We are a soon-to-be launched not-for-profit business accelerator working to significantly speed the growth of the inclusive clean energy economy of New York State, and beyond. Our goal is to help fulfill the necessarily aggressive climate targets enacted by the City and State, by creating an ‘accelerator of excellence’ focused on scaling the best growth-stage clean energy companies from around the world. We will achieve this goal by assisting with business development, corporate partnerships, tailored technical support, and providing non-dilutive grants up to $500k per qualifying company looking to grow in New York. We are excited for our official launch in Spring 2020, and have big ambitions to contribute to the impressive and growing ecosystem we’re joining.
We are funded by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), a public benefit corporation advancing clean, resilient, and affordable energy solutions for New Yorkers. We are a chapter of New Energy Nexus, an international non-profit organization that strives to achieve a 100% clean energy economy for 100% of the population in the shortest time possible by supporting diverse clean energy entrepreneurs with funds, accelerators, and networks. New Energy Nexus started in California as the California Clean Energy Fund and now operates programs in China, India, Southeast Asia, and East Africa.
About the Role
The Accelerator Program Director will design and run our core programming, creating a world-class growth-stage accelerator program from its inception. They will create and execute a process designed to help selected participants build capacity through need assessments, tailored support and connection to resources. Each cohort will focus on a different part of the clean energy economy (e.g. buildings, offshore wind, electric vehicles, etc.), and for each, the Accelerator Program Director will develop and oversee a relevant startup selection process, program curriculum, mentor/technical assistance provider identification and management, and related program services.
The person in this role will ensure the programming brings real and unique value to the participants, particularly in light of the atypical design of the accelerator with its focus on growth-stage companies, corporate match-making and a new clean-energy focus for each cohort. The Accelerator Program Director reports to the Managing Director and may have direct reports down the road but will not have any initially. They will work closely with the Partnership Director, whose role is the sourcing and management of corporate partners and investors. We compensate competitively and offer medical, dental, and vision benefits. Our office is located in the heart of the Brooklyn Navy Yard, an innovative hub for entrepreneurs and creators. Unfortunately relocation assistance is not available.
The Ideal Candidate
We are looking for an individual whose passion is to design and build a clean energy ‘accelerator of excellence’ program from its inception. The Accelerator Program Director would have significant experience helping to scale growth stage companies, and knowledge of the clean energy, environment or sustainable business sector. They would thrive in an early-stage environment by being a fast learner, self-motivated, solution-oriented, resourceful, and able to prioritize and multitask.
• Design and build a world-class global accelerator program for the clean energy space, focused on adding real and unique value to growth-stage startups
• Help evaluate the needs of participants in order to scale, and advise and connect them with the necessary resources
• Assess and monitor best practices in the accelerator world to understand what is and isn’t working and ensure we’re pioneering a best-in-class program design
• Oversee an inclusive startup selection process, including the development and management of the selection committee
• Develop tailored program curriculum, mentoring and technical support services for the startup companies
• Help manage program execution, including hosting multiple major events per year
• Build a strong mentor and technical expert network to support the program’s startups
• Ensure needs of participants are monitored and well-anticipated through the process
• Monitor and iterate program design to ensure it’s adding unique value to participants
• Bachelor's Degree+ with significant experience working directly with accelerators or incubators helping companies scale, or within startups helping them scale (Founder or COO who’s scaled a growth stage company, run a growth-stage accelerator, VC principal/senior associate, etc.)
• Experience building a significant program from scratch (or formative stage) that engages third party service providers to improve the capacity of participants
• Experience in the clean energy, environment and/or sustainable business world
• Founder-friendly approach and knowledge of the entrepreneurial ecosystem
• Coaching mindset, experience supporting others as they build great companies, and building community between companies so they can support each other
• Excellent public speaking skills and ability to smoothly manage large events
• Proven project management in lean, complex, fast-paced environments
• Strong global network of partners in entrepreneurship, innovation, and energy
• Execution-focused with a sense of urgency, solutions oriented and resourcefulness