Alumni Profile

Solar United Neighbors: Building a new energy system with rooftop solar at the cornerstone.

Building a new energy system with rooftop solar at the cornerstone.

Solar United Neighbors began in 2007 when Anya Schoolman’s son Walter and his friend Diego saw “An Inconvenient Truth.” They decided they wanted to install solar panels on their homes. When Anya looked into going solar, though, she discovered it was complicated and expensive.

But Walter and Diego would not be talked out of it. Anya wondered if some sort of bulk purchase might make solar affordable. So Diego and Walter knocked on doors throughout their neighborhood. In just two weeks, they signed up 50 neighbors who also wanted to go solar.

That first group, the Mt. Pleasant Solar Cooperative, helped 45 neighbors go solar. They also passed legislation to improve local solar policies, fought for their rights as energy producers, and shared their success with friends and neighbors. Soon after, other neighbors from across the region started organizing solar co-ops and fighting for better solar policies together.

Solar United Neighbors grew out of this movement. Since 2007, they’ve expanded across the country, doing on-the-ground projects and helping communities everywhere take control of their energy.

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Anya Schoolman

Executive Director & Founder
Solar United Neighbors

Heaven Campbell

Program Director
Solar United Neighbors

Laura Tellez

Florida Program Associate
Solar United Neighbors

Rooftop and community solar can be the driving force of a completely transformed energy system — one that’s based on energy democracy, where everybody gets to participate, and it’s local, fair, and affordable. 30 Million Solar Homes can get us there.

Anya Schoolman

Executive Director and Founder
Solar United Neighbors

Alumni News

March 12, 2024

Nearly 600 Dallas area residents registered for the 2023 Solar Switch Dallas program and received a personal recommendation. Residents who accepted their offer saved on average $6,030 on a rooftop solar installation.

February 2, 2023

On Feb. 1, Plano Solar Advocates partnered with area nonprofit Solar United Neighbors to launch the 2024 Plano Solar Co-Op, a free program that seeks to educate members about solar energy.

January 19, 2024

As the state Public Service Commission considers a Mon Power/Potomac Edison proposal to lower the credits for home solar customers, Solar United Neighbors has released results of a survey that shows the popularity of solar power – including home solar.

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