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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

  • Dan McDermott

    Director of Asset Management

  • George Plattenburg

    Senior Advisor and Co-Founder

  • Jason Benoit

    Controller

  • Jibril Amiyr

    Financial Analyst

  • Kaylyn Semones

    Finance Manager

  • Kevin Fox

    Finance Director

  • Meaghan Nocella

    Head of Human Resources

  • Mihaela Gorciu

    Accounting Manager

  • Rob Howard

    Chief Executive Officer

  • Ryan Bell

    Director of Origination

  • Thomas Plagemann

    Executive Director of ClearGen Holdings, LLC

  • Zaq Morgan

    General Counsel

Dan McDermott

Director of Asset Management

Dan McDermott, the Director of Asset Management at ClearGen, brings a wealth of experience in operations, investing, financing, and managing energy assets. He has played a key role in optimizing the performance of renewable energy projects. Prior to his current role, he held positions at renowned companies, including Manager of Asset Management at United States Solar Corporation, Asset Manager at Syncarpha Capital, and Portfolio Manager at Radian Generation. Dan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the University of South Carolina.

George Plattenburg

Senior Advisor and Co-Founder

George Plattenburg, founder of ClearGen, currently serves as Senior Advisor. With more than 30 years of leadership experience in energy infrastructure, energy efficiency, and sustainability, he brings a remarkable breadth of knowledge to ClearGen and its partners. George 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.

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.

Jibril Amiyr

Financial Analyst

Jibril brings over 8 years of experience in corporate finance, specializing in commercial real estate and alternative Investments. During his career, he has led the risk management and process improvement initiatives by introducing creative solutions into the foundation of daily operations. Under his previous role at LPL Financial, he introduced efficiencies that increased daily trading operations by 50% and managed the Alternative Investments resource platform that served as an information hub for over 19,000 financial advisors.

Jibril earned his BSBA in Finance from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

Kaylyn Semones

Finance Manager

Kaylyn Semones, Finance Manager at ClearGen, supports project valuation and underwriting, as well as new partnership due diligence and capital markets activity. She brings a diverse background in credit analysis, finance, and risk management having been a Credit Analyst at Bank of America, specializing in Power, Utilities, Renewables, and Commodities. There she managed a portfolio of corporate clients, conducting in-depth financial and industry analysis to support credit decisions, as well as playing a key role training junior analysts. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business, Finance – Risk Management & Banking from Virginia Tech.

Kevin Fox

Finance Director

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 an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a Palmer Scholar, and 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.

Meaghan Nocella

Head of Human Resources

With 20 years of diverse experience in the field, Meaghan Nocella is a seasoned Human Resources professional with a wide range of expertise. Her skill set spans strategic planning, organizational development, talent acquisition, compensation, employee relations, compliance, talent development, executive coaching, and program design.

Before joining ClearGen, Meaghan served as Senior Vice President at U.S. Bank, where she supported clients of various sizes and functions. She has worked with stage zero start-ups as well as mature, geographically dispersed organizations with over 10,000 employees. Meaghan’s focus has been on developing and executing talent strategies, fostering strong cultures, leading large-scale business transformations, designing innovative talent management programs, and supporting mergers and acquisitions.

Meaghan holds a BS in Human Resource Management from the University of Cincinnati and has also attended Xavier University’s MBA program.

Mihaela Gorciu

Accounting Manager

Mihaela Gorciu is a seasoned accounting professional with extensive experience in various aspects of finance and accounting. As a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Mihaela has honed her skills through diverse roles across different industries.

Drawing from her extensive experience Mihaela has held key positions, within the renewable energy industry including Lead Accounting Analyst at Deriva Energy and Senior Accountant at Duke Energy. Her tenure in public accounting with Dixon Hughes Goodman LLP (FORVIS) has provided her with a profound understanding of financial systems and practices, including auding, financial planning and analysis, budgeting, implementing accounting standards, and navigating complex mergers and acquisitions.

Mihaela’s educational background includes a master’s degree in accounting from UNC Greensboro, a master’s degree in financial Analysis and Valuation and a bachelor’s degree in international business and economics from Bucharest University of Economic Studies in Romania.

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.

Ryan Bell

Director of Origination

Ryan Bell brings nearly 20 years of financial acumen to his role as Director of Origination at ClearGen. His journey includes a tenure as Managing Director at Sunlight Financial LLC, where he guided the company from a Series A startup to a SPAC IPO, managing debt relationships and strategic initiatives. Under his leadership, loan origination volume grew from under $10 million to over $200 million per month. Previously, Ryan served as Vice President, Credit Funds at Fortress Investment Group LLC, specializing in underwriting and financing companies in the consumer finance and fintech space. His career began as an Analyst at Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc., contributing to residential mortgage portfolio acquisitions and securitizations.

Ryan graduated Cum Laude with a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He also earned a Financing and Deploying Clean Energy Certificate from Yale School of the Environment and Yale School of Management. In addition to his academic achievements, Ryan actively contributes as a Steering Committee Member and Participant in the Wharton Angel Network.

Ryan’s career exemplifies a commitment to financial success and strategic innovation. His operational expertise and experience position him as a notable figure in shaping the financial landscape.

Thomas Plagemann

Executive Director of ClearGen Holdings, LLC

Thomas Plagemann, an accomplished energy finance professional and entrepreneur, currently serves as the Executive Director at ClearGen Holdings, LLC. With nearly three decades of experience, he has a proven record in building businesses, originating and executing investments and financings, and overseeing M&A activities in the energy and infrastructure sectors, both domestically and internationally. Throughout his career, Thomas has been involved as an advisor, debt arranger, or equity investor in projects with capital costs exceeding $35 billion. His expertise spans a wide range of energy projects, including renewables, conventional energy, bio-fuels, and regulated utilities.

Most recently, Thomas held the position of Chief Financial Officer at PosiGen. Prior to that, he served as the Chief Commercial Officer and Head of Capital Markets at Vivint Solar, where he played a pivotal role in propelling Vivint Solar to become the second-largest residential solar company in the United States. His career also includes leadership roles such as Head of Energy U.S. Corporate & Investment Banking at Santander Global Banking & Markets, as well as senior positions at First Solar, AIG FP, and GE Capital’s energy investment division.

Thomas holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Minnesota and a Master of Arts in International Affairs with a focus on Finance from Columbia University. He has demonstrated his leadership within the industry by serving on the board of the Solar Energy Industry Association (SEIA) and chairing SEIA’s State Policy committee. Currently, Thomas is also a Board Member for the U.S. Solar Fund.

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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