Thomas W. Thompson CEO, Gridwerks Consulting Inc.
Policy Director, New York Solar Energy Society
Thomas W. Thompson is the CEO of Gridwerks Consulting, Inc., a NYS clean power company, dedicated to making alternative energy an economic reality. Established in 2005, Gridwerks develops distributed power systems and renewable power markets in the US and around the globe.
Tom is a member of the Board of Directors of the New York Solar Energy Society (http://www.nyses.org/), a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization and NYS chapter of the American Solar Energy Society. In this capacity, he works with the NYSES membership on education and public policy issues in community, legislative and regulatory arenas. He works with and advises trade and advocacy groups in New York, New Jersey, New England and beyond to enact policies that will accelerate the creation of fair, competitive and sustainable renewable power marketplace in the US. Tom is a regular speaker to industry, the general public, policy makers and students on the role of renewable technology as both a clean power platform and an economic development engine for America.
From 2006 - 2009, Tom was Chairman of the NY Solar Energy Industries Association (http://www.nyseia.org/), serving on the board for over five years. As Chairman, NYSEIA experienced unprecedented growth in membership, revenues and political influence. NYS's PV market grew fourfold. During this time, the NYS Legislature passed an expanded net metering law, eliminated interconnection barriers and introduced Feed-In Tariff bills in both houses. NYSEIA's goal of deploying 2,000 MW of PV by 2020 and establishing NYS as one of the world's Top Ten global solar markets became a benchmark of public policy dialogue in the Empire State.
As a consultant, Tom served as Senior Vice President for Atlantis Energy Systems, Inc. (http://www.atlantisenergy.com/), a US manufacturer of Building-Integrated PV (BIPV) systems, from 2005 to 2009. Tom led the company's manufacturing and global distribution activities, including BIPV sales and managed the design and development of landmark projects such as the Austin Sunflower project. Tom oversaw QC, automation efforts and UL certification for both standard and custom PV projects. Tom also worked with potential investors, raising over $1 million from NYS's economic development agencies.
From 2000 to 2005, Tom served as Vice President of Sustainable Energy at the nation's first urban electric co-op, the 1st Rochdale NYC Electric Cooperative. As a founder of the co-op, and in the infancy of electric deregulation, Tom developed the Green Apple® Renewable Energy business unit, offering a complete package of utility products including energy commodities, energy efficiency, on?site power, renewable power and demand response services for clients in capacity-constrained NYC (NYISO Zone J).
With the support of National Rural Electric Cooperative Association and the Weissmann Institute, Tom worked with the son of baseball great, Jackie Robinson, to deliver a PV-powered water purification system to a rural, Tanzanian village. Tom raised over $1 million in start?up funding while advancing the principles of cooperative development in NYC and around the globe.
As Executive Director of the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association from 1995 to 2000, Tom grew revenues by over 200%, raising over $4 million, and developed the nation's first renewably powered, public park. Working with the membership, Board and government officials as well as utility and insurance industry executives, Tom organized some of the nation's earliest and largest conferences on solar energy, climate change and electric transportation.
From 1986 through 1995, Tom served in the Demand Side Management (DSM) office of NYS Department of Public Service, where he led a collaborative of utilities, public advocates, state agencies and private companies to create the largest, ratepayer-funded weatherization program in the US. The program is still in place today. Tom also led a 5 year prudency investigation of utility practices resulting in the nation's only regulatory disallowance of DSM expenditures.
Tom has published articles for InterPV Magazine of Korea (Speaking Renewable Truth to Nuclear Power, July 2010, http://interpv.net/), Renewable Energy World Magazine (Pennsylvania Power: A Keystone For Renewable Energies in the US, May?June 2006) and the New York League of Conservation Voters(http://www.nylcvef.org/sites/nylcvef.civicactions.net/files/Solar%20Briefing%20Paper.pdf). In addition, his work has been covered by the NY Times (After a Veto, Pataki Offers His Own Solar?Panel Plan, 5/16/97), in New York Magazine (Blackout: Is a California?Style Energy Crisis Rolling Our Way, 6/18/01, http://nymag.com/nymetro/news/politics/newyork/features/4816/) and by author Jeremy Rifkin in his book, The Hydrogen Economy (Penguin Putnam, 2002). Tom has also been featured on the Discovery Channel TV show Planet Green: Renovation Nation (October 16, 2008) and on the Sunday Talk Show, NanoNow, aired by Fox News Affiliate in Albany, NY (May, 2007).
Tom holds a BA in Environmental Science from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh and completed the NARUC Regulatory Studies Program at the Eli Broad Graduate School of Management at Michigan State University. He has been certified as a PV Design Trainer at SUNY Ulster County Community College (March ‘10) and in Advanced PV Design at the SUNY Environmental Science & Forestry (June ‘10). He was certified in Installing Photovoltaics by the Florida Solar Energy Center at the University of Central Florida in 2005 and earned Fuel Cell Technician Accreditation from Plug Power, Inc., also in 2005. He is a certified operator of Building De?pressurization, Infrared Thermographic & Bacharach Combustion Efficiency Diagnostic Equipment as part of his building science training and has a thorough understanding of air, moisture and energy flows in buildings.
For over 25 years, Tom has worked to advance energy sustainability at home and around the globe. Underlying these accomplishments is Tom's unique ability to achieve corporate and community objectives by bringing diverse groups together. For more information, call 917?886?4793 or GridwerksConsulting@Comcast.net.
Having developed the first PV system and the only fuel cell system to be installed in NYC housing cooperatives, Gridwerks is a seasoned developer of clean power generation and energy storage technologies. Gridwerks consults with manufacturers, financiers, system integrators, electricians, roofers, building owners, building scientists, A&E firms, schools and community groups to deploy ground?mount, commercial rooftop and utility-scale PV power plants as well as Building Integrated PV (BIPV) systems. Gridwerks also provides training to students and professionals on PV system design, BIPV integration, solar sales and finance, PV market development and public policy issues.
Gridwerks current client list includes: