Energy Local is a Community Interest Company (a type of not-for-profit). Mary Gillie, Linda Hilton and Chris Blake are directors.
Founder of Energy Local, Mary is an applied physicist by training but her career has been as an engineer. She loves new ideas and has run numerous field trials and feasibility studies to make our energy systems more efficient and to connect more renewables. She enjoys working with science and people to make our society and environment better for everyone. She has been bringing together the different components for Energy Local for a number of years. After gaining a first class masters in applied physics from the University of Edinburgh and her PhD at the University of Strathclyde, she has managed, led or been a team member in high profile technical innovative energy projects from a few thousand to millions of pounds. Her main area of expertise is the development of smartgrids for the electricity distribution system to increase efficiency and to easily integrate renewable generation. Notably she lead Low Carbon Network Fund (LCNF) ‘Smart Village project’ working with Ashton Hayes, been technical engineer for LCNF Customer Lead Network Revolution and My Electric Avenue. She managed Ashton Hayes Low Carbon Communities Challenge (LCCC) Project and Local Energy Assessment Fund project and worked on Elexon funded investigations in local energy markets.
Chris Blake was slightly later to the party – he joined the board in 2016 – we needed to dilute the engineers and physicists a bit more! He brings with him a host of experience of getting start-ups going and running social enterprises. He is a passionate advocate of the social ownership of renewable energy generation. He is a founding Director of both The Green Valleys – joint winners of NESTA’s Big Green Challenge, supporting community responses to climate change, and TGV Hydro Limited – the Ashden Award-winning microhydro development company. He is a founding Director and Chair of Community Energy Wales – dedicated to promoting the community ownership of renewable energy.
Closer to home he is a volunteer Director of Talgarth Mill, a community owned, restored water mill and sometime baker and pizza chef. He walks the talk with his own micro hydro and solar panels.
Linda Hilton is a Chartered chemist. She has worked for large and small organisations including Unilever, Amec, the European Commission, Arvia Technology and Samarind Regulatory Management Systems. She joined Energy Local to manage the development of the Home Hub and Rnergy Dashboard. She is still managing the testing and development of the system. Energy Local recognises a good operations manager. She now keeps us all in order and looks after the rollout of Energy Local Clubs as Operations Director She was attracted to Energy Local because of its ethical values and its passion to help people save money, promote social cohesion and look after the planet.