Larry Sherwood, President | Chief Executive Officer
As IREC’s President and CEO, Larry has worked with IREC in different capacities for more than 10 years. Prior to becoming President/CEO, he was IREC’s Vice President/COO, the author of IREC’s U.S. Solar Market Trends report and editor of IREC’s Small Wind Newsletter. With more than 35 years of experience in renewable energy, Larry has served as President of Sherwood Associates, a renewable energy consulting firm. He was Project Administrator for the Solar America Board for Codes and Standards and Executive Director for a number of renewable energy organizations including the Small Wind Certification Council, American Solar Energy Society and Northeast Sustainable Energy Association. Larry has received a Special Recognition Award from the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association. He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and lives in a PV-powered house in Boulder, Colorado with his wife, Janet, and daughter, Morgan.
Sara Baldwin, Vice President-Regulatory
Sara directs and oversees IREC’s regulatory team and IREC’s national and state engagement on distributed energy resource policies. She leads and supports program and organizational development efforts, strategic planning, and collaborative partnerships to achieve IREC’s mission to expand clean energy access to all consumers. Sara is a co-author of IREC’s Making the Grid Smarter: State Primer on Adopting the IEEE 1547™-2018 Standard for Distributed Energy Resources, Charging Ahead: An Energy Storage Guide for State Policymakers, and a contributing author to Optimizing the Grid: A Regulator’s Guide to Hosting Capacity Analyses. Sara has led the development of and contributed to dozens of additional publications and regulatory policy tools and resources, and she has presented at numerous conferences across the country. She serves on the Advisory Board of Grid Lab as well as the NREL Distributed Generation Interconnection Collaborative. Prior to joining IREC, Sara directed and implemented strategic clean energy policy and regulatory efforts in Utah as senior policy associate for Utah Clean Energy. Sara was named an “Innovator and Influencer” by Solar Power World in 2017 and one of “Utah’s Enlightened 50″ by the Community Foundation of Utah in 2012. She is also the host of the Grid Geeks podcast.
Mari Hernandez, Assistant Director – Regulatory Program
As IREC’s Assistant Director, Regulatory Program, Mari is responsible for policy tracking, research and analysis, as well as providing support for IREC’s state and national regulatory efforts. Before joining IREC, Mari was Deputy Director of Policy and Electricity Markets at SolarCity where she managed regulatory and legislative solar policy initiatives that covered the Southeastern US as well as provided research and analytical support to the policy team. Prior to SolarCity, Mari worked on clean energy issues at the Center for American Progress and the Solar Energy Industries Association. A former Austinite, Mari currently lives in Washington, D.C.
Brian Lydic, Chief Regulatory Engineer
Brian Lydic, Chief Regulatory Engineer for IREC, holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from the University of Michigan and has been active in renewable energy since 2005. He started out designing and installing residential and small commercial PV, solar thermal and wind energy systems for a company based in Ann Arbor, MI. In 2007, he joined Fronius as an Applications Engineer for solar electronics, supporting customers with design and field issues as well as leading numerous trainings for installers, designers and salespeople. In his role as Sr. Standards & Technology Engineer, Brian tracked standards, regulatory, technology and market issues as they related to product development for Fronius. As Regulatory Engineer for IREC, he continues to work with regulatory stakeholders to further the organization’s mission to increase access to sustainable energy and energy efficiency. He is a member of UL 1741 and IEEE 1547 working groups, helping to improve the grid integration of PV systems. Brian is a founding member and chair of the Forum on Inverter Grid Integration Issues (FIGII), an ad-hoc consortium of PV experts which seeks to address emerging high penetration issues through research and standardization. Working with utilities, manufacturers and experts, Brian helps to craft and revise technical requirements for grid interconnection in California, Hawaii and elsewhere. Brian, who holds an electrical engineering degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, lives in Ann Arbor, Michigan with his wife Willi and enjoys playing music with (and for) friends.
Sky is a Partner at Shute, Mihaly & Weinberger, LLP, where she represents the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) in grid modernization, interconnection, and energy storage proceedings across the United States. Her practice focuses on renewable energy regulation, with a particular emphasis on the numerous legal and technical policy questions that need to be addressed to advance the integration of distributed energy resources. She was the lead author of IREC’s 2017 Optimizing the Grid: A Regulator’s Guide to Hosting Capacity Analyses for Distributed Energy Resources and has been an active participant in most of the country’s regulatory proceedings related to Hosting Capacity Analyses. Sky also regularly works on the development and refinement of state and federally regulated interconnection standards. She participates in rulemakings before state public utility commissions and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission surrounding creation of foundational policies for energy storage, distributed solar, community solar and related topics. Sky earned a B.A. with High Honors from Hobart & William Smith Colleges, a J.D. from UC Berkeley. In 2010, she was awarded the California Lawyer Attorney of the Year (CLAY) award.
Laure-Jeanne Davignon, Vice President – Workforce
Laure-Jeanne has served in various capacities for IREC since 2010, and currently serves as Vice President, managing oversight and strategic direction for the workforce program. She also leads IREC’s standards development and revision activities. She has served as Principal Investigator for federally-funded training and certification efforts and is a national thought leader on clean energy workforce issues. She leads a team that develops unique job-focused online training and pioneered the use of micro-credentials to provide clean energy add-on skills for allied professionals. Her experience spans education and nonprofit management, first in higher education and then as an association executive for the residential building supply industry. She resides in upstate New York, where she powers her home through one of the first community solar projects in the state.
Michelle Barrett, Senior Project Manager
Michelle Barrett is the Senior Project Manager for the IREC Workforce, Regulatory and Communication operations. Prior to joining IREC, Michelle worked at the New York Association on Independent Living, Inc. (NYAIL) as the Membership and Event Coordinator. Michelle’s primary responsibility was management of all association meetings. She was also responsible for the operations and management of the association’s bi-annual conference and exposition, along with overseeing the day-to-day association office operations. She is a life-long resident of New York and resides in Albany with her family.
Kristen Ferguson, Director of Training and Development
Kristen is Director of Training and Development, helping to lead IREC’s workforce and credentialing efforts. She works with IREC’s Registered assessors to recruit, train, and mentor both the new and more seasoned members of the team. Her work is part of continuing efforts to raise the bar for quality assessments. Kristen also led a working group of industry professionals on the revision of Standard 01022. She has a degree in Mechanical Engineering and has used this technical knowledge along with her experience in instructional design, curriculum development, and experiential education classrooms in Baltimore and as a Peace Corps Volunteer in West Africa.
Mary Lawrence, Project Coordinator
Mary is a Project Coordinator for IREC and in the last six years has supported numerous workforce development grants including three through the U.S. Department of Energy SunShot Initiative and one for NYSERDA’s Workforce Development Program. Mary is currently supporting IREC as national administrator of the GEARED (Grid Engineering for Accelerated Renewable Energy Deployment) Network, an initiative to build a skilled power generation workforce for the 21st century electric grid. She is also supporting the Solar Training and Education for Professionals (STEP) Project which is focused on deploying high quality solar training, both online and in-person, to code officials and fire fighters across the country. Mary came to IREC from AmeriCorps Cape Cod, a full-time, residential, service program that focuses its efforts on the natural resource management and disaster preparedness needs of the Cape Cod Community. Mary lives in upstate New York with her husband and two children.
Joe Sarubbi, Technical Education and Training Consultant
Joe is a technical education and training and workforce development consultant, currently serving as Project Manager for the Grid Engineering for Accelerated Renewable Energy Deployment initiative (GEARED). Before joining IREC, Joe was a professor, department chair, and executive director at Hudson Valley Community College where he was the main architect for the college’s TEC-SMART facility, the country’s first totally integrated Training and Education Center for Semi-Conductor Manufacturing and Alternative and Renewable Technologies. In 2009, Joe was honored by the visit of President Obama in which the president recognized his work in developing model programs for other institutions to emulate. With over thirty-five years in industry and education training experience, Joe has garnered a national reputation for the design and delivery of renewable energy and other industry training programs. Joe is a board member of the North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP), has twice given expert testimony regarding renewable energy training programs and policy before the U.S. Congress and is a journeyman electrician.
Anna Sullivan, Director of Credentialing
Anna joined the IREC team in 2014. As Director of Credentialing, she provides guidance, technical resources, and capacity-building services to applicants and credential holders throughout the process of applying for, obtaining, and maintaining the IREC credential. She also contributes to other IREC workforce initiatives. Prior to this role, she served on the Credentialing Award Committee after three years on the applicant side of IREC’s Credentialing Program. In that capacity, Anna was Director of Curriculum Development and Accreditation at the Association for Energy Affordability, Inc. (AEA), a DOE Weatherization Training Center and energy program service provider headquartered in NYC. Anna brings 14 years of experience in energy efficiency and building resiliency, primarily in training program design, delivery and evaluation, curriculum and assessment development, and worker certification. In other roles, she has served as the Director of the Community Services Block Grant in Cook County, IL; Manager of Training for CEDA Weatherization in Chicago, IL; Training Coordinator for American Red Cross Building Resiliency Programs; Community Development Analyst for the OSCE in Tashkent, Uzbekistan; and as a journalist in England. Anna holds an MA from the University of Chicago and a BA from Oxford University.
Gwen Brown, Communications Director
As Communications Director at IREC, Gwen works to promote awareness of IREC’s programs and successes. Prior to joining the IREC team, Gwen was Senior Content Marketer at Aurora Solar, a software firm working to reduce the cost of residential and commercial solar through remote site analysis and PV design. In this role, she led the creation of educational content for solar professionals—including blog articles and webinars. Gwen has published over 20 articles in industry publications such as Solar Power World and Renewable Energy World and presented in webinars hosted by Greentech Media and pv magazine. Earlier in her career, Gwen was a Senior Research Associate at the Environmental Law Institute and a Fellow with the Clean Energy Leadership Institute. She graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Gettysburg College and currently resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Maryteresa Colello, Administrative Coordinator
Maryteresa (MT) has more than 20 years experience in office management, administration, and operation procedures. MT assists IREC with bookkeeping and administrative tasks. MT lives in Albany and is a devoted Mets fan.