Policy Committee

The NYSEIA Policy Committee meets biweekly to coordinate engagement on policy topics that influence the New York solar market.

  • Kevin Bailey

    High Peaks Solar

    Kevin Bailey serves as the Lead System Designer at High Peaks Solar LLC. As a NABCEP and NYSERDA certified installer, Kevin has the qualifications and experience to install complex photovoltaic systems. He holds a BS in Political Science from the University of Albany, and also earned an AS in Electrical Construction and Maintenance from Hudson Valley Community College (HVCC). Kevin is an adjunct professor at HVCC, where he is training the next generation of certified solar installers. Kevin’s career in renewable energy began in 2005 with a three-year apprenticeship at Central Vermont Solar and Wind. During that time he completed a wind turbine training program in the Grand Cayman Islands. Prior to forming High Peaks Solar LLC, he was the sole proprietor of Sycaway Solar and Wind. Kevin is also the founder of The Sky Is Not Limited, a non-profit organization which provides drinking water infrastructure to impoverished nations. In 2010, Kevin traveled to a remote village in Tanzania, Africa to install a solar powered water well pump. Today, the “well project” provides fresh, bacteria-free drinking water for an entire village.

  • Mike Brusic

    Bright Power

    Michael Brusic is Technical Director at Bright Power. He provides support to the engineering team, and consults on projects across Bright Power's spectrum of services, including solar PV, energy storage, cogeneration, HVAC, building envelope, and controls. He also works closely with Bright Power's energy management clients, providing specialized troubleshooting, assistance in capital and strategic planning, and facility management consulting. He holds a B.S. in Physics from Fordham University, and a M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University.

  • NYSEIA Secretary

    Kathryn Chelminski


    Kathryn Chelminski is the Senior Manager, New Market Development – Solar PV at Ameresco, where she is responsible for Ameresco’s market development efforts into new territories. In this role, she stays actively involved in policy and regulatory proceedings and advocates proactively for policy changes to promote solar development in key markets.

    Prior to her work at Ameresco, Kathryn held doctoral research fellowships focused on energy policy at the Harvard Kennedy School Belfer Center and the University of Cambridge Energy Policy Research Group.

    Kathryn holds a Ph.D. in International Relations/Political Science from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva, for which her research focused the financial and regulatory barriers to renewable energy development in developing countries.

  • Elizabeth Curran

    BlueWave Solar

    Liz Curran is Director of Policy at BlueWave Solar. BlueWave is a pioneering solar developer and leading community solar service provider, providing community solar access to thousands of customers. Prior to joining BlueWave, Liz led state programs to expand access to clean energy for residents of disadvantaged communities at the California Public Utilities Commission. She holds a BA in International Studies from Colby College and an MA in International Environmental Policy from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies.

  • Robin Dutta


    Robin Dutta joined SunPower in 2015 where he leads the company’s east coast state policy initiatives, as well as supports the company’s Federal Affairs team. Robin is a bit of a throwback, having broken into the industry working on solar water heating policy for Skyline Innovations. His move to the PV space has shifted his focus to net metering/rate design, community solar, and the next generation of state renewable goals. Robin currently sits on the boards of the Maryland-DC-Virginia Solar Energy Industries Association as well as the Georgia Solar Energy Industries Association. He holds a M.A. in Urban Affairs and Public Policy from the University of Delaware, and a B.A. in Political Science from Drew University. Originally from New Jersey, Robin currently resides in Washington, DC.

  • Sean Garren

    Vote Solar

    Sean is the Northeast Regional Manager for Vote Solar. Vote Solar is an advocacy group focused on fighting climate change and fostering economic opportunity by bringing solar energy into the mainstream. He has worked in several states, including New York, and federally in clean energy and economic development policy and politics. He was previously the Legislative Director for Fair Share, an economic fairness advocacy group, and the Clean Energy Advocate for Environment America, a grassroots environmental advocacy group. Sean has a degree in Government from Dartmouth College.

  • Jeff Irish


    Jeff Irish founded Hudson Solar in 2002, as a solar system engineering and installation company operating in New York’s Hudson Valley and Capital District. In 2008, the company’s head office in Rhinebeck became the first proven zero net energy commercial building in New York and the ten northeastern states. In early 2018, Hudson Solar merged with SunCommon, Vermont’s leading solar installer and a Certified B Corp, and Jeff is now the Vice President and General Manager of SunCommon’s growing business in New York. Prior to his solar career, Jeff was a business general manager and senior executive with GE in the United States, Canada, and France. He is a licensed professional engineer in New York State and the Province of Ontario, a NYSERDA Eligible PV Installer, and a NABCEP Certified PV Installation Professional. Jeff has a degree in Engineering Science from the University of Toronto, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

  • Melissa Kemp

    Cypress Creek Renewables

    Melissa is the Director of Policy, Northeast for Cypress Creek Renewables, the second largest solar developer in the US, and a long-term owner and operator of community (CDG) and utility-scale solar and storage projects. She is focused on enabling the transition to renewable energy to urgently address climate change and bring many other economic and health benefits to communities. She serves on the NYSEIA Policy Committee and on the NYSEIA Board, and is also actively engaged in SEIA, ACE NY, CCSA, and AEE. Previously, she was the Director of Government and Utility Affairs for Renovus Solar, Director of Commercial/Utility Solar Development for Renovus Solar, and the Program Director for the large Solar Tompkins program. She has over a decade of experience in the solar market in the Northeast, and has a wide range of experience including project development, project management and engineering, and business development more broadly. She holds a BS from Princeton University.

  • Jessica Reinhardt


    Jessica has worked on policy issues across the country for almost 15 years. She currently serves as Director of Policy for Sunrun where she manages advocacy efforts to advance the deployment of residential solar, energy storage, and grid services in New York and the Southwest. She previously served as Energy Counsel in the New York Assembly, and spent several years as Government Relations Manager for Con Edison. During that time, Superstorm Sandy devastated NY forcing policymakers to reexamine the way electricity is generated and delivered. This led to her tenure as SolarCity’s Deputy Director of Policy where she worked on issues impacting the residential and commercial sectors in the Northeast.

  • Peter Ross

    Hodgson Russ

    Peter is a solar energy law and policy professional who has served as the Northeast Director of Policy and Business Development for Borrego Solar Systems, a developer, builder, and operator of solar and energy storage systems, and as an energy law and policy fellow at NYU School of Law’s Guarini Center for Environmental, Energy, and Land Use Law. He previously practiced as an associate at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, and clerked for the Hon. John Gleeson in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Based in New York City, he holds a law degree from NYU School of Law and a B.A. from Harvard University.

  • NYSEIA Vice President

    David Schieren

    EmPower Solar

    David co-founded EmPower in 2003 to make solar the dominant energy source in New York and beyond, and is dedicated to accelerating activities to achieve this goal. As CEO, David is responsible for leading and managing the company along with the management committee. David’s day to day includes commercial business development, battery system sales, community solar projects and managing the SunPower Master Dealer partnership.

    As an advocate, David conducts outreach to build support for clean energy amongst political, community, business and religious leaders, and the public at large. David has testified before the United States Congress Science Committee about the DOE Solar Decathlon and solar energy, and has been involved with numerous TV, print, internet, radio and documentary interviews.

    David is a current board member of Vision Long Island. He has a Master of Science in Energy Management from the New York Institute of Technology, where he received the Faculty Award for outstanding achievement, and co-led the 2005 Solar Decathlon solar-hydrogen zero energy home project.

    He has a BA in Economics from the University of Vermont, where he received the Freeman Saltus Award in Economics. David was a North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) Photovoltaic Installer. David started his career as an Institutional Equity Advisor at Merrill Lynch where he sold Japanese equities to large U.S.-based investors.

  • Daniel Spitzer

    Hodgson Russ

    Daniel A. Spitzer is a Partner at the law firm of Hodgson Russ LLP. He is the Renewable Energy Practices Leader and a member of the Cleantech Practice, Green Building Practice, Land Use & Economic Development Practice, and Real Property Tax Assessment & Eminent Domain Practice. Dan concentrates his practice on environmental law, renewable energy, sustainable development, land use law, municipal law, real property taxation, and real estate development. His practice involves numerous renewable energy projects, including representing municipalities, developers, land owners, and financing entities. His work, from project inception through successful litigation, includes some of the largest wind farms in the eastern United States, multiple utility and small-scale solar projects, and landfill gas-to-energy, biomass, storage, transmission, and energy efficiency projects. A primary part of Dan’s work focuses on National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA) review and compliance with federal and state environmental statutes. His work includes environmental assessments for large-scale telecommunications projects and power generation projects. He counsels agencies and private clients on compliance with historic preservation laws, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, and other federal and state environmental statutes and regulations, and has drafted PILOTs, Host Community Agreements, PPAs, EPCs, MIPAs and other contracts. He is a frequent speaker and writer on sustainable development, property taxation, SEQRA, and zoning issues. Dan has a J.D. from the University at Buffalo School of Law and an MSc in Sustainable Development from the University of London.

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