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Tennessee Solar Institute Receives 2011 Solar Champion Award

November 16, 2011

KNOXVILLE – The Tennessee Solar Institute is the 2011 recipient of the Solar Champion Award sponsored by the Tennessee Solar Energy Industries Association (TenneSEIA). TenneSEIA will present the award to representatives from the institute during a reception this evening in Nashville.
 
The Tennessee Solar Institute (TSI) is part of the Volunteer State Solar Initiative, a comprehensive solar energy and economic development program focusing on job creation, education, renewable power production and technology commercialization.
 
TSI has awarded 230 grants worth more than $23.5 million to Tennessee businesses since September 2010.  Collectively, the grants co-funded approximately 6.5 megawatts of new, clean generating capacity while providing Tennessee solar businesses with worker training, technical and manufacturing assistance and energy savings. These initiatives combined to assist 161 businesses and ultimately strengthen the solar industry across the Volunteer State.
 
“TSI funding resulted in my business making manufacturing improvements, increasing employment, increasing energy efficiency in my operations and relocating jobs from overseas back to East Tennessee,” said Tony Trigiani of Diversified Power International in Piney Flats. “I could not have done this without TSI’s assistance.”
 
“TSI is honored to receive this award,” said John Sanseverino, director of programs for TSI. “The staff has worked extremely hard with the solar community over the past 18 months, and it is rewarding to be recognized for our efforts.”
 
TSI is a center of excellence between the University of Tennessee and Oak Ridge National Laboratory housed at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville. Its mission is to advance the understanding of solar innovation and to inspire new ideas that speed the development and implementation of solar-based technology in Tennessee.
 
TenneSEIA is the state chapter for the national Solar Energy Industries Association and represents the interest of the solar energy industry in Tennessee. Founded in 2010, TenneSEIA strives to make solar energy a mainstream energy source and realize the full potential of the solar industry in Tennessee.

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Contacts:
 
Gina Stafford, (865) 974-0741, stafford@tennessee.edu
 
Elizabeth Davis, (865) 974-5179, elizabeth.davis@tennessee.edu