Solar Farms:
What communities need to know

What’s a solar farm?

A “solar farm” is a collection of interconnected solar panels that are strategically placed to maximize their ability to capture sunlight and convert it to electricity. Sunlight contains little packets of energy called photons. When photons from the sun reach the solar panels, it causes energy electrons within those panels to move and in turn create an electrical current.

The electric current is then sent to an inverter which converts it from DC to AC. That power is then pushed out from the solar site onto the transmission lines where the electricity is then distributed to households and businesses.

A solar farm is also sometimes called a solar project, solar power plant, solar ranch, or solar facility.


Does it matter who builds and operates a solar farm?


The solar energy industry has grown by leaps and bounds since Silicon Ranch was founded in 2011, yet it is still a relatively immature industry with a wide range of participants. What has become evident over this period is that not all solar companies are created and operate equally.

As the long-term owner and operator of every project we develop—a distinguishing characteristic of our business model—we are uniquely motivated to become active members of the communities where we locate for the life of the project. We’re here to help communities like yours build on their unique legacies while respecting local history and identity.

We buy and own the land we use

Our preference to own the land we build on, making us property owners and taxpayers in the local community, distinguishes us from other solar developers. We never sell or transfer our projects; we own, operate, and manage each site for the life of the project and have a 100% track record for successful delivery.

We restore and protect the land

We recognize our responsibility as land stewards and work to improve soil, water, natural habitat, and air quality on and around our solar farms using Regenerative Energy® practices.

We boost local economies

Our solar farms inject communities with significant new tax revenues that support infrastructure, schools, and other community-identified priorities, without requiring government services in exchange. In doing so, those communities are able to grow on their own terms.

Spotlight on: Hattiesburg Solar Farm

The residents of Hattiesburg, Mississippi are neighbors to the Hattiesburg Solar Farm.

Silicon Ranch constructed the facility in partnership with Mississippi Power, the Area Development Partnership, the city of Hattiesburg, Forrest County, and Silicon Ranch. The facility has been producing renewable solar energy since 2017.

“Having Silicon Ranch here has only added to and diversified an economy we already had… For the longest time, this site sat unused. It was a vacant piece of property. And now it generates funding for not only our schools, but also the community – and it didn’t require a lot of us.”

– Toby Barker, Mayor, City of Hattiesburg MS

The Solar Farm Lifecycle


We work with a community like yours to find the right property for a solar project. We want to make sure that the land, sun exposure, and other factors, including proximity to the electric grid, are just right.


We meet with community leaders to create a project plan that benefits local stakeholders and that supports local community initiatives.


We buy the land from the property owner and own it for the long term. We design our projects with reliability and the highest performance in mind over a 40-year useful life.


Building a new solar project means new job creation. Each solar project requires skilled labor and a talented workforce. In addition to training opportunities, Silicon Ranch works to hire from the local labor pool and the military veteran community.


Silicon Ranch designs, constructs, and manages its projects using regenerative land management practices called Regenerative Energy. Through Regenerative Energy we are able to help restore soil health, biodiversity, and water quality on and around our solar farms.


The solar arrays, or solar panels, are mounted on one of two racking systems, fixed mount or tracking. While fixed mount racking systems are stationary, tracking systems are constructed to move the panels with the sun from sunrise to sundown. A computer-controlled program makes sure the panels capture as much sunlight as possible throughout the changing seasons.

Energy Production

Sunlight contains packets of energy called photons. When photons from the sun reach the solar panels, they cause electrons within those panels to move, creating an electrical current. The current is sent to inverters, which convert it to a form of power that can be used on the electric grid. The power is then sent to a substation through high-voltage power lines, where electricity is distributed to the power grid. The power grid then sends that electricity to homes and businesses.


Our state-of-the-art network operations center helps Silicon Ranch monitor performance of our entire portfolio coast to coast. As the long term owner of every project we develop, Silicon Ranch has a vested interest in seeing that our projects perform as designed for the life of the project. Should a solar farm underperform for any reason, Silicon Ranch takes immediate, corrective measures through our network of on-site service personnel.


At the end of the solar project’s useful life, it will either be repowered with newer solar technology or decommissioned. Decommissioning means that all components are removed and the ground is stabilized. As the long-term owner of our solar farms, Silicon Ranch takes full responsibility for safely decommissioning our projects, recycling and repurposing equipment, and leaving the site in as good of, if not better, condition than when we first find it.

FAQs About Solar Farms

Large-scale solar farms in the U.S. range in size from 7 acres to over 4,000 acres.

Solar panel size varies by manufacturer. On average, solar panels for large scale projects are about 6 feet long by 4 feet wide.

Silicon Ranch typically uses the term solar farm, solar project, solar facility, or solar ranch. “Solar Farm” is a term that is commonly used in the industry to describe the way solar uses land and the sun to harvest a “crop” in the form of energy generation.

When we are searching for land to use for a project, we take several factors into account. Land for a solar farm needs to be relatively flat, big enough to accommodate the required capacity to meet the needs of our customers, and near electrical infrastructure such as a substation or transmission lines so we can interconnect to the electric grid. We choose properties that meet these requirements.

We aim to locate projects out of sight from homes, but sometimes it’s necessary to build a project within view of residences. We listen and respond to community input and work hard to ensure that our projects will not change the look or feel of the community. Use of setbacks and vegetative buffers can shield the project from view. Large solar projects have a low profile (8-15 feet from grade), similar to a greenhouse or single-story residence.

Large scale solar projects create construction jobs and increased business for local services such as hotels and restaurants. Solar projects also create high quality, long-term jobs for vegetation management and other operations and maintenance of the facility.

Silicon Ranch partners with or employs a diverse set of land managers, including ranchers and farmers, mowing partners, and agrivoltaic technicians recruited from rural communities.

We give a preference to the local labor pool and the military veteran community to fill these roles, further distributing the positive economic impact of our solar farm in your community.

Solar farms do not pose a threat to wildlife. Responsible solar development can actually improve, rather than harm, wildlife habitat and enhance biodiversity.

Silicon Ranch’s approach to land management has demonstrated that responsible solar development can, in fact, enhance the protection of wildlife habitat. Evidence reveals it is demonstrably improving wildlife habitat, specifically through an increase in bobwhite quail populations at certain projects.

As another example, Silicon Ranch has developed and funded a private Gopher Tortoise Sanctuary in partnership with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources (GA DNR) on our privately owned lands in Clay County, GA. Working together, Silicon Ranch and GA DNR have relocated several tortoise from surrounding projects, and have room for more. We take wildlife habitat very seriously, and our investment in this sanctuary is testament.

No. Silicon Ranch constructs Photovoltaic facilities, which absorb solar energy rather than reflecting it, and therefore do not heat up.

When a solar farm is no longer efficient or capable of being repowered, the system is dismantled and decommissioned, and the equipment is removed. The land is returned to the condition in which it existed prior to the installation of the solar project or in better condition. All costs associated with the decommissioning process are the responsibility of the project owner.

Because Silicon Ranch owns each of our solar farms and the land we occupy for the life of the project, we are long-term members of every community in which we operate. This means we are invested in ensuring that decommissioning will occur safely and responsibly, and that the site remains in excellent condition.

We are leading our industry in responsible end-of-life management of solar equipment. We are the first utility-scale developer to partner with SOLARCYCLE, a solar-specialized recycling company, to pioneer panel recycling and re-use at scale. We are already recycling, reusing, or refurbishing our early end-of-life equipment. SOLARCYCLE’s approach to module recycling recovers approximately 95% of solar panel value, which can be returned to the supply chain and used to support domestic manufacturing of new panels here in the United States.    

Silicon Ranch has a systematic approach to health and safety and is committed to the goal of zero recordable safety incidents. Accordingly, the team gives every consideration to safety and control measures as part of overall project design. In addition to his 25+ years of environmental, health and safety experience, Silicon Ranch’s Director of Environmental, Health, Safety, and Security—Jim Barfield, CSP, CHST—has deep credentials to lead the company’s approach to safety. Along with qualifications that include BSCP certifications, FEMA incident command, accident investigation, and OSHA 30 qualifications, he is a veteran of the United States Army as a Health Specialist of Preventative Medicine where he educated personnel on pathogen exposure, disease and occupational illness prevention, enforced military regulations governing sanitary practice and industrial hygiene, and investigated and controlled sources of pathogen and toxin exposure both inside and outside of United States borders.

Our projects follow and adhere to all local, state, and federal regulations including fencing, electric codes, and signage. Additionally, they are monitored 24/7 so that any disturbance to the system can be quickly and safely acted upon.

Once construction commences, external to the site, we post appropriate warnings in traffic ways to alert drivers of impending truck entrances to the roadway. Internal to the site there will be controls in place to regulate vehicles and heavy equipment on site.

The materials and components that comprise a solar energy generating facility are not hazardous to humans. Protection of the environment is very important to Silicon Ranch.

There is some truck and trailer traffic during the construction of solar farms, including 18-wheelers delivering supplies during the installation. Silicon Ranch coordinates to provide precise operation schedules as the construction of a specific project approaches. Once operational, the sites are remotely monitored and rarely visited except for periodic and routine maintenance. This is usually accomplished with 1-2 pick-up trucks or vans, depending on the crew.

How long it takes to build a solar farm depends on a variety of factors, including how large the project is. Typically, the larger the project, the longer construction takes. On average, it takes twelve months to build a 100 MW solar farm.

Solar farms are quiet neighbors. Solar panels do not produce noise and the slight hum that the inverters produce is inaudible past the property boundaries.

No. An examination of property values in states across the U.S. shows that large scale solar arrays have no measurable impact on the value of neighboring properties, and in some cases may even have positive effects.[1] Being close to a solar farm does not deter the sales of agricultural or residential land.

[1] Solar Energy Industries Association® (PDF)


Solar modules are designed to absorb (rather than reflect) as much light as possible and are covered with a protective layer of anti-reflective matte glass.

Each project is different, but typically a solar project will generate steady and significant new tax revenues that support infrastructure, local schools, and other community identified priorities, both immediately and for the long-term, while requiring little to no county services in return and helping to keep taxes low for homeowners.

A solar farm will also mean a large capital investment in the community that creates construction and operations jobs and increased business for local services like hotels and restaurants, strengthens the regional economy and workforce, and often helps attract more investment that brings even more jobs and tax revenues for decades to come.

A solar farm in your community also means more reliable electric service for homes and businesses and increased stability for the regional electric grid. Adding solar power helps diversify the energy mix and therefore helps reduce reliance on any single source of energy, while decreasing carbon emissions.

Yes! Silicon Ranch solar farms follow and adhere to all local, state, and federal regulations including fencing, electric codes, and signage. Additionally, Silicon Ranch monitors our projects 24/7 so that any disturbance to the system can be quickly and safely acted upon.

You might have heard that solar farms produce electromagnetic fields (EMFs). Exposure to EMFs is a part of normal life, from the appliances used in our homes to the electrical lines in our neighborhoods. At the perimeter fencing of a solar project, EMF exposure is far lower than that found inside a typical home.

Solar photovoltaic panels are made of tempered glass and pass rigorous hail and other weather testing. The two most common types of solar panels—silicon-based and thin film—are both required to pass the Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Leaching Characteristic Procedure test, meaning that these panels are nonhazardous.[2][3]

[2] Southern Environmental Law Center (PDF)

[3] Hindawi

Stormwater management plans are a required part of the solar development process. Professional engineers prepare these plans to ensure that projects do not contribute to erosion or flooding. Once operational and over the life of the project, Silicon Ranch’s use of regenerative land management practices, including the establishment of perennial deep-rooted vegetation and elimination of annual tillage, irrigation, and fertilizer, restores soil health, allowing the soil to absorb more water, reducing runoff. Because the land on a solar farm is not paved, a responsibly developed and managed solar project creates less stormwater runoff than most other types of development.

Silicon Ranch aims to refrain from the use of any pesticides at all of our projects, unless required by state law where the project is located to mitigate noxious weeds determined injurious to agricultural or horticultural crops or, in some instances, to prevent small targeted amounts of vegetation from growing up into equipment that would interfere with plant performance and impede the facility’s ability to deliver power to serve homes and businesses in the long-term. When circumstances require that we use pesticides, Silicon Ranch is committed to minimizing use, meaning that we only spot spray EPA approved herbicides – which are commonly used on timber farms – when required. We never broadcast spray herbicides or pesticides.

We recognize that our responsibility as a good neighbor doesn’t stop at our fence line. Rather than viewing the land housing our solar projects as a liability, we recognize that land and vegetation are valuable natural resources and biological assets. When land and vegetation are managed properly, and in alignment with natural systems, we can revitalize soils, restore grassland ecosystems, increase biodiversity, sequester carbon, improve water quality, and build better solar facilities. Ultimately, through our Regenerative Energy approach, our goal is to leave the land better than we found it.

We recognize each community’s pride in the unique ecosystems that make them up, and we are committed to designing, building, and operating our solar facility in a way that continues that legacy, in partnership with those communities and surrounding areas.

The supporting structures that hold the modules are designed to withstand wind loads of 105-120 mph.

When siting a project, the first part to consider is location – utility scale PV plants need to be near a viable transmission or distribution line to allow for connection to the grid. Additionally, consolidating the PV plant into a concentrated location allows for more efficient and effective connection to the grid. The second part to consider is the size. Silicon Ranch’s customers typically require more generation capacity than what these locations can accommodate. Another factor is that not all existing buildings were designed or built to hold the structural load of a PV plant on the rooftops.

Building PV plants on landfills presents permitting and construction challenges, environmental challenges, such as avoiding damage to the landfill capping system, and engineering challenges, such as potential settlement of the landfill area that can lead to structural damage to the solar generating equipment.

We aim to deliver low-cost and reliable renewable energy into the communities that the power will serve. Each community has a range of siting options available, including both rooftop and ground mounted. In addition to questions of scale and structural stability, rooftop is by far the most expensive option for the installation of solar energy. Ground-mounted solar energy is the lowest cost form of new electricity generation in the United States today, and it is an important energy source for helping to keep rates low for local homes and businesses.

“Silicon Ranch is one of the largest owners of solar assets in the United States. And they have a deep commitment to sustainability and regenerative solar, both in terms of agriculture but also creating a circular economy. And we’re thrilled to be working with them in a deep partnership to scale this for the industry.

By partnering with us and to recycle the panels, they’re sending a signal to the rest of the industry and helping to create a collaborative environment and consensus for the industry to get together to recycle all these end of life panels and create that circular economy.”

– Suvi Sharma, Co-Founder and CEO of SOLARCYCLE, Inc
Jerry Hanrahan

Jerry Hanrahan

Senior Advisor to John Hancock Infrastructure Fund

Jerry Hanrahan joined the John Hancock Infrastructure Team in 2001 and was the Team Leader from 2011 until 2016. Under Jerry’s leadership, the Infrastructure Team’s portfolio grew from $17 billion of debt and equity investments to $24 billion. He is currently a Senior Advisor to John Hancock Infrastructure Fund.

Mr. Hanrahan has worked in the financing of the power industry since 1990, as an investor, as a finance officer and as a financial advisor to power companies.

Prior to joining John Hancock in 2001, Mr. Hanrahan worked for four years in the Boston and London offices of power company InterGen, where he coordinated all financing activities on power projects in Turkey, Colombia, and Egypt. Prior to InterGen, Mr. Hanrahan spent nine years in the structured finance and financial advisory divisions of Bank of Tokyo Capital Corporation in Boston. Mr. Hanrahan holds an MBA from Babson College and received his BS from Northeastern University.

Ryan Edwards

Director, Project Finance at Silicon Ranch

“You see the results at the end of the day, that a veteran that came to a company is able to really grow within that role and accrue more responsibility offload from their manager, help train other folks on their team – that pure leadership piece that is extremely valuable for military folks because they had to do it the whole time with their fellow officers or their fellow enlisted.

And that’s where you really get that synergy just by entrusting veterans to really come onto a team and embrace the culture, but also offer some unique perspective. They may not have the years of experience, but the solar industry is constantly evolving, right? So, years of experience could potentially lead you down a rabbit hole in a different direction from where the actual path of solar is going to be in the next five years. You bring in some unique perspectives, somebody that’s not afraid to speak up, but is tactful about it, then you really can have some good discussion on direction down the road…

I think that adaptability kind of lends itself to adversity. Veterans tend to see challenges as something they need to overcome, not as something that shuns them away from getting to the desired solution. I’m not saying that this is unique to the military, but I would say that the majority of folks in the military will definitely look at a challenge and say, this is something that we as a team shall overcome.”

Byron W. Smith

Managing Director, Mountain Group Partners

Byron is a Managing Director of Mountain Group Partners, an investment firm dedicated to investing in and actively guiding transformational businesses in the Life Sciences and Technology sectors. Founded in 2002, Mountain Group Partners principals have invested in more than 30 seed and early stage companies in these sectors. Within technology, Mountain Group Partners’ investments focus on Business Services and Consumer & Healthcare, targeting those ideas with quantifiable development risk and a rapid path to market.

Byron has also taught entrepreneurship as an adjunct professor at Vanderbilt University’s Owen Graduate School of Management and been an active angel and venture capital investor.

Jeff Mouland

Managing Director and Head of Global Infrastructure Investments

Jeff leads the TDAM Infrastructure Team and is responsible for investment strategy, asset sourcing and execution, and oversight of acquired assets. He was previously part of the Infrastructure Investments Team at Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments, with multi-sector responsibility for global deal sourcing and execution and developing emerging markets investment strategy for equity investing and project financing within the infrastructure and energy sector. Jeff received his B.Eng in Civil Engineering from Memorial University and an MBA in Finance from McGill University.

Matt Kisber

Chairman of the Board

Matt is a co-founder of Silicon Ranch and served as CEO of the company until becoming Chairman in July 2019. As Chairman, Matt works closely with the company’s executive leadership to set and implement its ambitious growth strategy. Under his leadership, Silicon Ranch has from an idea to become one of the top solar companies in America, with a reputation as a pioneering, innovative, and principled industry leader. Matt brings a unique background to Silicon Ranch having been a business owner and having served eight years as Tennessee Commissioner of Economic Development. He has also worked with industry leaders from across the U.S. and around the globe to bring investments and jobs to Tennessee. A graduate of Vanderbilt University, Matt served 10 terms in the Tennessee House of Representatives.

Pradeep Killamsetty

Managing Director, Power & Infrastructure Investment Group at John Hancock Financial Services

Mr. Killamsetty is a Managing Director in Manulife’s infrastructure investment group. He joined John Hancock / Manulife in 2012 and is responsible for origination, execution and asset management of investments in various infrastructure sectors. Over the last ten years with John Hancock, Pradeep has led investments in infrastructure equity and public/ private/ project finance debt of over $5 billion. Pradeep has worked in the infrastructure sector since 2006, as an investor, developer, and a financial advisor. After graduating from business school in 2006, he joined Credit Suisse’s power & utilities investment banking group. At Credit Suisse, he was involved in M&A advisory and financing assignments for various power sector clients. Prior to joining John Hancock, he was at Competitive Power Ventures where he helped develop and finance about 1,000MW of renewable energy and gas fired power projects. Pradeep holds an MBA from University of North Carolina and an M.S in Mechanical Engineering from University of Alabama.

Philip Bredesen

Founding Chairman

Philip Bredesen served as Tennessee’s Governor from 2003 until 2011 and Mayor of Nashville from 1991 until 1999. He is known for his bipartisan approach to problem-solving and his careful fiscal management. Among those who have served in senior elected positions, Governor Bredesen has a unique depth of healthcare experience in both the private and public sectors.

Prior to entering public service, Bredesen worked in the healthcare industry. Between research trips to the public library, he drafted a business plan at his kitchen table that led to the creation of HealthAmerica Corp. in 1980, a Nashville-based healthcare management company. The company eventually grew to more than 6,000 employees and was traded on the New York Stock Exchange. The company was sold in 1986. Additionally, Gov. Bredesen is considered a serial entrepreneur, having helped start and mentor several successful companies, many of which subsequently became publicly traded on various stock exchanges.

Laura Zapata

President & CEO, Clearloop

Laura Zapata is the CEO and co-founder of Clearloop, a Nashville-based startup that helps companies of all sizes—from established companies like Intuit to innovative startups like Rivian—cut their carbon footprint and expand access to clean energy in the United States. Zapata made a career in crisis communications and reputation management having worked in Congress, political campaigns, and Uber. She’s now helping companies reach their net-zero and other climate goals with tangible climate action that ensures that the environmental, health, and economic benefits of new solar projects reach American communities getting left behind. Zapata is a strong believer that solar can do more if we’re intentional about the communities where we invest and is eager to tap into the economic power of more companies as they seek to tackle their carbon footprint and strive for an equitable clean energy transition. Zapata immigrated from Colombia, was raised in Memphis, Tennessee, and is a graduate of Dartmouth College.

Steve Wozniak

Senior Vice President, Engineering

As Vice President of Engineering, Steve’s primary responsibility is to oversee Silicon Ranches PV Power Plant Engineering and Commissioning teams.  Steve has over 33 years in engineering, management, and construction for the Solar and Power industries.  Experience includes all phases of EPC from development through construction and start up.  His leadership roles have encompassed development, multi-disciplined engineering, estimating, procurement, permitting, EHS, project management and construction.  He has 13+ years of design and field experience installing and maintaining over 9 GW of large-scale utility solar power plants, both domestically and internationally.  Steve was also involved in several working groups for solar power such as SEIA and the NEC to help drive the direction of utility scale solar. 

Jen Randolph

Senior Vice President, Human Resources

Jen is responsible for leading our HR function. People are our biggest asset at Silicon Ranch and the people strategies she is creating is helping grow and sustain our team. Jen joined Silicon Ranch with 22 years of HR experience in various industries, most recently in manufacturing with Bridgestone.

Amanda Nichols

Senior Legal Counsel

Amanda counsels Silicon Ranch’s business development, finance, and executive teams, where she supports the negotiation and management of significant transactions and execution of Silicon Ranch’s strategic plans. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Amanda practiced in a large regional law firm advising clients in M&A, corporate finance, and project finance transactions across an array of industries.

Morgan Day

Vice President, Projects

As Vice President of Projects, Morgan is responsible to oversee and execute the day-to-day operations of the LPC (Local Power Companies) and Clearloop portfolio of projects. Responsibilities include planning for projects, estimating, deploying and managing resources including labor, equipment, and subcontractors, and confirming proper close out of projects including ensuring the projects are achieving maximum resource efficiency and effectiveness. Morgan has more than 27 years’ experience with a proven track record of safe, high-quality project execution on time and under budget. His experience spans the power industry from gas turbines to coal fired boiler units and has been primarily focused in renewable energy and solar projects since 2017.

Kati Cook, CPA

Senior Vice President, Controller

Matt Brown

Vice President, Business Development

Matt serves as Vice President, Business Development for Silicon Ranch and has been with the company for nearly 9 years. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Matt worked in various management capacities at TVA both in renewable energy program management and economic development. Matt and his team are responsible for developing community and utility solutions for distributed and utility scale solar projects across multiple geographies in the Southeast, developing win-win-win solutions for all partners.

Luke Wilkinson

Senior Vice President, Project Development

Luke manages the Project Development team at Silicon Ranch. His team is responsible for identifying greenfield assets, negotiating land agreements, community and economic development, permitting, and de-risking assets prior to handing off the projects to the engineering and construction teams. Luke ensures his team keeps projects on schedule and budget through the development lifecycle.

Tyler Whitmore

Senior Vice President, Process Improvement

Tyler works with the Executive Team and other members of the organization to develop and implement processes to support and streamline several of the Company’s initiatives, as well as addresses ad-hoc requests for the Executive Team during rotational assignments. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Tyler worked at Mountain Group Partners, a venture capital firm where he served as Vice President and either in board or visitor roles for multiple portfolio companies, and successfully executed on over 150 financings and transactions across more than 45 different companies. Before starting at Mountain Group Partners, Tyler worked as an Investment Banker at Sagent Advisors (now DC Advisory) in the Automotive and Industrial vertical groups. Tyler graduated Cum Laude from Vanderbilt University in 2010 with a BS in Engineering Science and a minor in Financial Economics.

Nick de Vries

Chief Technology Officer

Nick is responsible for managing all aspects of the company’s operating portfolio, as well as technology decisions for new projects. Nick has more than 20 years of diverse renewable energy, semiconductor, and military experience that inform his current work, including executive positions at SolarCity, Phoenix Solar, and Applied Materials.

Nick’s renewable energy industry expertise spans module and cell manufacturing, photovoltaic project design and operation, auxiliary grid services, as well as the prediction and demonstration of the energy harvest of novel PV technologies. He has also worked on manufacturing amorphous silicon modules, and on process machine control of cell splitting and cascading cell bonding processes with heterojunction crystalline cells. Silicon Ranch owns—and Nick now operates—projects that he himself designed nearly a decade ago, including the first transmission interconnected PV plant in the Southeast. Nick holds patents in both PV module manufacturing and design.

While at Applied Materials, he advanced the use of statistical process control to enhance the reliability of production equipment. He has led the commissioning of process equipment at Intel semiconductor factories in both the U.S. and Europe, and entire solar cell factories in India, Germany, Spain, and China.

Nick served his country on active duty as an Infantry Captain in the United States Army, with tours in Kuwait and Bosnia-Herzegovina. He earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University.

Nick is a regular speaker at industry events and has authored several articles. His current passions are the use of predictive analytics to improve performance of solar power plants and the integration of solar farms with regenerative agriculture practices—mostly with sheep and cattle. Hear him talk about it about it on NPR.

Paul Russell

Senior Vice President, Project Delivery

Paul Russell oversees the procurement department at Silicon Ranch Corporation, a fully integrated provider of customized renewable energy, carbon and battery storage solutions. During his nearly six years at Silicon Ranch, Paul has worn many hats and been instrumental in Silicon Ranch’s growth during this period. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Paul worked as in-house counsel for a Fortune 500 energy company and an international law firm in Houston, Texas. Before attending law school, Paul taught high school special education in the Mississippi Delta through Teach for America.

John Marcarelli

Senior Vice President, Business Development

John leads the business development and origination efforts for Silicon Ranch and the expansion of utility-scale power plants, storage, and value-added energy services into new geographies. The origination team works electric cooperatives, investor-owned utilities, and commercial clients to achieve their economic and sustainability goals through cost-effective energy solutions. John has worked in the renewable energy industry for over two decades, covering all aspects of the value chain, from small-scale, off-grid power systems to heading up US origination for a global distribution company. John joined Silicon Ranch in 2015 following several years with the global engineering procurement and construction (EPC) firm that built Silicon Ranch’s early projects.

Gaurab Hazarika

Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning and Initiatives

Todd Aquino

Executive Vice President, Energy Delivery

As Senior Vice President of Energy Delivery, Todd’s primary responsibility is to oversees silicon Ranches Utility Planning, Interconnection, Substation Engineering and Development Engineering teams. Todd has provided quality leadership and electrical designs for electric utility, industrial and other clients for over 31 years. His leadership role encompasses directing groups of multi-disciplined engineers and designers in support of engineering and construction projects. His design work includes electrical renewable integration, energy storage, substation physical layout, equipment selection, bus design, grounding design, panel wiring, and control house design. He has field experience installing and maintaining large scale battery, inverters, and flywheel systems for industrial clients.

Andrew Katz

Executive Vice President, Strategy & Corporate Development

Andrew works directly with the Executive Team to lead the development and implementation of the Company’s corporate strategic plan thereby enhancing the analysis of and response to market conditions, and ensuring proactive monitoring and identification of sources of capital to meet outstanding and planned commitments. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Andrew served as a VP in Morgan Stanley’s Global Power & Utilities practice within the Investment Banking Division where he played a lead role in Silicon Ranch’s 2020 equity raise. Andrew earned a BA in Economics from Rollins College in 2009 and an MBA from The Yale School of Management in 2016.

Richard Johnson

General Counsel

Richard is responsible for managing all legal functions for Silicon Ranch Corporation and its solar energy projects, including corporate governance matters, regulatory matters, financing and development transactions, construction and procurement, acquisitions, and project management affairs. Before joining Silicon Ranch, Richard was an attorney in the corporate transactional group at Venable LLP in Washington, DC, where he represented clients in connection with M&A and financing transactions as well as general corporate governance matters.

Boris Schubert

Chief Operating Officer

Boris Schubert has been driving the energy transition for more than 20 years with a focus on global renewable power development. As Silicon Ranch’s Chief Development Officer and Chairman of Clearloop, Boris is charged with leading the future growth of Silicon Ranch by expanding its project inventory into new markets and use cases across the U.S. His role helps bridge together the unique offerings of Silicon Ranch’s carbon solutions provider Clearloop and its agrivolatics solution Regenerative Energy to meet growing customer climate ambitions and deliver tangible environmental, social, and economic impact for customers and local communities. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Boris served as General Manager of Renewable Power Development at Shell, globally leading a push to provide cleaner energy solutions.

Michael Payne, CPA

Chief Financial Officer

Michael is responsible for managing all aspects of Silicon Ranch Corporation’s finance and accounting functions. Michael oversees the company’s internal and external financial reporting, regulatory and reporting compliance, and accounting operations. Michael brings over 20 years of financial reporting and accounting experience in a wide variety of industries for both public and private companies. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch, Michael worked on the corporate finance team of Asurion and previously worked for Ernst & Young in Nashville and Brussels, Belgium.

Matt Beasley

Chief Commercial Officer

As Chief Commercial Officer, Matt manages the interface between Silicon Ranch and external stakeholders, including customers, local communities, and the broader industry, with additional focus on business development and corporate strategy. Matt is also a member of the Company’s Board of Directors. Since Matt joined the team in early 2015, Silicon Ranch has grown from an early-stage startup to become one of the largest and fastest-growing independent power producers in the country.

Matt brings more than twenty years of global communications expertise, business development leadership, and entrepreneurial experience to the company’s executive leadership team. Prior to joining Silicon Ranch in 2015, Matt held assignments in New York, Tokyo, and London to develop and implement marketing strategies for large multinational clients. He later led business development efforts across a range of strategic initiatives for one of the country’s premier infrastructure firms. From late 2015 to early 2019, Matt served as President of the Tennessee state chapter of the Solar Energy Industries Association (TenneSEIA).

Matt graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned his MBA from the Owen Graduate School of Management at Vanderbilt University.

Erin Hanratty

Erin Hanratty

Project Manager II at Silicon Ranch

“Ryan, you mentioned the entrusting to other people – it was kind of wired within all of us while we were in the military. You had to learn how to trust the people you’re with, because you were working so closely on teams and with teams. At the end of the day, teamwork was the hallmark of success. So that’s just instilled in us to – not to automatically just trust everyone, but to learn how to cultivate that trust. Because at the end of the day, that’s what’s going to make an organization successful and what you really need for any sort of team to be successful. Especially, like we said, in this high-pace, changing environment…

I think it’s extremely important to be pulling in vets, not just at Silicon Ranch, but to the whole energy industry, because the soft skills and the adaptability are really key to the person doing well in that kind of volatile, robust industry. Those skill sets will help grow the industry through these volatile and robust times.

It’s been really refreshing also to see at Silicon Ranch that we’re not just pulling in from one branch. There hasn’t been one cliche or cookie-cutter pathway of the same community from the military where we’re recruiting from. It’s all across the board. We have several Navy, we have a bunch of Army, we have some Air Force. So that’s also a key thing to remember in the recruitment of vets – it’s such a wide spectrum of experiences that can be capitalized on, and can contribute from different branches and communities in the military. So that’s been really cool to see here at Silicon Ranch as well.”

Reagan Farr

President & Chief Executive Officer

As Co-Founder, President, and Chief Executive Officer of Silicon Ranch, Reagan is responsible for ongoing operations and execution of the company’s strategic growth plan. Under his leadership, Silicon Ranch has grown from an idea to become one of the largest independent power producers in the United States, while successfully commissioning every project the company has contracted since it began operations in 2011. From developing the initial ambitious plan for Silicon Ranch to growing a company that has earned a global reputation as one of the premier solar energy providers in the industry, Reagan has been instrumental to the company’s growth. Reagan also serves on Silicon Ranch’s Board of Directors.

Reagan grew up in Baton Rouge, LA. He graduated from Louisiana State University in 1993 and from the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill in 1998 with a law degree. He worked for both KPMG and Ernst & Young in the area of state and local taxes from 1998 until 2003, when he joined the Bredesen administration as Deputy Commissioner of Revenue. He became Commissioner of Revenue in 2006, and when Bredesen left office in 2011 joined with him and Matt Kisber in forming Silicon Ranch.