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Simple Thread and Dominion Energy Innovation Center Celebrate Innovators at Energy Tech 2024


Simple Thread and Dominion Energy Innovation Center Celebrate Innovators at Energy Tech 2024

Richmond, VA – [May 1, 2024] – Simple Thread, a leader in digital product innovation for the energy sector, together with the Dominion Energy Innovation Center (DEIC), an entrepreneurial hub for clean energy innovators, are thrilled to announce the winners of the inaugural Energy Tech Virginia Awards. The awards ceremony, a highlight of the recently concluded Energy Tech 2024 conference, recognized exceptional contributions to Virginia’s energy transition.

Adam Sledd, Executive Director at the DEIC, shared “Virginia has a wealth of clean energy innovators, startups, and supporters, and the conference brought them together for the first time. The awards recognize those individuals and organizations doing the important, and hard, work to help the Commonwealth get to a net-zero carbon economy, and we’re encouraged by progress happening right now.” 

The Energy Tech Virginia Awards spotlighted innovators across three categories: startups, enterprises, and institutions, each playing a crucial role in advancing sustainable energy solutions across the state.

  • Institutional Award: Marco Rubin, Virginia Innovation Partnership Corporation
    Marco Rubin was honored for his instrumental role in funding energy startups through Virginia Venture Partners. Known for his commitment to the growth of the local energy sector, Marco has been pivotal in supporting numerous startups, making a significant impact on Virginia’s energy innovation landscape.
  • Startup Award: Ann Xu and ElectroTempo
    Ann Xu and her company, ElectroTempo, received the startup award for their groundbreaking work in transportation electrification. With a significant expansion in 2023 and a major fundraise, ElectroTempo is making notable strides in addressing the challenges of fleet electrification and EV infrastructure demands.
  • Enterprise Award: James Homan, Dominion Energy
    James Homan of Dominion Energy was recognized for his exceptional work within the company’s Electric Transmission department. His efforts in integrating IT and energy systems have not only enhanced operational efficiencies but also fostered a culture of innovation and excellence.

Both Simple Thread and the DEIC are committed to supporting the growth and development of sustainable energy technologies. Through events like Energy Tech 2024 and initiatives such as the Energy Tech Virginia Awards, both organizations aim to highlight and celebrate the achievements that contribute to a sustainable energy future.

“Recognizing these leaders and innovators is not only a celebration of their current achievements. It is a call to action, a vision of what is possible. They inspire us, and we hope they’ll inspire others to continue pushing progress in our industry,” said Al Tenhundfeld, Chief Technical Officer at Simple Thread. “With their generous, thoughtful leadership, I am so excited to see how we can shape the future of energy in Virginia and beyond.”

The Energy Tech Virginia Awards will continue to be a cornerstone of our annual conference, aiming to foster an environment of innovation and collaboration that benefits the entire community. We look forward to seeing the innovative solutions and dynamic leaders that will emerge in next year’s nominations.

About Simple Thread

At Simple Thread, we’re change agents that speak energy. We understand the unique challenges that modern electric utilities face and believe that meeting those challenges will require a thoughtful digital transformation driven by human-centered design. We are a digital product agency that puts people at the forefront of everything we do, providing cutting-edge solutions to the complex needs of the industry.

About Dominion Energy Innovation Center

The Dominion Energy Innovation Center is a hub for entrepreneurial growth and innovation in Ashland, Virginia. DEIC supports the development of new energy technologies and startups, providing resources and connections to help innovators turn their visions into reality. Founded in November 2009, the Dominion Energy Innovation Center accelerates great ideas across a wide spectrum of industry sectors in addition to its focus on building the clean technology sector in Central Virginia. Founding partners include the signature sponsor, Dominion Energy, as well as Activation Capital, the Town of Ashland and Hanover County. Learn more at

Media Contact:
Tracy Simpson
Director of Operations