Blacks in Energy and Steering Committee Member of Interfaith Power & Light, DC.Md.NoVA. In 2019, Nicole was selected as a New Voices in Energy Fellow by the Aspen Institute. In 2018, she was honored as a WRISE Honors in Public Policy and Advocacy recipient by the Women in Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy and listed as a Catalyst in the 2018 Grist.org Top 50 List.
Prior to joining Sunrun, Nicole served as an Assistant People’s Counsel in the Office of the People’s Counsel for the District of Columbia (DC OPC) and represented District of Columbia ratepayers before the Public Service Commission of the District of Columbia, Council of the District of Columbia, PJM Interconnection, as well as federal regulatory agencies. Prior to working in renewable energy advocacy, Nicole was a civil rights litigator representing numerous workers in race discrimination, sexual harassment, environmental and nuclear whistleblower retaliation cases. Nicole earned her B.A. at Yale University and J.D. at Boston University School of Law.
John Smirnow is SEIA’s General Counsel & Vice President of Market Strategy. He has been a solar industry advocate for more than 10 years, including service as SEIA’s Vice President for Trade & Competitiveness, Chairman of the U.S. Department of Commerce Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Advisory Committee, and Member of the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative Trade and Environment Policy Advisory Committee.
John also founded the Global Solar Council on behalf of 17 national and regional solar associations and was the Council’s first Secretary-General.
He received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Michigan, Juris Doctor from Western Michigan University Thomas M. Cooley Law School, and LL.M. from the Georgetown University Law Center.
Rachel joined MDV-SEIA as the Virginia Policy and Development Manager in July 2019. In this role, Rachel is responsible for implementing legislative and regulatory campaigns related to state-level solar energy policy in Virginia, and growing and managing membership within the Commonwealth. Previously, she worked as the Policy Analyst for Secure Futures, a commercial-scale solar developer and member of MDV-SEIA, coordinating the company’s outreach to state government officials and other key stakeholders and representing the company in a variety of policy discussions and stakeholder processes. Rachel brings several years of experience in marketing and public relations, as well as a passion for positively impacting communities through her professional work. As a clean energy policy advocate, she is driven by the hope and ambition that implementing cleaner electricity will lead to a more just and equitable world.
Doug Staker is an energy professional that has worked globally for 30 years. He has been a pioneer in the world of smart grid technologies with a focus on smart metering and intelligent energy storage. He is currently Vice President of Utility Business Development at Enel X, a distributed energy management and storage company and is a subsidiary of Enel, a leader in the global utility market.
Caroline is an Associate at the law firm of Gordon Feinblatt LLC in Baltimore, Maryland. She is a member of the Firm’s Real Estate, Energy and Environmental and Power Development Teams. Caroline advises on the real estate considerations of navigating the various processes for utility-scale and community solar projects. She specifically focuses on real estate issues of which solar developers should be cognizant in acquiring projects. These include, for example, (i) why and when to obtain title insurance and survey; (ii) when the project site is being acquired via lease, the importance of determining a specific description of the land constituting the premises; (iii) identifying and securing all necessary easements; (iv) and the necessity of confirming the continuing validity of zoning board decisions permitting the development of the project site as a solar facility. Caroline is the Co-Chair of the 2019 Maryland State Bar Association Advanced Real Property Institute. She received her J.D., magna cum laude, from the University of Maryland Carey School of Law and her undergraduate degree from William & Mary.
HARRY A. WARREN JR.
Harry A. Warren, Jr. is President of CleanGrid Advisors LLC, a renewable energy consulting firm focused on Mid-Atlantic markets, and co-founder of the Center for Renewables Integration, a 501c3 non-profit working to advance the penetration of renewable energy on the grid. During the 2019 academic year, Harry is a Visiting Fellow at Princeton University’s Andlinger Center for Energy and Environment, working with faculty, staff and students on grid decarbonization research.
Harry was formerly Executive Vice President of Community Energy, Inc. responsible for business planning on community solar, virtual net metering, and other retail customer access programs.
Prior to joining Community Energy, Harry spent 17 years as president of Washington Gas Energy Services, Inc., a leading retail electricity and natural gas marketer in the mid-Atlantic region. WGES ranked first in customer satisfaction among retail electricity providers in Maryland in J.D. Power’s 2014 survey. The company was named Green Power Supplier of the Year in the non-utility category by the U.S. Department of Energy in 2011 and was given a Mayor’s Sustainability Award by the District of Columbia Department of the Environment in 2013. Harry negotiated the corporation’s first solar PPAs in 2008 and 2009. He previously held many positions at WGES’ utility affiliate, Washington Gas, including Executive Assistant in the Office of the Chairman, Director of Investor Relations, and Director of Sales. Prior to joining Washington Gas, Harry worked in research, development and design of renewable energy systems.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Princeton University and a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Stanford University.