Founder and CEO, Powerhouse
2017 Entrepreneurship Award Winner
Emily Kirsch is the Founder and CEO of Powerhouse, the world’s first and only incubator and accelerator dedicated to intelligent energy. Powerhouse backs seed-stage founders that are building solutions enabled by software for distributed energy, storage, and grid modernization. Since inception in 2013, Powerhouse has housed over 50 intelligent energy startups and organizations in its co-working space in the San Francisco Bay Area, has invested in 17 startups, and has celebrated 4 acquisitions. Powerhouse startups have collectively generated tens of millions of dollars in revenue, raised hundreds of millions in capital, and have created hundreds of jobs. Before founding Powerhouse, she worked with Van Jones, a former advisor to President Obama turned CNN political commentator, to launch the Green Jobs Corps, Oakland's first renewables-focused job training program. She is the founding convener of the Oakland Climate Action Coalition, which drafted and secured passage of what was the most ambitious energy and climate action plan of any city in the country. In addition, she worked with the solar company Mosaic to secure its first customers and launch its pilot platform. She is a 2012 New Leaders Council Alumni, was featured in the ‘15 for 2015 Women Leaders in Cleantech,' was a 2015 winner of the 'East Bay Innovation Award for Cleantech,' and was included in 'Grist 50: The 50 People You'll Be Talking About in 2016.' Emily serves on the board of PV Complete and is on the advisory board of the University of San Francisco’s Masters of Science in Energy Systems Management program. She has guest lectured at University of California, Berkeley and Stanford University.