Executive Energy Leadership Academy

NREL's Executive Energy Leadership Academy, or Energy Execs, provides industry and community leaders an opportunity to learn about advanced energy technologies to guide their organizations in energy-related decisions and planning.

The Energy Execs program is designed for leaders interested in exploring renewable energy and energy-efficiency technologies, applications, and issues. Participants travel to NREL's main campus in Golden, Colorado, for four multi-day sessions held June–September.

While there is no cost to participate in the program, participants are responsible for their own travel and lodging expenses.

Learn more about Energy Execs by viewing the sample syllabus or emailing us at eexecs@nrel.gov.

Applications for the 2025 program will open in fall.

What You'll Learn

The program provides an in-depth look at solar and wind power, bioenergy, hydrogen and transportation, energy-efficient building technologies, and energy systems integration. Course content includes information on performance characteristics of the technologies, economics, and analytical tools.

You'll gain access to:

  • Briefings by world-renowned researchers and engineers
  • Tours of state-of-the-art research laboratories
  • Visits to renewable energy installations.

Program Outcomes

Upon completing the program, participants will demonstrate what they've learned through a group project relating to the course content.

Eligibility and Requirements

Successful applicants must:

  • Apply to the program using the link provided on this page each fall. NREL typically notifies applicants of their final status in mid-March.
  • Commit to attending all sessions (dates below) in person at NREL’s South Table Mountain campus in Golden, Colorado, and their organization must signify this commitment in its recommendation letter. Participants who miss sessions will be excluded from completing the program.
  • Meet NREL's site access requirements, per U.S. Department of Energy regulations.

Program Dates and Location

The 2024 Energy Execs program will be held on the following dates:

  • June 12–14
  • July 17–19
  • Aug. 21–23
  • Sept. 18–20.

Session times are:

  • Wednesdays and Thursdays: 8 a.m.–5 p.m.
  • Friday: 8 a.m.–noon.

We recommend arriving the Tuesday before the first session and departing on Friday after the last session has concluded.

Find information about transportation and lodging near NREL's South Table Mountain campus.

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In Their Own Words

Observations from previous Energy Execs program participants on the impact of this experience:

Given my extensive engagement with a diverse contingent of clean energy stakeholders, the unprecedented exposure to NREL's research depth and introduction to its vast array of publicly available software tools and databases, Energy Execs came through for me big time. I was particularly impressed with the responsiveness of the esteemed NREL engineers and researchers to whom I reached out for additional support."
— Craig Wright, Senior Buildings Performance Analyst at IBIS (Class of 2023)

This summit was nothing short of an exceptional opportunity to gain in-depth knowledge on advanced renewable energy technologies like wind power, bioenergy, energy systems integration and learn how to apply these innovations in the field at scale—showing how we turn out commitments into tangible and impactful action. Developing innovations at the speed and scale required to meet our decarbonization goals is no easy feat, but by learning about equity-centered renewable energy technology solutions, tools available to those in the clean energy space, and what's coming next from the leaders at NREL, I'm more confident than ever that we can succeed."
— Claire Behar, chief commercial officer, Hy Stor Energy (Class of 2022)

The NREL Execs program opened my eyes to myriad opportunities for energy advancement underway. Because of the intensive training, I was able to absorb the possibilities of the energy future. It is bright with the work of NREL and their partners! Meeting others from across the country who are working within the intersectionality of the energy industry gave me hope for a country that is less reliant on fossil fuels. Because of this program, I am able to incorporate cost-saving energy principles for home builds in cold climates."
— Mindy O'Neall, executive director, NREL's Alaska Campus in Fairbanks (Class of 2022)

NREL Energy Execs is a wonderful opportunity to learn about cutting-edge clean energy technology from leading researchers and technical experts. The program is designed to expand your knowledge, but also challenge your assumptions, so come ready to learn from your peers and hear different approaches and perspectives for a more complete and rewarding learning experience."
— Justin Leveque, section chief, Research and Emerging Issues, Colorado Public Utilities Commission (Class of 2022)

This program gave me the push I needed to get more excited about the technology and more motivated to explore what is possible. And that will only serve to improve outcomes, of that I am certain."
— Michael Peterson, Renewable Natural Gas Supply Development lead, Shell (Class of 2022)

Energy Execs Graduates

Since 2007, more than 350 decision makers from 39 U.S. states have participated in Energy Execs. See the list of Energy Execs alumni sorted by program and year.

U.S. map with numbers corresponding to the number of NREL Energy Execs alumni in each state: Washington (2); Oregon (1); California (17); Idaho (2); Nevada (4); Arizona (6); Utah (1); Colorado (216); New Mexico (4); Kansas (1); Oklahoma (3); Texas (10); Minnesota (9); Iowa (1); Missouri (1); Arkansas (1); Louisiana (1); Wisconsin (8); Illinois (5); Mississippi (1); Georgia (2); Florida (4); Michigan (6); Indiana (2); Ohio (8); West Virginia (1); New York (6); Pennsylvania (4); New Hampshire (1); Massachusetts (3); New Jersey (1); Connecticut (1); Delaware (1); Maryland (3); Washington, D.C. (19); Virginia (9); West Virginia (1); North Carolina (5); Tennessee (2); Georgia (2); Florida (4); Alaska (7); and other countries - Colombia, Lagos, and Philippines (3).
State/Territory Number of Participants
Washington 2
Oregon 1
California 17
Idaho 2
Nevada 4
Arizona 6
Utah 1
Colorado 216
New Mexico 4
Kansas 1
Oklahoma 3
Texas 10
Minnesota 9
Iowa 1
Missouri 1
Arkansas 1
Louisiana 1
Wisconsin 8
Illinois 5
Mississippi 1
Indiana 2
Michigan 6
Ohio 8
New York 6
New Hampshire 1
Massachusetts 3
Connecticut 1
New Jersey 1
Pennsylvania 4
Delaware 1
Maryland 3
West Virginia 1
Virginia 9
Washington, D.C. 19
North Carolina 5
Tennessee 2
Georgia 2
Florida 4
Alaska 7
International: Colombia, Lagos, and Phillippines 3

Are you an Energy Execs alumnus? Send your updated contact information to us at eexecsalumni@nrel.gov.


If you have any questions about Energy Execs, contact eexecs@nrel.gov.