About Solar United Neighbors of Maryland

From Appalachia to the shore, Marylanders are leading the transition to solar. Maryland has some of the best solar laws in the country and we’re not stopping until everyone has solar.

Our vision

We envision a clean, equitable energy system that directs control and benefits back to local communities, with solar on every roof and money in every pocket.

Our mission

We’re a community of people building a new energy system and rooftop solar is the cornerstone. We help people go solar, join together, and fight for their energy rights.

Our partners

We work with amazing partners to spread the solar word. Our partner organizations range from nonprofits to municipal governments, universities to community organizations, and individual “super volunteers” to houses of worship.

Some of our awesome partners in Maryland over the last few years have included:

Maryland advisory board

The Solar United Neighbors of Maryland Advisory Board helps guide our work. It provides strategic guidance and a valuable voice influencing the direction of the organization. Over time, Solar United Neighbors of Maryland expects to expand the board to include other community and co-op voices from across the state.


Kimberly Armstrong
Kimberly serves as vice president of the American Association of Blacks in Energy-Baltimore Chapter, and is an active board member for the Environmental Justice Partnership. She studied construction supervision and business management at Baltimore City Community College and has earned several industry certifications in sustainability management/planning and energy efficiency.


Joyce Breiner

Joyce is co-founder and Executive Director of Poolesville Green, a non-profit, educating the community about sustainable living. Her successes include: 1) the Poolesville Solar Array, 2) the largest Electric Vehicle show on the East Coast, 3) the Montgomery County GreenFest EV showcase, and 4) numerous other energy/environment events. She is a Climate Reality trained speaker on Climate Change and member of Poolesville MD’s Sustainability Committee. Joyce is a graduate of the Leadership Montgomery program and is also retired from a 29 year career as a FAA Air Traffic Controller. Joyce collaborated to ensure Poolesville residents had awareness of MD Sun’s Montgomery County Co-Op and is honored to join the Advisory Board. In ‘walking the talk’, her home is solar electricity net-positive since 2012 producing more electricity than needed by the household and the family’s Electric Vehicles.
Nancy Franklin


Because Nancy grew up with a father who was passionate about alternative energy, she developed an early appreciation of its value. She helped research, plan, and build rudimentary solar, methane, and wind experiments as a child. Decades later, she was the first in her community to put solar on the roof following extensive research to learn about current technologies. That positive experience led to her working on the Bowie Solar Co-op Selection Committee. As an active advocate for renewable energy sources with a focus on solar, she enjoys sharing her enthusiasm, knowledge, and insight with others.
Jacob Howley Jacob and his family have lived in Mount Rainier since the summer of 2007. They harness the power of the sun in their garden, as well as through their rooftop PV installation which generates all their household electricity. Jacob works on regulatory, legislative, and policy matters as an attorney for the U.S. Postal Service.
Alex Podlesny Alex Podlesny is an active supporter of clean and sustainable energy, from electric cars and solar panels at home, to the off-grid solar power-center at his apple orchard in eastern Maryland that waters trees and charges electric powered farm equipment. He has spent more than 20 years in computer science and engineering. Alex worked actively with the Rockville Solar Co-op Selection Committee, sharing his knowledge with others. Alex grew up in Ukraine and moved to the United States in the 1990’s.
Jonathan Smith Jonathan is a long-time Rockville resident, husband, and father of two. He works in technology portfolio management in the financial services industry. He made the solar leap with the Rockville Solar Co-op. He actively educates and recruits friends and neighbors to join the local solar co-op. He also helps them generate financial models to demonstrate solar financial metrics such as payback period and return on investment.
 Sean Williamson Sean is a faculty specialist at the Environmental Finance Center at the University of Maryland. He focuses on policy and business models that enable community-scale energy production and carbon mitigation. Sean is thrilled to be on the Solar United Neighbors of Maryland advisory board where he hopes to serve as a student and ambassador for best practices in community-scale clean energy. Sean is a native of the Finger Lakes region in upstate New York, but happily calls Maryland home.

Contact the Maryland team