Dave has over 27 years experience in environmental sciences and sustainable design – most notably in renewable energy systems design. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Biology from Fort Lewis College. Dave served as the National Action Coordinator for Greenpeace for 9 years and was instrumental in the development and execution of their Direct Action campaign strategy. He has served on the Board of Directors of the North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association and currently serves on the Advisory Board of Appalachian State University’s Appropriate Technology Program. Since 1995 Dave, along with his wife, Sierra, have been building Sundance Power into one of the most trusted renewable energy service companies in the southeastern United States. He is a renowned speaker at regional conferences and has been a prime mover in raising energy consciousness among policy makers and the general public.
Vice President & Co-editor of Newsletter
Sierra comes to renewable energy work by way of environmental advocacy and work for sustainability. Sierra studied Environmental Ethics at University of Maryland, College Park. From there, she went on to work at Greenpeace, where she met Dave. Dave and Sierra found that they shared a desire to offer viable solutions to the problems that humanity was creating as a result of lifestyle. The concept of Sundance was born. Sierra has worked with numerous environmental organizations over the years, addressing issues of sustainability as well as the ethics of human/ environment interaction. In addition to co-founding Sundance, Sierra also helped to create The Red Wolf Coalition, a nonprofit agency.
Sierra is fortunate to be living the life she dreamed. She is the mother of three wonderful children who fill her heart each day. In addition to working at Sundance, Sierra also teaches yoga at Warren Wilson College and Asheville Yoga Center. While daily time on her yoga mat is essential, Sierra also believes very strongly in the yoga of action on behalf of the health of our Earth and feels there is no greater calling. Addressing the energy consumption relationship, one house, one business at a time, is profound and powerful work and Sierra hopes that you will choose to work with her and Sundance, taking the necessary steps towards carbon neutrality together.
Tina joined Sundance in 2012. Originally from Ossining, NY, she lives in Raleigh and commutes periodically to Asheville, her former home, to connect face-to-face with the Sundance team and enjoy the mountains. While living in Asheville, Tina kept books for several downtown businesses. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting from NC State and is also a Certified Public Notary. A mother of three, Tina’s free time is focused on being with family. She enjoys traveling and experiencing new places.
Commercial Project Developer
Since 2007 Ray Quate has been an active partner with Sundance Power Systems, focusing on the design and installation of utility-scale power generating stations for the public and private sectors. Project developer, architectural designer, licensed general contractor, and commercial property owner, Ray Quate has a wide range of construction project experience ranging from Mixed-Use and Live/Work environments to medical facilities and historical restorations. Ray provides guidance, consultation and management for Energy Star, Healthy Built and LEED certified construction projects. He holds degrees from the United Electronics Institute and Laboratories in Kentucky and NC State’s Renewable Energy and Green Building Diploma Series.
Director of Business Development
With 20 years of experience in the solar industry, Matt joined the Sundance management team in 2014. Hailing from Athens, OH, Matt installed his first solar PV system with Dovetail Solar & Wind in 1996. He trained at the Great Lakes Renewable Energy Association in 1999 and Solar Energy International in 2000. In 2003, he became a NABCEP Certified PV Installer with the inaugural exam. Matt went on to install hundreds of solar systems of all types and sizes. He raised his two children, now young adults, in Athens, before moving to NC in 2014. Matt enjoys hiking, paddling, playing Ultimate, and working on his homestead in Madison County.
After gaining invaluable experience working on submarines as an Electronics Technician for the US Navy and being employed by Kemet Electronics, Steve joined Sundance in 2005. Also equipped with an Associate degree in Electronic Engineering, his background enables him to get to the root of any problem and bring a system back into service, often with increased efficiency and performance. Steve and his wife have two young boys and spend their time gardening and playing games.
Allen originally joined Sundance in 2000. Then after nearly a decade of experience elsewhere with solar energy and radiant floor heating systems, he returned in 2013 to join our Service team. His trainings include CPR, OSHA, forklift, and aerial boom lift operator certifications. Originally from Oak Ridge, Tennessee, Allen calls Asheville home and enjoys its live music scene.
Shop & Supply Manager
Brian joined the Sundance crew in 2011 as a Field Technician. As his last name implies, Brian grew up around solar. Prior to joining the family business, he worked on the snow-making crew at a ski resort and as a rafting guide. In his current position as the Shop & Supply Manager, he continues to respond to the demands the position entails, earning a Forklift Certification, organizing the building and its supplies, and streamlining processes to make things more efficient. Brian attended Appalachian State University and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Appropriate Technology. Born in Alexandria, VA, he moved to North Carolina in 2004. Brian’s hobbies include rafting, DJ-ing, enjoying music, creating mad scientist devices, hiking, general shenanigans, and sound engineering.
Prior to joining Sundance, Chris spent 22 years working with nongame and endangered species conservation and leading the Wildlife Diversity Program with the NC Wildlife Resources Commission. He holds a Bachelor degree in Biology and a Master’s degree in Environmental management. Chris pursued a career change to renewable energy as he realized that energy choices are significantly impacting the future of wildlife. In 2012, he enrolled in the Sustainability Technology Program at AB Tech and was just shy of earning his degree when the opportunity arose to join our installation team. Chris lives in Leicester with his wife and two children and enjoys sharing the outdoors with them- hunting, fishing, hiking, canoeing, and camping as much as possible.
Will joined Sundance in 2015 with the vital role of ensuring smooth operations for shipping, receiving, and inventory management. Will’s background includes 22 years of service in the U.S. Coast Guard, training and certification in Search and Rescue, time as a Coxswain, Emergency Medical Technician, Maritime Law Enforcement Officer, Pollution Investigator, Federal On-Scene Coordinator Representative, Hazardous Material Technician, and Marine Inspector. He has also worked in logistics and warehouse management for Shoreline Flooring Supplies, FLS Energy, and Rexel, Inc.
Will’s hobbies include hiking, cycling, and helping friends when and wherever he can. He hiked a section of the Appalachian Trail and looks forward to more hikes in the future. Will is originally from Middleburg, FL. He currently lives in “Weaver- Vegas” and proudly enjoys spending time with his son.
Blake has been Sundance’s resident plumber since 2010, bringing with him 30 years of plumbing experience and a NC Class One Plumbing License. Originally from Connecticut, Blake, wife Donna and two children, Josh and Emma, call Swannanoa home. With a B.A. in English, Blake lists reading as one of his favorite hobbies. He also enjoys music, specifically bass guitar.
Ben is native to North Carolina, born in Raleigh, to a family of 5. His parents, Tom and Edlene, fostered his love of snowboarding, camping, spending time in the woods, and all things outdoors. Ben has an older brother, Zack, who now lives in New Jersey and an older sister, Shelley, who lives in Georgia. Ben is also a newlywed, married to Erin, for just a little more than a year. They live in Swannanoa and have a dog and a cat.
Ben graduated from NC State with a degree in Environmental Technology and Management and he followed this up with a Masters in Technology with concentrations in Building Science and Appropriate Technology.
Inspired to work in the renewable energy field by his fascination with nature, Ben feels that this work gives him an opportunity to play a role in making the planet a healthier place, as well as finding the work meaningful.
Field Administrative Assistant
Originally from Greensboro, NC, Connor graduated from Appalachian State University with a Bachelor degree in Sustainable Development. Since graduating, he spent a year working with the National Park and Forest Services doing a wide range of conservation work. From invasive species control, habitat restoration, and trail construction, he has done it all. Connor also has experience with organic agriculture and spent a season on a farm in Henderson County learning the ins, outs, and importance of sustainably sourced food production. He joined the Sundance team in late 2018 and has since taken over Permitting and Interconnection duties. Connor enjoys hiking, camping, reading, live music, and watching sports; especially the Mountaineers, Panthers, and Red Sox. He lives in East Asheville with his girlfriend and their cat.
Sarah acquired an Associate of applied Sciences in Human Services Technology with a focus on Substance Abuse Studies. While attending Western Carolina University in pursuit of her Bachelor of Social Work she landed a job working closely with special needs adults. Sarah decided to pursue a career in the solar industry to help educate people on renewable energy, sustainability, and climate change. Sarah and her husband hail from Wilmington, NC where they frequently visit but call the mountains home! Sarah and Matthew have two feisty dogs and a three-foot 700-gram beautiful ball python. They both enjoy seeing live music, traveling everywhere they can, and doing anything outdoors to further their connection with nature.
Eric has a checkered past but we took a chance on him because we knew he was something special. He was non verbal at first, but we earned his trust with donuts and Well Bread breakfast burritos. Once he got comfortable, he was truly a sight to behold. It’s as if he harnessed the awesome power of the sun with a set of channel locks and Lexel sealant. If you look into his eyes long enough, you will see the spark of solar that burns eternal. He is a crack shot service technician and if your system needs maintenance he’ll have her tuned up in no time. He also likes long walks on the beach.
Renewable Energy Consultant
Colin Sheehan has been fantastic addition to our family. He brings a wealth of experience: From project management, to construction, to sales, to technical renewable energy knowledge. He has lived in Asheville for over 18 years.
Colin is a world traveler and has even summited Everest Base Camp! He is a passionate explorer who’s been to over 25 countries. He is also an avid pickleball player and you might see him on the pickleball courts nearby. People always enjoy talking with him about travel.
Colin has a beautiful 5 year-old daughter and is talking about a short trip to Machu Picchu.
Tara received her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Accounting from California State University Fullerton (CSUF). After graduating, she traveled cross country in her car from California to Vermont to take a job for a national clothing brand as their staff accountant.
Since then, Tara has worked in several industries, including the solar industry, non-profit organizations, business consultants, and opened small business in food trucking with her husband. She joined the Sundance team in early 2019 as our Accounting Manager. During her free time, she enjoys strolling farmer markets with her husband and on the weekends, trying new recipes, gardening, dancing, and hopefully in the future she can get back to playing bocce often like she and her husband did when they still lived in Vermont.
Field Operations Manager
Jessica comes from a love of science and the natural world; after receiving a bachelor’s of science in astrophysics, she sought to work on the more earthly need, as she came to manage an aquaponics farm developed to be the take-off point for installing similar systems in impoverished and educational areas – teaching people how to feed themselves and their families with limited resources. From here she became an electrician, and subsequently a project manager for a national general contractor. With this experience, and through her love of the western North Carolina mountains, she found her way to Sundance, where she aims to further the progress of renewable power systems at large with the conscious mission of Sundance, and to grow deeper roots in a place she has been drawn to since childhood.