National GEM Consortium Honors NREL Director Keller

Oct. 2, 2019 | Contact media relations

Photo of three men wearing tuxedos. One holds a glass trophy.
Martin Keller (right) poses with NREL colleagues Johney Green (left) and Roderick Jackson, both of whom are GEM alums. All three are working to expand the number of GEM fellowships at NREL. Photo courtesy of Roderick Jackson, NREL

The National Graduate Education for Minority Students (GEM) Consortium honored National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Director Martin Keller on Sept. 19 with its Corporate Leadership Award. The presentation took place at GEM’s 43rd Annual Conference and Gala in Chicago, Illinois.

NREL Associate Laboratory Director for Mechanical and Thermal Engineering Sciences Johney Green, who is also a GEM alum, introduced Keller. “Martin’s commitment to diversity and inclusion extends throughout the entire lab,” said Green, who has worked with Keller for about 10 years.

Founded in 1976, the National GEM Consortium has a mission to increase the participation of underrepresented groups at the master’s and doctoral levels in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Since that time, GEM has awarded more than 4,000 African Americans, American Indians, and Hispanic Americans with fellowships, including an expanding number at NREL.

GEM Chief Executive Officer Brennon Marcano praised Keller as “an influential leader” with a “commitment and passion for public service and dedication to creating better opportunities for members of underrepresented groups in STEM-related fields.”

Added Green, “His inclusive approach encourages us to keep diversity front-of-mind in our efforts to recruit the best and brightest scientists and researchers. He inspires us to pursue our dreams.” Green also mentored NREL Buildings Laboratory Program Manager Roderick Jackson as a GEM intern at Oak Ridge National Laboratory.

In accepting the award on behalf of NREL, Keller thanked GEM for its efforts in promoting inclusivity. “I was excited to accept this award in the name of the NREL community,” Keller said. “Inclusivity in a work environment is a key foundation for a successful organization.”

He has emphasized that innovation is not possible without diversity of thought and has pledged that NREL’s culture will ensure employees are valued and respected so they can do their best work.

NREL believes that fostering an inclusive work environment maximizes the unique talents and innovative ideas of every employee. Learn more about the laboratory’s commitment to diversity and inclusion.

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