The virginia renewable energy alliance


Executive Team

Cliona Robb | Thompson McMullan, P.C.

Cliona RobbCliona Mary Robb, LEED® AP, is the Director of Thompson McMullan, P.C. Formerly, she was the chair of Christian & Barton's Sustainability, Energy and Green Development practice group and a member of the Energy and Telecommunications department. She represents municipal, industrial, and commercial customers of electric, natural gas, and water utilities regarding rate, service and transmission line siting. Cliona also works on renewable energy transactions involving solar power and wind power and has been appointed by the Governor to the Solar Energy Development Authority, where she serves as Chair.

Cliona is currently serving as VA-REA's Chair for 2020.

Sarah Cosby | Dominion Energy

Sarah has been with Dominion for 18 years and works in Dominion’s Corporate Public Policy team in Richmond, VA. Sarah’s efforts at Dominion include analysis and research of energy policy and regulation in all 50 states. For five years, Sarah served in Dominion’s Alternative Energy Solutions group where her efforts focused on policy research related to renewables and advanced grid technologies as well as alternative regulation and rate design. Prior to her tenure in the Corporate Public Policy and Alternative Energy Solutions groups, Sarah held roles in the Company’s Regulation, Legal, and Corporate Ethics and Compliance groups. Sarah holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia and an MBA from Virginia Commonwealth University. Sarah is also a certified Six Sigma Master Black Belt.

Sarah is currently serving as VA-REA's Vice Chair for 2020.

Rick Thomas | Timmons Group

Rick Thomas specializes in Environmental Services and Energy projects and provides environmental consulting services for a wide range of the Timmons Group’s municipal, State, Federal and private clients.

Rick is currently serving as VA-REA's Secretary for 2020.

Kevin Comer | Antares Group, Inc.

Kevin Comer is a mechanical engineer specializing in energy and environmental systems. He is experienced in: R&D and market assessments for advanced energy systems; power plant performance testing and analysis; biomass fuel supply studies; biomass repowering and cofiring in fossil fuel-fired boilers; energy use evaluation and energy auditing; performance and economic modeling for energy systems; environmental permitting for power generation projects; feasibility and design studies for solar photovoltaic systems; project management and performance assessment for installation of solar photovoltaic systems; and public outreach for “green” energy.

Kevin is currently serving as VA-REA's Treasurer for 2020. 

Get to know the rest of VA-REA's Board of Directors

Preston Bryant | McGuireWoods Consulting

Preston is a senior vice president at McGuireWoods Consulting, where he works in the firm's infrastructure and economic development group. Preston’s practice centers largely on infrastructure and economic development, where he advises clients on State government and its legislative and regulatory processes.

Preston regularly represent clients before the General Assembly, Governor’s Office, and regulatory agencies. Preston served as Virginia secretary of natural resources in the cabinet of Governor Timothy M. Kaine (2006-2010), overseeing the Department of Environmental Quality, the Department of Conservation and Recreation, the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, the Department of Historic Resources, and the Virginia Marine Resources Commission.

Preston is currently serving as VA-REA's Events Committee Chair.

Guy Chapman | Collegiate Clean Energy

Guy is President of Collegiate Clean Energy at Ingenco. CCE & Ingenco provide customers with 100% renewable energy 24x7 from their landfill gas generation portfolio.

Guy brings over 20 years of experience in the energy industry with experience in clean energy research & project development, practical experience in large scale greenhouse gas inventories, carbon trading and clean energy strategy development.

Rob Corradi | Sun Tribe

An experienced strategist and consultant, Rob has spent his career advising leaders in every level of government and in the private sector. He currently serves as Senior Advisor, Public Affairs for Sun Tribe – Virginia’s largest distributed solar provider – where he oversees the company’s work in public policy, communications, media relations, and legislative affairs.

Prior to his time at Sun Tribe, Rob founded Pen Public Affairs in Charlottesville, and worked at CLS Strategies (Omnicom), where he represented Fortune 500 companies facing significant crises and provided media training for clients engaged in high-stakes litigation. Previously, he served in the Obama Administration as the speechwriter for U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy and Assistant Secretary for Health Karen DeSalvo; as the speechwriting consultant to Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser’s transition team; the Chief Speechwriter and Deputy Press Secretary for Maryland Lieutenant Governor (now Congressman) Anthony Brown; Chief of Staff to Baltimore City Councilman Jim Kraft; and for a variety of campaigns and elected officials in Illinois, New York, and Maryland. A New York native, he got his start at the Clinton Foundation.

Eric Heintz | M&T Bank

Eric Heintz is co-sponsor of M&T’s Solar Tax Equity Initiative and a Relationship Manager with M&T Bank’s Greater Washington commercial lending group. In regards to Solar Tax Equity, Mr. Heintz helps customers identify solutions for structured finance applications and is working to bring M&T to market as an active tax equity investor.

Mr. Heintz is responsible for 1) the development and deployment of the tax partnership as a new product at M&T Bank (product still in development), 2) building relationships with developers and other centers of influence in the renewable energy space, and 3) structuring, diligence, and underwriting of renewable energy transactions.

Francis Hodsoll | SolUnesco

Francis Hodsoll is the co-founder and CEO of SolUnesco, where he leads strategy, business development, policy, performance management, and community engagement. He uses his expertise in energy wholesale markets, policy, land use, and finance to develop utility-scale solar projects that connect society’s needs to sustainable, cost-competitive energy. SolUnesco has more than 1 GW of projects under development. Francis holds a BA in economics from Colby College and an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management.

He has served as Board Member of the MD-DC- VA Solar Energy Industry Association, Chair of the Energy Workgroup for Governor McAuliffe’s Climate Change and Resiliency Update Commission, Committee Member of Governor McAuliffe’s Energy Committee, and Founder of the Virginia Advanced Energy Industries Association. Francis also founded and serves as President of E&E Frontiers, an energy management consulting company whose clients include the U.S Military, US AID, Nextera, Advanced Energy Economy, ICF, LMI, Sun Edison, Sol Systems and Standard Solar.

Emily Hughes | EDP Renewables

Emily Hughes is a Project Manager at EDP Renewables North America (EDPR NA), specializing in greenfield development and acquisition of utility-scale solar and wind projects in the eastern United States & Canada. Emily is based at EDPR NA’s corporate headquarters in Houston, TX. EDPR NA develops, constructs, owns, and operates wind farms and solar parks across North America.

The company has developed more than 6,900 megawatts (MW) and operates more than 6,300 MW of renewable energy projects, with many more projects—including offshore wind—currently under construction and in the development pipeline. Emily graduated from Rice University in 2013 and has 7 years of experience in the energy industry, including energy business software consulting, renewable energy development and project management.

Ron Jefferson | Appalachian Power Company

Ronald Jefferson is an External Affairs Manager with Appalachian Power Company. He has 37 years of experience in the electric utility industry, working all 37 years for Appalachian Power. Ron’s current responsibilities include developing electric utility policies in Virginia and working with State Government.

Ron attended Patrick Henry Community College before graduating summa cum laude from Averett College with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in 1992. Ron lives in Mechanicsville, Virginia with his wife, Cindy, and two children.

Carrie Hearne | Virginia Energy

Carrie Hearne is the Solar Program Manager for Virginia Energy. In this role, Carrie provides outreach and technical assistance for localities on utility-scale solar siting and renewable energy procurement, including serving as a SolSmart Advisor for the Commonwealth. She also manages the Clean Energy Advisory Board and the affiliated Low-to-Moderate Income Solar Loan and Rebate Fund to increase energy equity and access to solar for economically disadvantaged communities. Carrie originates from rural West Virginia and has recently moved back to the region after working on climate policy and sustainable business in Oregon. She has an MBA in sustainable systems from Presidio Graduate School and a Bachelor’s degree from Earlham College. Carrie lives in a solar-powered home in Richmond, Virginia, with her two labradoodle dogs.Image preview

Jonathan Miles | James Madison University

Dr. Jonathan Miles serves a professor in the Department of Integrated Science and Technology at James Madison University and director of the Center for Wind Energy at JMU.

Dr. Jonathan Miles serves a professor in the Department of Integrated Science and Technology at James Madison University and director of the Center for Wind Energy at JMU.

He previously served as Program Director of the international Master’s program in Sustainable Environmental Resources Management at JMU and on an IPA assignment with the wind program at the U.S. Department of Energy. Dr. Miles holds a B.A. in physics from Clark University and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst.

Deborah Reyes | 174 Power Global

Deborah Reyes brings 25+ years of experience in the global energy sector shaped by a broad spectrum of commercial and leadership positions in the U.S. & overseas markets leading power project development in renewables and conventional power. Ms. Reyes' expertise includes originating and advancing projects to construction through her intimate knowledge of: site selection, land acquisition, interconnection/ transmission issues, permitting/ entitlement processes, origination, financing, project marketing, strategic market entry analysis, contract negotiations and deal structuring in several languages and multiple countries.​

Currently, Ms. Reyes is Vice President, Development, Eastern U.S. Region & County Manager for Mexico for 174 Power Global USA, an affiliate of the global solar module manufacturer Hanwha Q Cells, USA.

Ben Saunders | AES

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Ben is the Director of Development for renewable energy projects for AES Clean Energy, formerly sPower. In Virginia, he led the effort to gain approval for the 500 MW Spotsylvania Solar Energy Center, 175MW Skipjack Solar Facility and the 240 MW Cavalier Solar facility.

Prior to joining AES, Ben was an environmental auditor and a transmission line siting and permitting consultant at Dominion Energy. He has extensive experience with development, environmental compliance and permitting in Virginia, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia with a focus on high voltage transmission system projects, natural gas transmission and power generation facilities. Ben holds a BA in Political Science from Sewanee: The University of the South and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University.

Anthony Smith | Secure Futures​

Tony serves as President and CEO of Secure Futures LLC, bringing over 30 years of experience in energy efficiency, solar energy, and community development in Vermont, Pennsylvania and Virginia.

In 2016, Tony led Secure Futures in the development of over 1.7 MW of distributed solar power in Virginia, including the first PPA in the Dominion PPA Pilot Program, a 205kW system at the University of Richmond.

He serves as a board member of the Virginia Renewable Energy Alliance. Tony earned a Masters in Architecture from the University of Pennsylvania, and a PhD from the Wharton School of Management, University of Pennsylvania.

Christopher Smith | Fisher Associates

Chris has been responsible for leading Environmental Permitting, Civil Engineering, and Survey for wind and solar projects across the United States.

He currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer for Fisher Associates.

Kirk Johnson | Old Dominion Electric Cooperative

Kirk Johnson is Senior Vice President for Member Engagement at Old Dominion Electric Cooperative. He is responsible for developing and executing strategies to enhance ODEC’s engagement with external stakeholders and ODEC’s members. Prior to joining ODEC, Kirk was Senior Vice President of Government Relations at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. In that role, Kirk directed NRECA’s legislative, regulatory, and political efforts on behalf of the association’s 900 members in 48 states.

Kirk and his wife Janet Woodka live in Richmond, Virginia.  He enjoys playing golf, traveling, cooking, and playing with their dogs Gumbo and Roux.

Peter Muhoro | Rappahannock Electric Cooperative