Featured Solar Homeowners: Don and Grace Mayer

electric motorcycleDon Mayer has been the CEO and Top Dog at Small Dog Electronics since he founded it in 1995. Don’s been involved in the start-up of five different companies in fields as varied as computer software and wind energy, and has been a respected Vermont business leader through it all.  He’s served as Chair of Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility, and continues to serve as a member of the Boards of Vermont Health Care For All and Common Cause Vermont, a government transparency advocacy group.  The guy keeps himself busy.  Don and his wife, Grace, live on Prickly Mountain in Warren.

Why are you interested in solar?

I have a life-long interest in renewable energy.   We had a small wind turbine here in the 70’s with the first in Vermont net-metering.   Photovoltaics had always been out of reach for us financially.  The opportunity from SunCommon gave us the opportunity to install solar electric generating capacity right on my southern facing roof.   We are reducing our carbon footprint and taking advantage of clean and renewable energy.

Your business added solar a few years ago.  What kept you from going solar on your home until now?

It was a matter of financing in both cases.   When I discovered that it was financially feasible for my business, I was encouraged to seek a solution for my home as well.

Why did you pick SunCommon?

I picked SunCommon because of the strong recommendation of my VP of IT, Rebecca Kraemer, who was SunCommon’s first customer.   It didn’t hurt that I knew some of the people involved in the company.  And I knew it was a local company, which also appealed to me.

What advice would you give to future solar homeowners?

Well the first bit of advice, if you are just building, is to give yourself plenty of southern facing roof!  If you are concerned about global warming and about the depletion of our natural carbon resources, adding solar electric to your home, not only is financially feasible right now, but it is the right thing to do.  SunCommon makes it easy, too, with soup to nuts design, installation and support.   It is always an added benefit that a solar electric system will increase the value of your home, too!

What are you most excited about?

I am excited about finally, after 35 years, being able to use my southern facing roof to take advantage of the free and clean power from the sun!  I knew that orientation would come in handy :)

What’s your favorite thing to power with your new solar?

That has to be my experimental electric motorcycle with sidecar!   Come see the solar powered motorcycle in the Warren 4th of July parade this summer!


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