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About Us

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Financing the Energy Revolution

ClearGen understands the challenges distributed energy resource developers face in delivering new behind-the-meter resources in complex and dynamic markets. We work with them to take the mystery out of project financing and structuring so that they can turn concepts into action. We bring capital to projects that deliver the results end users demand while helping to make the world a cleaner place.

ClearGen is managed by industry veterans with years of energy experience and backed by a long-term capital commitment from Blackstone, a leading global investment business, through its credit division arm. Together with Blackstone, ClearGen serves as a one-stop-shop for clean energy capital needs.

On-site energy will double in the US and renewables will grow faster than any other form of energy through 2050, according to the most recent Annual Energy Outlook (AEO) by the US Energy Information Administration (EIA).

While some entities pursue ESG goals through the purchase of RECs or participation in Virtual Power Purchase Agreements (VPPAs), facility owners that operate on-site renewable energy and microgrids contribute to immediate and lasting reduction in Scope 2 carbon emissions.

Investment Tax Credits and state and wholesale market incentive programs can pay for as much as 35% of US-based projects funded by ClearGen. We work with our development partners to make incentives as bankable as possible to reduce customer costs and improve their returns.

Distributed energy projects can dramatically improve the reliability of operations for facilities where the impact of energy supply outages is critical. For many of these entities – hospitals, manufacturers, cold storage warehouse, and others – the value created by redundant energy resiliency is the most important factor in their adoption of distributed energy systems.

Businesses are at last capable of attaining cleaner, cheaper and more reliable energy thanks to technological and market innovations. ClearGen helps our development partners and customers answer the final question: Who brings the money?

Rob Howard

Chief Executive Officer

ClearGen Owns and Operates Projects Across the US

Projects Include Renewable Energy Generation, Energy Storage, Resiliency Services, Waste to Energy, Energy Efficiency, and Green Transportation

ClearGen has committed > $600 Million for Microgrid Projects in Development

ClearGen Projects Typically Reduce Carbon Emissions by 25% or More

Team

  • George Plattenburg

    Chief Commercial Officer and Co-Founder

  • Jake Lefkowitz

    Finance Manager

  • Jason Benoit

    Controller

  • Kevin Fox

    Finance Manager

  • Rob Howard

    Chief Executive Officer

  • Taylor Oswald

    Director of Investment Origination

  • Zaq Morgan

    General Counsel

George Plattenburg

Chief Commercial Officer and Co-Founder

George Plattenburg brings more than 30 years of leadership experience in energy infrastructure, energy efficiency, and sustainability to his role as Founder and Chief Commercial Officer at ClearGen. He has previously held management roles at Duke Energy, Indianapolis Power & Light, Servidyne, Prenova, Burton Energy Group and Expedient Communications. His background includes responsibility for sales, commercial development, partner management, mergers and acquisitions, and operations. George holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University and an MBA from Washington University in St. Louis, MO.

Jake Lefkowitz

Finance Manager

Jake’s career in the energy and power industry has spanned project development and construction, engineering consulting and asset acquisition roles. While working for SolAmerica Energy from 2018 to 2021, he marketed over $100 million of the company’s greenfield developed and constructed distributed generation solar projects. Prior to SolAmerica, Jake worked for Burns & McDonnell, advising and providing engineering services to investor-owned electric utilities in their transmission, substation and telecommunications upgrades.

Mr. Lefkowitz received a BS in Electrical Engineering from Washington University in St Louis and an MBA from Emory University.

Jason Benoit

Controller

Jason has over 15 years of experience in risk management, finance, and accounting at power and natural gas utilities, as well as, public accounting. While at Duke Energy, Jason supported the development and execution of enterprise risk management to quantify operational, financial, project, and strategy related risk. In a role in forecasting, Jason established a governance structure and policy for Capital Investment Planning to ensure efficient use of the capital spend. While at Piedmont Natural Gas, he managed corporate accounting, internal reporting, accounting systems, and business valuations.

Mr. Benoit earned a BA from Elon University and MBA from Wake Forest University. He holds an active CPA license in North Carolina.

Kevin Fox

Finance Manager

Kevin brings over 12 years of strategy, investment, and operations experience in power and utilities to his role as Finance Manager. While working Duke Energy, Kevin oversaw the operation and P&L management and growth for Duke Energy’s Residential Demand Response programs, consisting of over 1 million customer and 1.4 GW, across six states and two markets. Earlier in his career at Duke Energy, Kevin conceptualized, designed, and received approval for over $300 million of capital investments in grid modernization and clean technology.

Mr. Fox received a BS and MS in Electrical Engineering from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. He holds an active Professional Engineer’s license in North Carolina.

Rob Howard

Chief Executive Officer

Rob has 20 years of experience investing in, financing, and managing energy assets. From 2016 to 2020, Rob was the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Cogentrix Energy, a leading power asset manager. Previously he has held investment underwriting roles with The Carlyle Group and ArcLight Capital Partners, two leading energy investors. In the span of his career, Rob has overseen the investment of over $1 billion of equity investments in power and midstream assets throughout North America and Europe.

Mr. Howard received a BA from Duke University and MBA from Yale University.

Taylor Oswald

Director of Investment Origination

Taylor brings more than 10 years of experience in corporate finance, consulting, and energy. From 2019 to early 2022, Taylor served in strategic business development and Director roles with Duke Energy and NextEra Energy Resources, world leaders in sustainable energy solutions. Previously he has held several key positions in corporate consulting, project management, and finance with Maxis Advisors, Spectrum, and Big Lots. Taylor holds a BA in Finance from The University of Toledo and an MBA from Ohio University.

Zaq Morgan

General Counsel

Zaq brings 15 years of experience in energy-related development, construction, acquisition, and operations. Prior to joining ClearGen, Zaq was the General Counsel of Entropy Investment Management, a specialty energy investment and management company specializing in asset finance, private equity investments, and arbitrage investments primarily in renewable and alternative energy spaces in North America, South America, and the Caribbean. During his time with Entropy, he also served as the Chief Operating Officer of two utility-scale food-waste-to-energy anaerobic digesters in Charlotte, NC and Johnston, RI. Zaq began his career at McGuireWoods LLP where he represented banks, utility companies, and renewable energy developers on real estate, finance, and energy projects.

Zaq received his BA from Furman University and his JD from Campbell University, Norman Adrian School of Law.

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