12th Annual CCEC Forum Program

Transforming Tomorrow Together | August 3 – 19, 2021

Program

Schedule at a Glance

Track Legend

Plenary Events (Recommended)

Holistic Climate/Energy Planning and Readiness

The Holistic Climate/Energy Planning and Readiness Track sessions will cover one or more of the following topic areas

  • Leveraging energy data: benchmarking, tools, usage, and access
  • Equipping diverse partners to accelerate community-driven solutions (e.g CBOs, tribal governments, and small businesses)
  • Holistic climate action planning to support implementation
  • Integrating climate resilience into climate/energy action plans
  • Piloting new technologies and strategies
  • Redefining climate readiness through planning and community engagement
  • Planning and implementing affordable ZNE housing

Equitable Decarbonization Strategies

The Equitable Decarbonization Strategies Track sessions will cover one or more of the following topic areas

  • Electrification best practices, action plans, retrofits, and lessons learned
  • Energy Efficiency (EE) energy education and curtailment behaviors for community members
  • Responsible waste management for building retrofits and retirement of energy efficiency equipment
  • Reducing embodied carbon in building construction
  • Electrification and decarbonization policies, model ordinances, and codes
  • Integrating Energy Efficiency (EE) with Distributed Energy Resources (DER), Electric Vehicles (EVs), storage, renewable energy, and Zero-Net Energy (ZNE)
  • Access to Energy Efficiency (EE) rebate programs for renters and affordable housing retrofits
  • Decarbonization strategies in agriculture and farming including energy efficient technologies, water/energy nexus, transportation, workforce impacts, etc.

A Just Transition to Clean Energy

A Just Transition to Clean Energy Track sessions will cover one or more of the following topic areas

  • Overview of climate risks to the energy sector and key transition opportunities
  • Clean energy workforce development and equitable job transition programs
  • Retiring stranded assets and associated workforce impacts and life cycle assessment
  • Emergency management; navigating public safety power shutoffs; disaster mitigation, and recovery
  • Preparing for a decentralized energy system through DER procurement processes and community microgrids
  • Grid reliability solutions via non-diesel backup power, smart grids, hardening, or distributed generation to respond to disruptions
  • Transition to electric vehicles, charging infrastructure, impacts on the grid, and opportunities to diversify transportation options

Week 1

Tuesday, August 3

10:00 – 11:30 am

Opening Plenary – A Statewide View of Progress, Challenges, and Opportunities

Details

Opening Plenary – A Statewide View of Progress, Challenges, and Opportunities
Tuesday, August 3 | 10:00 – 11:30 am

California communities are emerging from the pandemic with new needs, priorities, and possibilities. Local governments are managing many fundamental shifts at once including a wave of commitments to recover in ways that take climate change, equity, and health more seriously than ever before. In this session, we welcome State and local speakers to help us begin the forum by ground setting in the “new normal” and highlighting clean energy progress, challenges, and opportunities from around the State.

Speakers:
Moderator: Angie Hacker | Statewide Best Practices Coordinator | Local Government Commission
Angie Hacker has nearly 20 years of public, private and non-profit experience serving communities in the areas of sustainability, energy, and climate change, primarily in California. Prior to becoming CEO and Principal Consultant of Prosper Sustainably, she served as Energy and Sustainability Division Chief for the County of Santa Barbara. Her areas of expertise include designing innovative local/regional solutions, communicating a strategic vision, pursuing policy and regulatory opportunities, obtaining resources, building local capacity, leveraging cross-sector partnerships, and engaging stakeholders.
Alejandra Téllez | Program Management Analyst | Tri-County Regional Energy Network
Alejandra Téllez is the program analyst for Sustainability Programs for the County of Ventura. Alejandra, manages the Local Government Partnership; Ventura County Regional Energy Alliance which is the County’s local energy efficiency clearinghouse office for training seminars, project identification, technical project support and energy planning for municipal governments, school and community college districts, special districts and small commercial businesses. In partnership with the counties of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Alejandra oversees the residential programs which provide utility customers and contractors with a direct link to dozens of energy rebates, training workshops and customer programs. Also manages sustainability activities via building operations and program implementation in County of Ventura services.
Darcie Houck | Commissioner | California Public Utilities Commission
Commissioner Darcie L. Houck was appointed to the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) by Governor Gavin Newsom on Feb. 9, 2021. She formerly served as Chief Counsel for the California Energy Commission since 2019. Commissioner Houck was an Administrative Law Judge at the CPUC from 2016 to 2019, a Partner at Fredericks Peebles & Morgan from 2005 to 2016, and Staff Counsel and Policy Advisor at the California Energy Commission from 2000 to 2005. Commissioner Houck has expertise in matters concerning environmental equity, nuclear energy regulation, and safety policy. She has an extensive background representing Native American tribes throughout the country on matters involving energy, natural resources, land claims, and water rights, among others. Commissioner Houck is a member of the California Indian Law Association, California Lawyers Association, Schwartz-Levi Inn of Court, Women Lead and the Association of Women in Water, Energy, and Environment. She earned a law degree from the University of California, where she also earned a Master of Science in community development.
Alana Mathews | Director of Policy Resources and Training |
Prosecutors Alliance of California
Alana Mathews is an impact attorney, executive leader, and equity champion. She is a former prosecutor who transitioned from protecting victims and criminal justice to protecting vulnerable communities and environmental justice. She was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown as the Public Adviser for the California Energy Commission where she developed the agency’s energy equity initiative, DEI programs, and coordinated a multi-agency disadvantaged communities advisory group. She later served as the chief consultant for the Joint Legislative Committee on Climate Change Policies where she focused on environmental and climate equity. Ms. Mathews is currently the Director of Policy Resources and Training for the Prosecutors Alliance of California and an adjunct professor at McGeorge School of Law. She is also the founder of the Community Justice Collaborative and an Advisory Board Member for the Rising Sun clean energy workforce development program.
Debra Gore-Mann | President & CEO | Greenlining Institute
As the middle child of a biracial, military, first generation immigrant family, Debra Gore-Mann embraces the beauty and strength that lies in her differentness. With an engineering degree and an M.B.A. from Stanford (where she was the only African American woman in a class of 300 graduate students), her work has spanned across the private, public and political sectors in uplifting low opportunity communities with funding, team building and financial and people resources. As Greenlining’s President and CEO, Debra serves as the unifying voice for our multifaceted policy work, bringing her unique, intersectional perspective to bear. She currently serves on several nonprofit boards and as a managing director for the fledgling Oakland Rise professional women’s basketball team.
Ronaldo Fierro | Councilmember  | City of Riverside
Born and raised in Riverside, many of Ronaldo Fierro’s earliest memories are those of his father sharing stories of immense perseverance, working in fields up and down California and overcoming insurmountable challenges to start their family’s produce company. On the Riverside City Council, Councilmember Fierro is focused on ensuring that the City of Riverside is doing all that is within its power to actively respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and to bring Riverside forward into a full recovery, and eventual rebound, from the traumatic effects of the pandemic. As the Chair of the City Council’s Economic Development Committee, Councilmember Fierro has taken a leadership role in continuing business attraction and retention efforts amidst the pandemic. Ronaldo currently lives in the Victoria neighborhood with his wife, Sheena and their 7-year old daughter, Luna.
David Burdick | Executive Vice President | TerraVerde
David serves as Executive Vice President of Business Development for TerraVerde Energy, supporting CCAs and public agencies (including transit agencies, school districts, municipalities, and water agencies) in evaluating, deploying, and managing intelligent energy programs (solar PV projects, battery energy storage projects, resiliency programs, facility microgrids, and DER Programs). Prior to joining TerraVerde, David served as a General Manager for a solar & battery EPC firm.
Laurel Rothschild | Vice President | The Energy Coalition
As Vice President, Laurel oversees The Energy Coalition’s diverse portfolio of programs and collaborates with stakeholders across the state to advance the organization’s mission of empowering communities to leap into the future of clean energy. She has over 13 years of experience working with local governments and communities to promote energy efficiency action through various Programs. Laurel is a current member of the California Energy Efficiency Coordinating Committee (CAEECC), a Certified Energy Auditor (CEA) and a LEED AP O+M. She holds a B.S. in Business Economics from UCSB.

12:00 – 1:00 pm

Lunch 1 – How Local Governments Can Seize the Moment: 2021 State Budget and Policy Updates

Details

Lunch 1 – How Local Governments Can Seize the Moment: 2021 State Budget and Policy Updates
Tuesday, August 3 | 12:00 – 1:00 pm

At a federal and State level, pandemic recovery efforts are meeting stronger commitments to equity, health, clean energy, and climate change. This intersection may result in an unprecedented wave of opportunity for local governments to tackle multiple needs and goals at once, but it also means that local governments will have to stay on their feet to take advantage of all the changes. This opening day lunch session will feature a state budget and energy policy review from Nuin-Tara Key with the California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research and Roger Dickinson, Policy Director with the Local Government Commission.

Speakers:
Moderator: Angie Hacker | Statewide Best Practices Coordinator | Local Government Commission
Angie Hacker has nearly 20 years of public, private and non-profit experience serving communities in the areas of sustainability, energy, and climate change, primarily in California. Prior to becoming CEO and Principal Consultant of Prosper Sustainably, she served as Energy and Sustainability Division Chief for the County of Santa Barbara. Her areas of expertise include designing innovative local/regional solutions, communicating a strategic vision, pursuing policy and regulatory opportunities, obtaining resources, building local capacity, leveraging cross-sector partnerships, and engaging stakeholders.
Sarah White | Senior Advisor: Jobs and the Economy | Governor’s Office of Planning and Research
Sarah L. White is Senior Advisor for Jobs and the Economy at OPR, where she leads state efforts to map an equitable high road transition to carbon neutrality. She works at the intersection of labor, workforce, and climate policy across OPR concerns.
Roger Dickinson | Policy Director | Local Government Commission
Roger Dickinson serves as the Policy Director for the Local Government Commission, providing direction and advocacy at the state and local levels for the policies, programs, and priorities of the Commission. In addition, he works with the Housing Concepts Coalition sponsored by the Resources Legacy Fund. The Coalition brings together a diverse set of stakeholders to advocate for and support legislative and administrative steps to increase housing. Previously, until March, 2019, Roger served as the Executive Director of Transportation California, a non-profit construction industry coalition which provides public education and advocacy to increase state funding for surface transportation infrastructure. Roger was elected to the State Assembly in November 2010, and re-elected in November 2012, and represented the 7th Assembly District including the Cities of Sacramento and West Sacramento. Roger currently serves on the boards of the MS Society of Northern California, the Aerospace Museum of California, and the Sacramento Tree Foundation, and is a co-founder of SMART, Sacramento Metro Advocates for Rail and Transit.
Wednesday, August 4

10:00 – 11:00 am

Webinar 1 – Championing Cross-cutting Programs: Effective Equity and Climate Resilience Partnerships

Details

Webinar 1 – Championing Cross-cutting Programs: Effective Equity and Climate Resilience Partnerships
Wednesday, August 4 | 10:00 – 11:00 am

As California recovers from the COVID-19 Pandemic, local governments will be tasked with implementing cross-cutting programs that tackle issues of affordable housing, homelessness, water resiliency, and the environment altogether. Oftentimes, projects that address the issues of affordable housing, homelessness, water, and the environment are developed separately. Through local regional partnerships, these projects can be united in their goals to promote equity and climate resiliency. The San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments (SGVCOG) and its regional partners will present on three regional programs that represent these ideals. The highlighted programs include the San Gabriel Valley Regional Housing Trust, the Southern California Regional Energy Network (SoCalREN), and the Water Policy and Technical Advisory Committees. These programs represent the power and benefits of regional partnerships at accomplishing intersectional goals. Speakers will share strategies and recommendations for local jurisdictions, community partners, and agencies to address intersectional issues by embedding regional partners in institutional processes and practices.

Speakers:
Moderator: Samuel Pedersen | Management Analyst | San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments
Sam works on a wide range of programming in his role as a Management Analyst at the San Gabriel Valley Council of Governments; from energy efficiency to homelessness and even the Neighborhood Coyote Program. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from New York University and a Master’s in Business Administration from Copenhagen Business School.
Brielle Acevedo | Regional Housing Trust Administrator | San Gabriel Valley Regional Housing Trust
Brielle is an affordable housing lending professional with experience in the public and private sector. As the Administrator of the San Gabriel Valley Regional Housing Trust, her work seeks to increase the supply of affordable and homeless housing in the San Gabriel Valley. Brielle is a graduate of USC Price School and completed the Ross Minority Program in Real Estate. Brielle serves on the boards of the Glendale Youth Alliance and LA County Community Development Foundation, whose work aims to end generational poverty. She is Vice President of the Sylmar Neighborhood Council.
Lujuana Medina | Environmental Initiatives Manager | County of Los Angeles – ISD Environmental & Energy Services
Lujuana is responsible for managing and operating the SoCalREN energy efficiency portfolio. She also leads policy and grant development regarding energy efficiency, economic development and the electrification of transportation throughout the Southern California Region. Over the past 16 years, she has worked in various capacities in the energy policy field. Before joining the County of Los Angeles, Lujuana served as the Regulatory Manager for SoCalREN under ICF consulting, as the Energy Efficiency Policy Lead for Southern California Gas Company, as a Regulatory Case Manager in the Power Procurement Department for Southern California Edison, as a Generation Resource Planner and Utility Finance Advisor for San Diego Gas & Electric.
Alex Tachiki | Deputy Director of Public Works | City of Monrovia
Alex Tachiki currently serves as the Deputy Director of Public Works for the City of Monrovia. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from the University of Southern California with a certificate in Public Policy. Alex currently manages various divisions within Public Works including Environmental Services, Engineering, Transportation, Capital Improvement Program and Administration.

12:00 – 1:00 pm

Lunch 2 – Resilience Hubs: Equitable Climate Solutions

Details

Lunch 2Resilience Hubs: Equitable Climate Solutions
Wednesday, August 4 | 12:00 – 1:00 pm

Resilience hubs are some of the most promising and equitable approaches to scaling up local resilience. Existing community-serving facilities can become resilience hubs by increasing their adaptive capacity and augmenting their building systems. Hubs center equity by creating power-building opportunities and relying on community leadership and expertise in decision-making processes. A group of Bay Area agencies collaborated with NorCal Resilience Network to implement a pilot leadership training series in 2021 to introduce the resilience hubs framework. The development of a program curriculum with local speakers allowed for partnership building, collaboration with existing sites, and responsiveness to local needs. Overall, the Resilience Hub training engaged with over 275 community participants from 50 sites. This fishbowl discussion will introduce resilience hubs as an important model for agencies collaborating with community organizations and equitable preparation for climate disruptions, and cover the program overview, impacts at hub sites, and lessons learned from agencies involved.

Speakers:
Moderator: Shayna Hirshfield-Gold | Climate Coordinator | City of Oakland
Shayna Hirshfield-Gold oversees climate action planning and implementation for the City of Oakland. She led the creation of Oakland’s 2030 Equitable Climate Action Plan (ECAP), which was adopted by Oakland City Council in July 2020 and puts the city on a trajectory to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045. She also co-led development of a new City Ordinance, adopted in December 2020, prohibiting the use of natural gas in new buildings. Shayna’s other projects have included developing plug-in electric vehicle policies and infrastructure, regional energy policy coordination, urban forest planning, and working with cross-sector teams to build a more equitable approach to City-community engagement. Shayna leads with a justice-oriented approach to climate and environmental policy development, informed by her upbringing and background in organizational work.
Susan Silber | Executive Director | NorCal Resilience Network
Susan Silber has worked as both a community organizer and environmental educator for the past 30 years. She was introduced to community resilience after learning about the Transition Movement several years ago. Susan went on to help organize Transition Berkeley, co-produce several Permaculture Convergences and then founded the NorCal Resilience Network. Susan is also proud to have introduced thousands of youth to the joys of nature and coordinating environmental education programs, from serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Costa Rica to writing the Berkeley Unified School District’s Sustainability Plan. She lives in a tight-knit neighborhood in Berkeley with her daughter and husband.
Patrice Strahan | Community Organizer | Disability Justice Culture Club
Patrice Strahan is a core member of Disability Justice Culture Club, a collective led by and centering disabled and neurodivergent QTBIPOC located in unceded Chochenyo Ohlone territory (in deep East Oakland, CA). DJCC has been involved in several projects, including the #PowerToLive campaign and the DJCC COVID Response Network.
Hoi-Fei Mok | Sustainability Manager | City San Leandro
Dr. Hoi-Fei Mok, PhD (they/them) is a neurodivergent, queer, non-binary Asian American artist and organizer born and raised in San Leandro / occupied Chochenyo and Karkin Ohlone lands. They currently work as the sustainability manager at the City of San Leandro, leading the City’s implementation of the Climate Action Plan and other sustainability programs. With a strong interdisciplinary background in environmental science, climate policy, and social justice, Fei aims to build out equitable community-driven strategies for local resilience and agency to climate change in their hometown of San Leandro. Fei currently serves on the California Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) Climate Network, the national NAACP Centering Equity in Building Energy Sector Initiative, the National Adaptation Forum equity advisory committee, and the Bay Area Climate Adaptation Network (BayCAN) equity working group.
Thursday, August 5

10:00 – 11:15 am

Webinar 2 – Soup to Nuts: An Interagency Approach to Guiding Constituents from Education to Energy Savings

Details

Webinar 2Soup to Nuts: An Interagency Approach to Guiding Constituents from Education to Energy Savings
Thursday, August 5 | 10:00 – 11:15 am

This session will present a framework for collaboration between county, regional, and state agencies that provides a continuum of support for constituents to improve their energy efficiency. With many energy-focused programs and resources available statewide, it can be difficult for constituents to navigate the options and overcome barriers to making energy upgrades. Collaboration across multiple agencies is key to raising awareness about available support for efficiency and sustainability improvements at the local level. The webinar will begin with an overview of available rebates and financing that can be used together by constituents undertaking energy upgrades, followed by a panel discussion about how the three presenters work together to streamline the complex energy retrofit landscape for constituents. Participants will learn about available energy efficiency resources for their constituents, how to pair them together to provide continuity of support, and best practices for interagency collaboration to raise awareness in their community.

Speakers:
Kaylee D’Amico | Marketing, Education and Outreach Specialist | California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing, State Treasurer’s Office
Kaylee D’Amico serves as the Marketing, Education and Outreach Specialist at the California Hub for Energy Efficiency Financing (CHEEF), a program of the California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing Authority (CAEATFA) in the State Treasurer’s Office. She manages public awareness efforts for three statewide energy efficiency financing programs in the residential, small business and affordable multifamily sectors, working closely with utilities and other stakeholders to promote the financing options.
Jeffery Liang | Single Family Project Manager | BayREN
Jeffery Liang is the Bay Area Regional Energy Network Single Family Program Manager and manages the residential energy efficiency and electrification rebate program for the nine county Bay Area since 2020. Previously, Jeffery helped launch and manage several energy efficiency rebate and financing programs over the past decade in order to bring cost-effective and practical solutions for homeowners and renters in California.
Tonya Veitch | Senior Sustainability Analyst | County of Santa Clara, Office of Sustainability
Tonya Veitch is a Senior Sustainability Analyst with the County of Santa Clara Office of Sustainability where she manages the County’s Sustainability Master Plan and local community relations activities for the Bay Area Regional Energy Network. Her background crosses public health, urban planning, and sustainability, working towards creating healthier, sustainable, and resilient communities for all. Tonya holds a Master of Urban Planning and Bachelor of Science in Public Health from San Jose State University.

2:00 – 3:00 pm

Webinar 3 – Sustainable Procurement: Opportunities for Local Government

Details

Webinar 3 – Sustainable Procurement: Opportunities for Local Government
Thursday, August 5 | 2:00 – 3:00 pm

Empower Procurement, a program lead by Doug Davenport, Founder and Executive Director of ProspectSV will be joined by Richard Schorske, Executive Director of ZNE Alliance and EV Alliance, and Christopher Payne Deputy for Operations, Building Technology & Urban Systems Division of Lawrence Berkeley National Lab to explore the opportunities for carbon reduction through sustainable procurement approaches and what their findings may mean for Local Government.

Speakers:

 

Moderator: Doug Davenport | Founder and Executive Director | Prospect Silicon Valley
Doug Davenport is the Founder of Prospect Silicon Valley, a nonprofit organization focused on supporting innovative startups in the transportation, energy and infrastructure sectors. Since its beginnings in 2013, ProspectSV has grown to engage more than 65 high-impact startups and corporate partners and has implemented $30M in grant funding and $80M in public financing to improve the lives and surroundings of people in the Bay Area. Prior to founding ProspectSV, heled business strategy and industry partnerships for Berkeley Lab’s Energy and Environmental Technologies Division, and prior to that led consulting teams in Tetra Tech’s environment and energy practices. Doug is an active member of the Bay Area Council and is a founding member of both the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator Program and the Innovate Energy Network. He holds master’s degrees in civil engineering and business from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
Christopher Payne | Research Scientist and Engineer | Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
Over his career in energy efficiency and sustainability policy research, Christopher Payne has focused on understanding how decisions related to energy consumption are made, how public policy shapes those decisions, and how energy policy can be made more efficient, effective, and persistent. Dr. Payne is a recognized expert in organizational decision-making related to energy and sustainability, with a research specialty in institutional acquisition processes and their role in clean energy technology adoption. His current projects include Federal acquisition of energy-efficient products, Institutional procurement of clean energy technologies in California, and State & local government procurement of emerging technologies.
Richard Schorske | Founder and Executive Director | Zero Net Energy Alliance
Richard Schorske is founder and Executive Director of the Zero Net Energy Alliance – which partners with leading cities and companies to achieve net zero emissions across the built environment and energy and transportation systems. Mr. Schorske is also founder and Executive Director of the EV Alliance, accelerates adoption of EVs by supporting fleet electrification transitions, deploying charging infrastructure at scale, and via EV planning and program development with utilities, fleet operators, and local government. Accomplishments of the EV Alliance include: 1) Developing the Bay Area EV Corridor Project to provide 400+ public EV charging ports throughout the Bay region; 2) Developing the Bay Area EV Council to drive EV-friendly policies; 3) Developing Transportation Electrification Plans for San Francisco and five Counties in the Monterey Bay and Central Coast regions, and for the Kingdom of Jordan; 4) Developing EV infrastructure programs for Community Choice Energy agencies, including Silicon Valley Clean Energy, Central Coast Community Energy, and Lancaster Choice Energy.
Renee Lafrenz | Senior Manager | Energy Solutions
Ms. Lafrenz is a Senior Manager with Energy Solutions, where she focuses on energy market transformation and code readiness integrations. She has extensive experience within the energy sector developing and delivering energy programs and projects for the Alliance to Save Energy and at the Oakland Unified School District as the inaugural Energy Manager. Ms. Lafrenz received her Master of Environmental Science and Management with a specialization in Corporate Environmental Management from the University of California, Santa Barbara and Bachelor of Science from University of California, San Diego.

Week 2

Tuesday, August 10

10:00 – 11:00 am

Webinar 4 – Increasing EV Adoption: From Paper to Production

Details

Webinar 4Increasing EV Adoption: From Paper to Production
Tuesday, August 10 | 10:00 – 11:00 am

Electric vehicles have received more attention than ever in California in recent years and are continuing to gain more market share in the U.S. auto industry, with ripple effects on the energy industry. To support greater EV adoption, local governments are transitioning their own public fleets to EV while targeting EV infrastructure investments towards the populations and locations that need them. This session will feature a moderated panel of local EV experts that will share thoughts on the current progress and opportunities for EVs in California, and innovative approaches to planning, procurement, and implementation of local EV initiatives that can effectively curb emissions and drive equity.

Speakers:
Moderator: Michael Chiacos | Director of Energy and Climate Programs | Community Environmental Council
Michael directs CEC’s energy, transportation, and climate programs. He has 14 years of experience leading dozens of clean energy and climate projects, including forming ElectricDrive805, the regional electric vehicle readiness coalition for Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo counties. This group has worked with dozens of businesses, local governments and others to install hundreds of EV charging stations, as well as conducted EV marketing, education, and outreach activities, including large Green Car Shows with hundreds of ride and drives. Michael has also influenced state energy and electric vehicle policy as an intervenor at the California Public Utilities Commission and has contributed to projects such as the EV Readiness Blueprint for Ventura County, the Central Coast ZEV Equity project, and the Central Coast EV Implementation Project.
Carlos Huizar | Planning Associate | City of Torrance
Carlos Huizar is a Planning Associate and manages the Sustainability Initiative for the City of Torrance. With over six years of professional planning experience, Carlos provides well-rounded technical expertise in land use, environmental planning, healthy communities, urban design, and community engagement. Under the City’s Sustainability Initiative, Carlos is currently working on the Climate Adaptation Plan and advancing the planned expansion of the City’s EV charging program into fleet applications.  Carlos holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Urban & Regional Planning from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona and recently obtained a Master’s in Public Administration from the California State University, Long Beach.
Sigalle Michael | Sustainability Coordinator | City of Burlingame
Sigalle Michael is the City of Burlingame’s Sustainability Coordinator. She manages climate action, EV, renewable energy, waste reduction, and resource conservation projects for the City. She has over a decade of experience developing and implementing environmental actions for local governments. Prior to Burlingame she worked for the Bay Area Air District on clean air and climate action policies.
Janelle London | Co-Executive Director | Coltura
Janelle London is the co-executive director of the nonprofit Coltura, the executive director of Joint Venture Silicon Valley’s Beyond Gasoline initiative and the vice-chair of Menlo Park’s Environmental Quality Commission. She published the first op ed in California calling for a phaseout of gasoline-powered vehicles. Janelle is the co-author of several papers on gasoline, including State Vehicle Electrification Mandates and Federal Preemption, Governing the Gasoline Spigot: Gas Stations and the Transition Away from Gasoline, and an upcoming paper on redesigning EV incentives to target those drivers who use the most gasoline. She wrote the first children’s storybook about the harms of gasoline, Sparky’s Electrifying Tale. Janelle holds a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University and a law degree from University of California, Berkeley.

2:00 – 3:15 pm

Webinar 5 – Planning for Equitable Existing Building Electrification

Details

Webinar 5 – Planning for Equitable Existing Building Electrification
Tuesday, August 10 | 2:00 – 3:15 pm

While many cities have begun the transition to decarbonize new construction through electrification ordinances, the conversion of existing buildings from mixed fuel to all-electric must consider the implications for low-income, disadvantaged, and historically under-invested communities. This session presents a facilitated discussion with the parties involved in the recently completed City of Berkeley Existing Building Electrification Strategy, which serves as a guide to an equitable transition of existing buildings from fossil fuel reliance to primarily renewable electricity by identifying the policy, funding, and regulatory processes which must be addressed. The City of Berkeley strategy is a first of its kind document which combines a parcel level cost and energy assessment of electrification options, funding mechanisms for the electric building transition, and a thorough evaluation of the equity impacts on the community. To develop the strategy, the project team conducted extensive and targeted outreach to Berkeley’s marginalized communities and received substantial feedback that guided the goals, timeline, and associated actions. The discussion panel will address topics relevant to their expertise and development of the strategy, including the detailed analysis of existing residential buildings, extensive community engagement, equity considerations, regulatory constraints, and electrification policy development.

Speakers:
Moderator: Reema Shakra | Senior Planner | Rincon Consultants, Inc.
Ms. Shakra is a Climate Adaptation Program Manager with Rincon’s Environmental Planning and Sustainability Department and has experience in sea-level rise vulnerability and adaptation assessments, climate action and adaptation planning, and community outreach and engagement. Ms. Shakra has a wide-ranging policy background, having prepared or managed general plan updates, climate action plans, local coastal program updates, corridor plans, and climate adaptation plans. She co-authored a step-by-step guidebook for the Southern California Association of Governments region which provides local governments with a compendium of tools, resources, and best practices to efficiently advance their climate adaptation planning process. Ms. Shakra has extensive experience conducting public outreach and engagement, having facilitated several dozen open house and community workshop meetings and advisory committee meetings, and presented at city council and planning commission hearings.
Denaya Shorter | Community Engagement Program Director | Ecology Center
Denaya Shorter is the community engagement program director for the Ecology Center, a Berkeley nonprofit that focuses on improving the health and the environmental impacts of urban residents. The Ecology Center addresses critical issues through a model of education, demonstration, replication, and advocacy through a variety of programs and services such as farmers’ markets, curbside recycling, eco store for sustainable living, classes, workshops, youth development, resource center, seed library, and much more! Denaya oversees programming for the Ecology Center’s store and public resource center, engagement & education programs, and EcoHouse. She leads and supports programming focusing on climate action through the Berkeley Climate Action Coalition, and zero waste education that supports Berkeley’s residential curbside recycling program. Denaya brings with her rich experience in education and engagement, most recently, leading equitable community outreach alongside the City of Berkeley in local efforts to transition towards a fossil fuel-free future through its Existing Buildings Electrification Strategy.
Michael Gartman | Manager, Carbon Free Buildings | Rocky Mountain Institute
Michael supports RMI’s Residential Energy+ and Building Electrification initiatives and is currently focused on providing both project developers and policymakers with the information and resources they need to drive a market shift toward a more efficient, affordable, and equitable housing stock. Michael utilizes a background in cost estimating and project management that comes from a diverse array of experience in the construction
industry. His past work has included serving over 50 cities through ongoing technical assistance on residential policies, cost-estimating over 1,000 commercial energy retrofits and solar installations, and building bridges in South America.
Katie Van Dyke | Climate Action Program Manager/Chief Resilience Officer | City of Berkeley
Katie Van Dyke (she/her) serves as the Climate Action Program Manager and Chief Resilience Officer at the City of Berkeley where she manages projects and programs to advance Berkeley’s ambitious climate goals and resilience strategies. Her work focuses on multi-benefit solutions to prepare the community to withstand and thrive amidst the many intersecting environmental, social and economic challenges it faces. Some of her work has included supporting development of the City’s first Resilience Strategy as part of the 100 Resilient Cities initiative, coordinating implementation of the City’s Climate Action Plan, leading the City’s recent study on how to equitably transition all existing buildings away from fossil fuels, and co-managing a $1.5M grant for a microgrid feasibility study.
Ryan Gardner | Climate Action Program Manager | Rincon Consultants, Inc.
Ryan Gardner serves as Rincon’s Climate Action Program Manager and an Environmental Scientist with Rincon’s Sustainability Services Group. His work focuses on climate action plan development, greenhouse gas reporting and audits, life cycle analysis, green building strategies, carbon accounting, carbon sequestration and sustainable infrastructure. Through this work Ryan has become involved in the electrification field helping to lead the City of Berkeley’s existing building electrification strategy as well as working with cities throughout the State on electrification ordinances, cost effectiveness studies, and community outreach and focus groups. Ryan uses his 8+ years of experience working with local governments, agencies, and special districts to help craft implementable plans and strategies that lead to meaningful change.
Wednesday, August 11

12:00 – 1:00 pm

Lunch 3 – Building Equity Into Policy & Programs with SOMAH

Details

Lunch 3 – Building Equity into Policy & Programs with SOMAH
Wednesday, August 11 | 12:00 – 1:00 pm

Join the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) team for an interactive discussion on this pioneering program and opportunities to bring its impact to your community. The team will walk through the program’s equity-driven approach to a state-level solar incentive program, with a walkthrough of how equity is integrated into the program’s policies and implementation. There will be breakout sessions focused on two of the program’s pillars: 1) community-based organization partnerships and tenant education, and 2)  workforce development. Attendees will walk away with an understanding of the program, its goals, and how local governments may be able to access SOMAH’s nearly $1 billion in incentives.

Speakers:
Moderator: Kajsa Hendrickson | Project Manager | SOMAH
Kajsa Hendrickson is a facilitator and project manager with global experience working in sustainability and environmental justice. Kajsa works on a pilot environmental and social justice solar initiative, Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) at the Center for Sustainable Energy. She oversees SOMAH’s evaluations, partnerships, as well as CSE’s Marketing, Education, and Outreach teams for SOMAH. She holds a bachelor’s degree in global politics from Washington State University and a master’s degree in Peace and Justice Studies from the Kroc School at the University of San Diego. Kajsa’s previous work experience includes managing custom educational and leadership programs at Washington State University, University of San Diego, and the Center for Creative Leadership, teaching English in Asia, and serving as a Political/Economic Graduate Assistant and Site Officer with the United States Embassy in Vientiane, Laos.
Sarah Salem | Senior Tenant Services & Community-Based Organization Manager | SOMAH
Sarah received a Bachelor of Architecture from Temple University and later received her master’s from the Bren School of Environmental Management specializing in Economics and Politics of the Environment alongside the communications focus. Upon graduating Sarah joined GRID Alternatives, a non-profit organization that envisions a rapid, equitable transition to a world powered by renewable energy that benefits everyone. There Sarah serves as the HQ Outreach Sr. Community Engagement Manager, focusing on community and tenant care for both community solar and multifamily affordable housing solar projects. She currently leads tenant education and community-based-organization partnerships for the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) Program, a ten-year clean energy program overseen by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC). As an Egyptian-American, Sarah has seen firsthand how developing nations and communities of color are often left out of the conversations that impact them the most. In her role, she strives to amplify the voices and stories of those most impacted by climate change and injustice and contribute to energy justice for all.
Staci Hoell | Workforce Development Manager | SOMAH
Staci works at GRID Alternatives as the Workforce Development Manager for California’s Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) program, a $1 billion investment in solar energy on low-income multifamily properties and solar job training opportunities. As the Workforce Development Manager, Staci connects job trainees with solar contractors participating in SOMAH to get hands-on training; conducts outreach and builds relationships with job training organizations across the state; and develops resources and workshops for job seekers in the solar industry. Prior to joining GRID, Staci managed alternative transportation programs and operations at the University of San Francisco. She is a double alumna of the University of San Francisco with a BS in Molecular Biology and a Master of Public Health focusing on environmental health.

2:00 – 3:15 pm

Webinar 6 – Incorporating Environmental Justice Priorities into Regulatory and Enforcement Policy

Details

Webinar 6Incorporating Environmental Justice Priorities into Regulatory and Enforcement Policy
Wednesday, August 11 | 2:00 – 3:15 pm

While investments in clean energy opportunities for environmental justice communities is a critical component to a just transition, influencing decision-making and conducting robust environmental enforcement are equally necessary for rectifying environmental injustice. In this session, we will hear from leaders at the CA Public Utilities Commission, the California Department of Justice, and Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability about their approach to incorporating environmental justice into regulatory and enforcement policy, some early successes, and where the State has room to grow. Participants will leave with a deeper knowledge of how an equity approach can be incorporated into enforcement practices and concrete examples of communities accessing decision-making power.

Speakers:

 

Moderator: Monica Palmeira | Analyst | California Public Utilities Commission
Monica Palmeira was born and raised in Eastern North Carolina as a first-generation American with parents originally from Portugal. Her professional background includes ethnographic research, affordable housing advocacy, climate policy, and community engagement. In her current role as an Analyst at the California Public Utilities Commission, she focuses on implementing the Commission’s Environmental and Social Justice Action Plan across energy, telecommunications, water, wildfire, rail, and safety and enforcement divisions. Monica has also served as Community Assistance Program Manager for the Strategic Growth Council at the California Governor’s Office of Planning and Research, where she spearheaded various outreach and technical assistance programs to support communities in accessing climate-related funding programs. Additional roles have included Policy & Programs Specialist at California Coalition for Rural Housing and as managing director at the Marian Cheek Jackson Center, a dynamic public history and community organizing center in Chapel Hill, NC. She received a B.A. in International Studies and Public Policy from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of Southern California.
Martha Guzman Aceves | Commissioner | California Public Utilities Commission
Martha Guzman Aceves was appointed Commissioner at the CPUC by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. on Dec. 28, 2016. Her portfolio includes issues related to distributed energy, fiscal oversight of utilities, broadband access, water affordability and conservation, increasing access to clean energy programs for Disadvantaged Communities, and preventing disconnections of basic utilities. Commissioner Guzman Aceves serves as co-chair of the Emerging Trends Committee, and is one of two Commissioners on the Senate Bill 350 Disadvantaged Communities Advisory Group in coordination with the California Energy Commission. She also represents the CPUC on the California Broadband Council and the Lithium Valley Commission. In May 2021, Commissioner Guzman Aceves was appointed to the NRRI Board of Directors. Commissioner Guzman Aceves earned a Master of Science degree in agricultural and resource economics from the University of California, Davis, and a Bachelor of Science in International Economics from Georgetown University.
Ashley Werner | Directing Attorney | Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability
Based in Fresno, Ashley Werner is a Directing Attorney with Leadership Counsel for Justice and Accountability where she helps to shape and advance the organization’s legal and policy initiatives to eliminate barriers to opportunity impacting disadvantaged communities in the San Joaquin and Coachella Valleys.   Through her work together with community residents, co-workers, and coalition partners across the state, Ashley has helped to secure commitments by public and private actors that advance access to safe and affordable housing and fair housing choice, essential infrastructure and services, a healthy environment, and inclusive decision-making processes for disadvantaged communities across the regions and state. Previously, Ashley worked as a Staff Attorney with California Rural Legal Assistance and with non-profits in Peru on matters relating to women’s rights and rural development. Ashley earned her B.A. from Swarthmore College and her law degree with a Certificate in Human Rights and International Justice at Boston College Law School.
Chanell Fletcher | Deputy Executive Director, Environmental Justice | California Air Resources Board
Chanell Fletcher was appointed to the position of Deputy Executive Officer of Environmental Justice in January 2021. Ms. Fletcher oversees CARB’s Environmental Justice and Community Air Protection Program and is responsible for developing CARB-wide environmental justice policies. She plays a key role in CARB’s programs designed to address disproportionate impacts from air pollution and climate change and associated chronic health conditions affecting Black, Latinx and other communities of color across the state.
Thursday, August 12

10:00 – 11:15 am

Webinar 7 – The Future is Local: Just and Equitable Clean Energy Transformation

Details

Webinar 7The Future is Local: Just and Equitable Clean Energy Transformation
Thursday, August 12 | 10:00 – 11:15 am

Local government leadership is truly the best driver for transformation to a clean and democratized energy economy. Regional Energy Networks (RENs) and Community Choice Aggregators (CCAs) are leading the charge and have deep and expanding roots in climate program deployment. They are crafting unique programmatic solutions to address local risks, including energy resilience, climate change mitigation, and workforce preparedness. Panelists representing RENs and CCAs will provide a peek into pilot efforts, programs, and partnerships offering community-focused initiatives with the potential to scale up and spark innovation in this era of renewed national commitment to climate change work. This session celebrates the change-makers and initiatives harnessing the power of local mobilization and engagement to shepherd in a cleaner, environmentally just energy future—one that succeeds by increasing access while building community equity and resilience.

Speakers:
Moderator: Laurel Rothschild | Vice President | The Energy Coalition
As Vice President, Laurel oversees The Energy Coalition’s diverse portfolio of programs and collaborates with stakeholders across the state to advance the organization’s mission of empowering communities to leap into the future of clean energy. She has over 13 years of experience working with local governments and communities to promote energy efficiency action through various Programs. Laurel is a current member of the California Energy Efficiency Coordinating Committee (CAEECC), a Certified Energy Auditor (CEA) and a LEED AP O+M. She holds a B.S. in Business Economics from UCSB.
Lujuana Medina | Environmental Initiatives Manager | County of Los Angeles, ISD Environmental & Energy Services
Lujuana is responsible for managing and operating the SoCalREN energy efficiency portfolio. She also leads policy and grant development regarding energy efficiency, economic development and the electrification of transportation throughout the Southern California Region. Over the past 16 years, she has worked in variety capacities in the energy policy field. Before joining the County of Los Angeles, Lujuana served as the Regulatory Manager for SoCalREN under ICF consulting, as the Energy Efficiency Policy Lead for Southern California Gas Company, as a Regulatory Case Manager in the Power Procurement Department for Southern California Edison, as a Generation Resource Planner and Utility Finance Advisor for San Diego Gas & Electric.
Alice Havenar-Daughton | Director of Customer Programs | MCE Clean Energy
As Director of Customer Programs for California’s first Community Choice Aggregator, MCE, Alice is focused on the development and implementation of programs that promote building efficiency and decarbonization, increase adoption of electrify vehicles, deliver grid resiliency and further environmental justice goals. Under her leadership, MCE’s energy efficiency programs have grown seven-fold and the electric vehicle-charging program has funded over 1,000 public charging ports.  Her team oversaw the developed an open-source software tool to helping CCAs effectively plan for the deployment of distributed energy resources across the state. Alice has a dozen years of experience designing energy programs and holds a dual Masters degree in Sustainable Development and International Affairs from American University.
Stephen Kullmann | Director of Demand Side Management | Redwood Coast Energy Authority
Stephen Kullmann is the Director of Demand Side Management at Redwood Coast Energy Authority (RCEA), a local government Joint Powers Agency and Community Choice Aggregator serving Humboldt County in rural Northern California. RCEA is an elect-to-administer Program Administrator and Implementor of resource programs and manages a Local Government Partnership with PG&E, as well operating several locally funded customer programs. Prior to joining RCEA in the early stages of the pandemic in 2020, Stephen served as the Community Development and Resilience Director for the Blue Lake Rancheria Tribe and the Natural Resources Director for the Wiyot Tribe. Stephen earned an M.S. in Environmental Systems from Humboldt State University and also serves as an elected Harbor Commissioner for the Humboldt Bay Harbor Recreation and Conservation District.
Kathy Wells | Energy Program Manager | California Choice Energy Authority
As the newest member to the CalChoice team, Kathy serves as the Energy Programs Manager, implementing and managing energy programs for the benefit of the member agencies. She brings over 20 years of customer service experience to CalChoice, having worked for the City of Lancaster in multiple sectors including Public Works, City Engineering, and City Administration. An inaugural member of the Lancaster Choice Energy (LCE) team, Kathy helped launch the City’s Community Choice Aggregation program, the first program of its kind in southern California, in May 2015. As LCE’s Energy Projects Coordinator, she developed energy efficiency programs for both residential and business customers, and managed LCE operations, customer outreach and retention, marketing, rate analysis, and customer programs. Most recently Kathy served at the City of Palmdale managing the implementation of the City’s new community choice aggregation program, Energy for Palmdale’s Independent Choice (EPIC), which is scheduled to debut October 2022. Kathy serves on the Legislative, Compliance, and Marketing and Outreach committees for California Community Choice Association (CalCCA) and holds an MBA in Energy and Sustainability Studies from Franklin Pierce University.
Kate Meis Wright | Executive Director | Local Government Commission
Kate Meis Wright is the Executive Director of the LGC, a nationally recognized nonprofit connecting local leaders, implementing innovative solutions and advancing smart-growth policies. Kate is a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Forum and has been recognized for her climate-change work by the Chronicle of Philanthropy as one of the nation’s “40 under 40 Young Leaders Who Are Solving the Problems of Today – and Tomorrow.”

12:00 – 1:15 pm

Lunch 4 – BPC Spotlight Event: How Local Governments Can Be Competitive in Today’s Funding Climate

Details

Lunch 4BPC Spotlight Event: How Local Governments Can Be Competitive in Today’s Funding Climate
Thursday, August 12 | 12:00 – 1:15 pm

Moderated by the Statewide Best Practices Coordinator, this session features experts that will review changing trends in relevant energy/climate funding sources, eligibility, and selection criteria and provide tips for how to write a competitive proposal to advance your organization’s strategic goals, including a live demo of how review a solicitation for “fit,” “deal-breakers,” and “score-boosters.” The Statewide Best Practices Coordinator will also share CCEC’s new Funding Resources website and database that can help you identify new ways to pay for your initiatives.

Speakers

 

Moderator: Angie Hacker | Statewide Best Practices Coordinator | Local Government Commission
Angie Hacker has nearly 20 years of public, private and non-profit experience serving communities in the areas of sustainability, energy, and climate change, primarily in California. Prior to becoming CEO and Principal Consultant of Prosper Sustainably, she served as Energy and Sustainability Division Chief for the County of Santa Barbara. Her areas of expertise include designing innovative local/regional solutions, communicating a strategic vision, pursuing policy and regulatory opportunities, obtaining resources, building local capacity, leveraging cross-sector partnerships, and engaging stakeholders.
Josh Simmons | President and Founder, Principal Consultant | Prosper Sustainably
Joshua Simmons, President and Founder of Prosper Sustainably LLC, has 15 years of grant writing experience. Since 2007, Josh has received 60+ grant awards totaling approximately $30M from federal, state, and private sources. The majority of Josh’s grant writing experience has involved innovative clean energy, climate change, and sustainability related projects and programs. Josh’s experience also includes strategic planning, feasibility studies, and project management and he is currently leading or supporting several cleantech projects. Josh is a licensed California Attorney and earned his J.D. at the University of San Diego. Josh also earned a Master of Environmental Science & Management degree from the UCSB Bren School.
Ena Lupine | Community Assistance Program Manager | Strategic Growth Council
Ena leads SGC’s California Climate Investments Technical Assistance Program, which helps create a more equitable playing field for under-resourced applicants looking to access the funds to transition to climate-smart communities. In this role, she manages a broad range of capacity building activities for applicants to cap-and-trade grant funded programs, including workshops, trainings, and direct application assistance. Ena holds a Master of Science in Community Development from UC Davis and a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, French, and Environmental Studies from Colby College in Maine.
Katrina Leni-Konig | Specialist | California Energy Commission
Katrina Leni Konig is a Supervisor within the Energy Research and Development Division at the California Energy Commission. Katrina leads a team that supports technology scale-up and outreach efforts to accelerate the transition to a clean energy future for all. Her research areas of interest include sustainable communities, building decarbonization, and energy equity.

2:00 – 3:00 pm

Webinar 8 – Preparing Workers to Build Back Cleaner

Details

Webinar 8Preparing Workers to Build Back Cleaner
Thursday, August 12 | 2:00 – 3:00 pm

As California recovers from the pandemic and prepares for forthcoming effects from the climate crisis, local clean energy workforce development programs will play an essential role in sustainable recovery efforts aimed at “building back better.” Local agencies help people obtain skills and good jobs and, therefore, can be strategic about increasing the number of skilled workers needed to achieve a vision for efficient, decarbonized, and resilient buildings in the future. This session features speakers from local and regional workforce development programs that demonstrate innovative approaches to putting people to work in the energy and building trades. Join us to learn what these programs are doing to boost skills and job opportunities, how they were developed, what lessons they’ve learned, and what opportunities and challenges lie ahead.

Speakers:
Moderator: Jordan Garbayo | Program Manager | Tri-County Regional Energy Network
Jordan Garbayo is an Energy Program Manager at the Tri-County Regional Energy Network (3C-REN) and the County of San Luis Obispo, where he works to administer and deliver energy efficiency programs to the Central Coast. In the past three years with 3C-REN and the County, Jordan has developed and delivered the Energy Code Connect program to public and private building professionals across the tri-county region via an Energy Code Coach service, educational offerings, and Regional Forums. Jordan is also a board member for the California Association of Building Energy Consultants (CABEC), due to his passion and experience surrounding California’s ever changing Energy Code. He has also delivered various municipal energy programming for the County under its Local Government Partnership prior to working with 3C-REN.
Ian Logan | Sustainability Program Specialist | Tri-County Regional Energy Network
Ian has been in the building industry for the past 10 years in varying degrees, working in carpentry and property management. He acquired his bachelor’s in Environmental Studies with an emphasis in Energy & Sustainability from UC Santa Barbara in 2018. Ian now works closely with 3C-REN’s Building Performance Training & Energy Code Connect Programs to provide stellar educational opportunities and code support for the Central Coast’s workforce.
Jennifer Green | Manager of Customer Programs | MCE
Jennifer Green joined MCE in 2019 as a Manager of Customer Programs, focusing on MCE’s residential energy efficiency and Workforce, Education and Training program development and management. Jennifer has worked in the energy industry for over 15 years. She began her career in energy as a policy coordinator for the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, then moved onto a policy role at the San Diego Regional Energy Office (SDREO-now the Center for Sustainable Energy). She worked on policy and regulatory issues prior to transitioning to program management for CSE’s EE programs, ranging from contractor training to residential in-home energy efficiency assessments, to the development of municipal ordinances. She holds an MA in Political Science with an emphasis on energy policy from San Diego State University. She is certified as a BPI Analyst and Envelope Professional and is a certified HERS rater for the state of California.
Wendy Angel | Program Director | Emerald City Los Angeles
Wendy leads the Southern California Regional Energy Network (SoCalREN) Workforce Development Program to facilitate access to education and training and implements the E-Contractor Academy Training Program to prepare small, diverse contractors to compete for energy efficiency projects with the County of Los Angeles and SoCalREN participating agencies. Wendy manages the ACES (Architecture Construction Engineering Students) Engineering Pathway Program to expose and engage students of color to pursue Science Technology Engineering Art and Math (STEAM) careers.  ACES students are concurrently enrolled in Los Angeles Community College District campuses to earn stackable skills certificates and participate in paid summer internships with design and construction companies that prepare them to be college and career ready.  The ACES Engineering Pathway Program promotes and supports female participation in STEAM; 38% of ACES students are female, far exceeding the national average of 3%.

Week 3

Tuesday, August 17

10:00 – 11:00 am

Webinar 9 – Planning for Energy Reliability Solutions That Do More Than Keep the Lights On

Details

Webinar 9 Planning for Energy Reliability Solutions That Do More Than Keep the Lights On
Tuesday, August 17 | 10:00 – 11:00 am

Power disruptions and changing energy usage patterns in the past several years have underscored the urgent need for reliable energy. More than ever, local, State and federal governments are looking for the best ways to actualize commitments to economic recovery in ways that also advance climate action, energy assurance, and environmental justice. Through thoughtful load, feasibility, and financial analysis, local governments can strategically implement solutions like solar microgrids, battery backup, and coordination with utility providers to maintain critical public facilities and services. Plans can also identify programs and policies to encourage private property owners to implement these solutions and target attention where vulnerable populations may be being left behind. This session will highlight the latest energy reliability news, planning case studies, and financing best practices from communities across California to help local governments as they consider their own energy reliability or microgrid initiatives.

Speakers:
Moderator: Peter Asmus | Research Director | Navigant
Peter Asmus is Research Director at Guidehouse Insights focusing on emerging energy distribution, integration and optimization platforms such as microgrids and virtual power plants (VPPs) and distributed energy resource management systems (DERMS).  Asmus has 30 years of experience in energy and environmental markets, as an analyst, writer, book author and consultant.
Alelia Parenteau | Energy and Climate Manager | City of Santa Barbara
Alelia Parenteau, LEED Green Associate & Certified Energy Manager; runs the Energy and Climate Program at the City of Santa Barbara. As Energy & Climate Manager, Ms. Parenteau identifies energy efficiency and conservation strategies, implements new technologies to reduce the City’s energy consumption and transition to 100% renewable energy and coordinates the development and implementation of the City’s Climate Action Plan. With expertise in utility operations, creative financing strategies, energy development, policy development and energy and climate best practices, Ms. Parenteau has helped position the City of Santa Barbara as a City to watch in the State when it comes to energy management and climate action.
Martin Carver | Managing Partner | ZeroCity LLC
Martin Carver, AICP, is Founder and Managing Partner of ZeroCity LLC, a firm that specializes in strategic energy planning for municipalities. Mr. Carver has 38 years of professional experience working with municipalities and since 2017 has led the team developing the Gonzales Municipal Microgrid Project. His responsibilities under contract with the City of Gonzales included strategic planning, project feasibility, and procurement of the public-private partnership that resulted in the city’s ground-breaking success.
Craig Lewis | Founder and Executive Director | Clean Coalition
Craig Lewis has over 30 years of experience in the renewables, wireless, semiconductor, and banking industries. Previously VP of Government Relations at GreenVolts, he was the first to successfully navigate a solar project through California’s Renewable Portfolio Standard solicitation process. Craig was energy policy lead on Steve Westly’s 2006 California gubernatorial campaign. His resume includes senior government relations, corporate development, and marketing positions at leading wireless, semiconductor, and banking companies such as Qualcomm, Ericsson, and Barclays Bank. Craig received an MBA and MSEE from the University of Southern California and a BSEE from the University of California, Berkeley.

11:30 – 1:00 pm

Lunch 5 – Local Government Electrification: Opportunities and Challenges

Details

Lunch 5 Local Government Electrification: Opportunities and Challenges
Tuesday, August 17 | 11:30 am – 1:00 pm

Join the Empower Procurement Program for an exciting and collaborative workshop which will tackle the challenge of electrification strategic planning through the lens of DERs procurement.  Along with fellow local government representatives, participants at various stages in their journey will have an opportunity to share best practices and gain access to valuable planning resources designed by subject matter experts.  This session is intended to kick start a coordinated and networked support system to enable local governments to work together to meet this challenge in California.  Empower Procurement is a CEC EPIC-funded program including partners from Energy Solutions, Prospect Silicon Valley, the Local Government Commission and others.

Speakers:
Moderator: Benjamin Zank | Engineer | Energy Solutions
Mr. Zank is an Engineer with Energy Solutions, where he works on building and appliance efficiency standards, midstream and upstream incentive programs, and local government procurement practices. Mr. Zank also has experience within the energy sector managing energy modeling, MEP engineering, and HERS testing on behalf of building industry clients. He has performed extensive academic research in renewable energy subject matter. His areas of interest and experience include: just transition for workers and communities, whole building energy efficiency, electric grid resilience, next generation solar and storage, and the science/policy nexus. Mr. Zank received his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from McGill University.
Renee Lafrenz | Senior Manager | Energy Solutions
Ms. Lafrenz is a Senior Manager with Energy Solutions, where she focuses on energy market transformation and code readiness integrations. She has extensive experience within the energy sector developing and delivering energy programs and projects for the Alliance to Save Energy and at the Oakland Unified School District as the inaugural Energy Manager. Ms. Lafrenz received her Master of Environmental Science and Management with a specialization in Corporate Environmental Management from the University of California, Santa Barbara and Bachelor of Science from University of California, San Diego.
Marna Schwartz | Sustainability Coordinator | Office of Energy and Sustainable Development, City of Berkeley
Marna is the Sustainability Coordinator for the City of Berkeley and works on a wide variety of projects ranging from building electrification and microgrids to community engagement and amplifying equity in climate efforts. Marna has worked in sustainability for the City of Berkeley for 13 years and co-project managed the EPIC funded Berkeley Energy Assurance Transformation (BEAT) project and led the Berkeley Climate Action Coalition to implement on-the-ground, community-driven projects. Prior to her work on energy and climate, Marna worked in the field of community economic development with a focus in affordable housing. She has an undergraduate degree from University of California Santa Cruz in Community Studies and a Master’s degree in Urban Planning & Environmental Sustainability from Kings College in London, England.
Jessie Denver | Senior Distributed Energy Resources Manager | East Bay Community Energy
Jessie leads development of demand side solutions that deliver benefits to residents and businesses throughout EBCE’s service area. Priority initiatives include development of EBCE’s Transportation Electrification strategy and investments, and local solar and energy storage projects to increase community resilience. Prior to joining EBCE, Jessie served as the City and County of San Francisco’s Distributed Energy Resources Program Manager. In this role her team developed and implemented citywide building and transportation electrification, energy efficiency, distributed solar and energy storage policies and programs. With 20 years of experience, Jessie also served as a Program Director with Vote Solar and was the City of San Jose’s Energy Officer. She holds a Master’s degree in Environment and Community Planning and a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies.

2:00 – 3:00 pm

Webinar 10 – Speeding Decarbonization Efforts with Reach Code Development Tools

Details

Webinar 10 Speeding Decarbonization Efforts with Reach Code Development Tools
Tuesday, August 17 | 2:00 – 3:00 pm

Reach codes, local measures that “reach” beyond the minimum state Building Energy Standards to require more resource-efficient buildings, are powerful tools for driving climate action and decarbonization efforts. Today, at least one in three Californians live in a community with effective reach codes. However, the development and adoption process can be challenging for jurisdictions that are disadvantaged, under-resourced or struggling to identify the best options. One new and highly effective tool that helps ‘level the playing field’ is the free online Cost Effectiveness Explorer, developed by the statewide reach codes program. This session presents a hands-on look at this tool to demonstrate how a local jurisdiction can effectively use the tool to identify reach code measures, as well as lessons learned from two different jurisdictions.

Speakers:
Moderator: Misti Bruceri | Technical Lead| Statewide Reach Codes Program/Misti Bruceri & Associates
Misti has worked in the energy efficiency field for more than 20 years. As principal of Misti Bruceri and Associates, LLC, established in 2007, she provides technical consulting services to private firms, non-profit organizations, and utilities. She is technical lead for the Statewide Reach Codes Program.
David Freedman | Member | Palm Springs Sustainability Commission
Following a 30-year career as an international lawyer in New York and Paris focused on corporate finance and energy and water projects, David Freedman retired in Palm Springs and began a new career as a volunteer environmental activist. Mr. Freedman has served since 2015 on the Palm Springs Sustainability Commission, where he has written many of the City’s renewable energy and energy and water conservation policies. He has also served since 2019 as Chair of the Community Advisory Committee of Desert Community Energy, the Community Choice Aggregator that provides electricity in Palm Springs.
Eric Engelman | Principal | Energy Policy Consulting
Eric Engelman has a master’s degree in public policy from University of California-San Diego. After working as a development economist internationally, he returned to San Diego to specialize in local government energy policy. Over the last decade, Eric served as Senior Energy Policy Adviser to the City of San Diego and consulted with local governments to help them accelerate energy policy adoption. Building software to simplify data-driven energy policy making is a dream come true.
Cory Downs | Conservation Specialist | City of Chula Vista
Cory Downs is a Conservation Specialist with the City of Chula Vista and manages their residential energy & water efficiency outreach.  He also assists with Climate Acton Planning efforts including compiling the GHG inventories and CAP updates.  Before working with the City full time he was an Environmental Scientist with AECOM and Climate Fellow with ICLEI.
Wednesday, August 18

12:00 – 1:15 pm

Lunch 6 – The State of Local Climate Planning – a Needed Evolution

Details

Lunch 6 The State of Local Climate Planning: a Needed Evolution
Wednesday, August 18 | 12:00 – 1:15 pm

A group of climate change practitioners convened in 2019 and again in 2021 to develop a collective statement regarding the State of Local Climate Planning. Released in May 2021, this Statement found that local climate action planning had reached an inflection point, and progress has become stagnant. In order to achieve the rapid transformational GHG reductions needed, the field must identify lessons learned from the last decade and move beyond traditional climate action planning processes to prioritizing implementation. The work ahead does not live with a single organization or small group of people: we hope these observations support reflection, spark dialogue, and fuel an appetite to work in a new direction with new partners. This session will be a facilitated discussion to support this reflection towards the goal of shifting practitioners and practices to implementation and action. See link here.

Speakers:
Moderator: Michael McCormick | Founder and President| Farallon Strategies LLC
Michael McCormick, AICP is the Founder and President of Farallon Strategies, LLC, an advisory, policy, and management consulting firm based in Davis, California. He founded Farallon Strategies to support the creation of transformative solutions to reduce society’s contributions to climate change and the needed resilience in communities to address the impacts of climate change. He has worked at the local, regional, state, federal levels, and in non-profit, business, and government. These perspectives allow him to see the interconnectedness of work across governance and organizations, and to help create the vision and strategy to affect change.
Mike Steinhoff | Director of Technical Services | Kim Lundgren Associates
Mike Steinhoff has worked to support local climate planning and analysis for over a decade, helping to create many of the tools, protocols, and practices that have been relied on to date throughout the US and internationally. Some of those resources included methods like GHG contribution analysis that illustrate the limits of inventory data for high quality performance tracking. Mike brings a wealth of experience in lessons learned from having tried to support many different end goals in community wide analyses and a drive to place the emphasis back on building local knowledge for local decisions.
Miya Kitahara | Program Manager | StopWaste
Miya Kitahara is Program Manager in the Built Environment at StopWaste, a public agency in Alameda County working on energy and material efficiency. She has managed the Bay Area Regional Energy Network’s multifamily program, and has worked on the program since its inception in 2013. She also supports local government climate action planning, and connects building energy and emissions impacts to climate action plans. She has worked in sustainability with cities across the Bay Area since 2006 and holds an MBA in Sustainable Enterprise.
Hoi-Fei Mok | Sustainability Manager | City of San Leandro
Dr. Hoi-Fei Mok, PhD (they/them) is a neurodivergent, queer, non-binary Asian American artist and organizer born and raised in San Leandro / occupied Chochenyo and Karkin Ohlone lands. They currently work as the sustainability manager at the City of San Leandro, leading the City’s implementation of the Climate Action Plan and other sustainability programs. With a strong interdisciplinary background in environmental science, climate policy, and social justice, Fei aims to build out equitable community-driven strategies for local resilience and agency to climate change in their hometown of San Leandro. Fei currently serves on the California Black Indigenous People of Color (BIPOC) Climate Network, the national NAACP Centering Equity in Building Energy Sector Initiative, the National Adaptation Forum equity advisory committee, and the Bay Area Climate Adaptation Network (BayCAN) equity working group.

2:00 – 3:00 pm

Webinar 11 – Next Generation Building Decarbonization: Policy Evolution in California & Washington

Details

Webinar 11 Next Generation Building Decarbonization: Policy Evolution in California & Washington
Wednesday, August 18 | 2:00 – 3:00 pm

This Pacific Coast panel will discuss the latest in decarbonization policy in Brisbane, San Francisco and the State of Washington. From small cities like Brisbane, to dense urbanized cities like San Francisco, to the Evergreen State of Washington, we will discuss how to address any scale of policy creation to meet big bold climate goals. With less than 5,000 residents, the City of Brisbane is an unlikely hero in California’s journey to decarbonization, but in 2019 it passed the most comprehensive benchmarking and auditing ordinance in the country.  San Francisco has recently launched an innovative approach, helping commercial asset managers plan for decarbonization, to better connect their local ordinance to the city’s Climate Action Plan. Lastly, the State of Washington will discuss their Clean Building Act, which aims to lower costs and pollution from fossil fuel consumption in existing buildings through a performance standard and incentive program.

Speakers
Moderator: Marc Costa | Director of Policy & Planning| The Energy Coalition
Marc has more than twelve years of experience in the building industry focusing on areas ranging from advanced energy community planning, federal energy data standards and software development, as well as state and local government energy policy. Marc previously led the Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition (LGSEC) “To Code” committee, is an active member of the California Technical Forum, advisor to the CEC on AB 802 data regulations and machine learning GIS data efforts, a member of the Department of Energy’s Task Force to create and implement data exchange standards, and was on the triennial DOE Solar Energy Technology Office investment proposal review team to award National Research Laboratories 2018-2020 funding. He holds a B.S. in Management Science from UCSD, a B.S. in Construction Engineering from CSULB, and is a LEED AP, CGBP, and BOC Level II.
Adrienne Etherton | Sustainability Manager | City of Brisbane, Brisbane Building Efficiency Program
Adrienne Etherton is the City of Brisbane’s Sustainability Manager. Prior to joining the city, she served as Executive Director of Sustainable San Mateo County from 2011-2017. She has a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has studied architecture and worked in design, construction and logistics, and holds LEED AP and NABCEP Solar certifications. Adrienne also serves on the Board of the San Mateo Resource Conservation District.
Barry Hooper | Senior Green Building Coordinator | San Francisco Department of the Environment
Barry Hooper manages the Existing Buildings Energy Performance ordinance, which motivates improved energy efficiency through benchmarking and energy use disclosure for commercial and multifamily buildings, and requires commercial buildings to prepare an actionable plan for improvement. Barry leads development and supports implementation of San Francisco’s codes and regulations requiring new buildings to be all-electric, install solar photovoltaics or living roofs, provide electrical infrastructure for vehicle charging, and meet credible 3rd party green building standards including GreenPoint Rated or LEED. Barry is an active contributor to Bay Area Regional Energy Network Codes & Standards program, and is active in the C40 Cities Private Buildings Efficiency Network.
Emily Salzberg | Managing Director | Building Unit, State of Washington
Emily Salzberg is the Managing Director for the Building Standards and Performance Unit at the Washington State Department of Commerce where she currently oversees administration of Washington State’s Clean Buildings Law. Emily has over 15 years of experience administering, evaluating, and providing technical assistance for energy efficiency programs in the Northwest.  Her experience includes low-income weatherization, community-based efficiency programs, technology research, market development and energy code implementation.
Thursday, August 19

10:00 – 11:00 am

Webinar 12 – Leveraging Solar & Battery Systems to Lower Costs & Increase Resiliency

Details

Webinar 12 Leveraging Solar & Battery Systems to Lower Costs & Increase Resiliency
Thursday, August 19 | 10:00 – 11:00 am

Our communities need cheaper, cleaner, more reliable electricity. With the increased frequency of power shutoff events and other power outages, communities need backup power resources. And with energy rates continuing to climb and shift, communities need resources that can help them control their energy costs and save money. When paired with solar, batteries can provide both backup power and cost savings benefits. In this virtual event, David Burdick & Ali Chehrehsaz of TerraVerde Energy will be sharing their team’s experience supporting California public agencies with solar and battery energy storage projects. We will discuss how changes in energy reliability and rates are impacting communities, the latest on funding & programs for these projects (including the fast moving SGIP incentive program, and a new solar refi program), methods for assessing the Economic Value of Resilience, and how local governments can take action in lowering energy costs and increasing energy resiliency.

Speakers
Moderator: David Burdick | Executive Vice President| TerraVerde Energy
David serves as Executive Vice President of Business Development for TerraVerde Energy, supporting CCAs and public agencies (including transit agencies, school districts, municipalities, and water agencies) in evaluating, deploying, and managing intelligent energy programs (solar PV projects, battery energy storage projects, resiliency programs, facility microgrids, and DER Programs). Prior to joining TerraVerde, David served as a General Manager for a solar & battery EPC firm.
Ali Chehrehsaz | CEO | TerraVerde Energy
Ali Chehrehsaz is a founding partner at TerraVerde Energy and serves as the Chief Executive Officer. Over his years at TerraVerde, Ali has spent much of his time leading the development of TerraVerde’s approach to project analysis, engineering, development, and implementation. Prior to joining TerraVerde, Ali managed development and implementation of utility scale solar projects, as well as served as a project emerging in the energy industry.

1:00 – 2:30 pm

Closing Plenary – Highlights and Horizons: An Interactive Forum Closing (Recommended)

Details

Closing Plenary Highlights and Horizons: An Interactive Forum Closing
Thursday, August 19 | 1:00 – 2:30 pm

This interactive session will give CCEC Forum participants a chance to reflect on what they have learned during the 12th Annual Forum and key takeaways that will advance local and state clean energy and climate actions. Together we will highlight what is on the horizon for local governments as they lead the way in a promising new era for climate, equity, health, and prosperity. This event will feature roundtable remarks by LGC and REN representatives, breakout discussions, and a facilitated listening session where you can share insights and help drive what we do next.

Speakers

 

Moderator: Angie Hacker | Statewide Best Practices Coordinator| Local Government Commission
Angie Hacker has nearly 20 years of public, private and non-profit experience serving communities in the areas of sustainability, energy, and climate change, primarily in California. Prior to becoming CEO and Principal Consultant of Prosper Sustainably, she served as Energy and Sustainability Division Chief for the County of Santa Barbara. Her areas of expertise include designing innovative local/regional solutions, communicating a strategic vision, pursuing policy and regulatory opportunities, obtaining resources, building local capacity, leveraging cross-sector partnerships, and engaging stakeholders.
Gabriela Yamhure | Climate and Energy Project Coordinator | Local Government Commission
Gabriela Yamhure is a Project Coordinator for LGC’s Climate & Energy team. She graduated from Griffith University with a BS in Marine Ecology, and completed her MS at the University of San Diego in Environmental and Ocean Sciences. She is the project coordinator for the California Climate & Energy Collaborative (CCEC) and the Local Government Sustainable Energy Coalition (LGSEC).
Jenny Berg | Manager | San Francisco Bay Area Regional Energy Network
Jenny Berg graduated with honors from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She received her JD from the Catholic University in Washington, DC. and an Executive MBA Certificate in Sustainable Management from Presidio Graduate School. After a successful legal career focusing on toxic tort litigation, she followed her passion and concern for the environment. Jenny has been the Manager of the San Francisco Bay Area Regional Energy Network (BayREN) since its inception in January 2013, and is an Assistant Director with the Metropolitan Transportation Commission and the Energy Programs Manager.
Alejandra Téllez | Program Management Analyst | Tri-County Regional Energy Network
Alejandra Téllez is the program analyst for Sustainability Programs for the County of Ventura. Alejandra, manages the Local Government Partnership; Ventura County Regional Energy Alliance which is the County’s local energy efficiency clearinghouse office for training seminars, project identification, technical project support and energy planning for municipal governments, school and community college districts, special districts and small commercial businesses. In partnership with the counties of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Alejandra oversees the residential programs which provide utility customers and contractors with a direct link to dozens of energy rebates, training workshops and customer programs. Also manages sustainability activities via building operations and program implementation in County of Ventura services.
Lujuana Medina | Environmental Initiatives Manager | County of Los Angeles – ISD Environmental & Energy Services
Lujuana is responsible for managing and operating the SoCalREN energy efficiency portfolio. She also leads policy and grant development regarding energy efficiency, economic development and the electrification of transportation throughout the Southern California Region. Over the past 16 years, she has worked in various capacities in the energy policy field. Before joining the County of Los Angeles, Lujuana served as the Regulatory Manager for SoCalREN under ICF consulting, as the Energy Efficiency Policy Lead for Southern California Gas Company, as a Regulatory Case Manager in the Power Procurement Department for Southern California Edison, as a Generation Resource Planner and Utility Finance Advisor for San Diego Gas & Electric.
Kate Meis Wright | Executive Director | Local Government Commission
Kate Meis Wright is the Executive Director of the LGC, a nationally recognized nonprofit connecting local leaders, implementing innovative solutions and advancing smart-growth policies. Kate is a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Forum and has been recognized for her climate-change work by the Chronicle of Philanthropy as one of the nation’s “40 under 40 Young Leaders Who Are Solving the Problems of Today – and Tomorrow.”

Peer-to-Peer Network

We often hear that networking is one of the most valuable aspects of the annual Forum. We would like to ensure that the network we have built still has access to each other in the absence of the in-person networking benefits that the Forum provided, and therefore have created a closed Peer-to-Peer network. Feel free to use this group to connect with other professionals, whether it be for project support or professional development reasons.

Thanks to our CCEC Forum Sponsors!

Gold Level Sponsors

The Tri-County Regional Energy Network (3C-REN) reduced energy use in our region’s buildings for a more affordable, healthy, resilient and sustainable community.

The Bay Area Regional Energy Network (BayREN) delivers regional-scale energy efficiency programs, services, and resources focused on energy, water, and resilience.

The Southern California Regional Energy Network (SoCalREN) brings together a wide variety of services with one common goal: achieving unprecedented levels of energy savings throughout Southern California.

TerraVerde Energy is an independent advisory firm that supports Community Choice Energy Agencies, Public Agencies, and Commercial Enterprises in developing and deploying solar, battery, and energy resiliency programs.

The Energy Coalition (TEC) is a nonprofit that is creating the building blocks for a new energy economy by bringing ideas, technology, and expertise to public agencies, businesses, educators, & more.

Bronze Level Sponsors

Thank you to our promotional partners for getting the word out about the Forum!

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