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Press Release - CustomerFirst Renewables Elects Three New Partners
Expanded partner team will lead the firm through significant expansion
March 16, 2022
Bethesda, MD – CustomerFirst Renewables (CFR), a global climate adviser for large organizations, has elected three new firm partners: Walid Norris, Jaafar Rizvi, and Terence de Pentheny O'Kelly. Additionally, they each serve as a vice president of client solutions.
“I couldn’t be prouder to have Walid, Terence, and Jaafar as CFR partners,” said Gary Farha, founder and CEO. “When they joined the firm 5+ years ago, we were a much smaller team with big ideas about disrupting the renewable energy industry and making it more accessible to large organizations. Now, we have dozens of team members advising on some of the biggest end-user-driven renewable energy procurements globally and have $3 billion of contracted renewable energy projects under our belts. Walid, Terence, and Jaafar helped make that growth happen by bringing vision and passion to CFR’s leadership team.”
Walid Norris joined CFR in 2015. He leads CFR’s client work with retail and consumer packaged goods companies, including quick service restaurants. Walid also has led CFR’s push to serve multinational clients globally, as well as expand the impact of renewable energy to client supply chains. Beyond his client work, Walid has contributed to CFR’s success by spearheading new investments in the firm’s business development and marketing capabilities.
Jaafar Rizvi joined CFR in 2016. He has led several longstanding client engagements in the industrial and higher education sectors, including ones with aggressive 2025 greenhouse gas emission reduction goals. Using his experience helping clients go beyond renewable energy and tackle other aspects of their carbon footprints, Jaafar is leading CFR’s decarbonization service line. He also leads the firm’s leadership development program, helping rising employees gain the business and leadership skills they need to advance their careers and roles at the firm. Previously, he helped create and lead CFR’s renewable energy project optimization and retail power and gas advisory service lines.
Terence de Pentheny O’Kelly joined CFR in 2015. He leads CFR’s engagement with a variety of private and public sector clients, through which he has pioneered a variety of lower risk transaction structures in both regulated and deregulated energy markets. Terence is also developing CFR’s utility service line. Working with utilities directly to help them and their customers pivot to renewable energy will substantially increase the firm’s impact on the climate and our global energy transition.
CFR projects significant growth in the years ahead as it expands its services and target clients. The firm continues to attract top-tier talent from a wide variety of backgrounds to enable its growth ambitions. As a mission-driven organization, the firm’s purpose is to be a catalyst for bold climate action, and its growth strategy is focused on increasing the firm’s impact.
The three new partners join CFR’s five existing partners: Gary Farha, founder and CEO; Henk van Duijnhoven, president; Dilip Kamat, co-founder and senior adviser; Kevin Rackstraw, senior vice president of client solutions; and Alan Zang, senior vice president of finance and operations.
About CustomerFirst Renewables
CustomerFirst Renewables is a global climate adviser dedicated to helping clients navigate complexity and take ambitious steps on their climate journey. We provide deep market insight, analytical problem-solving, and change management expertise so that clients can switch to renewable energy and make other large-scale climate and water resiliency investments with confidence and internal alignment. Clients turn to us at all stages of their journey, from strategy development to competitive procurement and implementation to performance management. These partnerships have resulted in dramatically cleaner and more resilient operations among a wide range of organizations, including corporates, academic institutions, and governments. To learn more about how CFR can help you get ahead of your climate goals, visit www.customerfirstrenewables.com.
Lindsey Longendyke, Marketing Manager