FIRST THOUGHT: Tomorrow is Another Day
Some of the best advice to follow when you need to make a big decision or are feeling unhappy about a situation is to just sleep on it. Knowing that tomorrow might be better is the kind of thing that keeps us going day after day.
That’s the cool thing about life, that in the course of 24 hours, the sun rises and sets, and we can decide how to spend the hours, minutes, seconds. How are you going to spend your time under the sun today?
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 90 Million
Now more than ever, businesses and homes are being powered by the sun. But the thing is we could be tapping into much, much more solar power. What was years ago a far-fetched and expensive idea has gotten so much more affordable. In fact, it’s cheaper than ever, with costs for solar power having decreased by 80 percent in the last 10 years.
However, some 90 million homes in America don’t have solar power because residents either rent, their roof is in the shade or companies simply aren’t willing to sell it to them. Today’s Woman to Watch is on a mission to change that and provide solar power to the masses.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Steph Speirs, Co-founder and CEO of Solstice
If you’re considering adding solar power to your home, you might want to check out Solstice. As co-founder and CEO, Steph Speirs is all about getting the word out about renewable energy. This innovating social entrepreneur has a handful of impressive achievements on her resume, including being selected as the Global Good Fund Fellow, an Echoing Green Climate Fellow and an Acumen Global Fellow for leading the way in social enterprise.
Those are indeed notable accomplishments, but how the heck does Steph help create more solar power? It starts with Solstice contacting community organizations, like churches, workplaces and schools, to find out whether they’re interested in hosting a community solar garden. What that means is that if your house can’t be affixed with solar panels or if you can’t afford them, you could subscribe to a neighborhood solar array. So, that school down the block could get solar panels and help the neighborhood create clean energy and lower electricity bills for everybody.
At the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit, Steph spoke about how her father was a failed entrepreneur, an outcome that resulted in her family relying on welfare and eventually, her mother raising Steph on her own. Given that experience, Steph never wanted to be an entrepreneur, but then she witnessed the devastation that bills, including electricity bills, can have on a family. It was a light-bulb moment for Steph, and she realized that being an entrepreneur isn’t necessarily about starting your own thing, but about discovering a need and finding a way to fill that gap in order to help people.
Steph began to really understand the major significance of solar power worldwide when she worked as a policy director for the National Security Council at the White House. She learned about citizens in Yemen who were facing fuel shortages and the difficulties in their everyday lives because of lack of fuel sources, and she discerned that, regardless of one’s economic status, we all have the right to power.
Since solar panels long proved to be only beneficial for homeowners who could afford them or those who had the “right” roofs, no one was creating a better solution for people like Steph and her family—until now. Thanks, Steph, for bringing the formidable power of the sun to the people!
QUITE THE QUOTE
Today’s sweet and simple quote comes from businessman Anthony J. D’Angelo:
“Wherever you go, no matter what the weather, always bring your own sunshine.”
This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us.