About Us

A do-tank, not a think-tank

ADL Ventures focuses on developing and deploying new services and products on behalf of critical infrastructure incumbents. Our firm is a do-tank, not a think-tank, and our deliverables are outcomes as opposed to reports.

Our Venture Consulting Products

While every ADL engagement is bespoke, several core ADL products underpin our work:

Spin-Ins

Spin-in novel technology through our DOE-funded ProblemSpace Platforms.

Spin-Outs

Ideate, develop, and launch new businesses many of which emerge from IP that is “stuck” within incumbents.

New Venture Launch

Leverage our team of experienced entrepreneurs to build the strategic foundation for growing new ventures and entering new markets.

Every member of the ADL team...

Has start-up and/or venture fund experience AND knows “what good looks like” at scale through work at successful corporate entities. Collectively the team has cross-cutting experience spanning key sectors such as start-ups, major corporations, professional services (investment banking / consulting / PE/VC), and public sector work.

Our Industries
Energy & Utilities
Smart Cities
Building and Construction

Our Team


Leadership

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Nolan Browne

Founding Partner

Nol is an innovation expert, entrepreneurial executive, investor, fundraiser and board member specializing in commercialization of emerging technologies in energy, automotive, technical R&D and innovation management who excels at developing first-of-kind programs and products, and leading teams of high performing technical, business and political professionals. A 5-time founder with 15 years of C-Suite experience in both startups and multinational corporations, Nol holds advanced economics and business degrees from MIT and Johns Hopkins.

Frank Yang

Partner

Frank Yang is a Partner at ADL Ventures and the Founder / CEO of Liatris, an advanced insulation materials startup. Frank became inspired to help scale up ADL’s open innovation offerings after Liatris went through the ADL’s US DOE funded Building Materials Challenge as an applicant, and currently leads all of ADL’s DOE-related activities including its ABC (Advanced Building Construction) National Collaborative and American Made Solar Prize teams. Frank previously spent 10+ years in the solar industry as a co-founder of Stion, a US solar panel manufacturer and systems integrator. He ran all commercial operations for the company, raising >$500M in funding and selling out a 150 MW annual capacity production line. Frank received an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA in Economics from Amherst College.

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Chris Richardson

Partner

Chris is Partner-in-charge of ADL Ventures’ Energy & Transportation practices. A serial entrepreneur, Chris previously worked in energy and transportation strategy consulting and led demand response product marketing at EnerNOC (now Enel X). Chris has an undergraduate degree from Northwestern University and an MBA (with honors) from the University of Chicago (Booth).

Eric Wisch

Partner

Eric is an innovation and operations specialist expert in the setup and operation of new ventures. He has built companies in tech and real-estate. Prior to his entrepreneurial career, Eric served as a director of venture development at Redstar Ventures, where he led agriculture tech, energy tech, and healthcare tech investment research and venture development initiatives. Eric attended the University of Rochester, where he was a Kauffman Entrepreneurial Year Scholar.

Jeff McAulay

Partner

Jeff is an applied technologist with a track record of new product development in multiple startup companies and larger established businesses. Most recently he launched solar and storage partnerships at EnerNOC. Prior to EnerNOC he co-founded the Fraunhofer TechBridge program to accelerate commercialization of cleantech startups. Jeff has technical degrees from MIT and Boston University.

Project Leaders

Ben Silton

Senior Principal

Ben is a data and analytics specialist focused on finding efficient ways to make our economy cleaner. Previously, Ben launched the analytics and customer success programs at Divert, a startup tackling retail food waste through an innovative IoT platform and anaerobic digestion. Ben has a joint bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Economics from Middlebury College and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management.

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Nigel Carr

Senior Principal

Nigel is a strategy specialist that transforms innovation into execution. He has founded and scaled early stage companies in energy and agriculture, concentrating on operations and product development. Nigel was part of the founding team at several startups including Flow Kana, Qorax (“Qor-ah”) and Brightfields, where he developed and commissioned 60MW of utility-scale solar projects. He is an Echoing Green Climate Fellow and was named a National Geographic Energy Innovator. Nigel received his BA from Amherst College and studied Photovoltaics at the Smith College Picker Engineering Program.

Virginia Spilman

Principal

Ginny brings deep financial and operational experience to her work at ADL. Previously, she led strategic initiatives supporting the growth and efficiency of the global wealth management business at Goldman Sachs. Ginny has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and a joint bachelor’s degree in Economics and International Politics.

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Project Teammates

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Kyungsu Alex Park

Engagement Manager

Alex is an operational strategy and innovation leader who is passionate about improving the tools and processes in construction. Alex was a project manager for Mortenson and brings a wide range of management experiences in Sport + Entertainment, Hospitality, Historic Performing Arts, Solar/Renewable and High Tech markets. Alex’s passion for industry development led him to his leadership positions at Design Build Institute of America and Associated General Contractors. Alex studied Construction Engineering Management at Oregon State University where he currently serves on the Industry Advisory Board.

Conor Larkin

Associate

Conor is a recent graduate of Colby College, where he majored in Environmental Policy and conducted biological conservation research for Round River Conservation. On campus he was a Buck Lab for Climate and Environment student researcher, a member of the Men’s Soccer team, and a personal care assistant. Motivated by work experiences focusing on climate change adaptation he is enthusiastic about cleantech innovation.

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Madeline Bundy

Associate

Madeline is a recent graduate from MIT with a degree in Chemical Engineering and a minor in Energy Studies. Her interest in sustainability has taken her around the world, conducting data analysis related to carbon dioxide emissions from vehicle fleets in Brazil to post-harvest storage solutions for farming cooperatives in Kenya. Madeline strives to use her engineering background to help increase access to large-scale renewable energy solutions.

Alyssa Watson

Associate

Alyssa recently graduated from St. Lawrence University with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Biology with a focus on renewable energy. Her background in climate change inspires her interest in renewable energy technologies as a solution to the climate crisis. Her interest in the energy transition took her to Copenhagen, Denmark on two occasions to study the transition in real-time, which culminated in her co-authoring two textbook chapters in Renewable Energy in the 21st Century on energy policies and the transportation transition.

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Isabelle Gorrivan

Associate

Isabelle is a recent graduate of Middlebury College with a B.A. in Architecture and Environmental Studies. On campus, she was a consultant for the sustainability solutions lab furthering the college’s sustainability goals and helping with waste management. She is passionate about environmental justice and energy security, and her work prior to ADL focused on expanding community solar in low-income neighborhoods in the U.S. At ADL, her work straddles decarbonizing the built environment through modular construction and helping utilities innovate to meet their sustainability goals.

Oliver Booth

Associate

Oliver is a recent graduate from Northwestern University with an MS in Energy and Sustainability, and from Oxford University with a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics. His experience has focused on sustainable finance, including co-authoring a published report on energy IPOs, conducting analysis of blended finance vehicles, and consulting for a major European financial institution on the chemical recycling industry.

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Matthew Paul

Associate

Matthew is a recent graduate of Dartmouth College, with a degree in Environmental Studies and a minor in Human-Centered Design through the Thayer School of Engineering. With an interest in sustainability start-ups, he focused his academic curriculum on sustainable design and environmental economics. Matt has worked in start-ups focused on agroforestry, carbon offsets, and sustainable CPG products. He was also a captain of the Men’s Lacrosse Team.

Lara Cardoso

Analyst

Lara is a junior at the University of Massachusetts Boston studying Environmental Studies and Sustainability. She currently works for the student run organization Tree-Plenish as an urban mentor, and previously worked with the Environmental League of Massachusetts. She is passionate about accessible clean technology and creating sustainable practices for communities all across the country. 

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Qinyi Ma

Analyst

Qinyi (“Chin-ee”) Ma is an upcoming junior at Tufts University studying International Relations and Environmental Studies. She has prior experience driving impact in an environmental health startup and documenting the unsung histories of Shanghai. On campus, she coaches writing and is learning how to make a killer cup of caramel macchiato as a barista. She also enjoys scouring Boston for delicious food and reading memoirs in her spare time. 

Justin Giffee

Analyst

Justin is a senior at Fordham University majoring in Environmental Studies with minors in Mandarin and Economics. He has researched and analyzed case studies for Agent-Based Modeling systems centered around nature-based solutions at the Stone Living Lab. He has also worked with SWEEP, the leading sustainability standard in the waste and materials management industry. With passions for sustainability, economics, and energy, he hopes to solve some of the issues associated with climate change. Outside of school he pursues interests in global cultures, fashion, visual arts, and fitness.

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Jack Weissman

Analyst

Jack is a junior at Columbia’s School of Engineering and Applied Science studying Operations Research and Sustainable Engineering. Passionate about solving both organizational and environmental problems, Jack has worked in technology, strategy, and operations for Columbia Climate School. He hopes to advance the world’s transition to renewable energy, from grid-level markets to the financial decisions of a family’s journey to electrification.

Bryce Hickam

Analyst

Bryce is a fifth-year Ph.D. student in Physical Chemistry at Caltech. Much of his previous work has revolved around quantum spectroscopies to study a range of relevant molecular systems. He is excited to explore climate-related technologies and apply his technical expertise in these spaces. Outside of work, he enjoys a good book, as well as getting outdoors to run and rock climb.

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Advisors

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Mei Shibata

Entrepreneur in Residence

Mei Shibata is a serial entrepreneur who has successfully started and sold two companies in the cleantech space over a 14-year period. In her most recent role as founder and CEO of Essense Partners, Mei worked with various city and state agencies, as well as with utilities across the country, to promote and implement energy innovations. Mei has authored four patents in the cleantech space, won 20+ marketing awards and was recognized as a New York Top 10 Energy Entrepreneur. Earlier in her career, Mei served as head of Strategy at Interbrand Health and Havas Life, as well as worked at Citigroup, Oliver Wyman and Pfizer. Mei has an MBA from Harvard Business School, an MS in Medical Engineering from the Harvard/MIT HST Program and a BA in Physics from Harvard College.

Diana Fisler

Entrepreneur in Residence

Dr. Diana Fisler brings to ADL Ventures her passion for both building materials and the interface between early technologies and corporates. Over the years, she has delivered new business opportunities in the building space. Diana earned her PhD in Geophysics from Penn State University and contributes her expertise the industry organizations and committees performing as Chair of ASHRAE TC 4.4 Building Materials and Building Envelope Performance and Vice Chair of ASTM C16 Thermal Insulation and Advisory board member the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator (IN²).

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Colby Swanson

Executive in Residence

Colby is a serial entrepreneur, innovation strategist and construction technologist who has spent over 20 years in the building industry. He began as a framer, graduated to a forensics investigator, has authored corporate strategies at multiple Fortune 500 companies, and has led the launch of many new ventures. He is currently the Managing Partner at Momentum Innovation Group (MIG), an innovation consulting firm helping clients drive transformational growth. Colby recently co-founded and serves as the Executive Director of the Modular Mobilization Coalition (MMC), which consists of fifteen modular companies who own and operate two dozen modular factories around the US.

SJ Maxted

Advisor

SJ accelerates innovation ecosystems and the systems that drive innovation and entrepreneurship. She has experience working on technology transfer and commercialization at the U.S. Department of Energy and 17 DOE National Laboratories. She holds a position on the World Economic Forum Global Future Council on Innovation Ecosystems. Originally from Durango, Colorado, she graduated from Duke University, where she studied the intersection of policy, business and society.

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Jeremy Kirsch

Advisor

Jeremy is an entrepreneur, executive, and advisor. Over the past 20 years, he has helped bring innovative technologies and business models to market and scaled them to IPO and acquisition, including at Opower (formerly NYSE: OPWR) and Viisage Technologies (formerly NASD: VISG). Jeremy earned his BA from Stanford and his MBA from MIT Sloan.

Pete Pedersen

Advisor

Pete Pedersen was trained earlier in his career as a financier and lawyer. He was later a Co-Founder and Managing Principal for both Renova Partners of Wellesley, MA, a property redeveloper founded in 2001, and Brightfields Development, a solar developer founded in 2009. Pete remains involved in redevelopment projects and is or has also been an Adjunct Lecturer at Babson College, President of the Board of Directors of the Environmental League of Massachusetts, in various capacities for Chautauqua Institution of Chautauqua, NY and a speaker at professional and academic gatherings on solar development, redevelopment and environmental issues. Pete graduated from The University of Chicago Law School and Amherst College.

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Janis Eitner

Media Partner

Janis is a technical PR and marketing expert with over 15 years of experience as Head of Communications for the venerable Fraunhofer Gesellschaft in Munich, Germany. As a trained journalist, he brings his expertise in communications, politics and organizational behavior to the team. In addition to a global network of cross-industry technologists, Janis founded a successful PR and digital media company.

Administration

Tyler P Martin

PhD, CPA Chief Financial Officer

Tyler serves numerous companies in an outsourced CFO role, aiding in financial management, tax planning/preparation, directing accounting systems, and aiding in other financial issues. He is also experienced in DCAA requirements and handles government invoicing and reporting requirements for small company awardees.

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Eriko Watanabe

Senior Business Operations Manager

Eriko is a project manager with extensive hands-on experience in driving all phases of project management in complex, domestic and international settings. In previous work, she led the global initiatives to comply with BSA/AML and sanction regulations at MUFG Union Bank. Eriko received BS in Management Studies and MS in Computer Information Systems concentration in IT Project Management from Boston University.

Arsen Milosev

Business Operations Manager

Ari is an operations and project manager experienced in startup foundation building, building processes based on company business goals, and managing execution of business goals through cross-functional team collaboration. Equipped with strong analytical and problem-solving skills ready to support the team to success. He studied law, internal affairs.

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Join our Team!

ADL is growing and we love having interesting conversations with folks who are passionate about innovation at legacy sector companies.

Please read more about our open positions and apply:

Engagement Manager – Buildings

Engagement Manager or Principal – Energy and Utilities

Associate – Energy and Buildings Innovation

Project-based Consultants – Energy and Buildings Innovation

Analyst – Spring 2023 Internship 

Interns

Learn more about our current interns and alumni, all of whom have gone on to make a big impact in the energy transition and innovation.