2023 Annual Metro CERT Event recap

August 2023

In May, the Metro Clean Energy Resource Team celebrated 20 years of CERTs with 175 of our closest friends, at the Shoreview Community Center!

Diana selfie with attendees


People checking in to the eventWe decided to host the event in Shoreview because we’ve had such a long and fruitful relationship with the city. John Suzukida, a member of Shoreview’s Environment Quality Committee, has served on the Metro CERT steering committee for four years and recently shared his journey to electrify his home with CERTs. And in 2019, we collaborated with the city to support the installation of electric vehicle charging stations at the community center.

The celebration was even sweeter because that very morning Governor Walz signed a bill that included the first increase in CERTs core funding since 2011! Now that was a reason to put on a par-tay hat! After hosting this event for 15 years, this one was definitely the best one yet!

Lissa and DianaCERTs alum Lissa Pawlisch highlighted the clean energy incentives in the Inflation Reduction Act and a few of the new programs passed during the MN Legislative session. Several CERTs Seed Grant recipients gave brief presentations on their projects. And our friend Baba Letang from the Neighborhood Development Center gave an energetic overview of the Advancing Small Business Solar Equity project. 

A number of people played CERT-O — our version of bingo — and won cool new CERTs swag, took pics at the photobooth, and talked to resource organizations including Citizens Utility Board, Xcel Energy, GreenStep Cities, CenterPoint Energy, Center for Energy and Environment, Willdan, and the Division of Energy Resources at the MN Department of Commerce. 


A few colleagues from CERTs partners shared reactions of the event:

  • It was wonderful to meet new folks and to connect in-person with so many people that I had only ever seen on Zoom. The wide range of attendees showed how broad the CERTs extended family truly is — folks from state agencies, nonprofits, local governments, CBOs, people interested in getting involved, etc. — and is a testament to the benefit that CERTs provides to all types of organizations from across the region. Catherine, Great Plains Institute

  • It was great to see people from across the state at the event. Hey, Duluth is talking with Winona! Minnesota is really blessed to have many passionate, smart people working in the clean energy space. Joel, Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships 

  • The Metro CERTs event is a must attend on my calendar. This event is not only great networking with a room packed full of engaged leaders, it is a great place to learn about emerging technology, emerging trends, and emerging leaders in clean energy, sustainability, local solutions, and energy efficiency. Brian, MN Department of Commerce

We ate street tacos and Taste of Scandinavia chocolate cake while we met new people, caught up with old friends, took a few selfies, smiled, and laughed.

Attendees sitting at a table at the event

Photos from the 2023 Annual Metro CERT Event

2023 Annual Metro CERT Event

Presentation slides from the 2023 Annual Metro CERT Event

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