Co-Owner After working as a soil scientist for several years, Stephan decided to pursue a career as an electrician and a plumber in the solar industry, in which he has now been working for over twelve years. He enjoys living simply, has lived off the grid, and now lives with PV and solar hot water systems. Stephan is a NABCEP certified solar hot water installer and a NABCEP certified PV installer.
Co-Owner Mark, a New York import, jumped into installing solar power because it seemed like a promising industry. Having moved to Tucson in the 1970’s, he practiced habitat restoration in the Sonoran Desert before joining the TFS team. With a grown daughter and son close by, Mark composts daily and lives with PV and passive water harvesting. He is NABCEP certified in Photovoltaics (PV).
Co-Owner Rob moved here in 2008 and has come to admire and enjoy the wonders and people of this desert ecosystem. He finally understands why his father, a one-time Arizonan, saved bathwater to flush the toilet, even in Pennsylvania. Now Rob implements as many water saving, reusing, and harvesting techniques as he can, lives with PV and thermal hot water systems, and relishes the desert flowers and blooming cacti. He enjoys bicycling, trail running, digging basins, playing soccer and installing solar. He is NABCEP certified in Photovoltaics (PV).
Co-Owner With a background in construction, Jesse came to TFS because he feels that the solar industry has a future and because working at the company like TFS just makes you feel good. Jesse got his degree from the University of Arizona in Regional Development and lives in Tucson with his dog, Cheyenne, a short haired pointer. Apart from installing solar panels, Jesse is an avid rock climber, biking enthusiast, and a NABCEP certified PV installer.
At a young age, Mike learned about the connection between people and the land they inhabit. He has a deep respect for the fragile balance required for sustainability and is thrilled to be working with a company that supports his belief in a sustainable future and to be doing work that respects and protects the environment. He spends most of his leisure time with his wife and their son, Thackery, camping, hiking and making music.
Willie has always believed in the sustainability ideal. Having lived off-grid for four years with his wife, Willie joined TFS and is happy working with the great people here. When not installing solar panels, he works on making his home more sustainable by gardening and adding more water harvesting and solar to his home. In order to maintain a sustainable lifestyle, he lives with solar hot water, photovoltaic panels, chickens, practices permaculture and shops local.
Born and raised in Tucson, Dave learned at a young age how important it was to conserve our desert’s precious resources. He brings several years of solar experience and endeavors to live more sustainably himself while helping the community do so as well, and ultimately contributing to our environment’s well being. When not working, you can find Dave disc golfing, checking out live music, listening to his extensive record collection, and traveling our amazing planet.
Jenner came to TFS with a strong construction background, as well as experience working on blueberry and raspberry farms in Washington. Originally from Utah, he loves to hike, fish, and play cards. At his home Jenner reuses almost everything, utilizes a greywater system, and has turned off his natural gas connection to better support the environment.
Co-Owner Travis comes to TFS from a background in construction and environmental restoration. He was raised in a passive solar/ wood heated home in New York and has lived off the grid in Maine and under feet of snow tucked up against the Teton Mountains in Wyoming. He moved to Tucson with his partner Amanda in 2012 and they spend their free time hiking, camping, and exploring Southern Arizona and beyond.
Travis has worked in the solar industry in Tucson for over ten years and enjoys helping people achieve energy independence. When not at work he loves spending time with his wife and young sons, and making furniture and sculpture out of metal and reclaimed materials. Over the years he has outfitted his home with PV, a passive solar outdoor shower, grey-water and rainwater collection systems which benefit his garden and chicken coop.
Duane is a transplant from Chicago, where he installed solar and got his NABCEP PV certification. He enjoys a friendly game of Ultimate Frisbee and encouraging solar through initiatives like revolving loans and community solar. His background includes house repair, piano tuning, nonviolent action and human rights defense. With partner Carol, he hopes to install PV and harvest water at their new home.
Ben is a native Tucsonan. With a diverse background in areas as varied as art history, commercial baking, and webcoding, Ben brings his varied skills to the TFS field team. He lives with two cats and a dog, enjoys astrology, art movies, fine dark chocolate, and is forever searching for the elusive perfect espresso. At home, Ben gardens and creates his own rich compost with colorful scraps from undisclosed locations around Tucson.
Chet is one of the native Tucsonans at TFS. With a background in land surveying, sustainable fisheries, and sustainable energy outreach and education programs, he brings his diverse skills to the field of solar energy. Chet is on a continuous quest to cut his personal energy use. The historic downtown Tucson home he shares with his two children has been the focus of these efforts, and is retrofitted with rainwater harvesting and vegetable gardens.
Patrick's academic background in atmospheric science, and natural aversion to cubicle jobs, ultimately lead him to the solar industry. With the firm belief that climate change is the largest existential threat facing humanity, he feels empowered, as a solar installer, to be making a positive difference towards a sustainable energy future. In his off-time, he enjoys exploring the otherworldly beauty of the desert southwest with his camera.
Kegon was born and raised in the backwoods of Arkansas, before moving to the midwest where he developed a deep love and connection with nature, along with an interest in technology. Majoring in the electrical trades he developed a solid understanding of electricity. After years of harsh winters in the midwest a bee-line west didn't seem like such a bad idea. He has found his place in Tucson among other Technicians who support Sustainability, he is proud to say the solar industry is a perfect fertilizer for a balanced path between both love of nature and an ongoing growth and interest in technology.
Jimmy comes to TFS with a broad skill set. He has been a theatrical props master, custom furniture maker and a neon sign Installer as well as a professional musician. At home, he and his wife Katy, with the help of their children, maintain a garden, compost, keep chickens and grow fruit trees. They have a TFS solar hot water system and solar electric system. They also utilize grey water systems and harvest rainwater. Some evenings you may run into Jimmy around town singing and playing accordion with his lively gypsy band.
Hailing from New York, Frank brings his experience in conservation, as well as a B.A. in Sustainable Forestry to his work in renewable energy. He moved southwest with his girlfriend, Juli, and has found gratitude for the diverse desert creatures and plants in his new home. Frank approaches individual sustainability with two guiding intentions: simple living and ethical consumerism. In addition to reusing and recycling, he incorporates his fondness of biking and gardening into his daily life. Frank is an active outdoorsman, a dog person, and loves all things involving saltwater, but still appreciates and frequents the watering holes of the desert.
David Walker Late baby boomer David Walker grew up in suburban Los Angeles, the youngest of nine. Talk about sustainability! He and his family of four are loving communal life in the shadow of Sentinal Peak, gaining nourishment from neighbors and friends and of course our sun and our mother Earth.
Jon grew up in the Midwest and was a carpenter when epiphany struck in 1998. Vowing never again to build urban sprawl on fertile farmland, he headed southwest, landed in Tucson and quickly became a desert rat. A lifelong environmentalist, he also worked as a park naturalist, HAZMAT responder, activist & wildlife biologist. Jon & his family were TFS customers before he become an employee. TFS is a great place to combine his construction skills and ethics. In addition to Sunpower PV, they enjoy their solar oven, gray water, clothesline and bicycles.
With a varied background in home restoration, horse ranch caretaker, and certified motorcycle mechanics, Dave brings a broad set of skills to his work in solar energy. Growing up in the northwestern US, he developed an appreciation of the outdoors through snowboarding. Since moving to Tucson, he's transferred that to hikes in the desert exploring old sites. When not hiking or working on solar, you might find him hanging with his dog or eating some good pad thai.
Erick was born in the Sonoran Desert of Mexico, where he spent several years working as an adventure tour guide. After experiencing the potential for negative impacts of people on natural places he decided to start working in sustainability. With his family he founded two education centers based on permaculture practices, community building and outreach. One is on a remote island in Panama and another in Southern Mexico. Now, back in Tucson he is happy to make contributions with renewable energy systems and finds joy in experimenting with different ways to save water and harvest rain.
Latimer grew up in Tonalea, in Northern Arizona. After working in the drywall and low-voltage electric trades, he trained as a farrier, shoeing horses in southern Arizona for the last few years. He brings his strong work ethic and diverse skill set to his work in solar at TFS. In his free time, Latimer spends time with his wife and daughter, as well as caring for their three horses.
Derek was born and raised in rural Kansas. As the son of an auto mechanic, he grew fond of taking things apart, fixing them, and/or making something completely new. This led him to study mechanical engineering at Wichita State and go on to work designing and refining machinery in the agricultural field for 6 years. After that, he spent three wonderfully fulfilling years volunteering at a rural non-profit bilingual school in Honduras as a middle school math teacher and administrator. Derek is excited to be living in the border region, working on his Spanish with neighbors, mountain biking and exploring when possible and installing solar with TFS!
Zak grew up in the Southeast and relocated to Tucson in the summer of 2016. Over the past few years, he’s worked as a landscaper, farm hand, and university philosophy instructor. In his spare time, Zak enjoys reading, contemplating how to grow vegetables in the desert, and spending time with his noble hound dog, Jonsi.