November 13, 2014
LANSING –The Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council (Michigan EIBC), an advanced energy business association, last night honored Michigan advanced energy companies at the second annual Michigan Energy Innovators Gala.
The business awards included three categories: business of the year; emerging company of the year; and employer of the year. The winners included:
- Business of the Year: REL, Inc., a Calumet-based material and process developer
- Business of the Year: Sakti3, an Ann Arbor-based battery company
- Emerging Company of the Year: Energy Power Systems, LLC, a Troy-based battery start-up
- Employer of the Year: Suniva, a George-based solar company that opened a facility in Saginaw Township
“The Michigan Energy Innovators Gala award recipients represent the very best in the Michigan advanced energy industry and demonstrate that energy innovation is being made in Michigan,” said Michigan EIBC President Dan Scripps. “These companies are creating economic opportunities in Michigan and growing an industry that represents the future of our state. Whether it’s a developer of conformable fuel tanks for natural gas vehicles or companies representing a range of battery chemistries or a new Michigan manufacturing facility for the nation’s leading solar manufacturer, this year’s winners have identified real business opportunities in the advanced energy industry. We’re honored to recognize them on behalf of the industry for their leadership.”
In addition to the business awards, the Gala also recognized the following individuals:
- Public Official of the Year: Senator Mike Nofs
- Michigan Energy Innovators Hall of Fame: Bruce Goodman and Stanley “Skip” Pruss
Goodman is Counsel at the Varnum Law Firm in Grand Rapids, where for thirty years he’s assisted clients in a range of complex energy issues, as well as helping to build the industry through the West Michigan Bio Energy Consortium, the West Michigan Wind Manufacturing Network, and the West Michigan Solar Supply Chain. He was named a “Thought Leader in Law” in 2010 for his work in energy, and is routinely included on the list of Best Lawyers in America.
Pruss is a Co-founder and Principal with 5 Lakes Energy, a clean energy and environmental consulting firm, and previously served as Michigan’s first Chief Energy Officer and the Director of the Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth. In those roles he served as the architect of Michigan’s clean energy economic diversification efforts, and helped attract billions of dollars in public and private investment into Michigan to support the state’s advanced energy industry.
The evening also featured a keynote speech from Chris Brown, President of Vestas Americas. Brown oversees Vestas’ sales and service operations in the United States and Canada and is a member of the company’s executive committee as Group Senior Vice President for Vestas Wind Systems, the world’s largest provider of wind turbines.