Tell us about yourself and your background.
I’m originally from the Greater Boston area where I grew up in Lexington, just west of Boston. For the last decade or so, I’ve been bouncing around both coasts. I was in the Northern California Bay Area for four years, moved to San Diego for four years, and then back to Boston. And then recently I relocated to Cary, North Carolina with my wife and two young daughters!
I’ve been working in energy for about a decade now. Before I started with Stem almost six years ago, I worked for EnerNOC as an Enterprise Account Manager.
What is your role at Stem?
I started at Stem as a Customer Success Manager in 2016 focusing on supporting and expanding the relationship with some of Stem’s largest customers. Then I advanced to become a Senior Account Executive before stepping into my current role managing the East Coast developer team, which is focused on front-of-the-meter (FTM) market development. Our team works with developers that both originate projects to sell to other parties or hold projects long term in their own portfolios. We act as a constant throughout the development cycle and support at each phase including financial modeling, technical review, pre-construction support, deployment coordination, and of course software-driven asset management and optimization.
My role transition coincided when I relocated back to the Greater Boston area, which just so happened to be perfect timing for the Massachusetts SMART program, ISO-New England market, and all the FTM applications Stem was developing at the time. In a way, I helped Stem plant a flag on the East Coast in not only Massachusetts but in New York’s FTM market as well with the VDER program. It’s been a great trajectory for me.
What’s the most interesting thing you worked on lately?
The overall sales process at Stem is highly consultative. Ultimately, my motivation is to provide as much information as I can to partners so they can make the best decision for their project. It has also been really interesting to see Stem grow its presence in ISO-NE. At last check Stem was operating over 50% of the operating storage capacity in MA. The fact that we have been able to exceed proforma targets also gives me confidence in our ability to effectively deliver on customer expectations as well as keep me excited about the overall storage opportunity in the region in the coming years. I really enjoy my current role here because it is an extension of the Customer Success work I had previously been doing. It’s about supporting partners and customers rather than selling to them.
Most recently, Stem’s partners and customers are focused on the new Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and its solar and storage tax credits. My East Coast team and I are focused on the Massachusetts and New York markets. We are now taking a critical look at how the IRA will impact projects that retrofit existing solar with storage to see how we can accelerate the critical need we have for both renewable energy resources specifically in some of the most congested grid areas of the country. At Stem, we see a great deal of growth coming out of the IRA with these existing projects that would essentially be able to deliver more value to the grid.
What recent industry trends have made a big impression on you?
The overall maturation of the market where the strategic focus has evolved from larger infrastructure funds and independent power producers (IPPs) to now being focused on energy storage – and that asset class specifically – is a significant industry trend in my mind. In the past, it took a lot of educating our partners about the value of adding energy storage to their projects. There had to be clear ways to prove the overall economics made sense to add batteries.
But in the last year or so, it’s been really exciting to see more of our partners now coming to the table with a lot more foundational knowledge, allowing Stem to be more efficient. We can customize a ‘growth strategy’ based on partners’ specific needs and business trajectory while we also help them unlock flexibility and maximize their energy assets. In the past, we had to use a crawl, walk, run model and now it’s great to see how quickly the evolution has taken place and how much storage has proliferated over the last year or so.
Any advice for somebody who’s interested in the energy industry?
When I first started in the energy space, I always focused on what I was passionate about. I stayed curious because there’s so much to learn. The markets are always changing, and you have to remain a motivated learner to help make even the most challenging situations worthwhile.
There are so many entry points in the energy space. It’s just a matter of determining your point of engagement. And then once you find it, just dive in as actively as you can.
What about Stem would you like our partners and customers to know?
In general, most people are conceptually aware of the value and the market opportunity that energy storage represents. But the industry has really evolved over the last year in terms of the introduction of new use cases, solution chemistries, lead OEMs, and market structures. As a result, we have developed new offerings and ways to increase flexibility and meet the needs of our partners.
I’m certain that Stem has the most well-developed and trusted enterprise platform on the market. Our great depth of expertise is also what differentiates us. When you partner with Stem, it’s not a set-it-and-forget-it exercise. Our experts are with you throughout the entire project lifecycle. I feel strongly that Stem has the strongest energy storage optimization capabilities out of any firm in the space.