Thursday 13 May 2021
11:30 AM - 11:45 AM

Event Open

Attendees are encouraged to join the event prior to its official start at 11:45 a.m. E.T. in order to ensure they are comfortable with the meeting software.

11:45 AM - 12:00 PM
Presenters

Welcome and Opening Remarks

In this opening session, leaders from the Community Development Action Coalition (CDAC) and National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) will welcome attendees and set the stage for the convening.

Presenters
  • Ron Butler, CEO, Historically Black Colleges and Universities Community Development Action Coalition
  • David Terry, Executive Director, National Association of State Energy Officials
12:00 PM - 12:15 PM
Moderator
Presenter

Congressional Opening Remarks

As a champion of clean energy, U.S. Congressman John Sarbanes will offer insights into the critical role played by Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other Minority-Serving Institutions in community development, sustainability, and economic opportunity.

Moderator
  • Natasha Campbell, Director, Clean Energy Initiative, Historically Black Colleges and Universities Community Development Action Coalition
Presenter
12:15 PM - 1:00 PM
Moderator
Presenters

Foundation-Setting: Key Findings from the Energy Workforce Diversity Research Project

Over the past year, NASEO, CDAC’s Clean Energy Initiative, and BW Research Partnership have conducted research, policy analysis, and best practices exploration to understand challenges and opportunities to promote a more diverse, inclusive, and accessible energy sector workforce. In this session, the team will present key themes from the project and offer initial insights on how State Energy Offices, Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Minority-Serving Institutions, and other partners can act on the findings.

The team will also share a sign-up sheet that attendees can use to express their interest in future discussions, either at the regional level or in direct connection with State Energy Offices, HBCUs, MSIs, and other partners in their states and communities.

Moderator
  • Sandy Fazeli, Managing Director, Policy and Development, NASEO
Presenters
  • Natasha Campbell, Director, Clean Energy Initiative, Historically Black Colleges and Universities Community Development Action Coalition
  • Philip Jordan, Vice President and Principal Researcher, BW Research Partnership
  • Sarah Lehmann, Project Manager, BW Research Partnership
1:00 PM - 1:45 PM
Moderator
Presenters

States Panel: Advancing Just Transition, Workforce Diversity, and Economic Recovery at the Regional, State, and Local Levels

In this panel, state leaders will highlight the partnerships, strategies, and policies that states are using to facilitate a just transition and equitable economic recovery for their clean energy workforce.

Moderator
Presenters
  • Tamika Jacques, Ed. D., Director of Workforce Development, Massachusetts Clean Energy Center
  • Robert Jackson, Director, Energy Office, Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy
  • Noemí Gallardo, Public Advisor, California Energy Commission
1:45 PM - 2:00 PM

Break

2:00 PM - 2:45 PM
Moderator
Presenter

Keynote: Setting a National Direction for Energy Justice, Equity, and the Clean Tech Workforce

As a new Administration takes stage, many have looked to clean energy as a tool to reduce pollutants, address economic and access disparities, and support an economic recovery in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. In this session, equity and environmental justice policy leaders will discuss the promise and potential of commitments such as Justice40, President Biden’s initiative to direct 40 percent of the benefits of federal investments to disadvantaged communities, as their implications for state policymakers and the academic community.

Moderator
  • Kelley Smith Burk, Director, Office of Energy, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services; Chair, NASEO Board of Directors
Presenter
  • Shalanda Baker, Deputy Director for Energy Justice and Secretary's Advisor on Equity, U.S. Department of Energy
2:45 PM - 3:45 PM
Moderator
Presenters

Federal Panel: DOE's Workforce Development Priorities in the Context of Climate Change and Economic Recovery

Join experts across the U.S. Department of Energy for a discussion of how the Department will be mobilizing workforce development investments, stakeholders, and resources to achieve key Administration priorities.

Moderator
  • Michael Furze, Assistant Director, Energy Division, Washington State Department of Commerce
Presenters
3:45 PM - 4:00 PM

Day 1 Closing Remarks and Adjourn

Friday 14 May 2021
11:30 AM - 11:45 AM
Moderators

Day 2 Opening Remarks

The event organizers from CDAC and NASEO will offer a brief synthesis of findings from the previous day’s discussion, and review objectives and formats for Day 2 of the event.

Moderators
  • Sandy Fazeli, Managing Director, Policy and Development, NASEO
  • Natasha Campbell, Director, Clean Energy Initiative, Historically Black Colleges and Universities Community Development Action Coalition
11:45 AM - 12:30 PM
Moderator
Presenters

Employer and Labor Perspectives: Strategies for Workforce Representation and Inclusion

Data show that a workplace culture founded in inclusion and equity pays dividends in terms of employee satisfaction and a business's bottom line. This discussion will highlight efforts by private sector and labor leaders to foster a representative and inclusive workforce.

Moderator
  • Chad Kruse, Manager, Office of Energy, Illinois Environmental Protection Agency
Presenters
  • Candace Bridges, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Employer Brand Leader, Schneider Electric
  • Willy Solorzano, Trustee, BYD-SMART Joint Apprenticeship & Training Committee, Local Union 105
12:30 PM - 1:15 PM
Moderator
Presenter

Congressional Outlook for Environmental Justice, Equity, and Diversity

As a member of the Congressional Safe Climate Caucus, Congresswoman Alma Adams of North Carolina is a champion of policies that combat climate change, curb pollution, catalyze renewable energy investments, and promote sustainable development solutions. In this session, learn about key insights for environmental justice and climate action in the U.S. Congress.

Moderator
  • Ivory Toldson, President and CEO, Quality Education for Minorities Network; Former Executive Director, White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities
Presenter
1:15 PM - 2:00 PM
Moderator
Presenters

Solar CARES Project Case Study Presentation and Breakout Discussions: Economic Opportunity and Job Creation: Partnership Models Centering Minority-Serving Institutions

This session will demonstrate successful approaches that address key paths to increase diversity in the energy sector while creating economic opportunity for job seekers, energy-related entrepreneurs and students through local partnerships and MSIs. It will overview the HBCU Clean Energy Initiative/North Carolina Agricultural and Mechanical University Solar CARES Project, a community workforce-economic investment project to expand solar energy adoption through a comprehensive, community-wide approach that focuses on low to moderate income communities, homeowners, entrepreneurs and job seekers living in communities where HBCU are located. 

Following the presentation, attendees will be encouraged to brainstorm in breakout groups the potential roles that new partnerships with MSIs and underserved communities can play in advancing energy policy priorities and economic development goals.

Moderator
  • Starlette Hodge, State Energy Program Manager, North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality
Presenters
  • Henry Golatt, Chief of Strategy and Partnership, Historically Black Colleges and Universities Community Development Action Coalition
  • Dr. Greg Monty, Director, Center for Energy Research and Technology, North Carolina A&T State University
2:00 PM - 2:15 PM

Break

2:15 PM - 3:00 PM
Moderator
Presenters

Roundtable Discussion: Collaborations to Facilitate Entry to the Energy Sector Workforce and STEM Fields

This session will provide a deeper-dive into how various MSIs and State Energy Offices are approaching workforce development and diversity, and building partnerships to overcome barriers to entry into energy and STEM fields. In breakout groups, participants will be invited to explore barriers to workforce entry and economic opportunity for underserved individuals in their own states and communities, and to consider how potential future investments and partnerships in energy and workforce can be designed to overcome these barriers.

Moderator
  • Dr. Janice Sneed, Associate Vice-Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Workforce Development, Southern University at Shreveport
Presenters
  • Adele Ferranti, Program Manager, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority
  • Dr. Deidra R. Hodges, Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Texas at El Paso
3:00 PM - 3:45 PM
Moderator
Presenters

Roundtable Discussion: State-Academic-Federal Partnerships for Diversity and Equity in Innovation, Technology Transfer, and Technology-Based Economic Development

This session will elevate the critical role that constructive partnerships between HBCUs, MSIs, Federal Agencies, and State Energy Offices, can play in advancing clean energy and climate innovation. Successful models will be presented of HBCUs and MSIs supporting the innovation, technology transfer, and economic development missions of State and Federal partners.  The session will also provide a venue for DOE’s Office of Technology Transitions to discuss support mechanisms to scale successful models to other HBCU and MSIs communities.

In breakout groups, attendees will be asked to explore potential program designs that would unlock opportunities for diversity and inclusion not just in the existing energy sector workforce, but among clean technology innovators, researchers, and students.

Moderator
  • Sumesh Arora, Ph.D., Director, Energy and Natural Resources Division, Mississippi Development Authority
Presenters
  • Dr. J. Chris Ford, Mission-to-Market Manager, Applied Research Center, Florida International University
  • Dr. Vanessa Chan, Chief Commercialization Officer and Director of the Office of Technology Transitions, U.S. Department of Energy
3:45 PM - 4:00 PM

Closing Remarks and Final Call for Sign-Ups

NASEO and CDAC leads will identify key findings and themes from the two days of discussion, including near-term follow-up items and long-term strategies. Attendees will have a final opportunity to sign up for future deep-dive discussions and networking on the topic of workforce development.