President & CEO
Alliance for Tribal Clean Energy
Washington, District of Columbia, United States
Chéri Smith is the founder, president, and CEO of the Alliance for Clean Energy, 501(c)(3). She is a descendant of the Mi'kmaq Nation of present-day Northern Maine and the Canadian Maritimes. Chéri founded the organization now known as the Alliance for Tribal Clean Energy in 2106. As a 25-year veteran of the renewable energy sector, she leverages her vast experience, network and relationships to support tribes in their self-determined pursuit of renewable energy -- as a means to diminish poverty, mitigate climate change, and restore true sovereignty and hope.
Previously, Chéri led workforce development and training for SolarCity and then Tesla, including coordination of all community, academic, and government stakeholders in the massive effort to identify and train a diverse team of over 1,400 employees of the 1GW solar manufacturing plant in Buffalo, NY, and Tesla’s Battery Gigafactory in Nevada, the largest factory in the world.
From 2009–2015, Chéri was in private practice, providing technical workforce consulting services for colleges/universities and governments, including the Interstate Renewable Energy Council(IREC), New York State Energy Research & Development Authority(NYSERDA), and US Department of Energy SunShot initiatives: Solar Ready Vets, Solar Instructor Training Network, and Solar Career Map. From 2005–2009, Chéri served as Director of Education and outreach for the American Council On Renewable Energy, where she developed and managed ACORE’s corporate, educational, and citizen-outreach programs, collaborating with foreign governments and NGOs to develop best practices for clean energy development.
Chéri serves as an Advisor to the Yale School of Business/Environment, served as an Advisory Board member for the Masters in Renewable Energy degree program at Penn State, and as a Buffalo & Erie County, NY Workforce Investment Board Director. She is an MIT Solver, and Indigenous Communities Fellow, a Cordes Fellow, and a Climate Leader, trained personally by former Vice President, Al Gore.
Tuesday, September 12, 2023
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PDT
Wednesday, September 13, 2023
3:30 PM – 4:00 PM PDT