RAY Clean Energy Diversity Fellow: Carbon-Free Electricity Program

POSITION TITLE: RAY Clean Energy Diversity Fellow           

DEPARTMENT/PROGRAM: Carbon-Free Electricity Program                               

REPORTS TO: Mark Dyson, Principal      

STATUS: Regular, Full-Time                             

LOCATION: Boulder, CO; New York City; Oakland, CA                    


Inspired by efforts to increase racial diversity in Clean Energy, the Roger Arliner Young (RAY) Clean Energy Diversity Fellowship Program aims to increase and facilitate Clean Energy-related career pathways for emerging leaders of color. The RAY Fellowship Program is a paid fellowship designed to equip recent college graduates with the tools, experiences, support, and community they need to become leaders in the Clean Energy sector—one that, in our visions of the future, fully represents, includes, and is led by the diverse communities, perspectives, and experiences of the United States.


Rocky Mountain Institute transforms global energy use to create a clean, prosperous, and secure low-carbon future. That is our mission. That is our passion. And every day, every member of our team of nearly 280 works relentlessly to achieve it. We are driving the global energy transition from fossil fuels to efficiency and renewables by working in partnership with businesses, communities, institutions, and entrepreneurs to advance market-based solutions. We achieve this by developing breakthrough ideas, testing and refining them, reshaping markets, and bringing solutions to scale. RMI is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with an annual budget of $70 million and offices in Basalt and Boulder, Colorado; New York City; Oakland, California; Washington, D.C.; and Beijing, China.    

The successful candidate will support RMI’s Carbon-Free Electricity (CFE) Program. The CFE program is focused on reducing carbon emissions from global electricity systems by >80% by 2030 in order to enable economy-wide decarbonization consistent with limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels. The CFE program pursues independent research and partnerships with policymakers, utilities, advocacy organizations, businesses, and other stakeholders to realize innovations in carbon-free electricity that can contribute to this overarching goal. 


RMI is seeking RAY Clean Energy Diversity Fellow candidates for our CFE Program, with a focus on our work in the United States but potentially expanding to other geographies including sub-Saharan Africa, China, India, and Southeast Asia. The Fellow will be a creative problem solver who uses their research, quantitative, and technical abilities to conduct compelling analyses around vital energy issues. They will collaborate with team members to craft visionary yet practical solutions for our research questions and for our clients. 

We look for aptitude at solving challenging problems, thinking in numbers, and working in groups. We expect self-motivation, curiosity, creativity, the ability to drive oneself and others toward meaningful results, and a passion for making the world better. The Fellow will be an independent contributor who works closely with a core group of colleagues on specific projects under the direction of senior staff, as well as across the broader CFE team. 


The Fellow will support projects that ultimately seek to bring carbon-free electricity resources to scale within the geographies we work in. This will include working with and across government, utility, finance, and private sector actors, and leading workstreams to provide research, policy and techno-economic analysis, and communication of findings. Specific responsibilities will include: 

  • Provide core research on projects. 
  • Locate and manage high-quality data that allow us to shed new light on problems and solutions. 
  • Create creative problem-solving approaches to drive project insight. 
  • Develop hypotheses to guide work and propose new ways to analyze problems. 
  • Synthesize recommendations into clear and compelling presentations and written reports. 
  • Present quantitative information in a clear, visual format. 
  • Engage with external experts via phone interviews, conferences, and on occasion responding to outreach requests. 
  • Support analysis and research on a small team across a variety of workstreams, including producing market intelligence, exploring energy business models, and recommending energy policies and strategies to achieve energy access and economic growth. 
  • Travel up to 20% to project sites including domestic and international, depending on the project. 


In addition to the responsibilities at the host institution outlined above, RAY Fellows will spend, on average, 2-4 hours per week (5-10% of work time) on the following:

  • Actively communicating and building community with their RAY Fellow cohort and previous RAY Fellows.
  • Attending monthly check-ins calls (including 1-on-1 check-ins with RAY program staff and group calls with their RAY Fellow cohort).
  • Meeting regularly with mentors both inside and outside the host institution.
  • Attending monthly professional development webinars, trainings, and other opportunities to build knowledge and skills.
  • Developing a Personal Leadership Plan (PLP) with the support of supervisor(s), mentors, RAY program staff, and their RAY Fellow cohort. The PLP will serve as a tool for self-reflection, planning, and assessing progress towards professional, personal, and leadership goals.
  • Preparing and leading an hour-long end-of-fellowship webinar highlighting their Fellowship experience.

RAY Fellows will also attend:

  • A 3-day Orientation Retreat in August 2021.
  • A 3-day Leadership Retreat in February 2022.
  • At least one other in-person training or workshop with their RAY Fellow cohort.

*Due to COVID-19 concerns, all retreats will be held virtually until further notice.


Eligible RAY Fellow applicants will:

  • Come from a racial/ethnic background underrepresented in Clean Energy and demonstrate a commitment to the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Be less than 1 year out of college and have a Bachelor's Degree by July 2021 (we are not considering individuals with graduate degrees at this time).
  • Have not had a full-time job in Clean Energy.
  • Have the ability to work in the United States and commit to the entire fellowship.


  • An undergraduate college degree by the time of employment, with preference given to degrees and study in the following fields: engineering (mechanical, electrical, civil, energy), business (marketing, finance, international), computer science, mathematics, architecture, physical and social sciences.
  • An interest in the field of Clean Energy.
  • Effective written and verbal communication skills.
  • Experience with designing, building, and maintaining models (e.g., Excel, MatLab). 
  • Understanding of basic financial analysis and metrics (e.g., NPV, cash flows). 
  • Ability to stick with a problem until a solution is found, but knowledge of when to ask for help. 
  • Ability to be self-motivated and work independently. 
  • Ability to listen actively, be diplomatic, and share knowledge and information clearly. 
  • Willingness to plunge into unfamiliar disciplines, and to take risks by exploring and testing new ideas. 
  • A passion for making the world better.


This is a two-year, full-time fellowship (one year with a one year renewal) starting on or after July 15, 2021.


The Fellowship is compensated and sponsored by Rocky Mountain Institute, who offers a competitive benefits package as well as training and professional development opportunities.

We offer a comprehensive benefits package including: 

  • Medical, Dental, Vision Insurance 
  • 403b Retirement 
  • Life, AD&D, Short-Term and Long-Term Disability 
  • Parental Leave 
  • Commuter and Wellness Benefits 
  • Casual Work Environment 


To apply for the RAY Fellowship Program, applicants must:

  1. Complete the online application survey on the RAY Fellowship Program website: https://rayfellowship.org/apply.
  2. Follow the instructions on the linked application webpage to submit a curriculum vitae or a resume, one essay, one visioning piece, short answer responses, and a letter of support.

Applications must be submitted to the RAY Fellowship Program no later than March 26, 2021. Transcripts and additional writing samples are not required. Questions about the application process can be submitted to the RAY Program Manager, Charlie Espedido, via email at charlie@elpnet.org.

Rocky Mountain Institute is an equal opportunity employer and will not discriminate against any employee or applicant on the basis of race, color, national or ethnic origin, religion, age, sex, handicap, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity, or veteran status. Rocky Mountain Institute is continually seeking to diversify its staff, particularly to broaden opportunities for individuals from demographic groups that are historically underrepresented in the sciences and in environmental advocacy.