Leadership Team

Phil VanHorne, President & CEO

Phil VanHorne serves as the Chairman and CEO of BlueRock Energy, a privately held energy solutions company based in Syracuse, New York, that provides electricity, natural gas and renewable energy products to small and medium-sized businesses across New York State. Phil founded BlueRock Energy in 2003 and under his leadership the company has solidified its position as a leading provider of energy solutions built around specific business needs.

His 35 years of energy experience includes executive leadership, energy trading and marketing, contract negotiation and administration, wholesale back office operations, interconnection, power system planning and systems development.

Prior to establishing BlueRock Energy, Phil was President and COO for Niagara Mohawk Energy Marketing, Inc., where he oversaw all aspects of operations for unregulated retail and wholesale natural gas and electricity. Early in his career, Phil worked for General Electric, where he was involved with utilities nationwide on a range of planning and strategic issues.

He is a founding member, past Chairman, Executive Committee and Board of Directors member of the National Energy Marketers Association and is a member of IEEE. He holds a BSEE and MSEE from Clarkson University.

Jim Cifaratta, Senior Vice President of Operations

Jim Cifaratta serves as Senior Vice President of Operations for BlueRock Energy, overseeing the commercial and customer facing functions for the Company. Jim brings more than 30 years’ experience and talent to BlueRock Energy in all aspects of the natural gas and power industries, including upstream, midstream, downstream, power generation, transmission and retail tariffs. Jim has spent his entire career in the energy industry.

Before joining BlueRock Energy in 2016, Jim was Vice President for Shell Energy North America for nearly fifteen years, managing various business lines associated with structured energy transactions, including gas and power business development and gas origination for North America. Earlier in his career, Jim worked for Niagara Mohawk and its affiliates, holding several positions relating to origination, power contracts, wholesale operations, retail tariffs, wholesale transmission tariffs and ISO implementation.

Jim’s role at BlueRock Energy is exigent and his expertise in the energy industry fosters BlueRock Energy’s mission in colossal growth.

Jim holds a B.S.E.E from Clarkson University.

Jason Klaben, Vice President and CFO

Jason Klaben serves as the Vice President and CFO of BlueRock Energy.He brings more than 20 years of experience in finance, accounting, audit, treasury and reporting roles for utilities and independent power producers.

At BlueRock, Jason oversees all corporate finance and accounting functions, positioning the company for continued growth and helping it expand the lines of businesses into new areas, including energy services. He is also responsible for optimizing the financing structure and banking relationships for BlueRock.

Jason joined BlueRock Energy in 2013. Previously, he was the CFO for several companies in the energy industry, including Upstate New York Power Producers and AES Eastern Energy, where he managed contract negotiations, monthly and capital reporting, budgeting and internal controls. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from LeMoyne College and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Binghamton University.

Tammy Graham, Vice President & Controller

30 + years of experience in financial operations/management and cost accounting

Joined BlueRock Energy in 2008 and continues to be instrumental in developing comprehensive controls, enhancing the accuracy of financial results and providing management with financial and operating metrics

Responsible for the day to day operations of the Accounting Department as well as to ensure useful integration of data systems between the Accounting, Operations and Sales Departments

Jason Starzyk, Director of Sales

Jason Starzyk serves as the Director of Sales Operations for BlueRock Energy. Jason is responsible for recruiting, consultant training, sales strategy development, product implementation, channel partners, and chamber/affinity partnerships.

After starting with BlueRock Energy in 2008, Jason quickly built a strong customer base in the Western New York area by establishing over 700 clients and 1,300 accounts.

In 2010, Jason was promoted to Western New York State Sales Manager overseeing 7 consultants in the Watertown, Utica, Syracuse, Ithaca, Binghamton, Elmira, Rochester, and Buffalo markets. Jason was responsible for recruiting, coaching, training, team performance reviews, and motivating the sales team to consistently produce at high levels to increase BlueRock Energy’s market share.

Working with several charitable organizations across New York State, Jason is active with the American Diabetes Association Tour de Cure, Golisano Children’s Hospital, and Food Bank of Central New York.

Jason holds a B.B.A. in Business Management from Bryant and Stratton College in Rochester, New York.

Wendy Hijos, Director of Marketing

Wendy Hijos serves as the Director of Marketing for BlueRock Energy, Wendy is responsible for customer service, customer communications, customer retention, sales and product communications, marketing and social media

Wendy joined BlueRock Energy in April 2009 as an account manager and was promoted to the Eastern New York Sales Manager in September 2010. Since joining BlueRock Energy, Wendy’s customer base has increased to more than 250 accounts, servicing both business and residential customers.

Jim Nichols, Director of Wholesale Operations

Jim serves as Director of Wholesale Operations at BlueRock Energy, responsible for the day-to-day management of the physical commodity purchasing and wholesale sales structure of the Company for both Electric and Natural Gas. He is also instrumental in establishing new and stronger relationships with counterparties, utilities, pipelines, RTO’s and strategic partners. Jim brings more than 13 years of energy-related experience in the deregulated energy markets across the Northeast sector of the United States. Jim joined BlueRock Energy in July 2005 as Manager of Wholesale Power Operations, where he led efforts including analysis, forecasting, purchasing, pricing, budget development and market expansion.

Prior to joining BlueRock Energy, Jim served as the Pricing and Planning Analyst at Select Energy New York, Inc. (formerly Niagara Mohawk Energy Marketing, Inc.), assisting the Manager of Market Planning and Analysis with strategic planning and analysis. He was responsible for market planning, including product development, market evaluation, sales planning and reporting, pricing, tariff analysis, regulatory affairs, EDI and back office system development.

Jim holds a Master of Business Administration degree from LeMoyne College. He also received a B.S. in Marketing from Oswego State University, Oswego, New York and an A.A.S. Computer Information Systems from Onondaga Community College, Syracuse, New York.

Jon Collins, Gas Supply Manager

Jon is responsible for leading the Enterprise risk management function at BlueRock Energy which includes market, liquidity, volumetric, credit and operational risk components. Bringing more than 10 years of experience in the deregulated energy markets in New York, Jon interacts with marketing, scheduling, structuring personnel, derivative accounting, and commodity accounting at BlueRock Energy to meet all corporate accounting requirements, and manage risk.

Prior to his current position, Jon was the Gas Operations Manager for BlueRock Energy, responsible for leading the department’s efforts related to gas supply including purchasing, pricing, nominating and other needed activities.

Before joining BlueRock Energy, Jon worked as an analyst for Select Energy NY, and was responsible for electric and natural gas utility tariff analysis in support of company sales efforts. Additionally, he was responsible for the company’s Request for proposal responses for various electricity and natural gas bids to supply electricity and natural gas to government agencies, specifically the General Services Administration and New York Office of General Services. Jon also participated in various rate cases and retail regulatory proceedings for all of the major utilities in New York State.

Jon holds a B.A. in English from SUNY Oswego and an M.B.A. from the University of Buffalo.

Tammy Maule, Customer Administration Director

With more than 25 years of experience within the energy industry, Tammy serves as the Customer Administration Director at BlueRock Energy, coordinating and monitoring office operations to ensure company requirements are performed and sufficiently met on a daily basis. Tammy resolves operational problems related to customer service, accounting procedures and computer systems and oversees special projects. Additionally, Tammy is responsible for handling all corporate compliance with utilities and state Public Service Commissions.

Tammy joined BlueRock Energy in 2003 working directly with BlueRock Energy’s President and CEO Phil Van Horne at New York Energy, Inc., where she played an important role in the company’s development as a competitive ESCO throughout New York State. In addition, Tammy worked for Niagara Mohawk Power Corp., now known as National Grid, in an administrative role for the company.

Tammy holds an Associate Degree in Business from Onondaga Community College in Syracuse, New York.

Joe Ablan, Manager - Customer Experience Team

Joe is responsible for managing Customer Experience. The primary focus of CE is to ensure all BlueRock customers have the best possible experience when interacting with the company. Another part of Joe’s role is to help guide his team in various ways to maximize client retention, assist the sales, solar and marketing departments and work on special projects. He is also responsible for executing a common goal approach between his team and the rest of the organization.

Joining Blue Rock in 2014, Joe brings a diverse skillset in management, operations, account management, client services, sales and marketing. He also has a multi-faceted background in insurance and medical management.

In an effort to give back to the community, Joe volunteers for a number of local charitable organizations in and around the Syracuse area.

Joe holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration.

Sean Delmonico, Director of Operations – BlueRock Energy Services

Sean Delmonico is the Director of Operations for BlueRock Energy Services. Sean joined BlueRock in June 2014 and is responsible for leading the planning and implementation of prescribed solutions, operational logistics, product sourcing, supplier relationships and financial analysis.

Prior to joining BlueRock, Sean held positons in both the financial services and engineering consulting industries. Most recently, Sean was an Assistant Vice President and Chief of Staff for the derivative operations division at Citi Global Markets in New York. Sean possesses a solid track record for solving complex business problems using creative solutions, and leading teams through change. He aligns the business processes and technical infrastructure to maximize cost savings, and accelerate performance to provide competitive advantages for the organization.

Sean holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from Lehigh University.

Michael Francis - General Manager, BlueRock Solar

Michael Francis is the General Manager for BlueRock Solar. Michael joined BlueRock in January 2016 and is responsible for the business development and management of BlueRock Solar, a subsidiary of BlueRock Energy. He is responsible for the creation and implementation of the BlueRock Solar business plan and leadership into the growing solar energy market.

Michael brings 20 years of financial and accounting experience in the real estate/ construction industries as well as in public accounting on both the tax and audit side of the practice. Prior to joining BlueRock, Michael was the Director of Acquisitions for a real estate company. Michael’s previous experience also includes being Chief Financial Officer for a real estate development company in Syracuse, NY and Corporate Controller for a construction company in Atlanta, GA.

Michael holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Ithaca College. He also is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in New York and Georgia.

Ethan Cowen, Director of Risk Management

Ethan is responsible for overseeing all of the company’s risk including commodity markets, operational risk and insurances. Ethan brings more than 10 years of experience in energy and derivative markets.

Prior to joining BlueRock, Ethan was a Portfolio Manager for a proprietary trading firm in Chicago. He has also served as a Portfolio Strategist where he oversaw and grew a power business in PJM, NYISO, ERCOT and MISO. His international experience includes working as an Energy Consultant on projects that include; clean technologies, renewables, demand response, risk management, hedging strategies and regulatory issues. Ethan has consulted for companies from Japan, Spain, Africa, Ireland and South America. He started his career as an Emissions and Renewable Energy Credits Analyst focusing on European and North American markets.

Ethan graduated with a B.S. in Finance from Syracuse University.

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