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IN MEMORIAM: Ruth E. Leistensnider, 1961–2019

January 8, 2020


The NYSEIA board of directors is deeply saddened by the loss of our colleague and fellow board member Ruth E. Leistensnider. Ruth passed away in Barnstable, Massachusetts, on December 23, 2019 at the age of 58.

Ruth joined our board in 2010 and served as Treasurer for seven years from 2012–2019, providing keen oversight and guidance for the organization during a critical period of evolution and growth. NYSEIA staff and colleagues who worked with her over the years universally described Ruth as dedicated and diligent in everything she did, consistently volunteering her time without being asked. She not only helped to manage the day-in, day-out administrative affairs of NYSEIA but also served as a useful legal and ethical check on all our work. We owe her a great deal.

Ruth was a partner at Nixon Peabody and a founding member of its Albany office, where she specialized in energy law and practice. She was valued for her expertise in the siting and permitting of renewable energy installations. According to those who worked with her at Nixon Peabody, “Ruth demonstrated an insatiable appetite for information relevant to her practice and had a unique ability to put that knowledge to work for her clients.” She was also appreciated for her generosity, warmth, and collegiality at the firm.

Ruth loved spending time at her family home in Cape Cod where in recent years she had been focused on taking care of her aging mother. She was known among friends and neighbors as a lover of golf and baseball.

NYSEIA and the New York solar community will greatly miss Ruth and the professionalism she brought to our board and operations. May she rest in peace.


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