Verde Energy Program

  • Verde Energy
  • Verde Energy Advisors

Chris Cross | Energy Program Manager

Chris CrossChris Cross grew up in Massachusetts where he received a BS in Architecture from MIT, and was a licensed general contractor for over 20 years. In the 1980s, he started Sun Energy Inc, a solar energy business that grew to 26 employees and installed over 700 solar heat, hot water and pool heating systems, 40 solar additions and 2 solar homes.

Chris moved to Portland in 1997, and has worked as the development manager for Housing Our Families (a non-profit Community Development Corporation) as well as managed The Rebuilding Centers, Deconstruction Services for 4 years. He also worked for Paragon Tile as an estimator / project manager where he managed the Rose Garden, The Armory, Waterfront Pearl, The John Ross and numerous other tile projects. Chris especially enjoys the mild winters here in Portland, gardening and being able to play golf all year round.


Leslie Simpson | Energy Project Coordinator

Lelsie SimpsonLeslie Simpson was born and raised in California, and relocated to Portland, OR in 2010. She brings 25 years’ experience in the trades as a tile contractor and previous owner of her own tile company. Leslie came to Verde as a graduate of Oregon Tradeswomen and enjoys working in the green energy field. In her spare time, she is an avid gardener and photographer.





Lee Shumaker | Energy Crew Superintendent

Leslie SchumakerHarold Lee Shumaker has worked in weatherization and home performance since 1996. Prior, Lee served in the US Military from 1989-1994, and also built roller coasters from 1995-1996 (including Oaks Park in SE Portland). During his weatherization career, Lee has worked on over 2000 homes in Portland Metro area.





Jess Ryan Bradshaw | Energy Crew Member

Jess Ryan BradshawJess is new to Portland, by way of Houston Texas, and has a BS in psychology with a minor in studio art. Jess had needed a break from academia, and wanted to do manual work. After graduating from Oregon Tradeswomen pre-apprenticeship program, Jess was connected with a job opportunity with Verde through the Tradeswomen. New to all things green, Jess believes in the green energy craft and is proud of the work. Jess is a visual artist, but loves to dance.




Richard Hampton | Energy Crew Member

Rich HamptonRich wn as born in Portland, Oregon and raised on a farm in Oregon City. He started working for Verde in July 2011, after previous work as a logger/lumber mill worker and aexcavator. When Rich is not working, he loves to read, play golf, ride his bike around town, and watch his kids grow - not in that order.





Marysia Walcerz | Energy Crew Member

Marysia WalcerzMarysia was born in Austin, Texas, and worked at Environs previous to coming to work for Verde. Marysia (Mish) sought employment with Verde because she was enthusiastic about the mission to provide weatherization service to low-income families and promote energy efficiency. She has a younger brother who lives with her parents in Pennsylvania. In her free time, she trains weight lifting and acrobatics. Her goals for the future are to continue learning all she can about building science and develop her skills as a technician.




Hugo Martinez | Energy Crew Member

HMartinez web photoHugo Martinez is from Veracruz Mexico and has been living in Oregon for the past 10 years.  He enjoys working for Verde because it fills him with pride knowing he is doing something to help the environment.


Connie Ashbrook | Oregon Tradeswomen Inc.

Connie-AshbrookConnie Ashbrook is the Executive Director of Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc., an organization dedicated to promoting the success of women in the trades through education, leadership and mentorship. As the first female journeyman elevator mechanic in Oregon, Connie learned firsthand the challenges women face to get into the trades. Through her work at Oregon Tradeswomen, Connie educates women and girls about the trades and engages with apprenticeship programs and contractors to ensure that women are given equal opportunities. Her strong commitment to equity combined with her insight into training, networking, and placement makes her an asset to Verde's Energy Advisors.



Rey España | Native American Youth and Family Center

Rey-EspanaRey España is the Director of Community Development of the Native American Youth and Family Center. He brings over 30 years of experience in all phases of community building, with a specific focus in community economic development, to Verde's Energy Advisors. He has been widely recognized for his successful community organizing skills and advocacy for social justice in communities that have not historically had access to quality education and services, economic opportunity, or self-determination. Rey also sits on the Portland Housing Advisory Committee and is an acting community representative for the Clean Energy Works Portland – Stakeholder Evaluation and Implementation Committee.




David Harmon | Board Liaison

Dave-HarmonDavid Harmon is a commercial capital consultant with a 23-year background in commercial banking, investment banking, and operations. He started his career at Wells Fargo Bank in 1988, and most recently worked for US Bank's Portland middle market commercial group. In the interim, he was an investment analyst with a Hong Kong investment bank, and chief operating officer of a Portland-based plastics manufacturing firm. He also spent 4 years at Shorebank Pacific, a unique bank with a mission to invest with the intent to create economic equity and a healthy environment. David serves as the Board's point person for financial management, and is the Board liaison to the Verde Energy Advisors.




Ben Nelson | Laborers International Union of North America

Ben-NelsonBen Nelson is an organizer for the Northwest Region Organizing Coalition for Laborers International Union of North America. As a student at Willamette University, Ben's passion for social justice drove him to become affiliated with labor organizers in Salem. Since then he has worked as a labor organizer throughout the West. One of his current projects is to ensure the support of workers in the growing field of weatherization and retrofitting and to build trade standards in the field. As a Verde Energy advisor, Ben provides valuable insight into union agreements, union benefits, and building up weatherization as a union trade.



Lisa Serrano

Lisa-SerranoLisa has worked in the building trades in Portland for the last ten years. As an activist in her community and her union, she is interested in seeing more people of color and working-class women have access and success in the trades. With a passion for community organizing and racial and economic justice, Lisa is excited to be a part of Verde Energy's unique community-based approach to workforce development in the green economy.





Eron Riddle | Native American Youth and Family Center

Eron Riddle webEron grew up on the Flathead Reservation in rural Montana, moving to the Portland Metro area during his senior year of high school.  He has a very diverse background with multiple years in business management and development in the retail job market.  Eron’s primary focus at NAYA Family Center is to provide clients with the tools to be more marketable and successful in the job market by exploring occupational retaining opportunities via various workforce development programs throughout the Portland Metro area.