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This post puts the spotlight on another valuable member of the Distributed Sun team: Paul Holshouser!
Paul is the Senior Director of Project Finance here at Distributed Sun. He is a part of Distributed Sun’s key decision making team for deal valuation, review of legal documentation, and retention of partner relationships.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill is where Paul decided to earn both his undergraduate BS in Business Administration and his MBA a few years later.
In between his time in Chapel Hill, Paul spent six years as a Risk Officer at Wachovia Corporation in Charlotte, North Carolina. It was Wachovia that introduced Paul to renewable energy when his team began making tax equity investments into large-scale wind farms. This experience opened his eyes to emerging business opportunities in clean energy and he decided to redirect his career to focus on renewables.
After graduate school, Paul served the wind industry at the American Wind Energy Association for five years, providing market analysis to the wind finance industry and working to convert market data into effective tax policy.
Since joining the Distributed Sun team, Paul has closed financing for projects commencing operation, supported the sale of operating assets several years into operation, and managed sale negotiations for development assets. Paul supported the full development cycle for Distributed Sun’s SUN8 portfolio – a 110 MW portfolio of solar projects that is now fully constructed and generates enough energy to power over 20,000 homes.
As Paul excitingly states: “Distributed Sun’s role as a policy innovator in New York helped us to deliver much of that portfolio to “shovel-ready” status within months of rulemaking. Our speed to market helped the state prove the viability of the community solar model”.
During his years working in the solar energy industry, Paul has witnessed how community solar in New York enhances the potential of solar projects to create win-win situations across many parties. The essence of community solar is to reach customers that are unable to install solar directly (roof conditions, home ownership, etc). Moreover, landowners and local counties benefit from significant lease and property tax revenues, while neighbors can sleep comfortably knowing that their local energy supply will not impair their water supplies or air quality. These wins are also reflected at a macro scale, where the local utility is able to decarbonize their grid in a highly cost-effective way.
However, to effectively coordinate all these actors and make deals happen in a dynamic environment is not a trivial task. This is why Paul believes that de-risking projects and expertise in amplifying the winning synergies across so many parties are among what distinguishes Distributed Sun in successfully bringing solar projects to operation.