Sustainability Series: Driving the Colorado Clean Energy Economy by Empowering Women and Girls

Date: June 7th, 2016
Time: 5:30 – 7:30pm

In 2012 the energy industry in Colorado represented more than $41 billion in revenue and 122,400 jobs. During that same year the state’s solar capacity grew by 31 percent, and by 2014, 18 percent of Colorado’s electricity came from renewables. In the U.S., between 2008 and 2011, green industries created 8.5 million jobs and $1 trillion in revenues. 

As we transition away from fossil fuels, advancing women’s leadership in clean energy is critical. What role could women play in this transition? What jobs in clean energy are being created and how could women be recruited? Are we making this paradigm shift to a clean energy economy in a way that promotes diversity in the field? How can women’s professional organizations contribute to this process by developing leaders and creating connections? Join Colorado Clean Energy Education & Empowerment (C3E), Colorado EcoWomen, Women of Wind Energy & Women in Sustainable Energy (WISE), and help create collaborative solutions to drive growth of the Colorado clean energy economy by educating and empowering women and girls.

Presenters: Emily Backus, EcoWomen Colorado | Kelly Crandall, WISE | Jennifer Newman, WoWE | Dawn Putney, Colorado C3E

Jennifer joined NREL in July 2015 as part of the Director’s Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. Her research interests include improving turbulence measurements from Doppler wind lidars and quantifying the effects of turbulence on wind power production. During her graduate work, Jennifer assisted in the design and execution of several field campaigns in Oklahoma, Colorado, and California through a collaboration with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Jennifer holds a B.S. in Atmospheric Science from Cornell University and M.S. and Ph. D. degrees in Meteorology from the University of Oklahoma. She is an active member of the Colorado chapter of Women of Wind Energy (WoWE) and is currently facilitating a WoWE peer mentoring group at NREL.

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Kelly Crandall joined the all-volunteer Board of the non-profit Women in Sustainable Energy (WISE) in 2011 and has been the Programs Coordinator since 2013.  Through WISE, she looks for opportunities to promote and connect women who are shaping Colorado’s clean energy future.  She is the Senior Rates and Research Analyst at EQ Research, LLC, a consulting firm that provides clean energy intelligence through regulatory and legislative monitoring, as well as consulting services.  Prior to joining EQ, she was the Energy Strategy Coordinator for the City of Boulder, Colorado.  As a key member of the Energy Future Project–a dedicated team tasked with evaluating the costs and benefits of a municipal electric utility and initiating its formation while exploring other opportunities for energy innovation in the Boulder community–her role was diverse and included technical project management, energy modeling, stakeholder facilitation, and providing testimony at the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.  Kelly graduated from the University of Florida and earned her J.D. from the University of Colorado Law School in 2010.

Dawn Putney is the founding president and lead strategist at Toolbox Creative, a brand design firm for innovative technology companies. Before moving to Colorado in 1994, Dawn worked with some of the largest ad agencies in Minneapolis. With 30+ years as a brand designer, Dawn thrives on helping technologists, innovators and engineers tell the story of how their big ideas can change the world. Dawn is also the co-founder of Art Lab Fort Collins, an experimental, non-profit creating community spaces for the arts. In addition to serving on the C3E steering committee, Dawn is proud to serve as a board member of Pretty Brainy, a non-profit that engages girls in STEAM learning, and the Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce. Dawn believes that elevating the conversation will change the face of women in technology and business leadership.

Emily Backus is a Sustainability Advisor with Denver Environmental Health’s Certifiably Green Denver program. She assists businesses in a variety of sectors across Denver that seek to reduce their environmental impact, improve operational efficiency and save money. In addition to assisting typical businesses like restaurants, retail stores and offices, Emily works to develop green standards and certifications for local emerging industries including breweries and cannabis cultivation facilities.  Emily joined EcoWomen Colorado in 2013 and became Co-President in 2014, overseeing a variety of events and programs in the Denver area that fulfill EcoWomen’s mission to inspire and empower women to become leaders for the environmental community. Emily has a background in hospitality management, environmental consulting and financial analysis and is an alumna of Cornell University.

The Sustainability Series (S2) is a collaboration between the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado and the Wirth Chair in Sustainable Development at CU Denver’s School of Public Affairs. The purpose of S2 is to provide a forum for the discussion of ideas, principles and strategies to enhance social, economic and environmental sustainability. Events occur the first Tuesday of each month, unless otherwise indicated.

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