Carbon Hackathon

WWU Carbon HackathonCarbon Hackathon | 2019 Energy Symposium

Tuesday, April 23, 2019
3:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
Western Washington University, Wilson Library Reading Room
Bellingham, WA
Admission Free & Open to Public

Western Washington University’s Institute for Energy Studies hosts an annual Carbon Hackathon to foster creatively, connection and idea-sharing between students and energy industry professionals. A hackathon is an event where a group of people engage in intense brainstorming sessions to develop creative solutions to a challenge.

The challenge for our 2019 hackathon is:

An impact investor and philanthropist wants to invest $10 million in a business venture that will result in significant carbon reductions and scale as quickly as possible.  The investor wants to fund something that has never been done and is looking for business models from six different sectors: Personal Mobility, Goods Movement, Information Technology, Buildings, The Electricity Grid, and Food & Forest.

Six teams of Western students will develop proposals in response to this challenge—in just one day!  The students will be mentored throughout the day by top thought leaders in the clean energy community. Team leaders include: 

  • Personal Mobility
    • Kelly Desy, Pacific Northwest Sales Director, ChargePoint  

    • Jonathan Hopkins, Director of Strategic Development, Lime

  • Goods Movement
    • Kelly Rula, New Mobility and Urban Freight Analyst, Seattle Department of Transportation

    • Michael Taptich, Research Scientist, Amazon

  • Information Technology
    • Brian Janous, General Manager - Energy & Sustainability, Microsoft  

    • Max Scher, Manager of Sustainability, Salesforce

  • Buildings    
    • Erin McDade, Senior Program Manager, Architecture 2030

    • Ric Cochrane, Account Executive, McKinstry

  • The Electricity Grid
    • Ryan Murphy, System Operations Manager, Puget Sound Energy

    • Christina Page, Climate Action Director, City of Seattle’s Office of Sustainability and Environment

  • Food and Forest
    • Mitch Friedman, Executive Director, Conservation Northwest

    • Marc Daudon, President, the Caspian Group


We are pleased to welcome faculty, students, and community members to watch student teams present their final proposals.  The afternoon will also include a keynote address by Amy Harder—a Climate/Energy reporter with Axios—and a celebratory networking reception.  

Thank you to our sponsors

Our 2019 Carbon Hackathon is made possible by the contributions of our following sponsors.

Gold level sponsor:  

Trane Logo




Silver level sponsors:

Puget Sound Energy LogoUniversity Mechanical Contractors Logo

Bronze level sponsors:  

Glosten-Pelastar Deep Water Wind

K&L Gates

Seattle City Light




The WWU Carbon Hackathon is open to the public.