Anna Demeo, PhD is the Director of Energy Education and Management at College of the Atlantic. She teaches physics and engineering with a focus on project based, renewable energy courses. Anna spent over 10 years in industry as an electrical engineer specializing in system design. Her research is focused on smart-grid and community scale renewable energy. Anna has a B.S. from the University of Colorado in Electrical Engineering, an M.S. in Marine Bio-Resources and a PhD in Engineering in the Natural Sciences, both from the University of Maine. Anna enjoys hiking and sailing with her husband and two children.
I grew up in Maine and attended college at Syracuse University New York, where I studied and earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interior Design. I have traveled to Japan and Italy as part of my schooling experience. I also traveled to Honduras as a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity. After graduation, I toured most of the United States, and returned to Bar Harbor, Maine to live and work. Currently, I am attending College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine, pursuing a Master’s of Philosophy in Human Ecology, with a focus on Green Design. My ambition is to try to bring ecological design solutions to Downeast coastal Maine.
Brooks joined the Island Institute in November 2011. As the Community Energy Associate, he works closely with island communities to assist with programming in energy efficiency, community-owned renewable energy, offshore wind and energy education. Since 2012, he has been partnering with local organizations to implement the Island Institute’s award-winning Weatherization Week program on seven Maine islands. Brooks holds a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Spanish from Bowdoin College where he received multiple awards for his work on community energy projects throughout the state of Maine.
Jay is the Sharpe-McNally Chair of Green and Socially Responsible Business at College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine and serves on the entrepreneurship faculty of Babson College. Fast Company, Princeton Review, CNN, Chronicle of Higher Education, Entrepreneur, Triple Pundit, Fortune, Money and other media have covered Jay’s work. He has also given talks to business and academic groups in the United States, as well as Japan, New Zealand, Australia, and the European Union. Jay holds a BA from Colgate University and an MBA from Babson College, where he graduated as Valedictorian. Jay enjoys cooking, hiking in Acadia National Park and traveling with his wife Ursula and son Max.
I am a junior at College of the Atlantic, where I major in Human Ecology, but study filmmaking. I spend my time thinking about the interconnections between humans and our environments, and use video media to explore and express those relationships. When we understand how connected we are to the things around us, we can form healthy and sustainable relationships with both our social and natural environments.
I am a 2014 graduate of College of the Atlantic (COA). I have been self-employed during the past twenty-five years in the fields of sustainable food systems, landscape horticulture and development. My interests in integrated systems, community collaboration, education and design are bases for my work and community involvements. The Samsø Energy Academy course at COA dovetails with my pursuits.
I am a third year student at College of the Atlantic. I have a background in the visual arts, but I have become interested in sustainable energy and design in the hopes of channeling my creative interests into something that will be of service to people on a larger scale in the years to come. I am keenly interested in learning more about not just the individual generators of renewable energy, but overall sustainable design and building principles and methods, which use more natural or recycled materials and require less energy input from the start. Also of particular interest to me with this course is exploring the ways in which a community enacts the necessary measures to set up energy sustainable infrastructures, and all of the things that have or haven't worked in the process.
My name is Lauren Pepperman. I live in rural Hunterdon County, New Jersey, just 80 km west of New York City. In my free time, I enjoy astronomy, fencing, and traveling. I am a third year student at College of the Atlantic, interested in sustainability. During my freshman year at COA, I took a class called Physics and Mathematics of Sustainable Energy, and fell in love with the field, particularly renewable energy. That same year I joined the college’s Campus Committee of Sustainability, and have been an active member since. At Samsø, I look forward to learning additional strategic methods and applications of renewable energy, and how it relates to both business and the community.
Since 2005, Marian Chioffi has served as the bookkeeper/clerk for the Monhegan Plantation Power District (MPPD), a quasi-municipal company that generates and distributes power on Monhegan Island. As a graduate of the 2013 ISLE program, Marian recently revised MPPD’s business plan to increase the company’s economic viability while implementing strategies to reduce Monhegan’s dependency on diesel fuel. Later that year, she began serving as the co-chair of the Monhegan Energy Task Force, the organization representing her community in discussions with the developers of the proposed Maine Aqua Ventus offshore wind project. She is currently working to implement a USDA-funded project that will upgrade to the island’s power station and install 13 kW of solar on the island. Marian is the co-owner of the Trailing Yew, a hotel on Monhegan, and sits on several community organization boards.
Nathan is the Director of Environmental Affairs at Ocean Renewable Power Company (ORPC) in Portland, ME. In this role, he is responsible for developing solutions to deploy ORPC tidal and river turbine technology in an environmentally responsible and cost effective manner. Mr. Johnson also contributes to ORPC’s strategic development by identifying partnerships, emerging technologies, and projects to accelerate the marine renewable industry and contribute to the sustainability of global communities. A resident of Long Island, Maine, Nathan also has spent time as a licensed commercial lobsterman and is a certified geologist in the State of Maine. The focus of his role in the CIERA program will be to evaluate the economic viability of community scale renewable energy projects on grid-connect islands, using Long Island in Casco Bay as a model, including investigating innovative technologies (i.e. energy storage for vehicles and vessels) to provide additional community benefits.
Nick Urban is a fourth-year student at College of the Atlantic (COA) in Bar Harbor, Maine, who studies sustainable energy systems. He has already spent ten weeks (from 6 January through 14 March 2014) on Samsø interning at the Energy Academy under the supervision of Søren Hermansen. During his time at the Academy, Nick worked with several of the staff members on a host of projects as well as his own task of laying the groundwork for this collaboration with COA and the Island Institute. He will serve as the class Teacher’s Assistant.
I was raised in a small coastal town spending my childhood exploring tide pools and adventuring in the sea. After high school, I began working on organic farms to learn how to reconstruct my lifestyle to be self-sufficient, independent of my parents. These pursuits brought me to the island of Kauai where I first learned how to live 100% off the grid to experience a complete resource loop in which all my energy and food needs were produced without fossil fuels. I then moved to Oregon to get involved with more rural living skills and natural building techniques. I finally decided to return to Maine to reconnect with my home state, and in doing so, I rediscovered my love for this coast. Now, at College of the Atlantic, I am driven to find energy solutions for the rural communities on the Maine Islands. I currently help manage North Haven Oyster Company where three of us sustainably grow hundreds of thousands of oysters on a small island.
For most of my life I have lived in Bath, Maine. In ninth grade I decided to begin an alternative autodidactic approach, which embraced following my passions. This led me to explore Australia and various parts of the United States. I lived in Chicago for three years where I pursued my interest in art and literature. I also attended an environmental semester school, Conserve School, in northern Wisconsin. Through a hodgepodge of educational opportunities I have been able to further develop my interest in sustainable systems and business.
Patrick works part time as a Math tutor and teacher at the Vinalhaven School. He is on a number of Vinalhaven boards: The Vinalhaven Water District, The Vinalhaven Municipal Sewer, The Vinalhaven Elder Care Services, and The Fox Island Electrical Cooperative. He started work as an electrician, spent 2 years in the Army, work 25 years for New England Telephone and AT&T as a technician, engineer, administrator, and manager, and then taught high school Math for 9 years in Massachusetts. His educational background includes an Associate’s degree from Wentworth Institute in Electronics, a B.S. from UMass Lowell in Mathematics, and a Master from UMass Lowell in Education. His hobbies are designing and building Sun Dials and Crystal Radios, programming with MS Visual Basic, and Vinalhaven geology and history. As a CIERA participant, Patrick would like to study the cost effectiveness of supplementing the Fox Island Electrical Cooperative’s (FIEC) wind turbines KWH production with a complimentary photovoltaic system as a way to reduce and stabilize year round electricity cost for the two islands. Recent energy projects that Patrick has worked on include remodeling his island home to be energy efficient, and making interior storm windows for island homes through the Vinalhaven Energy Club of which he is a founding member.
My passion lies in community initiatives for closed-loop material flows and sustainable energy systems. I will be participating in the Samsø program as the first stage of my final project at COA on community-based clean energy. Through an undergraduate scholarship, I will be continuing my work in Germany for 7 months to further investigate policy framework and case studies for community clean energy.
Rob Snyder is the president of the Island Institute. Rob's background is in cultural anthropology, and his research focuses on informal science education, science technology and society, and the cultural politics of natural resource management. He has conducted research on these topics in Maine; the Rocky Mountain states; Quepos, Costa Rica; and Yunnan, China.
I am originally from Boston, Massachusetts, and transferred to College of the Atlantic as a second year student (last January). I am extremely excited about the collaboration with Samsø Energy Academy and being apart of the first iteration of this course. My interests lie in sustainable design (more specifically architecture) and green energy. I wanted to be a part of this program to further my knowledge of renewable energy and green design. I am interested to see how community, economy, and design can be fused together into operational systems in order to better/heighten.
As child in rural Nepal, I was offered the opportunity to leave my village to attend a school in Nepal's capital. Although it meant not seeing my mother for nine years, I took the chance to invest in my education. I later won a scholarship from the Himalayan Bank of Nepal, financing my place on a three-year agriculture course at a United World College in Venezuela. On my return after graduating from UWC Venezuela in 2011, I helped co-found Maya Universe Academy, which is the first completely free education institution in Nepal. At present, I am a rising Davis United World College Scholar sophomore at the College of the Atlantic (COA), on the other side of Nepal, in USA Maine. Through my education at COA I am striving to understand development economics, global environmental politics and sustainable business. My current trajectory has taken me to attend UNFCCC as a youth delegate to Least Developed Country Watch helping with policy recommendations, and a lead delegate of Earth in Brackets - a student organization. With Earth in Brackets I have attended and blogged from the 51st UNCSocD and Open Working Group on SDG meetings. Recently I attended the World Conference on Youth 2014 held in Sri Lanka as one of 78 international youth delegates, and a panelist speaking on topics related to alleviating poverty and ending systemic inequalities.
Since June 2009, Suzanne has been supporting island communities in their efforts to better understand and confront their unique energy challenges. Suzanne directs programming on energy efficiency, community-owned renewable energy, offshore wind, and energy education. Suzanne is currently helping to implement America’s Islanded Grid Regional Resource Center, a DOE-funded national network of islands and remote communities considering the integration of land-based and offshore wind power into their grids. A former seasonal resident of Monhegan, she has a keen interest in supporting diesel-powered New England islands to move away from this costly energy source. Suzanne holds an M.A. in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University where she was awarded a graduate student research award for her thesis that focused on financing options for community wind power development on New England islands. She has a B.A. in political science and international development studies from McGill University.
My name is Saren Peetz, and I am a fourth year COA student from Cleveland, Ohio. For the past two years, I have worked on issues of sustainable community design, with an emphasis on walkability and how the associated reduced reliance on carbon-powered transportation can drastically decrease the “carbon footprint” of a place. My other passions are in education and food systems.
Sam is a retired school teacher and a board member of both the Peaks Environmental Action Team and WindowDressers, the Rockland based nonprofit which has developed innovative ways to scale up the construction of volunteer-produced storm window inserts at community builds. A former board chair of Maine Interfaith Power & Light, he comes to energy efficiency work out of climate change concern. Sam worked with Island Fellow Maggie Small, the Island Institute’s energy team and Efficiency Maine to implement the weatherization of 125 homes on Peaks in 2013 and set up a heat pump purchase group there this past winter. He is organizing the third annual storm window insert build on Peaks for this fall. Sam is interested in tackling a project in one of the following areas: electric island transportation, updating island energy infrastructure, or the possible use of a capped island landfill for a community-based solar project.
Tom is an independent consultant working in international development and humanitarian relief. His primary professional interest lies in the provision of essential utility services (water, sanitation & electric) in difficult, resource constrained environments. He has recently served 2-1/2 years as general manager of the Swans Island Electric Cooperative. He held the position of Chief Engineer of the Nashua, NH water utility for 10 years prior to starting international work in the mid 90’s. Tom has since worked in a number of developing countries in post-conflict and post-disaster environments. He and his wife Bev have been year round residents on Swan’s Island since they returned from Timor Leste in 2009.
I’ve lived all my life in Bar Harbor, Maine. I spent my formative years developing a deep appreciation for the natural world and a deep fear of the possibility of ecological collapse. A pivotal year for me was 2006, when I saw Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth. This movie exposed me to concepts of anthropogenic climate change—in my mind the ultimate ecological catastrophe—and sparked a burning desire to make a positive difference. Since that time I have focused mostly on Biology and Ecology with the ultimate goal of conducting some sort of ecological field research. I recently rediscovered the dire need for sustainable energy development by reading the IPCC 2013 climate change report.
My name is Zak Kendall and I will be starting my second year at College of the Atlantic this the fall. I grew up in Farmington Maine and since I was young I have expressed an interest and fascination with alternative energy. My love for the outdoors has inspired me to find new and less harmful ways to produce energy in this country. My focus of study had been sustainable construction and I hope to further that study while on the island of Samso. I am extremely excited for this fall and hope to have a fun and educational experience during my time in Denmark.
I spent the majority of my youth biking through my home state, Iowa, where there was an abundance of cornfields and also an abundance of wind turbines. Although sustainable energy was very much a part of my life growing up (my father being an avid environmentalist), I didn't fully realize the awesomeness of sustainable energy until coming to Maine. Now in my last year at the College of the Atlantic, I have focused my studies on how people interact with the places they inhabit—whether that be the cornfields of Iowa or the islands of Maine.