Accomplished Team of Seasoned Industry Professionals
TurningPoint Energy’s team has demonstrated renewable energy industry experience in the full cycle of large-scale solar project development, including executive management, origination, land development, project finance, design, procurement, construction and operations and maintenance.
Jared Schoch, President
Mr. Schoch is the founder and president of TurningPoint Energy, and leads a team of veteran solar development executives focused on developing large scale solar and related clean tech power plants, advising utility, clean tech and corporate clients and investing in unique clean tech project opportunities. Over his career, he has managed more than 500MW ($1.7 billion) of solar and energy efficiency projects working with utilities, school districts, cities, counties, hospitals, federal agencies and industrial clients throughout the U.S. Prior to starting TurningPoint Energy, he worked for SOLON Corporation as its vice president and general manager of the U.S. power plants business where he helped expand and restructure the U.S. business leaving it positioned for success and profitability forward. Prior to that, Mr. Schoch spent nearly five years starting and organically growing SunEdison’s utility-scale solar development business throughout the United States. Mr. Schoch also worked as a leader in business development at Johnson Controls in energy efficiency services, and prior to that as a marketing consultant launching various products and services in the high tech space during the 1990s. He holds a master of business administration degree from the Daniels College of Business at the University of Denver and a bachelor of arts from Loyola University New Orleans.
James Marshall, Executive Vice President of Project Operations
As executive vice president of project operations, James Marshall is responsible for the full development, engineering, procurement and construction aspects of solar and related clean tech generation projects. Prior to joining TurningPoint Energy, Mr. Marshall founded and led an independent consulting business specializing in the engineering, procurement and construction of solar power plants where he worked with solar energy project investors, manufacturers, and utility companies.
Mr. Marshall also spent nine years at SunEdison where he designed over 1GW of successful solar projects in the U.S., Canada, Spain and Italy as the lead engineer, director of the utility-scale engineering team, and then global director of engineering and global standards. Prior to that, he spent several years at both REC Solar and PG&E. Mr. Marshall holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo and holds CA General B Contractors license.
Bruce Tang, Senior Vice President of Finance
Bruce Tang serves as senior vice president of finance for TurningPoint Energy. For the past five years, he has consulted to and provided advisory services to a wide range of renewable energy companies, including developers, manufacturers and investors, across multiple jurisdictions and technologies. In addition to his consulting practice, he has spent 10 years working as a structured finance executive with Kala Energy, Lightbeam Electric Company and Recurrent Energy. Mr. Tang also worked for 15 years at the global investment bank, Babcock & Brown, where he specialized in sale-leaseback and partnership finance solutions for transportation and energy assets. He graduated with honors from Harvard University earning a B.A. in European History.
Franny Yuhas, Managing Director of Business Development
As director of business development for TurningPoint Energy, Ms. Yuhas performs all aspects of solar project origination including site identification, energy off-take agreement negotiation and other due diligence activities to ensure project implementation success. She works closely with engineering, project finance, real estate for land acquisition, operations and the legal team to ensure project feasibility and that project economics align. Immediately prior to her role at TurningPoint Energy, Ms. Yuhas worked at WaterSmart Software to exercise her passion to learn more about water demand efficiency supported by data analytics, customer engagement and behavioral science. Prior to that, she worked at SunEdison for 10 years where she originated over 100 MW of commercial, municipal and utility scale solar projects in the U.S. Prior to that, she worked in the public transportation industry. Ms. Yuhas holds Masters Degree in Business Administration from the University of Baltimore and a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from Salisbury State University (part of the University System of Maryland).
Jordan Belknap, Project Developer
As project developer, Mr. Belknap is responsible for project management and permitting of major projects. Prior to joining TurningPoint Energy, Mr. Belknap founded HelioAmp Energy LLC, which specialized in solar energy project development, permitting, and construction management. Mr. Belknap in an industry veteran with a wide breadth of experience and proven track record of successful project execution. He has designed and constructed over 100 ground and roof mounted solar projects for clients that include government entities, businesses, low income housing, schools, non-profits, and houses of worship. He is a co-developer and an equity owner of 19 operating solar farms in the northeast for which he managed EPC and O&M activities. Mr. Belknap holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Physics and Economics from Bowdoin College and is a Massachusetts Licensed Construction Supervisor.
Peggy Paas, Real Estate Manager
Ms. Paas leads TurningPoint Energy’s site acquisition activities nationwide and handles corporate entity management. Immediately prior to joining TurningPoint Energy, she served as Real Estate Paralegal for a Connecticut-based solar energy developer. Ms. Paas was previously engaged by a developer specializing in high-end golf resort communities such as Lake Las Vegas and Waikoloa Beach Resort, where she facilitated and assisted in major real estate purchase and debt closings of up to $500MM, and also served as Paralegal for Cross Mountain Ranch, a 400,000-acre world-class hunting, cattle and sheep ranch. Ms. Paas has lived in the United States since 2001 and is fluent in Dutch, German and English. She has been a licensed Transactional Paralegal for nearly 20 years and is also a licensed Nevada Notary Public.
Adam Beal, Executive Vice President of Development
As executive vice president of development, Mr. Beal oversees all real estate, land development and permitting activities for the company. Prior to joining TurningPoint Energy, Mr. Beal founded Lighthouse Advisers, a Colorado-based real estate development consultancy specializing in the renewable energy industry. In addition to its consultancy work, Lighthouse Advisers co-developed and maintained an equity stake in 19 operational solar facilities in the Northeast U.S. Before forming Lighthouse Advisers, Mr. Beal was employed by SunEdison, overseeing land development and site acquisition processes for 80+ distributed generation solar project sites throughout the U.S. and its island territories, and handling land acquisition functions for dozens of utility-scale solar projects in the desert Southwest. He has lent his expertise to over 1,500 MW of now-operational or under-development photovoltaic solar projects. Mr. Beal has also worked as a commercial real estate broker – licensed by the Colorado Real Estate Commission for over a decade – and has additional experience in retail and mixed-use development. He is an active real estate investor, and holds a Bachlor of Science from Western Michigan University.
Elaine Schoch, Vice President of Marketing Communications
Ms. Schoch is vice president of marketing communications, and brings two decades of expertise in both business-to-consumer and business-to-business public relations, social media and marketing communications. She was previously the director of social media at 104 West. She has developed and implemented integrated public relations campaigns at leading public relations firms including Schenkein, Ogilvy Public Relations and Golin/Harris International for consumer and high-tech clients including Western Union, Home Depot, Qwest Communications, Texas Instruments and Amazon. Her programs have been recognized by the industry with multiple awards from the Public Relations Society of America.
Ms. Schoch is also an award-winning travel writer and the founder and editor at Carpe Travel, an online wine travel resource. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Marketing from The University of North Texas in Denton.
Salar Naini, Vice President of Business Development
Mr. Naini is responsible for origination and development of solar and related clean tech generation opportunities and supporting the development of project financing resources at TurningPoint Energy. Over his career, he has held various roles in business development and finance and has successfully developed 112MW ($381 million) in solar projects. Prior to joining TurningPoint Energy, Mr. Naini was the principal at SolCom Energy, LLC where he originated and developed California-specific customer-financed solar projects. Mr. Naini has also worked at NRG Energy where he was responsible for the origination and development of opportunities for the firm’s public and private sector customers. Before joining NRG, he worked for SOLON Corporation as a business and financial analyst, playing key roles in the analysis, development and execution of a 24MW project portfolio. Mr. Naini is a Provost Scholar from Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business and holds a Masters in Finance from Creighton University’s Heider School of Business.
Jake Wilson, Engineering Manager
As engineering manager, Jake Wilson is currently responsible for development management in the Rhode Island and Maryland markets. Mr. Wilson’s solar experience includes more than a decade of engineering management of primarily utility-scale power systems in Hawaii, California, Texas, Arizona, Utah and Colorado. All solar power systems are currently operational and producing more than 500MW of clean energy. Mr. Wilson has worked extensively with environmental and civil engineers to minimize solar impact to natural surroundings, which includes navigating seismic fissures in California. Career experience includes substation, transmission line and SCADA integration with multiple utilities across the nation. Mr. Wilson holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering from Santa Clara University.
Michelle Carpenter, Managing Director of Development
Michelle Carpenter has more than 12 years of project development, financing and technical expertise within the renewable energy industry in the Northeast. She has been involved in the origination, development and due diligence on more than 150 MW of solar projects. Prior to her work at TurningPoint Energy, Mrs. Carpenter was C.O.O. at a Rhode Island renewable energy company where she helped grow the business from a single operational project to one of the largest developers in the state. She also ran the Northeast distributed generation division for NextEra Energy Resources, helping to spearhead the companies entrance into the DG space. Her expertise ranges from site identification, qualification and permitting to contract negotiation and regulatory analysis. Prior to her experience in the renewable energy industry, Mrs. Carpenter spent five years in the estimating department of a multi-million-dollar electrical contracting firm. She has a B.S. in Environmental & Natural Resource Economics with a minor in Environmental Science from the University of Rhode Island.
Robert V. Maki , Senior Director of Real Estate
Rob Maki is responsible for real estate related matters across TurningPoint’s multi-state portfolio. In addition to negotiating and drafting a variety of site control documents, he works with the project developers, title insurance companies, surveyors, and landmen to ensure that TPE’s projects meet all investor expectations and document requirements. By identifying and eliminating real estate risks during the development phase, projects can move forward smoothly and without drama.
Mr. Maki previously served as Counsel and Director of Land and Legal for SunShare, where he was intimately involved in the successful development of over 100 MW’s of Community Solar projects in Minnesota and Colorado, as well as the financing and sale of the projects. From the initial landowner negotiations through financial close, he interfaced with title insurance companies, surveyors, contractors, utility representatives, attorneys and bankers. Prior to his solar experience, Mr. Maki spent over 25 years in the title insurance industry.
Mr. Maki received his Bachelor Arts from the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth, Minnesota and his Juris Doctor from Hamline University School of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota. He is licensed to practice law in Minnesota.
The team members listed below work with TurningPoint Energy in its development, advisory and investment initiatives and projects.
Blair Loftis, Advisor, Renewable Project Design and Technical Development
Mr. Loftis is the National Program Manager for Renewable Energy at Terracon, Inc. Terracon specializes in environmental, geotechnical, materials testing, and facilities services with nearly 4,000 engineers and scientists located in over 150 offices throughout the U.S. Blair has responsibilities for strategic direction, account management, technical efficacy, and operational efficiency for Terracon’s renewable energy services. Prior to joining Terracon, Blair served as eight years as the Vice President and Global Director of Renewable Energy at Kleinfelder. In his career supporting renewable energy project development, design and construction he has overseen in excess of 5 GW of wind energy projects and over 4 GW of solar energy projects. Loftis has also been involved in other forms of renewable energy projects including: hydrokinetics, biomass, anaerobic digestion, and geothermal energy. Mr. Loftis also serves as a testifying expert witness in renewable energy litigation matters and was the lead expert on a $125m litigation dispute involving 97 solar projects in the NJ SREC market. In addition to his tenure in renewable energy Blair spent a decade in construction management and seven years with PacifiCorp, one of the largest intra-jurisdictional investor-owned electric utilities in the United States. At PacifiCorp Loftis started in construction operations and through various levels of meritorious advancement served as Special Projects Program Manager, Operational Risk Manager, and Director of Corporate Strategy where he was part of the inorganic growth team evaluating M&A opportunities targeting other IOUs. His diverse career has presented him with a unique balance of construction know how and utility business acumen. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Toxicology from the University of California at Davis.
Christopher Bergen, Advisor, Land Acquisition, Development and Entitlement
Mr. Bergen is Principal of Altis Energy Services LLC and brings 13 years of wind and solar development experience, including a five-year tenure at Iberdrola Renewables. He has demonstrated success in siting project concepts, building and supervising project teams, managing complex permitting process, and negotiating commercial agreements. Mr. Bergen developed over 221MW of commercially operational wind and solar projects now in operation, and managed over 5GW of development pipeline across North America. He holds a BA in Political Science and Environmental Studies from Emory University, and a MBA from the University of Colorado Denver Business School.