Energy/Climate Track Speakers

RACHEL NORTON–ACTION TEAM LEAD

Rachel Norton joined Mountain Association for Community Economic Development in May 2016 as a residential energy specialist. She is committed to creating a healthier, more sustainable global environment by focusing her efforts on the local community. While at MACED, she has branched out into commercial energy efficiency work, including expanding her knowledge on solar installations. She has been elected to leadership roles in her professional community, and participates in volunteer work around the state involving energy efficiency and solar energy. Her most recent project, Solarize Lexington, doubled the amount of solar panels on homes in her hometown of Lexington, Kentucky. Ms. Norton is a certified Building Performance Analyst and is building her own energy auditing business while working full time MACED. A native of Lexington, she enjoys spending her time out riding horses, hiking trails in the Red River Gorge, and spending time with friends and family. 

SCOTT DRAKE–LOCAL EXPERT

Scott Drake is the Manager of Corporate Technical Services at East Kentucky Power Cooperative and is responsible for developing, implementing, and managing the cooperative’s energy efficiency and demand response programs. Scott is also the manager of Envision Energy Services, a for profit energy services company.

While at EKPC, Scott has been responsible for the planning, design, construction, and maintenance of substations and transmission lines. Scott also managed a large research and development portfolio for power production including the operation and maintenance of coal-fired power plants, gas-fired power plants, emission control equipment and fuels.

Scott is a registered professional engineer in Kentucky.

Click here for Scott’s presentation from the Sustainability Summit.

ANDY MCDONALD–LOCAL EXPERT

Andy McDonald is the Director of Sustainable Systems Programs for Earth Tools, Inc., where he leads projects to advance renewable energy, energy efficiency, and environmental sustainability.  Andy has over 25 years’ experience working in the fields of renewable energy and environmental sustainability. He is the former Director of the Kentucky Solar Partnership for Appalachia-Science in the Public Interest and is the co-author of “The Kentucky Solar Energy Guide,” published in 2005. He is the former President of the Kentucky Conservation Committee and co-founder of the Kentucky Solar Energy Society.

Andy lives with his wife and step-daughter on an organic farm near Frankfort, Kentucky. They live in a farmhouse they have renovated to become a “net-zero energy” solar home. Using a combination of solar photovoltaics, solar water heating, and passive solar design, 100% of the annual electricity needs of their home and farm are supplied with solar energy.

Click here for Andy’s presentation from the Sustainability Summit.

CHRIS WOOLERY–LOCAL EXPERT

Chris Woolery became the How$martKY™ Program Coordinator in 2015, after four years with Mountain Association for Community Economic Development as a Residential Energy Specialist. How$martKY™ partners with rural electric cooperatives to design, finance, and install home energy efficiency upgrades that are paid for directly out of energy savings on utility bills. As a former ENERGY STAR® builder and energy services contractor, Chris has been a pioneer in efficient construction and remodeling for two decades. Having built 21 ENERGY STAR® homes and implemented energy upgrades to over 800 households, he has learned which energy upgrades make the best investments. When he’s not being an energy nerd, he enjoys family time and many of the perks of being a Kentuckian – including bourbon, basketball, and breathtakingly beautiful natural spaces.

Click here for Chris’s presentation from the Sustainability Summit.