Donnel Baird is the founder of BlocPower, a clean tech startup based in New York City. BlocPower develops portfolios of clean energy retrofit opportunities in underserved communities and connects those opportunities to investors seeking social, environmental, and financial returns. BlocPower creates jobs for qualified local low-income workers, energy savings for community institutions, reduces carbon emissions, and provides returns to investors. In 2021, the company announced a historic partnership with Ithaca, New York to decarbonize all of the city’s buildings—the first such project in the United States.
BlocPower is backed by Kapor Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, Eric and Wendy Schmidt, the American Family Institute for social and environmental impact, and Salesforce. Baird is a graduate of Duke University and Columbia Business School, where he was a recipient of the Board of Overseers Fellowship and a recipient of investment from the Lang Fund for Entrepreneurial Initiatives. He spent four years as a political and community organizer, and more than two years managing a national initiative to leverage American Reinvestment and
Recovery Act energy efficiency investments in underserved communities. He sits on various boards including the New York Federal Reserve Bank Advisory Board. Baird lives in New Jersey with his wife and son.