Home Electric Vehicle Meet CleanTechnica’s First Outdoors Investor

Meet CleanTechnica’s First Outdoors Investor

Meet CleanTechnica’s First Outdoors Investor


Women and gents, permit me to introduce you to a different local weather warrior and common CleanTechnica reader, Rob Simon. Rob is an entrepreneur, changemaker, frustratingly mediocre ex-golfer (his phrases), father of two, EV driver, involved local weather citizen, and general good dude who showers in warmth pump heated water that’s powered by photo voltaic panels.

He additionally occurs to be chargeable for the truth that CleanTechnica even exists — nicely earlier than he grew to become our first investor two weeks in the past, and it’s why I needed him to be our first investor. Extra on that in a minute.

Rob, with Cynthia, Zach’s mother.

Rob and I am going method again. Because it goes, males are inclined to not make as many new associates as girls do as we age, which has positives and negatives. One of many positives is that we have a tendency to remain in contact extra with associates from vital intervals of our life. Rob was my finest good friend from an vital period of life — highschool — and we’ve stayed in contact our complete grownup lives.

Rob invested $15,000 two weeks in the past and formally grew to become CleanTechnica‘s first outdoors investor. However his connection to the corporate (that he now owns a bit of) is way deeper than that. It requires a bit of backstory. At age 17, I took a bodily examination as a part of a highschool requirement for enjoying varsity sports activities. The routine examination returned a non-routine consequence: my ldl cholesterol was nicely into the mid 300s. The physician recommended strongly that I get on a every day cholesterol-reducing tablet, one thing I must take for the remainder of my life to handle the cloggage in my arteries. My mother and father have been terrific, however they have been additionally fairly “regular” for that time period, and to them, this suggestion from a physician was merely the most effective we may do and never one thing we actually wanted to suppose extra about.

However there was one thing that didn’t fairly sit proper with me about being 17 years previous and having to get on a tablet that I’d need to take every day for the remainder of my life to handle my ldl cholesterol. In all of the pharmaceutical commercials of the day, ldl cholesterol medication all the time gave the impression to be for folks with quite a lot of grey hair. So it simply didn’t really feel proper. Fortunately, I had one good friend in highschool who I assumed may need one other concept for me, and that was Rob. Rob was all the time the child who introduced his lunch whereas the remainder of us wolfed down a number of slices of microwaved cheese pizza and washed it down with a few cartons of chocolate milk. After which after I went to his home and tried to discover a snack, I … couldn’t. I might open the fridge on the Simon home and wouldn’t acknowledge a factor. There have been no luggage of chips, no cans of Coke, no cookies. … There have been no … model names, actually. Not less than none that I acknowledged. There have been, nonetheless, numerous baggies and glass containers with vibrantly coloured issues in them. Leaves. Roots. Stems. Fruits. Mushrooms.

See, Rob’s household ate a macrobiotic food regimen. It’s not vegan, however not removed from it. They ate seaweeds. They ate numerous greens. They cooked in forged iron and nothing of their home had teflon. Most of the issues of their fridge and cabinets had the phrases “Organically grown” and “Honest Commerce” on them. They saved issues in glass containers, not plastic. They usually had issues soaking on the counter … little sprouts rising generally, and different instances, grains or legumes/beans tripling in measurement in a number of hours earlier than being transferred to a cooking implement and cooked.

This was within the Nineteen Eighties. These folks have been wayyyyy forward of their time. And fortunately, Rob knew sufficient to hearken to my scenario, and recommend to me, “Certain, Scott, you would take a tablet on daily basis for the remainder of your life … or you would simply eat some f**king oatmeal.”

That second began my sustainability journey.

Rob and his superb household took me in for a week-long keep at their home, the place they taught me tips on how to reside higher. They taught me about tips on how to purchase substances in bulk on the well being meals retailer. They taught me how to consider my meals prematurely in order that they’d come out delicious whereas additionally being filled with wholesome substances. They taught me to take a breath earlier than simply beginning to chow down. They taught me to chew my meals and the significance of digestion. They took me for walks after dinner as an alternative of simply transferring straight to cake or ice cream.

I felt it instantly. Even at 17, once you’re form of indestructible, you may inform a distinction in the way you digest and the way you are feeling once you eat higher and eat with intention. And the Simons imparted quite a lot of information of how our meals is grown, and the way damaged the meals system was (and nonetheless largely is) that feeds us a bunch of processed and refined stuff, and subsidizes extremely unhealthy issues to maintain it in order that we will purchase a quick meals burger for 99¢. They gave me a number of books, together with Eating regimen for a Small Planet and Eating regimen for a New America, which I voraciously learn.

I went again to my residence and proceeded to declare to my nervous mother and father that I used to be going to eat this manner. Fearful I might shrivel as much as nothing, my extremely loving and well-intentioned Italian mom tried to speak me out of it, suggesting I simply preserve a bit of meat, cheese and, particularly, milk, in my food regimen on daily basis to remain wholesome. However I used to be 17, I knew all the pieces, and I used to be having none of it. On the finish of her rope, my mother did one thing that was most likely probably the most ‘not like her’ factor she’d ever performed. She reduce me off. She advised me that I must begin not solely making all my very own meals, but additionally doing my very own purchasing, paying for my very own groceries, and cleansing my very own dishes. I’ve by no means been one to again down from a problem, so I mentioned OK, and proceeded to change into kind of a vegan macrobiotic highschool senior in a reasonably rural a part of southwest Virginia. The youngsters after all couldn’t get sufficient jokes in, the cafeteria employees snickered, the lecturers simply shrugged … however I soldiered on.

And fortunately, I didn’t shrivel as much as nothing. If I had tried to do it alone with out the Simon household’s help, who is aware of what would have occurred? As a substitute, I flourished. I lettered in a number of sports activities as a highschool senior, making second workforce all convention in soccer on the outdoors linebacker place, and simply making the wrestling workforce with out even attempting to drop pounds. After a number of months of maintaining a healthy diet, I had change into lean and muscular, and filled with gas that athletes these days are beginning to acknowledge offers a definite benefit. And by the tip of my senior 12 months, I gave my first environmental discuss, with a few of the extra curious lecturers getting me an opportunity to do a presentation in entrance of your complete faculty concerning the a number of issues related to our agricultural system in addition to the unbelievable advantages of consuming higher and extra eco-friendly.

Rob modified my life. I might really strongly argue that Rob and his superior mother and father, Murray and Leslie, saved my life. Who is aware of what would have occurred had I continued with bleached white pasta, meatballs, and all the pieces lined in cheese — and washing it down with all of the bovine development hormone–laden milk I may deal with. However greater than that, the Simons gave me a goal in life. It’s a present that I’ve tried to repay my complete life by giving again, main by instance, and educating others.

On my LinkedIn profile (be happy to attach, by the best way), you’ll see me listed as CleanTechnica‘s founder, former CEO, and present COO, however I didn’t really begin CleanTechnica. Not less than, not the web site. I really acquired the web site that you simply’re studying proper now. At the moment, it had about 100,000 readers a month (these days, due to Zach, Derek, Jo, Danielle, and the unbelievable workforce of journalists we now have, it’s nicely into the 4–5 million vary). The earlier proprietor simply didn’t see a path ahead. He burned out, and needed to do one thing else, so he had deliberate to fireplace everybody (together with Zach, are you able to think about?) and simply let Google search preserve sending visitors to the location’s older articles whereas the location ultimately wound down into oblivion. It will have continued to drive some income simply from the Google adverts on the location, and the earlier proprietor had deliberate to make use of that cash to bridge him into his subsequent startup. I seemed on the income projections, received on the cellphone with Zach to ask him about his plans, and determined to purchase the man out, giving him the cash up entrance and persevering with to make use of Zach and another nice writers to develop the location.

None of this might have occurred if I didn’t have a goal. And Rob, bless his frikkin coronary heart, gave me that goal. That goal saved CleanTechnica, which has, since then, revealed greater than 60,000 articles and educated greater than 161 million totally different folks about local weather options, lots of whom cite CleanTechnica as the explanation they purchased EVs, photo voltaic….

I like you Robbie! Have a look at the distinction you’ve made. Louis and Zoey Paloma will reside in a greater world due to you.

CleanTechnica is elevating a spherical of funding to ramp up our manufacturing and attain a billion folks. Need to make investments and change into an proprietor of CleanTechnica? We’re taking funding now, with a minimal of $10K. Enroll right here, and I’ll be in contact.


I do not like paywalls. You do not like paywalls. Who likes paywalls? Right here at CleanTechnica, we carried out a restricted paywall for some time, however it all the time felt mistaken — and it was all the time powerful to determine what we must always put behind there. In concept, your most unique and finest content material goes behind a paywall. However then fewer folks learn it! We simply don’t love paywalls, and so we have determined to ditch ours.

Sadly, the media enterprise continues to be a tricky, cut-throat enterprise with tiny margins. It is a endless Olympic problem to remain above water and even maybe — gasp — develop. So …



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