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Our Board

Rachel Watson, Chair

Chief Executive Officer, Pacific Hydro

Rachel Watson is the CEO at Pacific Hydro Australia, one of Australia’s leading renewable energy companies. Rachel is the Chair of the Clean Energy Council and has served on the Board since November 2014.

Rachel joined Pacific Hydro in 2006 as a Corporate Lawyer, and also held roles as Executive Manager Finance and Legal, and General Manager Australia. She has extensive experience in transactions surrounding the development and operation of energy projects. Before joining Pacific Hydro, Rachel worked for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries in Japan negotiating power system supply contracts.

Rachel is a graduate of the AICD and has an MBA.

Alex Beckitt, Deputy Chair

Head of Strategic Policy, Hydro Tasmania

Alex has worked for Hydro Tasmania since 2001 in a variety of roles and is currently Head of Strategic Policy. With over a decade of renewable energy policy, industry development and national and international advocacy, Alex brings a strong focus on working across multiple government levels and with a variety of stakeholders. Alex has a long history and personal commitment to building an effective and sustainable national association, demonstrated through ongoing contributions in both executive and non‐executive roles with the CEC, and its predecessor associations.

Alex is focussed on the continual building of our industry profile, particularly from an Australian Government perspective. Specific elements include communicating clean energy policy developments nationally and internationally; interfacing with political, technical, commercial, regulatory agents; and developing strategies to increase the share of renewable energy in national energy portfolios – thereby increasing commercial development opportunities for members.

Alex is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Maria Cahir

Senior Manager, Sales and Business Development, Tesla

Maria has over a decade of experience in the Australian renewable energy industry, in the origination and development of pioneering large-scale solar and energy storage projects. Maria leads Tesla’s energy storage Sales and Business Development activities across Asia Pacific and brings a wealth of experience managing various government and industry stakeholders. Throughout her career, Maria has proven to be a passionate advocate for accelerating the world’s transition to sustainable energy.

Maria is currently on the board of the Clean Energy Council and prior to Tesla, held senior utility-scale business development roles at both BP Solar and Trina Solar.

Charles Davis

Executive Director, Energy, Commonwealth Bank

Charles is currently Managing Director, Sustainable Finance and ESG for CBA’s Institutional Bank, a position that he’s held for the last year. Prior to leading the sustainable finance and ESG team, Charles led the energy team with a strong focus on large scale renewable projects. Charles has over 20 years' experience in the energy and renewable industries and has spent the last 13 years at CBA where he has delivered project, acquisition and corporate financing transactions in Australia and globally. In his time at CBA he has been involved in many of the broader sustainability and clean energy initiatives undertaken by Institutional Bank which led to his current role.

Prior to moving to Australia, Charles worked in London for over 10 years with roles in finance, business development, project finance and origination/trading across the energy and renewables sectors in Europe. Charles is a Chartered Management Accountant and a graduate member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Cameron Garnsworthy

Managing Director, juwi Renewable Energy

Cameron has 20 years of global experience spanning the development, construction and operation of solar, wind and battery technologies, providing a good insight into the many challenges involved for the clean energy industry to continue to develop and thrive.

Cameron is Managing Director of juwi Renewable Energy, an integrated renewables company that has delivered more than 5 GW of renewable projects globally and is also a leader in delivering hybrid renewable projects that combine solar, wind and battery technologies for both local communities and mining sites.

Previously, Cameron was the Managing Director of FRV Australia, an elected Board Member of the CEC and General Manager (Business Development) at EnergyAustralia.

Karen Gould

Investment Director, Palisade

Karen is an Investment Director with Palisade, where she is responsible for renewable energy asset acquisition, development and management.

She has extensive governance experience and is a non-executive director on nine boards, including the Ross River Solar Farm and the Granville Harbour Wind Farm.

Prior to joining Palisade, Karen was a Senior Vice President with Macquarie Bank, where she focused on principal investments in renewable energy projects.

Prior to this, Karen was a renewables and climate change lawyer with Baker & McKenzie, a senior policymaker and UN climate change negotiator with the Australian Government, and an engineer with CH2M Hill.

Jack Hooper

CEO, GEM Energy

Jack Hooper is the founder and CEO of GEM Energy, a national installer with offices in Brisbane and Darwin.

Jack started GEM Energy in Emerald, Queensland in 2013 as a one-man operation. Today, GEM employs 50 staff with revenues of $40 million per annum.

Under Jack’s leadership, GEM Energy has expanded in the residential sector and grown in skill and capacity to regularly undertake installations of over 1.5 MW.

GEM Energy were one of the first CEC Approved Solar Retailers and has been recognised with three CEC Solar Design and Installation Awards.

Warwick Johnston

Managing Director, Sunwiz

Warwick Johnston is the managing director of SunWiz, a consultancy that services Australia’s solar industry. Warwick has worked in the solar industry since 2005 where he became well-known in the BCSE. Since founding SunWiz in 2009, Warwick has helped hundreds of solar businesses to improve their competitiveness and authored dozens of reports on Australia’s solar industry.

Warwick has been contributing to the solar industry since 2005, through previous roles in ANZSES (Victorian Treasurer), SEIA (NSW President), on the CEC's Distributed Energy Leadership Forum and Chair of the CEC's PV Directorate. Warwick was also Australia's representative to an International Energy Agency PV Task. In 2011, the ASC recognised Warwick's pro-bono contribution to overturning the NSW Government's retrospective feed-in tariff legislation with an Industry Leadership award.

Warwick is a fierce advocate for the role of solar energy in Australia’s energy supply. Warwick combines a passion for solar energy with a love of all renewable energy technologies, and his master’s degree in Renewable Energy provides a framework for considering broader energy policy, energy market operation, and energy economics.

Jenny Paradiso

Managing Director, Suntrix

Jenny is Managing Director of Suntrix, a solar PV company with head office in South Australia and operating in SA, VIC and NSW. Jenny established Suntrix in 2009 and drives the strategic direction of the company, with a focus on commercial solar, battery storage and solar/energy monitoring. Jenny is a regular speaker at renewable energy conferences, has worked in management roles for over 20 years and is a member of a number of committees and not-for-profit boards.

Jenny was the winner of the National Telstra Business Women’s Entrepreneur Award in 2016 and named in AFR’s 100 women of influence in 2019. Her personal and professional drivers are around renewable energy, women in business and supporting start-up entrepreneurs.

As a member of the Clean Energy Council board, Jenny aims to represent the views and needs of SME solar companies nationally, giving solar companies a voice and providing a point-of-view that reflects their segment of the industry.

Matt Rebbeck

Chief Executive Officer, RES Australia

Matt has worked in renewable energy for over 20 years both internationally and locally. He has led the growth of the Australian business including the delivery of a range of large scale wind and solar projects and a significant construction management and asset management portfolio. The global RES Group is the world's largest independent renewable energy company with a 21 GW portfolio and expertise to develop, engineer, construct, finance, and operate wind, solar, energy storage and transmission projects.

Matt has been on the CEC board since 2017. He has a BSc in Mathematics from Bath University and an MSc in Renewable Energy Systems Technology from Loughborough University.

Philip Cullum

Principal, Consumer-wise Consulting

Philip is an experienced regulator and consumer advocate, based in Melbourne. He recently set up Consumer-wise Consulting, working on regulatory strategy, policy, engagement and governance. He is a member of the Boards of Consumer Action and Consumers’ Federation of Australia, the code committee for mutual banks, and the expert panel at the financial ombudsman AFCA.

He was a senior advisor to the Australian Energy Regulator in 2017–2020, focused on strategy, governance and change. Before that, Philip was at the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, on secondment from the UK energy regulator Ofgem, where he was the Consumers and Sustainability Partner. In the UK he also held senior roles at three consumer organisations, worked as an associate partner at Accenture, and was a member of advisory committees in financial services, food safety, aviation and water. He was appointed by the UK Government to its Better Regulation Commission, Risk and Regulation Advisory Council and Regulatory Policy Committee.