In this episode, Sharon Lee talks with Katie Southworth about how she got into solar and landed her first job in solar. She also gives details about Southface, her role as an advocacy director, how they help design systems through consulting, and why it is important to invest in solutions on energy since the costs will continue skyrocketing.
Sharon Lee taps over a decade of solar sales experience, having led the creation of a solar division for a leading manufacturing/construction firm, resulting in over 17 MW of solar in its portfolio, as well as solar ultimately becoming its highest-grossing revenue vertical. Lee has been involved in the GA Solar Energy Association, serving on the board of directors as the marketing chair, organizing the annual conference, as well as vice-chair, and ultimately the first female chair of the organization in 2015. She is also a charter member of the Professional Women in Building chapter of the Greater Atlanta Homebuilders Association, a member of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), and Women in Solar Energy (WISE). Lee earned her B.S. degree in communications with double minors in marketing and psychology from Middle Tennessee State University, after spending three years at the University of Tennessee in the pre-health curriculum. Lee is the mom of two boys, ages 14 and 11, and a rabid college football fan. She and her husband, John, spend most of their free time at the baseball or football fields unless they can steal away for a quick round of golf.
Katie Southworth is the Advocacy Program Director at Southface Institute. She is an innovative, results-driven professional with fifteen years of experience in planning, coordinating, and implementing clean energy and environmental policies, programs, and projects.
Insights from this Episode
- How Katie got into solar
- How she got her first job in solar
- Details on Southface
- How Southface helps in designing systems and its advocacy efforts
- How Southface intervened specifically on Georgia Power’s Rate Case
- Takeaways from the Rate Case and outlook for solar
- How the renewables scene will look like in the next few years
Quotes from the Show:
- “Many people had lawyers in their family, and they sort of knew what they wanted to do, in terms of practicing law, and I didn’t really, other than I knew I wanted to help people, maybe do something with environmental” —Katie Southworth in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
- “I wasn’t interested in working in a law firm, but I knew I wanted to work in the public interest” —Katie Southworth in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
- “In terms of how we (Southface) work with clients on their sustainable plans for sustainability, of course we work with cities to help them design their 100% clean energy plans. We also work with private sector clients like Chick-fil-A” —Katie Southworth in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
- “If you are living in a building for a long time, now is the time to invest in solutions that can help you control your costs, coz they are going up up up!” —Katie Southworth in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
LinkedIn: Sharon Lee
Facebook: Sharon Lee
LinkedIn: Katie Southworth
Membership: Southface Membership
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