NM People’s Energy Cooperative Board of Directors

Brian Naughton, Ph.D. General Manager

Brian has spent his entire career developing more affordable and reliable renewable energy technologies. With wind and solar technologies now becoming the lowest cost option, Brian has joined New Mexico People’s Energy Cooperative as General Manager to deploy these technologies to most benefit local communities. Brian previously worked in wind and solar startups, as a researcher at Sandia National Laboratories on wind and solar power technologies, and as a senior analyst in Washington, DC supporting the Department of Energy’s Wind Energy Technologies Office with strategic planning and management. He earned his Ph.D. in materials engineering from UC Santa Barbara and his B.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of Minnesota.

Andrew Stone, President

Andrew Stone is a lifelong solar enthusiast and was instrumental in planning and running The First Annual Solar Fair at UNM in 1977. He built passive solar adobe additions to homes in the ’80’s and permitted the first PNM grid-tied PV system in 2005. In 2008, he received the first Tesla Model S in New Mexico. In 2016, he added one of the first grid-tied Tesla powerwall battery storage systems to make a residential nanogrid.

He advocates for community ownership of solar resources as an active board member of the Renewable Energy Industry Association, and devotes his time to the Policy Committee which works on bringing good solar legislation to New Mexico. He is a member of NREL’s National Community Solar Partnership and served on the board of The American Solar Energy Society.

He spent 27 years working Steve Jobs, NeXT Inc. and Apple Computer as a third party software developer, retiring early in 2015 to bring solar to the people of New Mexico

Bianca Sopoci-Belknap, Secretary

Born and raised in New Mexico, Bianca first started organizing around issues of social justice and sustainability in her home community when she was a teen at Santa Fe High School. Bianca worked as an educator and community advocate for a number of organizations across the country including Global Exchange, the Border Network for Human Rights, Del Pueblo Inc., Local Energy, and Antioch College. She served as the Mayor appointed Chair of the Sustainable Santa Fe Commission for 3 years and was also an appointed member of the Santa Fe Policy Council. She currently splits her time between NM People’s Energy Coop, Earth Care and New Energy Economy where she implements climate justice campaigns and supports the staff as its Associate Director.

Miguel Acosta, Vice President

Miguel Angel Acosta joined the Earth Care team in the summer of 2017 to launch Poder Familiar – our parent leadership program which he’d been dreaming up for some time. A long time ally and role-model, Miguel now co-directs the organization in our shared leadership model. Miguel was born in Chicago but made in Mexico. He has been the Director of El Colegio Sin Fronteras, a social enterprise focused on community education, training and capacity building for healthy communities, as well as a Principal Associate at the Center for Relational Learning, an international consulting firm based in Santa Fe, NM which focuses on building family-community-school partnerships.  Prior to that he served on the Board of Education of Albuquerque Public Schools where he helped establish The Community Schools Partnership with the City, County and Business Community and he worked for many years at the University of New Mexico where he was instrumental in establishing the Freshman Year Experience programs in the College Enrichment Program, Undergraduate Studies and across the campus. He has more than 40 years of experience in advocating for educational opportunities and community development for underserved populations

Roger McNew, Treasurer

I have volunteered my services for treasurer duties for over 20 years at non-profit organizations in Albuquerque as well as my current duties as the Treasurer for NM People’s Energy Cooperative.  Having recently retired from the position as Systems Administrator for IT at a local STEM museum here in Albuquerque, I have found many opportunities to lend my technical skills to local non-profits. I volunteer at Los Jardines Instituto