Dec. 8, 2021
Cedar Rapids – Bright Future Iowa is a grassroots organization formed in 2021. The group is dedicated to increasing Iowa’s role as a leader in renewable energy. Bright Future Iowa is bringing people together to advance clean energy solutions, create jobs, grow the economy, and help provide for a cleaner environment. Today, Iowans are already benefiting from reliable, affordable, clean renewable energy, and we lead the nation in wind power and ethanol production. As solar energy generation grows in Iowa, the economic and environmental benefits of renewable energy can be shared by greater numbers of Iowans. Bright Future Iowa will help more Iowans understand the benefits these projects provide to our state, our communities and our farmers.
Swati Dandekar, Bright Future Iowa Chairperson, has assembled six leading Iowans to support and advise the organization as they seek to educate and advocate for renewable energy in Iowa. “I’ve dedicated my life to service and helping the people of Iowa. From my early days as a school board member to my time as a Linn County area State Senator, I’ve always believed in the importance of a diverse, affordable, and clean energy system that supports Iowans”, Dandekar said.
“And today, with the proposed solar projects, we have the chance to provide millions of dollars in new revenue to our community, provide new jobs and the opportunity to grow our economy with new employers, and give our farmers a new income source not dependent on the weather or federal trade policies. Iowa has led on wind, and we can continue to power the clean energy transition with solar farms.”
Larry Murphy is a former State senator and Mayor of Oelwein, IA.
“I understand the value of new revenue for our communities and state. While mayor, I worked to expand energy options, and I believe solar energy is a critical piece of that dynamic. The success and sustained growth of our rural communities depend on new economic development opportunities that include sustainable energy sources like solar, among others.”
Ron Corbett is the former Mayor of Cedar Rapids, former Speaker of the Iowa House of Representatives. He is the current Vice President of Economic Development at the Cedar Rapids Economic Alliance.
“I know that access to renewable energy, primarily wind and solar energy, is increasingly a key part of a company’s decision-making process on where to locate new factories and offices. To compete for 21st-century jobs, Linn County needs solar energy.”
Bret Nilles is the Linn County Democratic Party Chairperson and a retired finance manager from Rockwell Collins Aerospace.
“Our communities need to move forward, and we can lead the fight against climate change with solar energy being a huge step in the right direction. Sustainable solar farms will not only help to provide clean energy, but they will also help bring 21st-century jobs for our community.”
Linda Langston is a former Linn County Supervisor and the former President of the National Association of Counties.
“As someone who spent time working with and advocating for county government nationally, I believe solar energy and solar farms are part of the future for rural counties and will contribute to their sustained growth and success across the nation.”
Gary Grant is the former District Director for Congressman Jim Leach and a statewide leader for many bipartisan causes that benefit all Iowans.
“I’ve devoted my career helping to find common ground on a variety of important issues. It is clear that finding solutions for our ever-increasing demand for energy is one of our most pressing challenges. Solar energy is a vital part of those discussions and is the next great opportunity for our state.”