Erica Mackie and Tim Sears worked together for several years at an energy consulting company, traveling around the U.S to help businesses save money and cut energy costs. After a while, they both felt that something was missing in this work; they each wanted to do something more meaningful, something that was not just about helping a corporation’s bottom line, but that would make a real difference in people’s lives. Erica and Tim wanted to find a way to both help people and help the environment in a tangible way, so they decided to team up and start GRID Alternatives in 2004. GRID Alternatives is a non-profit, volunteer-driven grassroots program bringing solar energy to low-income families. With the help of over 15,000 volunteers, GRID Alternatives has installed solar panels on 4,000 homes in 5 states, impacting 16,000 people and offsetting 340,000 tons of greenhouse gasses from entering the atmosphere.

Contact Information:

Phone: (510) 731-1310
Address: 1171 Ocean Ave #200, Oakland, CA 94608


We’re looking for true everyday heroes: folks who are helping to make their communities a better place.