Affordable Access to Equitable Solar for San Diego (and Beyond)

Tuesday September 12th

11:00 AM - 1:00 PM


The Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) and Disadvantaged Communities Single-Family Affordable Solar Housing (DAC-SASH) programs incentivize solar panel installation multi-family and single-family residences and provide green workforce development opportunities across California. The newer San Diego Solar Equity Program (SDSEP) is focused on providing access to solar for San Diego residential customers in Communities of Concern, as defined by the City of San Diego’s Climate Equity Index. Collectively, these programs have millions of dollars to provide financial incentives for residents that need it the most. Furthermore, the San Diego region has the potential to unlock the benefits of these programs while making strides in achieving decarbonization, equitable development, and clean energy goals.



Fabiola (Fabi) Lao is the Senior Equity Policy Manager at the Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE). She is CSE’s lead expert and advisor on climate equity principles and strategies in legislative and regulatory policies related to electric vehicles (EVs) and clean energy. Fabi partners and collaborates with various stakeholders, including elected officials, nonprofit and community-based organizations, and equity advocates. Prior to her current role, Fabi was CSE’s Senior Transportation Policy Manager, where she led the organization’s statewide policy efforts in California related to EV adoption and charging infrastructure. She has over 15 years of environmental justice and equity experience across a variety of issues, including community engagement, air quality and access to green spaces. Before joining CSE, Fabi was Deputy Policy Director at the Coalition for Clean Air, where she was responsible for the organization’s climate justice and equity work in the Los Angeles region. She was also the lead organizer for the Sierra Club where she led a campaign’s organizing and outreach efforts that were instrumental in the designation of the San Gabriel Mountains National Monument. Fabi earned a Master of Public Administration from the University of Southern California and a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies (Public Health concentration) and Spanish from UC Berkeley.


Margee McDonnell is currently a Program Manager at the Center for Sustainable Energy working on the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) Program. On SOMAH, Margee supports marketing, education and outreach efforts and application processing. The SOMAH Program provides financial incentives for installing solar panel systems that benefit both low-income tenants and property owners throughout California. Prior to SOMAH, she worked in marketing and outreach for the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP), a statewide rebate program for electric vehicles. She holds a Bachelor's Degree from Santa Clara University in Environmental Studies with a concentration in Sustainable Development.



Mai Fang is a dynamic outreach coordinator with extensive background in sustainable development and energy efficiency. As part of the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) Program Administration Team, Mai coordinates logistics for SOMAH educational events and workshops, data tracking and management. Mai leads the charge on stakeholder outreach, including engaging and building partnerships with local governments to share how the SOMAH program can benefit communities and help meet local climate goals. Mai has over 15+ years’ experience in business administration and more than 10 years in the sustainable and green construction field specializing in residential energy and water efficiency.  Her knowledge in building science and sustainable practices enable her to provide comprehensive outreach and education to homeowners and renters. Beyond involvement in the SOMAH program, Mai has also worked on energy efficiency and distributed generation programs such as the Home Energy Score Assessor Training Program, Homeowner Energy Efficiency and Solar Workshops, Home Energy and Water Tune-up and Home Energy Upgrade Community Workshops.


Monica de la Cruz supports the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing program as the Marketing, Education & Outreach Coordinator at GRID Alternatives. Prior to joining GRID, Monica conducted community-centered outreach for the SOMAH program in San Diego's environmental justice communities with the Environmental Health Coalition. Monica is native to San Diego County and holds a B.A. in Literature and Cultural Studies from University of California San Diego. 




Vallerie Gonzalez is a Program Manager for the Solar on Multifamily Affordable Housing (SOMAH) Program in the Distributed Energy Resources Division at the Center for Sustainable Energy (CSE). With a focus on equity and environmental justice, Vallerie is committed to ensuring the SOMAH Program delivers benefits to those most in need. Before SOMAH, Vallerie was an Equity Specialist focusing on equity transportation program outreach throughout California. Vallerie holds a Master of International Environmental Policy from the University of California San Diego and a B.A. in international business and economics from Richmond, the American University in London, England.


September 12, 2023 at 11:00am - 1pm

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