Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy (WRISE) announces 2020 Rudd Mayer Fellowship and Wind at Our Backs recipients

June 11, 2020 • Recent Press Releases

The eight awardees will be recognized at WRISE virtual luncheon happening later this month

Brooklyn, NY —WRISE has selected six 2020 Rudd Mayer Memorial Fellows and two 2020 Wind at Our Backs Scholars. Each year, WRISE awards fellowships on a competitive basis to women college students or recent graduates. The fellowship honors wind industry pioneer Rudd Mayer of Boulder, Colorado, who passed away in 2002.

In 2016, a new scholarship program launched for women in or graduating from degree and training programs for wind technicians. This new program is designed to help diversify the wind energy workforce and provide greater opportunities for women in the field.

Meet the 2020 Rudd Mayer Fellows:

  • Jeanie Aird, Cornell University, Mechanical Engineering
  • Olivia Corriere, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Environmental Studies
  • Aminata Diagne, Prairie View A&M University, Chemical Engineering/Energy
  • Lauren Reeg, University of Wisconsin Madison, Environment and Resources: Energy Analysis and Policy
  • Jayne Sandoval, Northern Arizona University, Mechanical Engineering/Comparative Cultural Studies
  • Evangelia Stoikou, Dartmouth College, Mechanical Engineering

Meet the 2020 Wind at Our Backs Scholars:

  • Bonnie Holloway, High Plains Technology Center, Certified Wind Technician 1
  • Jennifer Ward, SUNY Canton, Sustainable Energy Technology

“Amid the uncertain times we find ourselves, it can be a challenge to look towards the future with a sense of hope and optimism. There is no better time to celebrate these women, who are actively building upon the legacy of Rudd Mayer,” said Kristen Graf, Executive Director of Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy. “Rudd was an inspiration who fought tirelessly for our industry and this fellowship named in her honor offers a unique opportunity to introduce these talented and hardworking women into the clean energy workforce.”

The fellowship and scholarship normally covers the cost to attend the annual CLEANPOWER Conference and Exhibition, this year’s conference was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A virtual event is scheduled for June 30, 2020, from 1-3 pm ET that will recognize this year’s fellows as well as provide networking opportunities for the broader WRISE community. 

“We may not be meeting in Anaheim this year as we originally planned, but we remain committed to finding innovative ways to ensure these women are connected with our broader network of over 10,000 supporters,” added Graf.

About the Rudd Mayer Fellowship: 

The Rudd Mayer Fellowship is WRISE’s way of supporting women in the academic community, college students and recent graduates, who are interested in expanding their knowledge and engaging in the renewable energy field by attending the CLEANPOWER Conference & Exhibition. The 2020 Rudd Mayer fellowship is made possible with the generous support of ReGenerate Consulting.

About the Wind at Our Backs Scholarship:

Wind at our Backs is a new scholarship program for women in or graduating from degree and training programs for wind technicians. This scholarship which provides a tuition stipend, focuses on furthering the education of women in wind energy and is designed to help diversify the wind energy workforce and provide greater opportunities for women in the field. The 2020 Wind at Our Back Scholarship is made possible with the generous support of Vestas.

Both of these annual fellowship and scholarship opportunities are awarded on a competitive basis and selection is based on a commitment to renewable energy development, academic achievement, potential for future contributions to the U.S. renewable energy community, and financial need.

About Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy:

WRISE was founded in 2005 and works to promote the education, professional development, and advancement of women to achieve a strong diversified workforce and support a robust renewable energy economy. Since that time, WRISE has grown to an organization with local chapters in the US and Canada; national programming that includes activities at renewable trade shows across the country, the Leadership Forum, Take Charge Workshops, mentoring, professional development and webinar series; and a growing grassroots network of more than 10,000 women and men.