Get to know 5LE Team Member Benjamin Stafford!
Benjamin Stafford is passionate about addressing the challenges to redefine our relationship with energy and how it fits into our lives — how it is generated, how we consume it, how companies can be innovative and grow and do good things in the energy sector. And he knows that the work he is doing is critical, because, he explains, “…the energy that got us to this point won’t get us into the future.”
For nearly 15 years, Benjamin has analyzed, researched, and developed public policy and regulations. His work experience builds on his academic achievements including master’s degrees in public policy and management, labor and human resources, and business research. That rich blend suits him perfectly for his new role as a senior consultant with 5 Lakes Energy.
“My job is help others think. I help explore options and opportunities around energy regulations and policies,” says Benjamin, from his home office in Minneapolis. “We’re looking at the future and figuring out how we can work together to make our energy use better — cleaner, more reliable, affordable, and sustainable. Not only can we do better with climate change, we don’t have a choice.”
Far from being bleak about the future, Benjamin is inspired. “There is huge opportunity for innovation around energy!” he says with characteristic enthusiasm. “Trillions of dollars will be invested worldwide in building and modernizing energy systems over the next ten years. That translates to trillions in opportunity to create business for good in the energy space. That’s creating shared value. Let’s make that happen!”
He also believes each of us can make a positive difference in the world just by looking at the choices we make. Benjamin’s commitment includes purchasing items from companies that are doing good. He supports businesses that adhere to international environmental agreements. He shops “locally” and belongs to co-ops. As he looks for a new home in Minneapolis, his short list includes a place where he can live well, minimally, and sustainably, with little impact on others.
Before the field of energy captured his attention, Benjamin was aiming for a career in management and human resources, or touring in a heavy metal band.
“My dream job was to work in HR for a guitar company… you know, for the employee discounts.” he chuckles. “My first internship was in HR for a government regulatory agency. I swore I would never get into the details of all those energy laws. Too many acronyms. I’ve never been more wrong, and I’m thankful for it. Now I’m knee-deep in energy policy and I love every day of it! In its own way, energy policy rocks, too.”