Isaiah wants to build something piece by piece and bring a vision into reality, just like he did with the Lego set he loved as a kid. And that’s exactly what he still does in his job as a Project Development Analyst at Trajectory Energy Partners, an Illinois-based community solar project developer.
Isaiah is responsible for preparing each solar project site for construction. He coordinates with landowners and contractors to perform the necessary steps before a solar project can be built, such as geotechnical investigations and wetland surveys. This is important to identify any unknown risks or challenges that may be involved with the projects as they move through the development process. He likes to think of himself as the “conductor of the orchestra” as he manages all the moving parts of this multifaceted job.
Before joining the Trajectory Energy Partners team full-time, Isaiah worked at a local construction company in his hometown of Freeport, IL. The company had decided to go into commercial solar a couple years prior to him starting the job. Starting as an assistant project manager, he managed on-site construction and assisted with the day-to-day operations for projects. He moved up at the company taking on a hybrid project development/pre-construction role, started handling procurement, and then eventually managed projects from procurement to project estimating and engineering coordination. At the time he joined Trajectory, he could have pursued a job anywhere in construction. But he wanted to remain in the solar industry because of the rapid growth of new and exciting technology and it betters the lives of the people who are transitioning to clean energy.
Most of Isaiah’s training happened on the job, but when COVID hit his employers used the slow period to offer training in general construction safety and Isaiah was able to receive a NABCEP Certification in PV inspection. He credits the different building trades which have been helpful in educating him on the ins and outs of solar project construction.
Isaiah does a lot of his work out of his home in Freeport, IL and he also travels to project sites as needed. Outside of his specific duties as a Project Development Analyst, Isaiah supports Trajectory Energy’s project development by advocating for community-driven projects at open houses and zoning board hearings. In this part of his job, he’s had the opportunity to talk to former coal communities and local school boards about the benefits of clean energy.