aerial view of solar panels

Over the past year, the Biden-Harris administration has been working hard to create a more sustainable and equitable future. On September 24th, the Department of Energy announced eight new appointees that will help deliver on the climate and clean energy infrastructure goals that President Biden has set in place. 

Here are the eight Department of Energy appointees that are helping create a more sustainable future for our country.

Matt Baca, Director of Scheduling and Advance, Office of Management  

With nearly a decade of experience in advocacy and political campaigns, Matt Baca is a hard-working project manager and event producer. Baca has worked as the Director of Advance for Pete Buttigieg’s presidential campaign. Prior to this, he worked as the Press Advance Lead in the White House during President Obama’s time in office. 

Christian Bato, Regional Intergovernmental and External Affairs Specialist for the Southwest, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs 

Prior to his new role in the Department of Energy, Christian Bato worked under U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto. Bato previously held the position of Nevada Coalitions Director for the Biden-Harris campaign. He also started his career working for SEIU’s iAmerica, where he advocated for immigrant justice in Latino communities.

Julie Cerqueira, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of International Affairs 

Recently serving as the Executive Director of the U.S. Climate Alliance, Julie Cerqueira has spent her career working to advance the most ambitious state climate agenda in our nation’s history. Cerqueira previously served as the Senior Advisor to the Special Envoy for Climate Change at the U.S. Department of State. Before working for the federal government, she worked with developing countries to design and implement climate policies and financial instruments at the Center for Clean Air Policy. Cerqueira also volunteered with the U.S. Peace Corps in the Philippines, working with teachers and farmers to promote economic development and environmental stewardship. 

Torend Collins, Regional Intergovernmental and External Affairs Specialist for Appalachia, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs 

Torend Collins recently served as a Program Coordinator in the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), where she synthesized research and performed policy analysis. Through this role, she helped advance the EDF’s clean energy agenda and strategic communications across the state. Collins previously worked as an Environmental Coordinator with the Louisville Metro Air Pollution Control District, where she implemented programs focused on improving air quality in the surrounding area. 

Arjun Krishnaswami, Special Advisor to the CFO, Office of the Chief Financial Officer 

Arjun Krishnaswami most recently served as the Climate Policy Lead for Innovation at the Natural Resources Defense Council. Through this position, he worked to advance federal policy to build a just and equitable economy, promote clean energy innovation, and address environmental issues such as climate change. Krishnaswami also held a prior role in the Biden-Harris administration, where he served on the policy team. 

Ramzey Smith, Deputy Press Secretary 

After serving as a spokesperson for the Biden-Harris Presidential Transition and African American Media Director for the presidential campaign, Ramzey Smith was most recently a Director of Public Affairs with SKDKnickerbocker. Smith previously worked at Howard University, where he held the role of Senior Communications Specialist. 

Rose Stephens-Booker, Regional Intergovernmental and External Affairs Specialist for the West, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs 

Rose Stephens-Booker most recently worked as a Senior Associate at BlocPower, where she developed and managed the company’s partnership strategy to bring clean energy solutions to vulnerable communities across America. Prior to working at BlocPower, Booker previously worked as a Program Manager for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. She has prior experience working as an environmental consultant for various stakeholders for the nexus climate, energy, and business community issues.

Spencer Thibodeau, Regional Intergovernmental and External Affairs Specialist for the Northeast, Office of Congressional and Intergovernmental Affairs 

Serving as the Portland, Maine City Councilor for six years, Spencer Thibodeau is an attorney and public servant that has practiced real estate law for the past eight years. Through his role as Portland’s City Councilor, Thibodeau chaired both the Housing and Economic Development Committee and the Sustainability and Transportation Committee. He also previously worked for the Biden-Harris administration, serving as the Maine Senior Advisor for the presidential campaign.