PosiGen Celebrates Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month
May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, a time to celebrate the contributions of AAPI communities to American culture and society. In recent years, there has been a growing awareness of the need to transition to renewable energy sources to combat climate change. In this blog post, we highlight AAPI pioneers in the renewable energy and climate change sectors who are leading the charge towards a more sustainable future.
Jigar Shah, Entrepreneur
Jigar Shah is a clean energy entrepreneur and pioneer who has played a significant role in the development and adoption of renewable energy technologies in the United States. Shah is best known for his work as the founder of SunEdison, a company that helped to drive the growth of the solar industry by developing innovative business models for solar project financing and installation.
After launching SunEdison in 2003, Shah went on to found several other successful clean energy companies, including the energy efficiency financing firm Generate Capital and the non-profit organization The Carbon War Room. He has also served as an advisor to government agencies and private sector organizations, including the Obama administration and the United Nations.
In addition to his work as an entrepreneur, Shah is a vocal advocate for renewable energy and sustainability, and has been recognized for his leadership and innovation in the clean energy industry. He has been named a Time Magazine Hero of the Environment, a Fortune Magazine Innovator of the Year, and a recipient of the United Nations Foundation's Global Leadership Award, among other honors.
Naren Yendluri, Chief Operations & Technology Officer PosiGen
Naren Yendluri is our Chief Operations & Technology Officer for PosiGen Inc.. In his role, he oversees all of Field Operations, Corporate Operations, Energy Efficiency business functions as well as Technology investments across the board.
Naren has extensive experience leveraging technology to enable small to medium sized companies to scale. Naren is experienced in M&A and built his career in fortune 500 companies. Prior to joining PosiGen, Naren was the SVP of Engineering and Technology at Sunrun for 9+ years.
While at Sunrun, he was responsible for directing technology operations, developing strategies focused on software products through effective management of product and platform portfolio; overseeing all facets of software product lifecycle from inception to deployment and cultivate and lead a global engineering and technology team to ensure alignment with key corporate initiatives supporting 500K customers, 3500 partners and 10K employees.
Prior to Sunrun, Naren had worked at Autodesk and Hewlett Packard and leadership positions. Naren has a bachelor’s degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering and a master’s degree in Math and Computer Science.
Brianna Fruean, Samoan Climate Activist
Brianna Fruean is a climate activist from Samoa who has gained international recognition for her work on climate justice and environmental activism. Fruean has been an outspoken advocate for the Pacific Islands, which are among the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, and has worked to raise awareness of the urgent need for action to address the climate crisis.
Fruean first became involved in climate activism at the age of eight, when she organized a letter-writing campaign to raise awareness of the impact of climate change on the Pacific Islands. Since then, she has continued to be a vocal advocate for climate justice-participating in protests, speaking at international events, and working with organizations such as 350.org and the Pacific Climate Warriors.
In 2015, Fruean was selected as one of the 12 youth delegates to the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, where she represented the voice of Pacific youth and called for stronger action on climate change. She has also been recognized for her work by a number of organizations, including the United Nations Development Programme, which named her as one of its "Champions of the Earth" in 2018.
Through her work, Fruean has become a leading voice in the global movement for climate justice, inspiring others to take action and advocating for a more sustainable and equitable future.
Miranda Wang & Jeanny Yao, Cofounders, Novoloop
Miranda Wang and Jeanny Yao are the co-founders of Novoloop, a biotech startup that is developing a technology to upcycle waste plastics into high-value chemicals and materials. The two met as high school students in Vancouver, Canada, where they became interested in the issue of plastic pollution and the environmental impacts of plastic waste.
After conducting research on the topic, Wang and Yao developed a process for converting waste plastics into useful chemicals and materials, which they later commercialized through the founding of Novoloop in 2015. The company has since raised funding from investors and received recognition for its innovative approach to sustainable materials.
Wang and Yao have been recognized for their leadership and innovation in the clean energy industry, receiving honors such as the Forbes 30 Under 30 and the Rolex Awards for Enterprise. They have also been active in promoting diversity and inclusion in the tech industry, and have advocated for greater representation of women and underrepresented groups in STEM fields.
Sarah Paiji Yoo, Co-Founder & CEO of Blueland
Sarah Paiji Yoo is a clean beauty and sustainability entrepreneur who is the co-founder and CEO of Blueland, a company that creates environmentally friendly cleaning products. Blueland's mission is to reduce plastic waste by providing consumers with a range of cleaning products that come in reusable bottles and dissolvable cleaning tablets. By reducing the need for single-use plastic bottles, Blueland aims to create a more sustainable and eco-friendly approach to household cleaning.
Prior to founding Blueland, Paiji Yoo worked as a venture capitalist, investing in early-stage startups in the technology and consumer sectors. She also co-founded the mobile app Snapette, which helped users discover and shop for fashion products. Paiji Yoo is a graduate of Harvard Business School and the University of California, Berkeley.
Paiji Yoo has been recognized for her leadership and innovation in the sustainability and clean beauty industries. She has been named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 list and has been featured in publications such as The New York Times, Vogue, and Fast Company. She is also a vocal advocate for sustainability and eco-friendly practices, and has spoken at conferences and events on topics related to sustainability and entrepreneurship.
These AAPI pioneers are just a few examples of the many individuals who are working to make the future more sustainable for everyone. As we celebrate AAPI Heritage Month, it is important to recognize the contributions of these individuals and to support their efforts to build a more sustainable future for all. By investing in renewable energy and supporting policies that promote its development, we can reduce our dependence on fossil fuels and protect the planet for future generations.