CustomerFirst Renewables (CFR) named Chris O’Brien as Director, Business Development effective June 11. O’Brien will help CFR strategically grow its business in the higher education market.
“Welcoming Chris to our team is like a family reunion. He was one of our first clients while he served as the Director of Sustainability at American University,” said Gary Farha, President and CEO of CFR. “His experience at the university and his long career of energy and sustainability accomplishments, make him an ideal liaison to serve higher education clients. With the addition of Chris, CFR now has the strongest and most experienced team serving higher education institutions in their pursuit of on- and offsite renewable energy solutions.”
O’Brien brings more than 20 years of energy, sustainability, and strategic advisory experience to CFR. He comes to CFR from Edison Energy, where he served as Director of Higher Education Programs and advised on over 150 megawatts of renewable energy transactions by colleges and universities. Previously, O’Brien spearheaded American University’s (AU) sustainability program and authored its climate action plan. He also led the university’s participation in the 53 MW Capital Partners Solar Project, which pioneered large-scale renewables in higher education, and set AU’s course to becoming, in 2018, the first carbon-neutral research university in the U.S. Additionally, he spent several years teaching new generations of sustainable business leaders in the Master of Science in Sustainability Management program at AU’s Kogod School of Business.
Prior to AU, O’Brien worked extensively organizing and networking businesses and professionals committed to social and environmental responsibility. In 2013, he became a founding board member of the Sustainable Purchasing Leadership Council. He also served on AASHE’s STARS Steering Committee and Advisory Council.