Saturday, November 29, 2008

Solar Energy Field, Association Category

Emcee: Debra Poneman

Our next inductee is the Illinois Solar Energy Association, represented by its President Mr. Mark Burger. Mark has been involved in renewable energy for nearly thirty years.

Mark's interest in solar energy began in his community organizing days in Central Bronx in the 1970's when, while struggling to keep housing from being abandoned and stripped, he noted the common death knell of buildings was when they ran out of heating oil. That encouraged him to find alternatives to fossil fuels.

Mark's involvement with the Illinois Solar Energy Association began nearly ten years ago. He has been on the Board of Directors since 2001 and has served as President since 2004. During his tenure, the ISEA grew from less than 100 to over 600 members, becoming one of the largest chapters in the American Solar Energy Society.

The mission of the ISEA is the education and advocacy of solar, wind and other forms of renewable energy for the people of Illinois. The Association conducts meetings, workshops, publishes a quarterly newsletter, publicizes an Annual Solar Tour in October and maintains a website while providing all sorts of assistance to the Illinois public.

Mark is Principal of Kestrel Development Company, a renewable energy consulting firm that provides marketing, policy and technology information assistance to businesses and organizations. Kestrel is also part of a venture that is developing zero net energy homes in Illinois.

Mark was a sales and marketing manager for Spire Solar in Chicago, a Technology Transfer Team Leader for the US Department of Energy and a building rehabilitation specialist for the Chicago Energy Savers Fund. He has a Bachelor's Degree in Alternative Energy from Jordan College in Michigan and a Masters Degree in Environmental Studies and Urban Geography from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Mark is a Life Member of the American Solar Energy Society, Midwest Renewable Energy Association and the Illinois Solar Energy Association.

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