RAY Clean Energy Fellow/Climate Aligned Finance

POSITION TITLE: RAY Clean Energy Fellow/Climate Aligned Finance

DEPARTMENT/PROGRAM: Center for Climate-Aligned Finance

REPORTS TO: Whitney Mann, Senior Associate

STATUS: Regular, Full-Time

LOCATION: New York, N.Y.; Washington D.C.; Basalt or Boulder, CO


Inspired by efforts to increase racial diversity in conservation and clean energy, the Roger Arliner Young (RAY) Diversity Fellowship Program aims to increase and facilitate environmentally-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 conservation and clean energy sectors—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.


RMI 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 250 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.

Expectations about the role of private financial institutions in shaping a sustainable planet have evolved rapidly and have now converged on the notion of climate alignment. Climate alignment is the process of bringing the global economy’s greenhouse gas emissions in line with 1.5°C temperature targets. This means addressing emissions from the production and purchase of goods and services—what is often called the “real economy.” For private financial institutions, climate alignment means actively using levers of influence with the intent of helping move the real economy toward net-zero emissions.

While climate alignment is a powerful theory that could provide a definitive approach for the financial sector to drive long-term decarbonization, implementation poses daunting challenges. In July 2020, RMI launched the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance (the Center) to help the financial sector transition the global economy toward a zero-carbon, 1.5°C future. Through deep partnerships in finance, industry, government, and civil society, the Center works to develop decarbonization agreements for high-emitting sectors and supports financial institutions to decarbonize their loan books and investment portfolios. The Center’s work is fast paced but is balanced by a supportive and friendly team culture.


In order to achieve our goals, the Center utilizes a top-down and bottom-up approach. The Alignment Insights Team supports the firm-level and systems operating environment needed to execute alignment strategies. The Sectoral Decarbonization Team works to co-create a common framework for assessing and disclosing the climate alignment of sectoral lending portfolios.

The Center is looking for an individual to support a rotating set of projects across these two teams. The scope and timeline for each project will be determined on an ongoing basis depending on the Center’s evolving workstreams and capacity needs.

  • Projects with the Alignment Insights Team will support work engaging the financial sector to understand the barriers financial institutions face in implementing climate alignment goals, and offering solutions through open-source analysis, practical resources, and tailored advisory. In the day-to-day, this may include a wide range of activities, including stakeholder engagement, research, writing, PowerPoint development, and thought leadership for audiences ranging from financial regulators, global financial institutions, and actors across the investment chain.
  • Projects with the Sectoral Decarbonization Team will support work developing science-based, implementable, and comparable standards to assess and benchmark climate alignment for high- emitting sectors. In the day-to-day, this may include supporting the team in preparation for conversations/facilitation with stakeholders as well as conducting research and analysis related to industrial processes, sectoral decarbonization pathways, and carbon emissions accounting methodologies


  • Developing research and thought leadership products, including discussion papers, concept notes,
  • reports, blogs, and presentations
  • Leading and/or supporting stakeholder outreach and engagement at a range of institutions
  • (including private financial institutions, companies, and non-governmental organizations), including conducting interviews, managing partnerships, and supporting recruitment and participation of external stakeholders in the Center’s workstreams
  • Planning, designing, and facilitating workshops
  • Supporting the development of innovative approaches and strategies for achieving our core
  • objectives
  • Representing RMI and the Center for Climate-Aligned Finance at conferences and events
  • Preparing proposals, pitch decks, grant reports and other donor-facing materials
  • Developing and managing work plans
  • Leveraging knowledge and experience of the private financial sector and capital markets as
  • well as knowledge of the emerging field of climate alignment in all of the above
  • Providing quantitative analysis and modelling of industrial sector processes.
  • Locating and managing high quality data that sheds new light on problems and solutions.
  • Understanding and explaining implications of complex energy-system and climate modeling
  • used by financial institutions (e.g., the International Energy Agency’s Net Zero by 2050 Scenario).
  • Synthesizing recommendations into clear and compelling presentations and written reports.
  • Presenting qualitative and quantitative information in various formats for audiences with varied
  • levels of technical expertise.
  • Engaging with external experts (both technical and non-technical) via interviews, conferences, etc.


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) in their 2nd year 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 November 2022.
  • A 3-day Mid-Fellowship Leadership Retreat in September 2023.


Eligible RAY Fellow applicants will:

  • Come from a racial/ethnic background underrepresented in conservation and clean energy and
  • demonstrate a commitment to the values of diversity, equity, and inclusion.
  • Be no more than 1 year out of college and have a Bachelor's Degree by September 2022 (we are not
  • considering individuals with graduate degrees at this time).
  • Have not had a full-time job in conservation or clean energy.
  • Have the ability to work in the United States and commit to the entire fellowship.


  • A college degree by the time of employment, preferably with knowledge in a relevant field such as finance, industrial processes of one or more sectors (preferably metals and mining and/or oil and gas), economics, business, or public policy.
  • Keen interest in shaping the role of private financial institutions in proactively supporting decarbonization.
  • Willingness to plunge into unfamiliar disciplines and take risks by exploring and testing new ideas.


This is a two-year, full-time fellowship (one year with a one year renewal) starting on or after September 12, 2022.


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


The salary is $55,000/year with a 5% bonus target.


We offer a comprehensive benefits package adjusted to regional norms, including (for US employment):

  • Medical, dental, vision insurance
  • 403b retirement options (5% match immediately)
  • Life, AD&D, short-term and long-term disability
  • Professional and personal development (including LinkedIn Learning access)
  • Generous paid time off
  • Parental leave
  • Commuter and wellness benefits
  • Casual work environment


To apply for the RAY Fellowship Program, applicants must:

Complete the online application survey on the RAY Fellowship Program website:

  1. https://rayfellowship.org/apply
  2. Follow the instructions on the linked application webpage to submit a resume or curriculum vitae, one essay response, one visioning response, one short answer response, and a letter of support.

Applications must be submitted to the RAY Fellowship Program no later than June 26, 2022. Transcripts and additional writing samples are not required. If you have questions please see our FAQ page, attend an informational webinar or watch a recording, and any further questions about the application process can be submitted to the RAY Program Manager, Charlie Espedido, via email at charlie@elpnet.org.

RMI 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. RMI 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.

Increasing the diversity of thought, perspectives, ideas and opinions within RMI is a critical change element supporting our long-term sustainability and mission to build a clean, prosperous, and secure energy future.

We strive for a level of diversity that reflects the communities we serve. Achieving this—regardless of ability, race, ethnicity, ancestry, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, veteran status, socioeconomic class, educational attainment or other social identities—is critical to the success of each RMIer and collectively as an organization. This ensures that we:

  • Have the different array of thinking that comes from diverse backgrounds and cultures, enabling us to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.
  • Strive for a culture of inclusion and belonging by treating others with dignity, respect and appreciation enabling them to feel welcomed, supported and valued.
  • Effectively connect, communicate and build long-lasting relationships with decision makers, stakeholders and constituents within diverse communities.