July 14, 2016

Our Team

Howie Rodenstein, Chairman of Advisory Board 

Howie RodensteinHowie Rodenstein, based in Boston, served for the past 15 years as CFO of Adheris Inc. a pharmaceutical information services company that he grew from a start-up to its sale for $100 million to inVentiv Health. He earned an MBA with Distinction (Baker Scholar) from Harvard Business School and a BA in Economics from Brandeis University. Howie founded and still chairs an annual charity bike ride that has attracted over a thousand riders and raised over $2.5 million for environmental NGO’s over the past nine years.

 

 

Weldon Turner, Director, COO, and Chief Compliance Officer

Weldon TurnerWeldon Turner was formerly the Director of International Equity Sales/Trading at Credit Suisse in New York, and has been a senior product manager at RCS Solar, a leading supplier of solar power plants in Europe and Africa. From 1994 to 1999, and from 1985 to 1992 he was a V.P. of Equity Sales/Trading at Salomon Brothers in New York. Turner  has been on the Board of Advisors of Thorium Power Company and Portofino Equity Advisors. He has extensive experience in growing new companies; he managed GoldNames from 1999-2000, a domain name internet company, from inception to an organization with over 50 employees. He holds a BA in History and Political Science from Union College, NY, received his JD law degree from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, and his LLM from Thomas Jefferson Law School.

 

Josef AbramowitzPresident 

Josef Abramowitz, an Impact Investor and green energy activist, is recognized as one of the pioneers of the solar industries in Africa and other frontier markets. Named by CNN as one of the top six global “Green Pioneers,” and by PV Tech as “one of the most inspiring solar CEOs” worldwide, Abramowitz has developed over $1 billion in solar pipelines and has been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.  Abramowitz serves as CEO of Gigawatt Global, an impact investment platform that provides healthy returns to investors while advancing the environmental and humanitarian goals of providing affordable green power to underserved populations. Gigawatt Global is a founding partner of the White House Power Africa initiative and was the first company to interconnect a commercial scale solar field under President Obama’s program.  Abramowitz recently served in Paris as a delegate to the Climate Conference negotiations, is co-founder with Ilan Goldstein of Gigawatt Global Wind, and his life's work was featured on an episode of CNN’s The Next List with Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

 

 

Dr. Hanna H. Klein, Director of Research
Hanna KleinDr. Klein in an energy expert. She has developed gas turbines with ABB in Switzerland and worked with Nuclear Safety for Vattenfall power company in Sweden and designing concentrated solar systems with Aora Solar. She has developed her own patents in concentrated solar technologies (as EZKlein) and has been active as an evaluator for the European Commission for grants regarding energy and environmental Science. She built up her business experience working as a business consultant for Arthur Andersen out of Amsterdam. She holds a MSc in Energy Systems from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm and a PhD in solar energy from the Weizmann Institute of Science.

 

 

 

Chana AbramsGeneral Counsel
image (1)Chana acts as General Counsel for Gigawatt Global. Chana is a project finance lawyer specializing in the renewable energy sector in Africa, with experience in Zambia, Tanzania, Rwanda, Benin, Burundi, Togo, Ghana, Egypt, Jordan, South Sudan and Nigeria. Previously employed at Slaughter and May, London and Herzog Fox, Tel Aviv. Visiting lawyer at leading Nigerian law firm Aluwko & Oyedobe, Lagos. Chana has published in the Renewable Energy Law & Policy journal and received her degree from King's College London.

.

 

 

Michael FichtenbergVP Finance

Michael Fichtenberg_PictureMichael handles finance for both corporate and project finance needs. Michael started his
professional career as an entrepreneur in the construction materials business in NYC, where he founded and operated his company in custom materials servicing high-rise buildings in Manhattan. Deciding to move into the clean technology sector, Michael worked at an insurance company at their renewable energy desk where he dealt with private wealth management, clean technology start-ups, and acquisition/sale of operating solar fields. Michael has been on the front lines of financing a wide range of solar initiatives since 2011, most notably raising the debt and equity for 100 MW of solar PV in the Middle East. Michael holds degrees in Finance and Information Technology, and is currently completing an Executive MBA at Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management.

 

Aryeh Green, Chief Strategic Officer

Aryeh SpeakingAryeh is responsible for strategic planning, institutional investment and corporate communications.  He has over three decades of experience working as a business consultant and executive for many publicly-traded companies, including AudioCodes, ECI Telecom, Pfizer, Aladdin and MotoGuzzi, as well as various non-profits and NGOs. He holds masters degrees in business and international relations, and is an expert in Middle Eastern affairs and media issues.  Aryeh is a well-known international speaker and has been a leading advocate and activist for freedom and democracy for two decades.

 

 

Misha Nataf, Director of Project Development Wind

misha-picture-for-gwg-website2 Misha serves as the V.P. of Project Development for Gigawatt Global Wind LLC, a subsidiary of Gigawatt Global focused on wind energy projects. Prior to joining the company, Misha worked as an analyst for ICIC, as an agriculture projects economist for LR Group  with a focus on West African countries, and as senior project finance adviser for Ascola Project Finance. Misha brings with him valuable experience in building bankable financial models of large-scale infrastructure, agriculture and renewable energy projects, as well as walking companies through tender preparation, bid submission and financial close stages. He holds a B.A. in Business Administration and Finance from IDC Herzliya and a M.Sc. of Management Studies from Tel Aviv University' Recanati Business School.

 

Mandy Efrati, Controller

mandy efratiMandy Efrati, CPA, began her career at Ernst & Young in New York City in 2008. After four years of working in the real estate department, her focus shifted towards working with start-ups and high tech companies. Mandy then started working for KPMG where she continued to service start-ups, including Gigawatt Global. She officially joined the Gigawatt Global team in May of 2015.  Mandy holds a Bachelors in Economics from the University of Maryland, and a Masters in Accountancy from the University of Notre Dame.

 

 

Joel Abrams, Project Developer, Nigeria

Joel AbramsJoel serves as the Managing Director of Nigeria Solar Capital Partners, a special purpose vehicle for our projects in Nigeria. During his time in Nigeria, Joel has worked closely with all of the country’s key constituents, including the NBET, NERC, TCN, and Ministry of Environment. Joel has established links to development banks and financing institutions and specializes in development finance. Joel is a founding partner of Ibex Capital Partners and has had significant experience working and living in West and Central Africa. Prior to founding Ibex Capital Partners, Joel headed the fixed income research team for Sub Saharan Africa at Bloomberg and went on to work at Western Asset Management, as a portfolio analyst on the global fixed income desk that managed $60 billion in sovereign debt. Joel holds a BA (with honors) in History from University College London.

 

Dr. Gershon Baskin, VP Special Projects

110514special.gershonGershon is the founder of the Israel/Palestine Center for Research and Information (IPCRI) - a joint Israeli-Palestinian public policy think and “do”-tank. He has been awarded the Histadrut Prize for Peace in 1996, the Turkish Foreign Policy Institute Peace Prize in 2004, the Tribute of Honor and Courage from the World Movement for Democracy in 2004 and the Search for Common Ground Journalist Award for Middle East Journalism in 2005 and 2007 as well as the Ordine Della Stella Della Solidarieta Italiana. He holds a Ph.D. in International Affairs from University of Greenwich.

 

 

Remy Reinstein  Project Developer and Government Relations 

Remy headshot

Remy leads project development in a number of emerging markets with a focus on solar PV projects.  He also serves as the company's representative in its dealings with foreign ministries and governments.  He previously was the CEO of ICIA, which helped foster relationships with Chinese high-tech companies.  Remy studied business computer informational systems at the University of Colorado at Boulder and holds a BSc in Government, Diplomacy and Strategy from IDC, Herzliya.

 

 

Eran BlumbergProject Developer East Africa 

EranEran has gained vast experience in engineering management and the coordination of project development. His focus is site identification, geographical constraints, radiation parameters, energy production assessment, design and layout yield optimization and controlling of engineering data flow. Eran oversees land surveying & geotechnical parties preparing the engineering detail for the construction of medium and large scale PV projects and manages EPC & subcontractors during project construction and operational stages. He honed his skills through five years on the engineering team at leading solar companies and holds a practical engineering degree in architecture and various certifications in Green Studies.

 

Akiva Turner, Financial Analyst 

Akiva headshotAkiva is a financial analyst for Gigawatt Global. His keen insights and financial modeling expertise are invaluable for the company. Prior to joining the renewable energy industry, Akiva worked as a Financial Analyst at a boutique consulting firm in Los Angeles that provides financial and strategic advisory services to large independent film and TV companies in Hollywood. Akiva has a BA in Business Administration and Finance from IDC Herzliya.

 

 

Patrick Nzitunga, Project Developer Central Africa

Patrick Nzitunga from Burundi event at FM-v2Patrick is a project developer for Central Africa.  He began his career working in East Africa leading projects for various international companies and NGOs, including Egis international, Doctors without Borders Netherlands, Action Contre la Faim France and Tevel B'tzedek.  With a deep knowledge of the language, culture and business practices of region, Patrick holds a Bachelors of Business Law from Lake Tanganyika University in Burundi.

 

 

Shoshi HarariBookkeeper and Payroll Manager

Shoshi headshotShoshi has over 20 years of experience working in businesses and nonprofit organizations as solo book keeper. She has also been successfully running her own business teaching teenagers and young adults about accounting and money management for a number of years. Ms. Harari holds a BA in Business Management from Touro College.

 

 

 

Eli RappProject Manager 


Eli Headshot

Eli acts as a project manager for a number of projects in Africa. He specializes in tenders, terms of reference, RFP's  selection and land identification. He is especially involved in the Environmental and Social Impact Studies (ESIA) where he is the expert on IFC regulations. He has been intimately involve with solar PV projects for a number of years and is the lead liaison for Ethiopia. Eli holds a BA in Business Administration from Machon Lev Collage of Technology in Jerusalem.

 

 

Nathaniel Johnson, Project Development Off-Grid 

Nat Head shotNat Johnson is the Project Development Associate for Off-Grid Applications at Gigawatt Global. He is currently focused on developing off-grid electrification projects in Burundi, working with third-party contractors and international project financiers in order to facilitate these initiatives. Prior to working at Gigawatt Global, Nat worked at 1st Light Energy where he helped close over forty residential solar projects in New York City. Nat holds a bachelors degree in Geography from California State University.

 

 

 

Jennifer PosenAssistant to President   

IMG_0492Jennifer brings over fifteen years of executive and corporate management experience as well as a BBA in Finance experience to her role as assistant to Josef Abramowitz. With her calm, no-nonsense approach, if it needs to get done, on-time and well, Jennifer is the go-to person.

 

 

 

Chaim Motzen, Co-Founder

Chaim Motzen, Co-Founder of Gigawatt Global, led the successful development of the first utility-scale solar field in East Africa in record time, an 8.5 MW plant in Rwanda which reached full production in September 2014 and increased Rwanda's generation capacity by approximately 6%. Chaim is a former consultant at McKinsey and Company, where he was awarded “The Marvin,” McKinsey’s highest award for non-partners, recognizing exceptional work in knowledge building. He received an MBA from Harvard Business School and an MPA from Harvard Kennedy School. Chaim is on the Board of Directors of the Gift of Life Bone Marrow Foundation, a world leader in facilitating bone marrow transplants for children and adults suffering from life-threatening diseases.