We Are Liberal Arts: Jeremy Kalin

We Are Liberal Arts: Jeremy Kalin


I’m Jeremy Kalin. I earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Studio
Arts with a ceramics emphasis from the College of Liberal Arts at
the University of Minnesota. I’m the CEO and founder of Eutectics. We’re a mission driven company that facilitates
financing for energy savings projects and renewable energy for underserved markets,
for buildings like this one at University Enterprise Laboratories, where we helped upgrade
all the lighting and replaced the rooftop air conditioning units to much higher performing units. We like to mobilize capital for the public
good to create economic development and sustainability at the same time. I’ve had evolving formal roles and job descriptions
over my adult career, but they’ve always been about solving problems and
particularly solving problems that have a public good component to them. The University of Minnesota College of Liberal
Arts education really prepared me in lots of ways. It gave me both very hard tools, but also
helped to continue to spur my curious mind and that ongoing inquiry about how to be of
service to the world and to really think creatively about what’s around the corner and how can
we mobilize my own resources but also the resources around me to solve those problems. After leaving the Midwest for a little bit
to go to architecture school I really realized that that juncture of craftsmanship and
the arts, culture, community, and policy was a real sweet spot for me. I’d always been interested in green building
and sustainability. When I came back home and ran for the Minnesota
house of representatives in Chisago County and took two tries and then won, nobody else
was really interested in taking on the hard work of energy efficiency and energy conservation. They were more interested in the more attractive
and cooler things like solar panels and windmills. I had this opportunity to do something really
important and good in a bipartisan fashion. The Next Generation Energy Act I helped author
as a legislature actually got more votes 95% of the legislature voted for the Next
Generation Energy Act–more votes than the Honeycrisp apple being
designated as the state apple. It was really about bringing people
together around a common problem and doing the technical work to figure it out. As a state legislator I saw opportunities
for all sorts of projects and financing platforms to move forward if somebody would just step
in and deal with all the nitty gritty things that can prevent a project from moving forward. When my wife and I decided to move back to
Minneapolis for her work and start our family, I started Eutectics as a mission-driven company
to continue doing the same work but really just focused on making clean energy mainstream
and unlocking private investments in solar and energy efficiency opportunities. My name is Jeremy Kalin,
and I am liberal arts.

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