Maui Business

Maui Energy Conference Reflects on 5 Years

March 2, 2018, 11:19 AM HST
* Updated March 2, 11:22 AM
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Alice Madden, Executive Director, Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural
Resources and former Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, US Department of Energy

The Maui Energy Conference returns to the Maui Arts and Cultural Center on March 14-15, celebrating its fifth anniversary.

Alice Madden, Executive Director of the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment at Colorado Law and keynote speaker at the first Maui Energy Conference in 2014, will open this year’s second day with a reflection on the tremendous changes that have occurred in Hawaiʻi and the nation’s energy landscape over the last five years.

Madden started her distinguished career as a lawyer, specializing in employment, civil rights and anti-discrimination law. Elected to the Colorado House of Representatives in 2000, she served as Majority Leader from 2005 to 2008. Her legislative priorities included helping build the foundation for a sustainable energy economy.

Subsequently, Madden served as Climate Change Advisor and Deputy Chief of Staff to former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter and later held the Timothy E. Wirth Chair in Sustainable Development at CU Denver. In 2013, she accepted an appointment to the US Department of Energy where she served as the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Intergovernmental & External Affairs.

Her current priorities at the Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy and the Environment include bridging the gap between research and practice by drawing on the perspectives of diverse stakeholders.


The Maui Energy Conference is presented by Maui Economic Development Board Inc. and supported by the Maui County Mayor’s Office of Economic Development. The in-depth conference sessions and ample networking opportunities aim to provide valuable resources for participants. As Hawaiʻi’s leading homegrown energy conference, it attracts more than 300 energy industry leaders from Hawaiʻi, the Continental US, Asia, and Europe.


The 2018 Conference theme is Decarbonization: A Business Opportunity for Innovative Communities. Session topics include exploring technical innovations in energy storage, an economic analysis of utility PV customers as they respond to new policies on distributed energy, the future of ground and maritime transportation, and the potential of carbon farming techniques in agriculture.

“The challenges that increasing levels of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere present to our environment also provide innovative communities, from Hawaii to New York, with new business opportunities,” remarked Frank De Rego Jr, Director of Business Development Projects at MEDB and Vice-Chair of the Program Committee. “The key is to seize those opportunities and make them work.”

The 2018 Maui Energy Conference sponsors include Ulupono Initiative, a Hawaiʻi-focused impact investing firm that uses investments to improve the quality of life for Island residents and Hitachi, Ltd., a company who has conducted important research in Hawaiʻi to improve the stability of the electric grid
through a system that employs electric vehicles.


The full list of conference sponsors includes: Ulupono Initiative, Hitachi, County of Maui, Hawaiʻi Energy/Leidos, Hawaiʻi Natural Energy Institute, Hawaiʻi State Energy Office, Hawaiian Electric Companies, Sempra Renewables, Amber Kinetics, Ameresco, Gridworks, Kauaʻi Island Utility Cooperative, Kevala, Ohm Energy Technologies, Steffes, and Tabuchi Electric.

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