New Report Highlights the State, Local, and Tribal Program Accomplishments in Fiscal Year 2021

Dec. 9, 2021 by Brooke Van Zandt, Kerrin Jeromin

If NREL had to "show and tell" the human impacts of its work today, what would stand out? The State, Local, and Tribal Program (SLT) team's Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 accomplishments would.

The SLT FY 2021 report highlights key projects and research underway at NREL that support states, local jurisdictions, and tribes. The SLT program and research is largely funded by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Weatherization and Intergovernmental Programs, Energy Transitions Initiative, and Office of Indian Energy as well as the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency.

"The SLT Program takes the research, analysis, and development of technologies that's being done at the lab and translates that information to tangible solutions for communities," says Eliza Hotchkiss, the acting SLT laboratory program manager for FY 2021. "This work has significant impact, and our team is excited to be at the forefront of the clean energy transition, working alongside communities, tribal nations, and states."

SLT Program Laboratory Program Manager Elizabeth Doris adds her excitement about the program impact, not just in FY 2021 but also throughout the more-than-decade-long journey of the SLT Program.

"It's exciting to be at a point where our technologies, experience, partnerships, and tools are poised to support a larger number of state, local, and tribal governments in taking data-informed steps toward their brighter future. In addition to on-the-ground needs, scaling up the efforts with a community-focused approach enables us to inform national and economic priorities as well," Doris explains.

Working Directly With Communities

Place-based work has been at the heart of the SLT Program since its beginnings, creating a legacy of community engagement work, "turning energy research into energy action, one community at a time," in the words of SLT subprogram lead Jordan Burns.

"The SLT Program is where the rubber meets the road in clean energy transitions," says Megan Day, the SLT Partnerships and Technical Assistance subprogram lead for FY 2021. "[It] is also where the most ambitious clean energy goals are being made—and achieved—and where equity is increasingly prioritized in the transition."

Working directly with communities that are impacted by SLT Program activities is a point of pride for NREL's SLT team. The SLT Program has shaped clean energy in more than 1,000 states, local governments, and tribes for more than a decade, supporting development of efficient, affordable, equitable, and resilient energy systems that address local energy and infrastructure challenges, goals, and priorities.

NREL's SLT Program brings diverse stakeholders together to ensure the lab's innovative research can make tangible impacts. This mission—filled with optimism—keeps the SLT team committed to making a difference in our world.

The People Who Make It Happen

Photos of the State, Local, and Tribal Program Leadership team.
State, Local, and Tribal Program leadership team for FY 2021. Upper left to lower right: Elizabeth (Liz) Doris, Eliza Hotchkiss, Jordan Burns, Chuck Kurnik. Megan Day, Kevin McCabe, and Liz Weber

The SLT Program and projects bring together nearly 200 researchers and staff across NREL to accomplish a variety of projects dedicated to supporting states, local jurisdictions, and tribes. The program's core leadership team includes dedicated subprogram leads who oversee and coordinate focused areas of research and tasks while upholding the overarching goals and mission of NREL and DOE. For FY 2021, the SLT leadership team included:

Elizabeth (Liz) Doris – laboratory program manager

Eliza Hotchkiss – acting laboratory program manager for FY 2021

Gian Porro – acting laboratory program manager for FY 2022

Debbie Meixner – project controller

Jordan Burns – subprogram lead for projects supporting DOE's Energy Transitions Initiative

Chuck Kurnik – subprogram lead for projects supporting DOE's Weatherization Assistance Program

Megan Day – subprogram lead for projects supporting DOE's Partnerships and Technical Assistance program (within DOE's Weatherization and Intergovernmental Programs Office)

Kevin McCabe – subprogram lead for projects supporting DOE's Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs

Liz Weber – subprogram lead for projects supporting DOE's State Energy Program.

See all staff and researchers involved in FY 2021 projects on the final pages of the SLT summary report.

More Updates

Follow the latest updates and accomplishments as NREL continues to work with communities. Follow NREL Conduit on Twitter, or subscribe to the NREL's State, Local, and Tribal governments newsletter.