Board of Directors

Elaine Hebert, Chair

Northern California Solar Energy Association
Berkeley, California

Elaine Hebert is a retired energy efficiency and green and sustainability expert from the California Energy Commission. For most of the years since 1983, she has been involved with a chapter or subchapter of ASES on either the East Coast or the West Coast; she served as President of the Urban Solar Energy Association in Boston and years later as President of the Northern California Solar Energy Association in Berkeley. She is an ASES Fellow and a recipient of ASES’s Rebecca Vories Award. She is an avid hiker and bicyclist, and in 2014 rode in the California Climate Ride – 250 miles in 4 days – to raise money for organizations working on climate issues. She took an unusual path to a college degree, starting out at Swarthmore College, taking an extended leave of absence, taking classes at Harvard University’s evening division, then finishing a BS in Resource Science from the University of California at Davis.

paulette_middletonPaulette Middleton, Chair

Owner, Panorama Pathways
Boulder, CO

Paulette Middleton is a strong advocate for the rapid transformation of the global energy system to renewable energy for all, used wisely and efficiently. During her 40-year career as an atmospheric chemist specializing in assessments that bring science to support appropriate decision making related to energy and the environment, she come to deeply appreciate the need for this energy system transformation, and for advancing sustainable living. Her professional experience includes leadership positions at University of Texas (PhD Chemistry 1973), National Center for Atmospheric Research, Atmospheric Sciences Research Center at the State University of New York at Albany, Science & Policy Associates, Inc., and RAND. In addition to being ASES Co-Chair, she is Secretary of the International Solar Energy Society Board and does environmental and energy consulting through her company Panorama Pathways (

Lucas Dixon, Vice Chair

Project Manager, Plug Smart
Columbus, Ohio

Lucas Dixon is a passionate energy guy! Mr. Dixon has had the opportunity to participate in multiple exciting projects and organizations during his young career, including being a Board Member of Green Energy Ohio, Co-founder of the 2009 OSU Solar Decathlon team, adviser for the 2011 OSU Solar Decathlon Team, Founding Co-Adviser of the OSU ASES Chapter that has since completed two solar projects in Haiti. Lucas also serves as the Chair of the Sustainable Transportation Division of ASES. Lucas is Chief of Strategy and a Project Manager at the mid-west’s most innovative energy efficiency firm Plug Smart.

Adam Plesniak, Treasureradam_plesniak

Managing Director, OC Renewables 
Orange County, CA
Adam Plesniak has been the Managing Director of OC Renewables (, the Orange County, CA Chapter of ASES since 2012.  Adam received a MS in Electrical Engineering from Stanford and has worked as a consultant, entrepreneur, product development engineer and technical team builder since 2005.  Notable accomplishments include acting as lead designer on the Boeing XR700 solar generator project, leading a team at Amonix to set a world record for PV module efficiency in 2013 and leading a team in Arzon Solar to install the first utility scale solar array in a US National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, in 2015.


james_morelyJames Morley, Secretary

Solar Operations Engineer, WindLogics
Juno Beach, FL

James Morley is a Solar Operations Engineer at WindLogics.  James is passionate about solar radiation processes and solar energy production.  His experience includes research and field work across university, government and private sector settings. James is very interested in the areas of: solar monitoring instrumentation, data mining, grid impacts from high levels of solar photovoltaic (PV) generation, PV operational performance monitoring and solar resource assessment.

James has also served as a technical expert for the International Energy Agency Task 36 working group on solar resource knowledge management. Most recently, he has been developing analytics and software for operational performance assessment at PV plants. This work is acting to reduce the LCOE from solar PV by reducing operations and maintenance costs. His academic background includes a B. Sc. and M. Sc. in physical geography from the University of Regina and Simon Fraser University respectively. The general theme of his formal education has been meteorology and climatology; with specific focus on measurement and modeling of solar radiation.

billSpratleyBill Spratley

Executive Director, Green Energy Ohio
Columbus, Ohio
Bill has led GEO since 2001 and is based in Columbus. In May 2012, he received the prestigious Charles Greeley Abbot Award from the American Solar Energy Society (ASES), the National Green Power Leadership Award from the Center for Resource Solutions in 2007 and the Wind Advocacy Award in 2006 from the US Wind Powering America Program of the US Department of Energy. An attorney since 1973, Bill was President of William A. Spratley & Associates Inc., a consulting firm with public interest clients starting in1 993. He headed the PhotoVoltaics4You National Consumer Project to assist state utility consumer advocates in understanding solar electric issues. As the State of Ohio’s first Consumers’ Counsel, 1977-1993, Bill was founding President of the National Association of State Utility Consumer Advocates (NASUCA). He served on US Department of Energy advisory boards under Presidents Carter, Bush and Clinton. A College of Wooster graduate, Bill’s J.D. is from Ohio State University’s College of Law.

Laura Cina

Managing Director, Minnesota Renewable Energy Society
Minneapolis, Minnesota

Laura Cina has been the Managing Director of the Minnesota Renewable Energy Society since 2009. Laura received her Bachelors in Political Science and Sustainable Studies from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked for a solar leasing company and is attending the Humphrey Institute for her Masters in Public Affairs.

John Essig American Solar Energy SocietyJohn Essig

Director, U.S. Energy Institute

With nearly three decades of experience as a research and development engineer, John is currently working to develop cost-favorable zero-net-energy buildings, carbon-neutral transportation systems, and fully sustainable communities. In his current role as Director of the U.S. Energy Institute (, John is also exploring ways to maximize both individual and national energy security through the broad application of finely distributed renewable energy systems coupled with distributed storage, aggressive demand management, and smart microgrids. Realizing that the future of Planet Earth depends on much more than technology alone, John also endeavors to engage in policy review and formulation at various levels of government including local, state, national, and intergovernmental.

Prior to his current work, John led efforts as a social entrepreneur to develop highly portable, multi-purpose, solar energy harnessing systems designed to support a broad range of activities including, among others, global rapid-response disaster relief, health and education programs within the developing world, remote field work, and numerous recreational activities. John’s early professional work focused on the research and development of high-performance aerospace propulsion systems for United Technologies’ Pratt & Whitney Aircraft division, as well as high-efficiency, low-emission, ground-based gas turbines for Caterpillar’s Solar Turbines group.

John holds a B.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Virginia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science, and is also a practicing Certified Passive House Consultant™. Beyond his professional life, John is an avid explorer. Whether by land, air or sea, John is always seeking to gain a better understanding of the true nature of our shared world, the beautifully diverse nature of humanity, and the many complex interrelationships between the two.

John strongly believes that by openly sharing our respective knowledge and experience, we can work together to ultimately create a more peaceful, prosperous, equitable — and sustainable — world for all.

wyldon-king-fishmanWyldon King Fishman, FASES

Founder and President of the New York Solar Energy Society (NYSES)

NYSES is a volunteer, grassroots, membership organization serving the children, families, engineers, architects and teachers of New York State since 2007. NYSES prepares consumer knowledge handouts about energy conservation and renewable energy and distributes Green Energy Times, a resource publication, to the public throughout eastern New York State. NYSES analyses legislation and state programs and visits with the staff of legislators in New York City, New York State and in Washington, DC. Ms Fishman is a thought leader and organizer of the Solar Salon NYC series and NYSES conferences. She travels to local events with the NYSES exhibit table and facilitates the “Make A Solar Module” workshop classes for groups. Ms Fishman mentors a local organization working on food, energy and environmental justice.  

As a chapter leader and Fellow of ASES, Ms Fishman helps coordinate the yearly National Solar Tour and assists with new chapters and Emerging Professionals. As the Solar Resource Network, NYSES helps individuals making a career path change with exposure to renewable energy professionals, with sound resources for technical information and with opportunities to explore technologies. Ms. Fishman writes regularly for local magazines, the NYSES publications and Green Energy Times. Ms Fishman serves on the board of the American Solar Energy Society.

JTrahan_photoJamie Trahan

Jamie received a B.S. and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of South Florida (USF), with a focus in solar energy engineering. Fueled by a desire to promote the advancement of a clean and sustainable future, she volunteered across local and statewide non-profit environmental organizations in the state of Florida throughout her undergraduate and graduate academic career. She also promoted the adoption of solar energy technology through educational outreach, having engaged in activities such as traveling the country with a world record-breaking solar powered car, and organizing Tampa Bay’s first ASES Solar Home Tour. Jamie was the principal investigator of USF’s first Student Green Energy Fund project that financed the installation of two photovoltaic systems at the university’s student center. As a graduate student, she worked under the auspices of the USF Clean Energy Research Center, conducting research in thermal energy storage systems for Concentrating Solar Thermal Power plants.

After receiving her Ph.D. in May 2015, Jamie moved to rural Haiti to serve as the Microgrid Operations Manager for EarthSpark International’s first solar powered smart grid. She is an ASME Graduate Teaching Fellow and a Department of Education GAANN Fellow. She is also the first recipient of Solar Energy International’s Johnny Weiss Award and a recipient of the National Go Solar Foundation Evette Harless Award. Jamie currently devotes time to installing PV systems on low income housing as a volunteer with Grid Alternatives.

IMG_0620Angela Lipanovich

President, Estriatus Law, PC

Angela Lipanovich became a lawyer because she wants to protect what she loves: a healthy environment for us, future generations and all species who share this earth.  Ms. Lipanovich has worked as legal counsel almost exclusively for solar companies for over a decade.

Currently, she serves as legal counsel to dozens of solar companies through her law practice “Estriatus Law” located in Santa Cruz, California.  Ms. Lipanovich assists her clients with developing and navigating solar transactions, assisting with the day-to-day legal needs of running solar companies and advocating for solar policies.  Previously, she worked in the solar industry of Silicon Valley as General Counsel of Akeena Solar (Andalay Solar and Westinghouse Solar).  She represented Akeena Solar on the Boards of the Solar Energy Industry Association and the Silicon Valley Leadership Group.  She has also served on the Monterey Bay Area community choice aggregation (CCA) Technical Working Group, which is creating a locally owned utility that will supply clean power to its residents of Santa Cruz, Monterey and San Benito Counties (CA) beginning in 2018.  Ms. Lipanovich has served on the American Bar Association’s Energy Infrastructure and Siting Committee as the Vice Chair, Renewables. She is a member of CalSEIA, NorCal Solar, ASES and SEIA and serves on SEIA’s Solar Services and Consumer Division Committee.  Beyond her professional life, Ms. Lipanovich is an avid hiker, surfer, and cross-country runner.  She is passionate about bringing renewable energy technologies mainstream because she knows that our future depends on them.


Jill K. Cliburn


Through her consultancy based in Santa Fe, NM, Jill Cliburn has focused on speeding the shift to clean energy, including solar and integrated DERs. She is committed to collaboration, whether across technical disciplines or political divides, as her recent work leading the SunShot-funded Community Solar Value Project, shows. She has worked for government, utilities, and industry associations, including more than a decade promoting best practices among electric coops and municipal utilities in the West. In addition, she has worked for non-profits, ranging from local agencies to regional advocacy groups. In New Mexico, she helped promote foundational laws and policies, from the RPS and clean-vehicles to climate. Jill started her career (long ago) in Illinois, initiating the State Solar Office and helping drive solar and clean-jobs development in Springfield. An active ASES member, she has participated in conferences, events, and Solar Today. Now rooted in Santa Fe County, she divides her free time among family, gardening, land-conservation, energy and other sustainability concerns.



David PanichDavid Panich

Owner, Panich Architecture
Framingham, MA

David Panich is a registered architect and has been designing energy efficient buildings incorporating active and passive solar energy and sustainable building strategies for over 35 years. He practices in the Boston, MA area, is a member of the American Institute of Architects and a LEED accredited professional.

David has been a member of ASES since 1976. In addition to serving on the ASES Board of Directors he is currently the chair of the ASES Solar Buildings Division, is past-chair of the ASES Sustainability Division and has worked to help organize multiple ASES Solar conferences.  He also served as Chair of the 38th National Passive Conference, at SOLAR 2013 in Baltimore, MD.

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