Charging Up: Boosting investment in women-led startups, plus career moves at Ojjo, Arevon Energy, Ecoflix and more

Women are advancing up the ladder at climatetech firms, but funding for companies started by women still lags way behind.

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Canary Media’s Charging Up column chronicles women’s career advancements in the climatetech sector. Please send feedback and tips to [email protected]​canarymedia.​com.

Investing in women-led startups

Currently, only 2.7 percent of venture capital funding in the U.S. goes to women-led startups, with 0.2 percent going to companies founded by Black women and 0.4 percent to companies founded by Latinx women, according to the W Fund, which invests in seed and Series A companies being built by traditionally underfunded founders.

HearstLab provides investment and services to early-stage, women-led startups in North America.

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Portfolia designs investment funds for women supporting innovative companies they want to see in the world, for returns and impact.”

Citrine Angels is a membership group providing early-stage investment opportunities and education to female investors in the Washington, D.C. metro area.

Career moves at climate nonprofits

Elizabeth Kennedy Cleveland was promoted to senior director of operations at the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, a state economic development agency dedicated to accelerating the growth of clean energy across the state.

Jessica Leader is now director of strategic outreach at the Building Decarbonization Coalition. She was previously with Sunrun. Here’s a link to the coalition’s roadmap to decarbonize buildings in California. 

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Camorah King was promoted to policy innovations associate at Clean Energy Buyers Alliance, a business association of energy customers and partners looking to deploy market and policy solutions for a carbon-free energy system. 

Susanna Hasenoehrl is now climate reality leader at the Al Gore–founded Climate Reality Project, which has a mission to create a global sense of urgency on climate change and catalyze a planet-wide shift to clean energy to solve it.” 

Shar Olivier is now chief sustainability officer at Ecoflix, a global streaming platform with a focus on environmental issues and climate action. 

Career moves in climatetech

Convergent named Katie Guerry as senior VP of regulatory and government affairs. Guerry was previously with Enel Group. Convergent finances, develops and operates megawatt-scale energy storage systems.

Volt Energy Utility named Yinka N. Bode-George as senior manager of environmental justice and community impact. She was previously with the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators. Volt Energy is a minority-owned solar firm that develops, finances and builds rooftop solar and solar carport projects. 

Rachel Liesching, previously with AES, is now business development manager at Made of Air, a startup aspiring to cycle waste biomass into carbon-negative materials for industrial use.

Heather Wilson was promoted to VP of operations at Clean.Tech, a startup looking to streamline the residential solar installation process.

Marie Washington, previously with Canadian Solar, is now director of people and culture at Ojjo, a startup building structural hardware for utility-scale solar.

Yancan Lydia Li, previously with Generate Capital, is now a climate investor at Arevon Energy, a provider of commercial, financial, performance-asset-management and construction services for wind, solar and energy-storage assets. Arevon is backed by CalSTRS, the United States’ second-largest public pension fund; APG, a Dutch pension fund; and a wholly owned subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority. 

Katie Laning Niebaum is now president of Delta Solar, which serves agricultural and commercial solar customers in Arkansas. She is the former executive director of the Arkansas Advanced Energy Association.

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Eric Wesoff is the editorial director at Canary Media.