Solar trade group CEO Rhone Resch departing organization by June

The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has announced that President and CEO Rhone Resch plans to leave the solar trade organization effective May 31.

SEIA said in an April 15 news release that it would name an interim leader and begin an executive search before Resch leaves.

The SEIA news release did not include any information about Resch’s future plans. A spokesperson said Resch is considering various options.

Nat Kreamer, chairman of SEIA’s board of directors, expressed the association’s gratitude to Rhone for his accomplishments as SEIA’s CEO.

“During his 12 years of leadership at SEIA, Rhone grew the organization from a grassroots collective of solar companies into a formidable national association with a strong presence in Washington and members that range from local family businesses to blue chip and Fortune 500 companies,” Kreamer said.  “He created a single, powerful voice for the industry, representing all technologies and markets. That unified front has been the hallmark of SEIA for the last 12 years and recently helped us secure a huge win at the federal level with the extension of the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), ensuring the solar industry’s role as an economic engine of growth for the United States for years to come.”

“I am honored to have been able to contribute to building an industry that has such a positive impact on the U.S. economy, our energy security and the environment,” Resch said in a letter to membership. “With the ITC extended through 2021 and solar energy markets growing throughout the country, now is the right time for me to move on to new challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. “

The SEIA news release also called Resch as instrumental expanding state renewable portfolio standards (RPS) across the country, protecting and enhancing net energy metering laws, spearheading siting and permitting reforms and supporting the adoption of carbon dioxide (CO2) regulations.

Since 2004, the industry has installed more than 30 GW of solar in the U.S. while reducing technology costs by more than 80%.

In addition to having served as vice president for the Natural Gas Supply Association, Resch also served as program manager at the EPA’s Climate Protection Division during President Bill Clinton’s administration, according to the SEIA website.

Rhone holds an M.P.A. in management from Syracuse University’s Maxwell School, a Master of Environmental Engineering from SUNY Syracuse, and a B.A. from the University of Michigan.

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Wayne Barber, Chief Analyst for the GenerationHub, has been covering power generation, energy and natural resources issues at national publications for more than 20 years. Prior to joining PennWell he was editor of Generation Markets Week at SNL Financial for nine years. He has also worked as a business journalist at both McGraw-Hill and Financial Times Energy. Wayne also worked as a newspaper reporter for several years. During his career has visited nuclear reactors and coal mines as well as coal and natural gas power plants. Wayne can be reached at wayneb@pennwell.com.