Adam Rowles

Project Developer


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?


I am a Project Developer with a focus on greenfielding Community Solar Projects in New York State. In short, I am tasked with finding plots of land and turning them into fully permitted solar power plants. To accomplish this, I am responsible for everything in the realm of business strategy and project development, including strategic project siting, negotiation support, managing our relationships with stakeholders and subcontractors, interconnection strategy, permitting, obtaining municipal approvals and helping prepare projects for sale.

 


Project Developers are primarily problem solvers, so most of my day is spent pivoting from issue to issue to help ensure that Saturn is making the best decisions possible on which opportunities to pursue and how best to forge a path to get our existing projects to the finish line. When it comes to developing solar projects, I like to joke that we are professional sandcastle builders, and New York State is our sandbox in many ways. You can build bad sandcastles, or you can build good sandcastles. It really depends on your approach.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

My most memorable moment with Saturn was when I moved to Buffalo to better develop our projects during the pandemic. It was on a Saturday in the middle of COVID in February 2021, and there was a snowstorm. Not only did I have to drive my fully packed hatchback, but I had my cat in the car as well. I showed up at the border and I had to go in and get my visa approved to be able to work there. It took an hour and a half, and outside my cat was freezing and I was worried about her. Eventually I got into my new apartment in Buffalo at around 11pm, and the movers with my furniture weren’t getting there until the following Thursday. Thankfully one of my coworkers showed up and gave me a box of chicken shawarma and a blowup mattress to survive off of. I essentially squatted in my apartment for five days with no furniture except for a folding table to get my work done on until my stuff came, all while adjusting to living in a new country for the first time. I have many memories at Saturn but that one takes the cake.

 

 

What led you to a career in solar project development and what have you found rewarding from working in the renewables sector?

 

I sort of stumbled into Saturn Power. Having been here 4 years now, it is my first job in the renewables sector. Ever since high school, I knew I wanted to be involved in renewable energy. I’m an environmentalist and an urban planning nut, and I’ve always wanted to contribute to the green economy in some fashion. I never really knew what that entailed until I applied to Saturn for a summer co-op term in early 2018.  When I started at Saturn, I was writing articles for our battery storage team and performing business development research. As soon as I got here, I realized how amazing of an opportunity I had to join something special. It’s a place that rewards problem solvers, creative ideas, and teamwork.

 

What I love about Saturn is that they have fantastic leadership and mentors at every level that are willing to teach you. If you show initiative and make intuitive decisions, you’ll get more responsibility and you’ll grow very quickly. It is the perfect environment for young employees to experience strong career growth and learn a myriad of skills.

 

How have experiences from early in your life, along with your educational background, helped you in your role at Saturn?

 

I’m a bit of an outlier at Saturn Power. Most of our people have engineering, finance, and law backgrounds, which are of course critical pillars of an independent power producing company. However, I have a general science degree from the University of Guelph. I originally started in environmental engineering, but realized that engineering was close to but not exactly my calling. I was passionate about the subjects I was learning, but not about the way that I was applying what I was learning. Saturn had really awakened this business development and creative mindset in me during my summer coop, and I realized quickly that Project Development was what I wanted to do. I switched into science and started taking courses on economics, business ethics and environmental science & stewardship, all of which are valuable in my current role. I am a generalist, and I like being one. I want to be contributing strong ideas and try to see them come to fruition in developing new energy projects.

 

You’re an avid soccer fan and noted youth track and field star. With a busy career, how do you manage to stay active and involved with these sports?

 

I love to run, and I play soccer. Even if I’m not running in circles as fast as I can anymore, I love to go hit the trails and it’s a good time to clear my brain. I often like to go for a quick run during my lunchtime, which allows me to think about how I want to finish my day. Furthermore, I love to play soccer in the evenings and am (unfortunately) a massive Arsenal fan. Maybe one day they will eventually win something.

 

 

Athletics helps maintain a competitive edge as well. Solar project development is a very competitive industry, as we are competing with other companies for real estate, for capacity on the power grid, and for opportunities to win contracts. In many ways it’s like being on a sports team. We need to cooperate as a team and certain people are good at doing certain things, so fitting them in a certain format in the best way possible is very important.

 

What is a movie that you never get tired of rewatching and how many times do you figure you have watched it?

 

There’s a few of them. I don’t have a favourite movie but one that I don’t get tired of watching is Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. It has some of the best monologues in film. When I was young, I remember seeing a Disney channel preview about how the movie was made and I was so scared of it before it came out (because of the skeletons, I was 8). I eventually grew to love it. I’ve watched the movie probably 20 times in my life. I love quoting some of the scenes. “Me? I'm dishonest, and a dishonest man you can always trust to be dishonest. Honestly. It's the honest ones you want to watch out for, because you can never predict when they're going to do something incredibly... stupid.”

 

If you could only get delivery or takeout from one local food joint for the next 3 months, what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I would get Singapore Noodles everyday. If I could get takeout everyday I would go to this place called The Thai Room, on College and Parliament in Toronto, not too far from me. It is cheap and they’re always so nice to me. I’m a sucker for small businesses.

 

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Dan Crumrine

Land Acquisition Specialist


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I work as a Land Acquisition Specialist, contacting landowners to negotiate leases and solar options. I do cold-calling, send mailers, and on the ground door knocking while meeting with landowners in various markets to secure land for solar development.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

Two weeks ago, I had a landowner fall asleep in my pickup truck. I got out for five minutes to take a picture of some utility poles and when I turned around, he was knocked out in my front seat.

 

What led you to a career in the land procurement field and how have you found the transition to the renewables sector?

 

I have a geological science degree. I started working as a field engineer in the oil fields in Pennsylvania, until I got laid off in 2015 and was looking for work again. I had a mutual connection with a land broker in Pennsylvania, so they gave me an opportunity and I ended up being there for five years doing land acquisition on the oil and gas side. Eventually I transferred to renewables with Saturn.

 

The transition to renewables hasn’t been too difficult. There are some nuances with renewables that are different as you’re selling a different product, but at the end of the day, you are dealing with similar clients and lease agreements. The biggest hurdle has just been learning more of the ins-and-outs of renewable energy from the engineering and development standpoint. Everyone here at Saturn has been really helpful with that transition.

 

How has some of your past work experience helped you in your role at Saturn?

 

My experience with oil and gas leasing was very helpful as there was a lot of similarities with renewable energy. The cliental hasn’t changed; talking about farming and about the outdoors within rural communities all remains the same. When it comes to the lease agreements, there are also many consistencies and similarities.

 

 

You’re known as an avid outdoorsman and Pittsburgh sports fan. When you have spare time, what is your ideal outdoor excursion or sporting event?

 

My favourite outdoor excursions include hunting and fishing. We try to do an out of state hunting trip once a year, and we go to Southern Quebec fishing a lot. On the weekends I also enjoy fishing, hunting, and hiking here in Pennsylvania. As far as sporting events, there’s nothing better than a Sunday afternoon Steelers game down at Heinz Field.

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

I would like to go on a trip to Alaska, and I’d like to go fishing up there. Its just a wild place. I am intrigued by the scenery, mountains, and wildlife. I like the fact that there isn’t a lot of people and no big cities. I want to experience the wide-open spaces and untouched wilderness of Alaska.

 

 

What is a movie that you never get tired of rewatching and how many times do you figure you have watched it?

 

Happy Gilmore is the most recent one I’ve watched, and I have probably watched it about 50 times. Its always on TV, and it’s one of those movies where you’re scrolling through and just have to watch.

 

If you could only get delivery or takeout from one local food joint for the next 3 months, what spot and meal are you picking?

 

There’s a local Mexican place called Condado Tacos right down the road from me. It has really good build-your-own tacos with all kinds of different quesos and other over the top features.

 

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Annie Ho

Paralegal


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I work as a Paralegal, assisting with contracts, terms and conditions, and keeping track of corporate governance.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

It was my first day of going into the office, when I got a message from Christina warning about traffic which ended up being because eggs had caught fire on the highway. However, I was still able to make it to the office before 9 that morning and was greeted by Tracy, Christina, and Tim. All in all, it was quite a memorable day.

 

What sparked your interest in working within the legal industry and how have you found the transition to providing legal support in the renewables sector?

 

Before working in the legal industry, I was in the editorial field and one of the summers I had a job in a law firm which is what initially sparked my interest in law. However, I didn’t want to be a lawyer, but I still wanted to be more than a legal assistant, so I went back to school and got a Paralegal certificate after my undergrad. The transition to renewables has been really good, especially since Saturn fosters such a collaborative environment. The renewable sector is a very niche law field to get into, and I am happy to play a small part in making the world a better place.

 

How has some of your past work experience helped you in your role at Saturn?

 

In previous law firms that I have worked at, I am usually the first point of contact which has been the same at Saturn. I am the first point of contact for the legal team. Additionally, I have experience in retail, which has provided me with valuable experience on how to interact with various clients and customers.

 

You were recently named Ms. Galaxy for Peel Region in the Canada Galaxy Pageant. What first interested you in participating in the pageant and what have you found rewarding from the experience?

 

My interest in pageants started in March 2021 when there was a surge of hate crimes towards Asians due to the pandemic, so I wanted to use my platform to voice this concern. I got in contact with a person who sold “Stop Asian Hate” t-shirts to raise awareness on the issue and they ended up being the pageant director and inspired me to start. Through my reign as Ms. Galaxy Peel Region, I have met so many independent women as it’s such a great way to network and build connections. The most rewarding thing about the whole experience has been partnering with the Diabetes Canada association for fundraising purposes. Since I am a diabetic myself and have family history of diabetes as well, that is a cause very close to my heart.

 

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

I would like to go to Fiji and Bhutan. I want to visit Bhutan because I find it interesting that, even though the country is sandwiched between India and China, they’ve managed to remain carbon negative. Additionally, the scenery is beautiful, there’s plenty of greenery, and the food is amazing. I want to visit Fiji because, sometimes, I just like to get out of the city and explore somewhere exotic.

 

When you have some time to yourself, what are some of the ways you like to spend it?

 

When I have some time to myself, you’ll either find me kickboxing, doing pageant work, holding fundraisers/doing charity work or taking a nap.

 

If you could only get delivery or takeout from one local food joint for the next 3 months, what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I would choose 168 Sushi where I would get a bento box since they allow you to make your own bento box and customize it however you like, which is awesome.

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Abhishek Dave

Senior Analyst


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I help explore opportunities to develop and operate standalone energy storage and hybrid projects across Canada and US. As a Senior Analyst, I evaluate policy, regulation, and develop energy models to evaluate markets across North America.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

We had a team social outing, where the entire team got together. We had games scheduled and an overall fun day planned. The highlight of the event for me was when we played a Swedish game called Kubb and I was surprisingly good at it, which was thanks to some skills I borrowed from Gully Cricket I played growing up.

 

What is the main thing that you find exciting about the renewable energy industry?

 

I find it exciting to see how the industry has developed and integrated in terms of bringing down cost and adoption of 100% renewable energy targets by regions across North America. There is a long way to go but we are making good strides in adding more renewables front-of-the-meter and behind-the-meter. I am excited to be part of this transition as renewable energy becomes mainstream over the next decade.

 

How has some of your past work experience helped you in your role at Saturn?

 

I like when people bring their queries to me, and I can help them create solutions which is something I realized while working in consulting. My previous experience provided me with a jumpstart to setup and carry out policy and market analytics at Saturn. It helped us in preparing a case and focus on developing projects in key markets. Engaging with policy makers through stakeholder consultations helped in further strengthening Saturn’s ability to enter new markets.

 

Do you have any fun memories from your recent trip to India?

 

I have plenty of good memories including spending ample amount of time with family and friends. I met with all my school friends while I was there and went to our favorite food joints we used to go to growing up. I must thank our team at Saturn for helping me plan an amazing trip.

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

I would like to visit all the national parks in North America, especially Redwood Forest in Western North America. I am a big fan of Rachel Carson and would like to see what inspired her books.

 

When you have some time to yourself, what are some of the ways you like to spend it?

 

Toronto is a beautiful city. I am usually out with friends playing soccer or basketball at venues across downtown. I also enjoy visiting AGO, various museums, and trying out new food and discovering new coffee places.

 

If you could only get delivery or takeout from one local food joint for the next 3 months, what spot and meal are you picking?

 

My two favourites are 309 Dhaba Indian Restaurant of Excellence and Impact kitchen. However, if I had to choose one out of these two, I would pick Impact Kitchen. My favourite thing from their menu is the true roots salad.

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Larry Henry

Director, Land Procurement & Project Origination


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I am currently the Director of Land Acquisition and Project Origination for Saturn. I head the land team and we are the first stop on the way to development. This entails evaluating and securing land control for our projects as we go forward.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

Working at Saturn has been memorable and enjoyable for me because it has the most diverse group of people that I have ever worked with; diverse age wise and background wise and I have just found that to be an extremely rewarding experience.

 

You have been with Saturn for over 5 years, and you were the first US based employee that Saturn hired. What’s something you’ve learned about Canada that surprised you?

 

Something I should’ve known but found out this morning is that Canada has its own ground hog day, and they don’t rely on the US ground hog which I just discovered after a conversation with Julia.

 

How has some of your past work experiences helped you in your various roles at Saturn?

 

I think I come with quite a varied resume and background, so I draw on a lot of that. I have a degree in Forest Production Management and so based on my background I look at renewables and renewable resources through the lens of growing trees. I worked as an Industrial Forester for the first 10 years of my career. Then for the next 10 years I owned a logging company. Following that I made a switch and became a real estate broker. I have also acquired experience in general heavy civil construction. At Saturn, I come with an extensive civil construction background. I believe that my real restate brokerage experience lends itself to land acquisition which is the function I fill now. All in all, I come from a very varied background, and I think having that toolbox to draw from helps me be more effective and bring different solutions to the table.

 

 

Describe one of your favourite vacations and what made it memorable?

 

Recently my wife and I went to Roatan. It was memorable because it was our 39th wedding anniversary and I was also able to get back into some diving, which was another thing that made the trip special

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

I am a little bit of a motor head as a hobby, and one of my holy grails is the 1967 Cobra muscle car. So, driving that is something I’d like to cross off my bucket list.

 

You have several grandchildren that are frequent visitors at your home. What is papa’s favourite activity to do with his grandchildren?

 

We have a couple favourites however horse riding would definitely be a favourite and riding the snowmobiles with papa would be a close second.

 

 

You spent a good part of two years managing our project in Bermuda. Did you have a favourite spot to eat while you were down there?

 

Probably one of the most special would be The Loren Inn. On one of my wife’s visits to meet me, I took her there for our anniversary, so that was a great place. Secondary to that, the more famous one is a place called The Swizzle Inn.

 

 

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Laura Reiding

Director of Accounting


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

There are two main aspects of my role. One of them I call “keeping the lights on” so that entails making sure vendors are paid, employees are paid, and all reporting requirements and regulatory filings are done accurately and on time. The other aspect is using and analyzing the information we have to help predict future results and cashflow needs, or determine if there are any potential issues with our current assets. This information is then used by the Executive Team to help decide what opportunities to pursue.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

It would have to be the social where we did the Amazing Baden Race, which was developed and designed by a small team of three of us that included myself, Julia, and Tracy. That race is still talked about to this day, and I hope we can recreate it in the future.

 

Over 22 months into the pandemic, we are accustomed to working from home. What has been a positive element of working remotely and what have you found challenging?

 

The positive aspect has been that my husband is also working from home, so he makes sure that I take breaks for lunch which usually include going for a walk. The challenging element is that there are no impromptu meetings anymore since everything is scheduled over Teams, so there is no “water cooler” talk that helps you bond with different people from the company. Technology has also been another challenge since the accounting team needs good internet at home and at the office, so if either of those are slow, it definitely can affect our team.

 

You’re talented in several different sports however if you could only participate in one of them which one would it be and why?

 

I enjoy hockey the most as it is a really good physical activity along with the comradery with my teammates, which is great.

 

Describe one of your favourite road trips and what made it memorable?

 

This would be when my husband and I went to St Louis and Kansas City. We got to see some Frank Lloyd Wright architecture, which we both really enjoy. We also got to see a ball game in both Kansas City and St Louis, with the Kansas City game actually being against the Jays, which was pretty awesome. Overall, we had a great time.

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

Several years ago, I got to go to the Netherlands with my parents and my sister’s family to see the areas that my parents grew up in. I would like to see my husband’s family roots which would bring us to another part of the Netherlands but also to Gottscheer which is now part of Slovenia but was part of Austria.

 

 

What is a movie that you never get tired of rewatching and how many times do you figure you have watched it?

 

I am not much of a movie person, but my favourite movie is The Shawshank Redemption which I have probably seen eight times, if I had to guess.

 

If you could only get delivery or takeout from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I would have to go with Ennio’s which is a fresh pasta place in Waterloo Region, and I have a rotation of about five different pastas that I get. However, my favourite one is the Rustica.

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Pat Goodale

Sr. Project Developer


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I’m one of two senior project developers, helping and leading the efforts to develop solar projects in the New York market. I oversee the development process all the way from assisting with siting to NTP (Notice to Proceed). For seven of the furthest along projects the strategic decision was made to go out to market and sell them as a portfolio. During this sales process I have been working closely with Julia, members on our legal team and other relevant parties to work out the specifics of the sale. Understandably so, this has preoccupied most of my time.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

One such moment was working through the sales process of our Tiffany project in New York state. Within my first week at Saturn, this task was assigned to me. Through this experience I learned a lot about and benefited from working with all the different groups at Saturn. I was able to have the benefit of and work with the different Saturn groups (legal, accounting, engineering) This opportunity was incredibly rewarding and satisfying to see it through to completion. A second moment that certainly stands out, but for another reason, also occurred during my first week. Heading into the office on my second day, I decided I would park on the grass. At the time of parking the lawn was frozen, and weather was cold. However, by the end of the day the temperature had warmed up enough to change the grass into mud. When I went to get out of my spot, I found that the car was stuck in the mud. After trying to get it out on my own (and likely making the situation much worse) I had to go back into the office to ask co-workers to help get it out. That was certainly an unforgettable experience – one I don’t seem to live down!

 

Over 20 months into the pandemic, we are accustomed to working from home. What has been a positive element of working remotely and what have you found challenging?

 

A positive element has been the ability to drop off and sometimes (depending on the frequency and duration of some of my late afternoon meetings) pick up my kids from school and daycare, which I wouldn’t be able to do if I had to commute to work. On days when I just need to take my daughter into school we will try to bike most of the time. However, earlier on in the year, with online learning in full effect one of the struggles was internet bandwidth because me, my wife and daughter would all be working remotely at the same time. This meant if all three of us were online at the same time, it was certain that one of our Teams would crash.

 

When you’re not working and you have some time to yourself, what are some of the ways you would choose to spend that time?

 

One of the ways I enjoy spending my down time is watching something with my wife on Netflix. Alternatively, and on warmer days, I am lucky enough to live by a number of bike trails that I will explore, either alone or with my daughter biking along side with me.

 

What’s a favourite vacation that you’ve been on or an adventure that you have undertaken?

 

One memorable vacation a couple of years back my daughter, wife and I spent two weeks in London, UK and then moved on to Italy (Bologna and Rome). While in Italy we also did day trips to both Vatican City and San Marino.

 

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

It would have to be visiting fifty countries before I turn fifty but recognizing the challenge of achieving this goal, I would also be happy to say I’d like to visit fifty different countries before I die. The last time I counted, I was at twenty-eight, so I still have a long way to go.

 

What is a movie that you never get tired of rewatching and how many times do you figure you have watched it?

 

The Big Lebowski is a favourite that I have probably watched close to ten times. If it was playing on cable TV, I would definitely take some time and sit down to watch it or at the very least some of it.

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I would pick the Indian restaurant that my wife loves, it is called Sagarmatha Curry Palace and is about a five minute from my house. As a family we try to get take-out from there on special occasions. Each of us have our favourite dish, but in terms of a meal that I would pick, it would have to be the Palak Paneer.

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Joshua Conway-Beaulieu

Sr. Electrical Engineer


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

My key responsibilities are mainly to provide engineering support to our business development group as they pursue opportunities in our targeted markets. Additionally, I also play an active role in realizing those opportunities once they reach the Notice to Proceed (NTP) stage in the project’s life cycle, which includes preparing designs, supporting the contractors during construction, and collaborating with all the other project stakeholders as the project progresses to Commercial Operation.

 

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

The most memorable moment so far has to be achieving commercial operation on the Highfield Solar Project in Saskatchewan. This was a very challenging but enjoyable project to a part of. I was really fortunate to be paired with an amazing team here at Saturn that made navigating the hurdles we faced a lot easier. Additionally, working closely with the SaskPower and miEnergy team was also a blessing, as they were extremely collaborative throughout the entire process. Overall, working on a project like this was a true pleasure and I’m hoping there will be more of these memorable moments in the future.

 

Over 20 months into the pandemic, we are accustomed to working from home. What has been a positive element of working remotely and what have you found challenging?

 

A positive aspect is the time I have been able to get back that I would’ve otherwise spent commuting to work. This has been helpful from a mental health aspect as it has allowed me to focus more on self care which has helped eliminate much of my stress. The most challenging aspect has been the lack of the social aspect and not being able to have face to face meetings with my team.

 

What’s a favourite vacation that you’ve been on?

 

My favourite trip would be when I went to Tanzania with my parents about ten years ago. During the first week, we did safari tours and had the opportunity to visit several national parks, which was pretty amazing. The second week, we hiked up Mt. Kilimanjaro where we were walking about ten hours each day. This experience really showed me that anyone can achieve anything, provided you put your mind to it. We spent the last week at a resort which was a much needed break after the hike.

 

 

When you’re not working and you have some time to yourself, what are some of the ways you would choose to spend that time?

 

I have taken the additional time I have gained from working from home to focus on trying to get back into shape. I built a home gym right before the pandemic began so I try to exercise there everyday after work as I feel it allows you to center yourself and decompress after a long day. Besides that, I tackle a bunch of small renovations around the house, spend time with my wife and my dog and watch sports. I’m a big NBA fan.

 

 

What is the main thing that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

I would really like to climb to the Mt Everest base camp with my wife. My parents did the trek a few years ago and I remember just being astounded by all the photos and stories they were sharing with us when they got back. It definitely seems like a trip of a lifetime.

 

What is a movie that you never get tired of rewatching and how many times do you figure you have watched it?

 

I would have to say the Star Wars original trilogy, which I have probably watched about ten or twelve times. My favourite one out of the original three would have to be The Empire Strikes back.

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I would probably pick sushi. There are so many good places in my area, so just picking one would be doing an injustice to all the others.

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Lisa Neeb

General Accountant & Insurance Administrator


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

My key responsibilities include general bookkeeping for our solar, wind and battery storage sites, as well as processing all employee expenses. I also handle much of the insurance for our company which includes doing annual reviews for insurance coverage for sites and reviewing any obligations for both sides of any agreements we’re entering into, such as development or RFPs.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

I started out at Saturn in a casual role of book-keeping. As the company grew I was offered the role of Health & Safety Administrator and tasked with development of our H & S program. Just as I was starting to realize that this was not something I saw myself doing long-term, a position opened up in the accounting department. This is when I went to Karen and asked if I could return to my previous position, and her eyes lit up. That conversation was a turning point for me. Karen then steered me towards insurance and I have grown into that role. That was three years ago and ever since then, I’ve known that this is the spot I’m meant to be in; I enjoy being a part of our accounting team which has grown, as well as working with the other teams at Saturn through my various responsibilities.

 

 

Nearly 18 months into the pandemic, we are accustomed to working from home. What has been a positive element of working remotely and what have you found challenging?

 

Right before the pandemic everything was really busy with my two teenage boys and running from the office to their extra curriculars, so when everyone started just being home, it was easier to be working while also being available for the kids, instead of all going our separate ways. On the other hand, slower internet has been a challenge since I live in the country. As well, it gets lonely at times since I can’t just step outside and have a quick chat with the neighbours.

 

Sharing a home with your husband and two teenage boys, are there any activities that you find yourself engaging in that your teenage self would have never predicted?

 

I was never really into team sports, so my teenage self would have never thought that I’d be sitting in hockey arenas or at taekwondo tournaments or football and soccer games cheering on my boys. We also renovated the main floor of our farmhouse together, which gave everyone a lot of ownership in the final result. Another thing that my teenage self could have never imagined doing is butchering a chicken, and other aspects of living on a farm.

 

 

What’s a favourite vacation that you’ve been on?

 

A favourite would be when I went to Australia for a month with my husband and 3 friends; one of whom is Australian, so we were able to see the more local side of the people and the culture, as well as visit a lot of main attractions. It was also interesting to experience the similarities between Australians and Canadians.

 

When you’re not working and you have some time to yourself, what are some of the ways you would choose to spend that time?

 

I don’t usually get much time to myself but when I do, I like to go walking, either with my dog in the country or meet friends in town. I also love being outside in the sunshine, doing yard work and digging around or rearranging my flower gardens. I basically refer to myself as a sunflower so doing anything outside in the sun really brings me joy.

 

What is an activity or destination that you would like to cross off your bucket list?

 

I have always had Ireland on my list. However, since the pandemic I have taken more notice to Canadian travel destinations and have added New Brunswick, particularly the Bay of Fundy to my list. Both destinations seem rugged, open, and wild.

 

Imagine a post COVID world, where the team has returned to the office. Everyone has agreed to meet for a classic Saturn Friday team lunch at EJ’s in Baden. What is your go-to order that you have been craving/missing since the start of the pandemic?

 

When we used to go before the pandemic, I always got the special because I liked the surprise. Other than that, I also love the wings there. So, it either has to be their wings or their daily special.

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Lana Taher

Project Developer


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I am a Junior Project Developer on the Solar Business Development Team having been with Saturn since July 2019. I work on permitting, site screening and selection, interconnection, stakeholder consultation and managing the overall project lifecycle. I currently juggle my time between the Pennsylvania market and our Springbrook Solar Project. I have been involved in the development phase of our 20 MWac Springbrook Project located in Red Deer County, Alberta over the past 1.5 years, leading the Project through land acquisition and permitting. I am also heavily involved in growing our Community Solar Portfolio in Pennsylvania.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

There are so many great moments, but the one that stands out to me was the 2019 Golfing Team Building event, which took place shortly after my first day. The awesome Social Committee had planned a day out on the golf course and had separated us into teams, which made me quite nervous not really knowing anyone too well at the time, but every person was so kind, welcoming, and friendly. It was that day that I knew I would be extremely comfortable at Saturn and that it would be a wonderful place for me to grow, professionally.

 

 

Nearly 18 months into the pandemic, we are accustomed to working from home. What has been a positive element of working remotely and what have you found challenging?

 

I live in London, Ontario so the daily commute pre-pandemic was quite time consuming. Getting that 2-2.5 hrs of commute time back to spend on my work, personal hobbies, or with family and friends has been wonderful. What has been challenging for me is the lack of office atmosphere. I genuinely miss being able to strike up conversation with someone while making coffee or walking over to a colleague’s desk with a question or spending Friday lunches at EJ’s with everyone. That daily interaction has definitely been missed over the past 18 month.

 

Imagine a post pandemic world, and you’re out for karaoke with your friends and its your turn to sing: what’s your go-to song to bring the crowd to their feet?

 

Trust me when I say, no one wants to hear me sing. I think my go-to song would be Staying Alive by The Bee Gees, which I usually find myself humming anyways and I don’t know why! That’s definitely the first one I would bring to the table.

 

Given that you were born in Abu Dhabi, what are your favourite memories about growing up there?

 

I am naturally a very outdoorsy person and growing up in the Emirates, I had very easy access to the sea living right across the street from the beach. Growing up in and around the water was my favourite thing. My favourite memories definitely revolve around being able to do so many different water related activities year-round, without weather restrictions.

 

What’s a favourite place you’ve travelled to?

 

In Turkey, there is a tiny island called Princes’ Island which you need a ferry to get to from Istanbul. You won’t find any cars on the island, everyone gets around on foot, by bike, or by horse drawn carriage! There are tiny kiosks and cafes everywhere, the views from the top of the Island are stunning, you definitely feel like you’ve entered into a fairy tale, it takes you back in time a little bit. I also have a trip planned to BC in a few weeks which has been on my bucket list for years so that may creep its way up to my #1 spot. I’ll keep you posted!

 

When you’re not working, what do you like to do in your spare time?

 

I’m definitely a person of habit but not one of routine so I do a lot of the same activities over again but not on a set time or day. I have always been a very big photography enthusiast and I recently purchased my first professional camera, the canon EOS 90D. I also got a Fuji Film polaroid as well, so I’ve been navigating my way around those two cameras. During lockdown, I picked up photo editing on lightroom and photoshop as a new hobby, which has been phenomenally fun. I am a very big movie buff and I consider a night out at the cinema to be the most enjoyable time. Pre-pandemic, I would grab a few friends and catch a movie at least once a month. I am very family orientated, so I spend as much time as I can with my family and friends. I am also a very avid reader; I love fiction and find it a great source of enjoyment and a form of escapism. Just before the whole covid debacle, I started heading over to the local archery range and took a few lessons for a couple months, so I hope to pick that up again once it’s a little safer to do so.

 

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I have been obsessed with this one restaurant that recently opened up in London. It’s an Italian restaurant called Dolcetto, and they have the most amazing comfort food. Carbs galore. So, if I were going to order from somewhere for three months straight, they definitely have enough going on their menu that I’d want to explore. They have a lamb ragu pasta dish that I would definitely recommend. I also have the biggest, sweet tooth and their espresso tiramisu is phenomenal.

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Shanna Li

Legal Counsel


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I am legal counsel within Saturn’s legal department. My role is involved at every project milestones for our solar, wind, and battery projects. This includes reviewing all variety of agreements that come through, working on Request For Proposals (RFP’s), looking over terms and agreements for the purchase ofequipment with suppliers during the construction phase of projects, and the sale of projects across North American and Bermuda. I am also involved in the corporate governance of the different subsidiaries of Saturn Power as well as involved with HR for employment related issues.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

I would say being able to work on the sale of the Tiffany project. It was one of the first projects where I felt I was leading a lot of the negotiations during the tail end of the project. I also really enjoy being involved in the social committee as I enjoy chatting and coming up with events for people to participate.

 

 

Nearly 18 months into the pandemic, we are accustomed to working from home. What has been a rewarding element of working remotely and what have you found challenging?

 

I think a rewarding element is I have more time during the day since there’s an absence of interruptions. The Saturn office has an open design and people can drop by which may create interruptions, so being able to get lots of time during the day where I can be super focused is great. Another element I enjoy is the flexibility such as being able to prepare a lunch at home. What’s been challenging is the lack of face time at work since I enjoy speaking to people and grabbing a coffee from Tim Hortons.

 

What’s the best movie that you’ve watched in the last year?

 

I would say Soul is the best movie I have seen this year. It is really great and I feel like everybody must watch it.

 

Can you provide a personal accomplishment that you are really proud of?

 

I think running a half marathon in 2019 is something I’m really proud of. Just being able to finish and raise money for refugees during the Scotiabank marathon was amazing. My time was not great but I was really glad I could finish it.

 

What’s a favourite place you’ve travelled to?

 

One place that I reminisce often about is in 2017 where I met up with friends in Pakistan and had a great time traveling together. It is gorgeous and the people there are very friendly. I got to check out many different parts of the country and I highly recommend going if you have friends there.

 

 

When you’re not working, what do you do with your spare time?

 

I try to workout and I spend a lot of my time looking for delicious food places to hit up.

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I am located in Massachusetts and one local food joint is a local restaurant named Season-To-Go and they support a lot of local, in-season food. However, the one food I’m picking is duck confit.

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Lauryn Ostermaier

Project Coordinator


 

Give us a brief overview of your role with Saturn Power?

 

I work with Larry to help lead and coordinate the efforts of the land team and ensure all core tasks and accountabilities are fulfilled so that Saturn can develop viable green energy projects.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power so far?

 

I have a few memorable moments ranging from making a coffee for a co-worker that included vinegar water (only a select few know what I’m talking about here) or looking out the window to find people driving over curbs and landing on parked cars in the parking lot at our old office. However, I have to say starting a new position during a pandemic takes the cake. The amount of support I received to allow me to quickly get up to speed with current projects, processes and market details was mind blowing and truly appreciated. Also, due to the virtual aspect, it’s been quite the experience to learn the company culture and try to meet new coworkers. It’s been a welcome challenge that solidifies I have made the right decision to become a member of the Saturn team.

 

 

This is your second stint with Saturn – what is an interesting difference between your first tenure and your second?

 

I was hired as an Administrative Assistant back in 2012. At that time, we were located in a small office in New Hamburg. It was an office of 5 (or so) staff with a few projects on the go, all specifically focused in the Ontario market. Fast forward to 2020, I’m back and have joined a team of over 50 employees located throughout Canada, the US and overseas. I came back to a company that has grown from focusing on one market to multiple. We are becoming a fierce competitor as the days and weeks go on and yet, one thing has remained consistent; we have managed to maintain that tight knit family atmosphere that we all truly appreciate. I look forward to seeing what the next 5 years will bring!

 

What was the title of the last book you read?

 

The title of the last book I read was “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a…”… I’ll let you fill in the blank. It was a great book that reminds you that everyone is flawed and limited in some way but strongly reiterates that you only have one life to live so make the best of it. It’s a real talk style of book with hilarious stories that somehow or another tie in life lessons. It’s meant to open your eyes to get us to lead a more balanced life. I also like to mix in a bit of Robert Munsch or Diary of a Wimpy Kid to shake things up a bit (…thanks to my kids).

 

What’s a favourite place you’ve travelled to?

 

I’ve been on some great trips that have left me with great memories (or lack thereof), but I have to admit, the best of them all was taking my kids to Disney World. Seeing their faces light up, day in and day out, was absolutely magical. It was an experience that is still talked about to this very day and an experience we were able to share with their grandparents.

 

When you’re not working, what do you do with your spare time?

 

I have always spent my summers at our cottage. You’ll find me at the beach, on the patio enjoying a few beverages or boating around Lake Erie trying to show off my fishing skills to anyone who will pay attention. Pre-Covid, I enjoyed being part of the Dragon Boat fun league in my town and is something I hope to pick up again once restrictions allow.  I’m always on the hunt for a good ice cream cone so you’ll find me touring around looking for a little mom and pop shop that offers HUGE scoops of Chocolate Peanut Butter ice cream. In the winter, you can find me at the arena cheering on my son’s hockey team or at the barn watching my daughter during her horseback riding lessons.

 

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

I enjoy a good chicken wing and pizza combo so I’d have to choose Aneta’s Pizzeria in Ridgeway. It’s a small pizza place that we religiously go to during the summer months. They make the best pizza and the most delicious wings you could ask for. The right amount of toppings and the right amount of sauce makes for the most mouth-watering meal!

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Meredith Moore 

Land Acquisition Specialist, USA


 

How long have you been with Saturn Power and what is a brief overview of your role with the company?

 

I have been with Saturn Power as a Land Acquisition Specialist for a year and a half now. In my role I predominately interact with landowners that we are negotiating with to obtain land control for potential solar and energy storage projects. When I am not on the road or conducting site visits with landowners, I am assisting with the background steps to identify viable properties and help move them towards eventual development. This includes site screening across multiple markets with the Development and GIS team, preparing Option and Lease agreements, and attending municipal meetings.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have had working at Saturn Power?

 

I would have to say my most memorable moments come from meeting landowners all over rural Pennsylvania and New York. Touring each site and hearing the unique history and character of their properties is always a fun adventure. In the dead of winter in rural New York I was once offered a glass of whiskey and a pair of wool socks to keep me warm in the middle of a negotiation.

 

 

How has your past work experience prepared you for your role at Saturn Power?

 

Starting out in the oil and gas industry in 2008 I was involved in most every aspect of land work including title research, leasing, and right-of-way acquisition. Upon moving into the renewable energy sector in 2019, I found that I was easily able to apply those skills and knowledge towards acquiring viable solar and energy storage sites at Saturn.

 

Tell us one interesting fact about yourself that people at Saturn might not know?

 

On a weekly basis you can find me on the golf course, most evenings at my local country club or at trivia night trying to obtain the very coveted first place prize of a free appetizer for the following week.

 

 

What is a favorite place you have traveled to?

 

I would have to go with Puerto Rico as my favorite place I have traveled to. Back in 2017 a friend asked me if I wanted to go to Puerto Rico and I reluctantly declined. When she got there, she sent me a few pictures and explained how great it was. So, I booked a flight right then and there, packed a bag and hopped on the plane the next morning. I have been back 3 times since then. The culture, food, weather, and beaches are just a few things that keep me going back and I am anxiously awaiting to go back this fall.

 

When you’re not working, what do you do in your spare time?

 

When I’m not playing golf, you can usually find me spending time at my cabin in Western PA where I enjoy cooking, kayaking and spending time with family and friends by the camp fire. I also travel as frequently as possible, attend at least one music festival a year and several local concerts, and avidly tailgate for Pittsburgh sporting events.

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

In Pittsburgh there is a sushi restaurant called Mola. Honestly, any sushi from there would do the trick but if I had to pick just one meal it would be their tuna poke bowl.

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Kyle Edginton 

Senior Manager, Engineering



What is your role at Saturn Power? How long have you been with Saturn and can you give me a brief overview of what your role entails?

 

I am the Senior Manager of Engineering and I have been with Saturn Power for 11 and a half months now. I am currently the Project Manager for the Highfield Solar project in Saskatchewan where I oversee day-to-day progress as well as provide engineering advice when needed. I also deal with energy storage projects mostly on the business development side where I build cost models and work with suppliers and contractors to figure out pricing.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have of working at Saturn Power?

 

It is hard to say since I have only ever worked at Saturn Power during the pandemic and have never actually been in the office. I would have to say the few times that I’ve been able to meet people in person, like the time I met my boss, David Windley, and other BD team members for the first-time on site visits.

 

 

 

What has drawn you to working in the renewables industry?

 

I have always had a passion to reduce my footprint on the earth so when I had a friend who started a renewables company about 10 years ago, I saw it as the perfect opportunity to get into the industry.

 

Name one thing that has been challenging about working remotely and one thing that has been rewarding about working remotely?

 

What has been challenging is the ability to always stay focused since we have become so disconnected. The benefit is that it has been cool to see the kids and my wife all working from home. It has been really nice to see my family during the day. My kids are good students and its nice to see them focused on school and getting their work done.

 

What’s a favourite place you’ve travelled to?

 

It would probably have to be Southeast Asia. I went there 2 years ago with my family, to celebrate my wife turning 50 and my son graduating from high school and getting ready to go to university. We toured Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Singapore for 4 weeks and it was a great experience. The kids especially enjoyed the trip and they considered it a great experience for themselves.

 

 

When you’re not working, what do you do in your spare time?

 

In my spare time I do home renovation projects. Right now, I’m actually in the middle of a pretty major main floor renovation. My wife and I also bought a house a little while ago and renovated it into a duplex, however the whole flipping process took longer than expected because of inspection delays caused by new COVID protocols. We would like to do something similar again but the market is just too crazy at the moment.

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

My family has frequented very few restaurants in town because we tend to just settle for the ones we already like. If it was up to my wife, she would probably pick KW Pho in downtown Kitchener near the Kitchener market, which is a small place that has only been around for a couple years now. However, if it was up to me, I would have to go with Domino’s pizza since I love pizza. The order itself would be a crispy thin crust pizza.

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Jared Perram

Sr. Project Developer


 

What is your role at Saturn Power? How long have you been with Saturn and can you give me a brief overview of what your role entails?

 

I’m a senior project developer with a primary focus in New York State. I’ve been with Saturn for a little over a year. As a senior project developer, I, and the rest of the New York team, oversee all things solar development in NY State. From early involvement in the land acquisition process, through permitting and utility engagement, all the way up to the construction, and/or the potential sale of our projects. Developers are problem solvers; most days are consumed with either planning for or reacting to any number of different issues that can come up during project development. You’re constantly shifting focus from one end of the development spectrum to the next and touching on all the little pieces in the middle.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have of working at Saturn Power?

 

At the tail end of my first two-weeks in Ontario, following the work-from-home announcement, I went to lunch at an Irish pub with the few remaining members at the office. We sat down for a beer and a sandwich and it was a nice send-off, as I was going back to the States. We had a real, down-to-earth, “what’s happening with the state of the world” conversation and it sticks out to me as a nice, warm reception into the company.

 

 

What has drawn you to working in the renewables industry?

 

Renewables for me was partly out of necessity. Growing up, I didn’t put a whole lot of emphasis on schoolwork, and I ended up finding myself in Buffalo, New York seeing others around me in the same program having difficulty finding work. I figured I needed to do something else and went abroad through the University of Virginia. I was all over Europe for 3 to 4 months and during this time I saw the impact sustainability and renewable energy had. I believed with my experience in construction I could find my place in this industry. Ultimately, it came from a place of necessity and understanding the strengths that I had already built. But along the way renewables did prove itself to be a passion.

 

You’re an avid sports fan. Tell us about a distinct in-stadium or tailgating memory?

 

My favourite memories are during my late teens to early twenties when my friends and I had season tickets for the Buffalo Bills. We had this van that we drove and tailgated out of for home games and would take it cross country to different cities for away games. We were young and broke, so we had times when the breaks went out in the mountains, getting stranded and reaching games just in-time, getting egged while we drive the van through cities of opposing teams, and so many other wild experiences. We loved every second of it and it was so much fun. Also, one of my fondest memories when talking to my Canadian brethren is that it was always obvious at a Bills game if you saw somebody walking with an NFL jersey of a team that was not playing, we would immediately walk up to them and ask them how bridge traffic was because we knew they were Canadian. They would of course always reply politely “Not too bad, thank you”.

 

 

What’s a favourite place you’ve travelled to?

 

This is a really tough question and a apart of me wants to say Russia. I never felt so far away from home while in St. Petersburg and Moscow and those were certainly an interesting few weeks. However, Egypt was one of the biggest culture shocks I had in my life. At the time, as a younger person visiting right before the revolution, the political and social environment was palpable enough for me to notice. This experience gave me a new perspective on culture, religion, and an overall self-awakening in a lot of diverse ways.

 

Outside of work, what do you love to do with your time?

 

I am a big outdoors guy and that was a huge part of wanting to move back to Western New York from California and North Carolina. Any type of camping, hiking, backpacking, canoe trips, or any big outdoor trips that take several days are always a lot of fun. Also, I like to read pretty much anything non-fiction I can get my hands on. I’m a fan of anything that speaks about different universal energies, growth mindsets and history related literature. Sitting on the front porch, having a beer and meaningful chat with friends is also something I love to do.

 

If you could only get delivery from one local food joint for the next 3 months what spot and meal are you picking?

 

We have these quintessential Italian delis that exist almost on every corner. Some of them really suck while others are extremely good. These places are small and local, so you don’t really know what you’re into until you order and try the food for yourself. I stumbled across a place, Marco’s, and the sandwich was so good that I almost called them back to express my love for the food. So, if I had to pick it would have to be Marco’s Italian Deli.

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Mike Gupta

VP of Construction & Operations


 

What is your role at Saturn Power? How long have you been with Saturn and can you give me a brief overview of what your role entails?

 

I am the VP of Construction, Operations, and Maintenance. I have been with Saturn Power for over 7 years. I started at Saturn as a Construction Manager for one of our 10MW solar farms, David Brown. After the completion of this project, I started looking after the operations and maintenance for all Saturn Power assets. Right now, I am responsible for leading our team in the construction of new projects and the operation and maintenance of all solar, wind, and battery assets in Ontario, as well as our Highfield project in Saskatchewan and solar project in Bermuda.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have of working at Saturn Power?

 

Saturn Power is a very family-oriented company, and management works alongside their employees, even during difficult times. Management has always been very cooperative and helpful, not only to me, but to all its employees. Saturn Power organizes a lot of (virtual) social gatherings and team-building activities, and Christmas get togethers, which are all memorable moments. I can’t say anything specifically as they are all great in their own way.

 

 

What about your previous roles have prepared you for success at Saturn?

 

Prior to joining Saturn Power, I had the opportunity to work at Bruce Power and on the construction of a solar farm for Aecon. I also had the good fortune of working in the automotive industry, where I acquired experience in making Locomotives and in the assembly of cars. As automotive is an extremely fast paced industry, it honed my skills of collaboration and completing projects on time and right the first time. My education has also played a great role in shaping my life. I completed a Masters in Electronic Engineering from England at the University of Bradford, which gave me the valuable knowledge, which has often comes in handy for the operations, maintenance, and other day-to-day project requirements.

 

Best vacation you’ve been on?

 

In December 2019, just before the Pandemic began, I went to Mexico with my family to an all-inclusive resort. The vacation itself wasn't particularly notable, however I value this trip highly because it was right before the lockdown and was our last vacation as a family. Being able to remember the fun times I enjoyed with my wife, son, and daughter makes the memory 10 times greater.

 

Outside of work, what do you love to do with your time?

 

In my free time, I like to watch the game of cricket. Also, I used to play cricket with my friends but not anymore. Apart from that I enjoy travelling and learning about new places.

 

Describe a recent meal that was truly memorable.

 

As we all know, due to the pandemic, it is not possible to eat out at restaurants currently. However, I always look back fondly to my 25th wedding anniversary dinner with my wife at the CN Tower. The dinner was wonderful, and our 360-degree view of Toronto was magnificent. We specially chose a time when the sun was setting behind the horizon so that we could enjoy the scenic view of the Toronto skyline.

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David Heiduck

Vice President, Business Development


What is your role at Saturn Power? How long have you been with Saturn and can you give me a brief overview of what your role entails?

 

My role is VP of Business Development which means I oversee all Business Development activities at Saturn, currently being Solar and Storage. I work very closely with Julia, who is leading the Solar Development Team, and Nick, who is leading the Storage Development Team. I work together with them and the executive team on the corporate strategy of how to grow and maximize revenues for Saturn with our projects. I’ve been with Saturn for almost 2 years now.

 

 

What does a typical day as the Vice President of Business Development look like for you?

 

I get up, eat cereal, drink tea, water, or coffee and then have a Teams meeting. Usually, 60% of my day is Teams meetings. This is catching up and getting updates on our various projects and opportunities, and many one-on-one personal development meetings. I also make myself available for anyone who has issues and wants to reach out to get my feedback or opinion. The rest of the time I have is spent reading about developments in the market that we at Saturn should be aware of or may affect our existing projects or opportunities. At the end of the day, I like to either go for a run or do some workouts on the Nike Training Club app which is a great way to do a quick 20-30 minute workout. Finally, I go to sleep.

 

What is the most memorable moment you have of working at Saturn Power?

 

When we played soccer after our summer event and Adam jumped into the lake behind the office in Baden.

 

What is the most rewarding part about working from home? What is the most challenging?

 

Not having to commute is a big reward, especially for me as I am in Toronto and our office is in Baden, so it was always quite a hike for me. A challenge for me is missing the impromptu or unplanned meetings with team members. Meeting someone in the hallway, chatting, going for lunch, any of the unplanned interactions with colleagues.

 

What was the best part about growing up in Germany?

 

Germany is in the center of Europe surrounded by different countries and cultures. A short car ride is all it takes to experience the many things around. Also, the drinking age is 16.

 

Best vacation you’ve been on?

 

My trip to Korea and Japan two years ago. My wife and I visited her aunts and uncles in Korea, then drove through the mountains and stayed at a Buddhist temple. Culturally, it was very interesting with a lot of variety of landscapes, activities, and partying. At the Seoraksan National Park we had the opportunity to stay with Buddhist monks and follow their traditions. We lived in the mountains far away from any city or urban environment. Also, the food was very special as it was all vegan and was without ingredients like garlic but was still very favourable. At the end of our stay, we wrote letters to ourselves which were delivered a year after we left. They were essentially time capsules of what our thoughts were at the time and we forgot about them, so it was a pleasant surprise.

 

Outside of work, what do you love to do with your time?

 

I like to run regularly and more recently we have been doing a lot of board games like Settlers of Catan. Exercise, cross-country skiing, and talking to my family in Germany are all things I do but are limited by our current situation.

 

Describe a recent meal that was truly memorable.

 

For New Years, my wife and I made okonomiyaki, a Japanese pancake.

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Tim Banic

Health & Safety Coordinator


Can you walk me through your roles and responsibilities within the organization?

 

I am responsible for ensuring that we are current with health and safety legislation and doing everything we can to protect the company, our employees, visitors, and our contractors. One of my tasks is bringing our policies and procedures up to speed. The monthly Safety Moments just try to ensure that topics are relevant to us and what we do as a company. We do a lot of driving; our safety talks have a tendency to revolve around this. Our October conversation will surround ergonomics. Our Health & Wellness Week is an event to promote that the activities within the organization go beyond the occupational health and safety act. We want to ensure that our employees are taking care of themselves. When people ask how many people work in Safety at our company – I look at the total number of employees, each of us has a responsibility to safety within the organization.

Tim participating in the Terry Fox Run earlier in September. 

 

What is your favourite part about being the Health & Safety Coordinator at Saturn?

 

The people of Saturn Power. It’s interacting, and it’s making sure they get home safe at the end of the night. It’s the little things about my responsibility that mirror in the actions of the Saturn Team Members.

 

How do you promote workplace safety?

 

That’s an ongoing challenge – it’s not just e-mails and safety talks or one-on-one discussions, it’s having environmental awareness, being cognizant of all potential hazards, and having an open line of communication.

 

One of Tim's prized possessions!

 

What are some ways that an individual can improve on their workplace experience?

 

By following our Safety Moment – Stop what you’re doing, assess the hazards, identify them, correct them, and then do the job. That can go for big and little jobs.

 

What do you like to do outside of work?


Spending time with my family – Coaching my daughter’s softball team, shopping with my other daughter, then it’s cigars and my car and my leather business. But family time is definitely the number one.

 

Favourite movie?

 

My daughter would say it’s High School Musical 2 or 3 – But I’m thinking Steven King’s “The Stand” is also up there.

 

What are you usually listening to on Spotify during a work day?

 

There’s 1,200 songs in my playlist so that’s a hard one to narrow down. It ranges from Queen, to Cat Stevens and Blue Rodeo.

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Saturn Power Team Members participated in the Terry Fox Run this past weekend. The Saturn Team raised funds to assist the Terry Fox Foundation in its ongoing work to fund innovative cancer research programs.

 

 

Tim

 

Karen

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Recently, Saturn Power Team Members had the opportunity to participate in a build with Habitat for Humanity in Waterloo Region. 

 

 

Since its establishment in 1988, Habitat for Humanity Waterloo Region has provided the community with affordable living spaces, while bringing together the community and fostering a greater sense of engagement. 

 

 

For more information on how you too can get involved, visit their site, www.habitatwr.ca.

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Raquel Reyes 

Project Development Intern 

 

As Raquel concludes the last day of her Co-Op placement, we take a look at her time with Saturn Power. 


What is your position at Saturn Power and what does an average day look like for you?

 

I'm the Co-Op Student in Development, often referred as Junior Developer. My day-to-day tasks are constantly changing - dependent on the current priorities in the department. Primarily, my position entails finding land opportunities within a geographic region for large utility-scale solar PV projects. So, I look at environmental factors, mapping, the triple-grid information available and present those opportunities to my Supervisor and move forward accordingly. 

 

What drew you to Saturn Power initially, why did you think it was good fit? 
 

I wanted to do something different from my previous co-op experiences, and focus on the enironmental aspect of my degree. I'm completing a Bachelors of Environmental Studies, with a Minor in Political Science and Specialization Diploma in Environmental Assessment. The goals of Saturn Power really align with what I'm learning in the classroom. 

 

Given the chance, who at Saturn Power would you like to be for a day? 

 

I would like to be Julia. She's incredibly detail-oriented, organized, and has a strong presence as a leader.

 

What is the best part about your role?

 

That it's never the same. I've been helping with market research, understanding the grid, obtaining information and contacting stakeholders to assist the Land Team - this position allowed me to explore various segments of the business cycle. 

 

 

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Tyson Zehr

Senior Investment Analyst

 

What is your role at Saturn Power? Can you give me a brief overview of what your position entails?

 

My role is an Investment Analyst, and I’m on the Strategic Capital Team. The Strategic Capital team is responsible for three segments of the process cycle. Business developers will come to us with a project, they’ll ask for pricing, so I’ll run pro forma and review the assumptions, and provide feedback with a price. The second part would be after we win a project, the Strategic Capital Team must go out and raise the capital for that asset. At that stage, I look up investor contact details and develop investor materials (preliminary information memorandums and presentations), and then the third area I work in is project acquisitions, including sensitivity analysis and contacting developers to see if there is interest in selling off their project.

 

 

What incentivized you to stay on with Saturn Power following your co-op term?

 

First thing would be the culture here and the people, I had a really good experience, they gave me a lot of opportunities and the company is so close to home. When I was at Ivey, they really engrained in us to find an industry that is a “wave”. You want to catch a wave in its early stages and ride it. I saw energy storage as an opportunity to become an expert in an area that there are not many experts in.

 

As an Investment Analyst, what trends do you see?

 

We’ve hit a tipping point where we’re at price parity with the other energy sources. Battery prices are coming down rapidly and we’re seeing a lot more RFP’s that have battery storage paired with solar. Having developed the largest battery in Canada, there’s a huge opportunity for us there. Also, investors are becoming more comfortable with renewable energy and offering better terms. Lastly, we’re seeing new programs popping up across North America in an effort to incentivize renewable energy projects.   

 

 

What is the best part of your role? The most difficult?

 

The best part is also the most difficult. I enjoy when we are very busy, working in a competitive environment with tight deadlines. This can be very difficult, however that’s really where I get my best work done. I believe it fosters personal growth and a strong team environment. I think our ability to process RFP’s and submit proposals on tight deadlines is a testament to the working relationship we have at Saturn Power.

 

Best vacation you’ve been on?

 

I went to Italy and Greece in Grade 12 for a month, and it was amazing. It was my first time to Europe. I saw Rome, Florence, Crete and Athens, just an amazing trip and got to enjoy the architecture and the history of two amazing countries.

 

 

What chore do you absolutely hate doing?

 

Dusting. Growing up, laundry and dusting, those were my chores, and I’m allergic to dust. Dusting, when you’re allergic to dust, isn’t fun.

 

Last meal?

 

Steak, twice baked potato with cheese and bacon, asparagus and a lobster tail on the side for sure.

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Julia Kossowski

Director, Solar Development

     

What is your role at Saturn Power? How long have you been with the corporation and can you give me a brief overview of what your role entails?

 

I’ve been with Saturn Power for two years but provided engineering consulting services to Doug and Ray in my former role for over five years. My title is Director of Solar Development, and I’m responsible for managing the development team for utility-scale solar projects through greenfield development, project acquisitions, and RFP bids for our North American and Caribbean projects.

 

What does a typical day as the Director of Solar Development look like for you?

 

Every day is a bit different – but definitely lots of meetings. Daily, I’m checking in with our solar developers on their greenfield development progress and addressing obstacles that they’re encountering, improving processes and communication. In parallel, I’m responding to market trends and assessing frequent acquisition and RFP opportunities and deciding which ones to pursue. My position entails rallying the team to prepare offers, in addition to communicating progress to the executive team and identifying risks. Where there’s time, I try to look ahead to plan our future strategic development goals.

 

 

What was the driving factor for you to join Saturn Power?

 

As a small, privately-owned company, I find we’re able to jump into new business opportunities very quickly. As a team we can assess these opportunities and explore new markets. The renewable energy sector is changing so rapidly and it’s nice to be with a team that can keep up with it. There’s a lot of learning on the job as we explore those new trends. Because Saturn Power has in-house specialists for every phase of solar project development (land agents, engineers, legal counsel, developers, accountants, and financiers) we have a tight knit team that supports the entire project lifecycle.  Our departments inter-connectedly work well together, we can successfully take on new and exciting projects. It’s great being a part of a world class renewable energy developer and operator in the Waterloo Region.

 

What would you say is your greatest highlight from your time working at the Saturn? Is there a specific project you’ve worked on that you found the most successful, and what was your role?

 

There have been lots of exciting successes over the past few years.  I might say one of the highlights would be submitting the successful bid for the 2017 SaskPower 10MW Solar RFP.  Saskatchewan is an important market for us, and it was a very competitive bid process – we were thrilled to be selected.  We are currently developing that project.

 

Outside of work, what do you love to do with your time?

 

As a mom of two kids, I’m kept busy so finding sleep wherever I can, is a plus. I also enjoy playing volleyball, I love being in the outdoors. I’m a big yoga enthusiast.

 

Ten years down the road, what role do you see renewable energy projects and practices having on our society?

 

We’re at an exciting tipping point for renewables, they’re already at parity with other traditional sources of electricity in parts of North America. In 10 years, I can see that being the case across the continent and that means we’ll have clean, sustainable sources of energy that no longer rely on fossil fuels. I think the shift is going to continue to support the integration of electrical vehicles, as well as exciting large infrastructure projects (light rail transit, for example), and overall a cleaner, healthier, and more sustainable society.  I feel very privileged to be a small part of that evolution.

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In concert with their efforts to help create a sustainable environment for future generations through the advancement of clean energy, employees and management at Saturn Power spent the afternoon of Thursday April 25 doing their part to keep the community clean in honor of Earth Week.

 

Saturn Power, a developer of clean, renewable energy projects that is headquartered in Baden, Ontario sent a team out to clean up debris and litter from the area surrounding the on/off ramps near HWY 7/8 and Foundry Rd in Baden/Wilmot Township. Another dedicated team participated in the cleanup around Saturn’s Baden headquarters at 140 Foundry Rd, including the area adjacent to the Baden Pond.

 

 

The team ended up filling over two dozen large garbage bags full of litter, removing harmful waste from the environment while beautifying the local community they are proud to call home. Saturn Power would like to also provide a special thank you to Provincial Waste Systems of Elmira, Ontario for generously agreeing to pick up the large load of garbage from our office, without charge.

 

“We at Saturn Power recognize the importance of building a sustainable planet through the minimizing of waste and consumption efforts, in concert with the work we are doing to develop, build and operate clean, renewable energy projects across the globe.” said Ray Roth, Chief Operating Officer of Saturn Power.  “As a company, and as a team, our goal is to help contribute to a more sustainable world for future generations and we will continue to strive, every day, to do better”.

 

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