Sunday Feb 12, 2023

Ep 11: Chat with Lily Valdez

Episode Summary:

In this episode, Lily Valdez takes us through her journey into solar and founding Women United By Solar to help reduce gender inequalities in the solar industry. She also talks about starting her company, Solar Lily, and the impact of the Inflation Reduction Act on her business and details about her mentorship program.


Sharon Lee

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.


Lily Valdez

Lily Valdez has been in the solar and energy efficiency industry for 5 years. It’s her passion to help homeowners transition to clean, renewable energy. With solar, homeowners enjoy a fixed, lower power bill, increase the value of their home and take control back by owning, not renting, their power while contributing to saving our planet.


She co-founded Women United By Solar to promote gender equality and diversity in the solar industry. Being in a predominantly male industry, they want to create a safe space for women to have access to training, development, support, and women empowering women. They have a sisterhood and place for women to grow and learn together.


WUBS hosts weekly Clubhouses and Zooms and has a Facebook Group, “Women United By Solar,” to catch up, provide value and promote inclusivity by having their clubhouses and zooms open to all genders.


Insights from this Episode

  • How Lily got into solar
  • Details on founding Women United By Solar
  • Inclusivity of women in solar
  • Starting Solar Lily
  • Impact of the Inflation Reduction Act on her business
  • Details about her mentorship program
  • What to expect from Lily


Quotes from the Show: 

  • “You know, once you get that entrepreneurial spirit and that bug, like it's very hard to go back to working for someone” —Lily Valdez in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
  • “But when I found solar, I was like, this isn't even a sale, like people are already paying for this and I get to help them save a bunch of money, add value to their home and literally own it now instead of renting at ever increasing prices” —Lily Valdez in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
  • “I love collaborating and helping because I think that we’re the trailblazers and the pioneers of the industry, especially being of a very few women that started the movements” —Lily Valdez in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
  • “I started it because I didn't find what I was looking for and what I think people needed in the industry” —Lily Valdez in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
  • “I believe that people follow people that lead by example and don't expect them to do something they wouldn't do” —Lily Valdez in “The Sunnyside Podcast”
  • “You know, let's be real about what really happens in solar, not just the pretty side, don't sell dreams, tell people the reality, tell them why we're doing this, you know” —Lily Valdez in “The Sunnyside Podcast”

Stay Connected:


Sharon Lee

LinkedIn: Sharon Lee 

Facebook: Sharon Lee


Lily Valdez

LinkedIn: Lily Valdez

Instagram: Women United By Solar


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This episode was produced and managed by Podcast Laundry.

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