Holiday Greetings from the Mendocino Solar Service team!
pictured (clockwise starting on the left) are Jim Shipp, Shop Assistant;
Wally Hawker, Solar Installer; Andreas Dahm, Lead Solar Installer; John
Huxsol, Office Manager; Jezreela Anderson, Marketing Coordinator; Bruce
Erickson & Maggie Watson, Co-Owners. not pictured: Julia Vazquez,
Bruce Erickson, Co-Owner and General Manager of Mendocino Solar ServiceBruce’s interest in solar began before it was called “renewable energy”. As a junior high student in the late ‘60’s, he had the opportunity to take one of the first environmental education classes ever taught. This helped lead to an early desire to become a “back-to-the-lander”, which landed him in Mendocino County in 1976. While becoming a carpenter and general contractor, his career for many years, he kept an eye out for the slowing developing field which gradually changed from “alternative energy” to “renewable energy”. Eventually he had the chance to work for Mendocino Solar Service, owned at that time by his friend and MSS founder Rob Harlan.
When Rob was ready to sell MSS, Bruce and Maggie jumped at the chance to be in the solar business. Today Bruce spends too much time in front of a computer, but relishes service calls and troubleshooting, system design, and getting to know the customers. After 35 years in the community, Bruce likes being the “local solar professional” and working with a fabulous team. Bruce designed a solar system for a remodel of the Anderson Valley Health Center. The building went on to win the “LEED Gold” award from the US Green Building Council. If he has any time off, he can be found working on his house and land, and just maybe, indulging in some sea kayaking or bike riding.
Maggie Watson, Co-OwnerMaggie Watson is co owner of Mendocino Solar Service. With a background as a professional organizer, she brings these skills to her work at Mendocino Solar Service. She has taken solar and sales classes at the Solar Living Institute and SunPower Corporation. She is a people person and a natural networker. Maggie represents the solar business at community events and is an ambassador for the Mendocino Coast Chamber of Commerce.
When not at Mendocino Solar Service, Maggie is a professional organizer, working to keep elders independent in their home, as the owner of Simple Systems. She is the author of “A Graceful Farewell: Putting Your Affairs in Order” and presents seminars and gives talks on this subject. She is also a trained facilitator. In the near future, Maggie will acquire a license as a Professional Fiduciary.
For fun, Maggie organizes women’s clothing swaps, attends lots of community building meetings and reads sci fi. She loves taking walks with friends, making homemade cards and jams and doing yoga and spin class.
Andreas Dahm, Senior Installation ManagerAndreas has 6 years experience in Solar On- and Off-Grid installations and troubleshooting. After earning his Masters degree in Design- and Manufacturing engineering in Germany, and traveling Asia for an extended period of time, he chose rural Mendocino County to be his home. He is living a sustainable lifestyle in an off-grid home and homesteading in the Mendocino Mountains with his wife Laura. When he’s not working on improving his homestead he enjoys listening to his extensive music collection, hiking, cycling, windsurfing and playing music. His expertise in the Solar field and easy-going attitude makes him a perfect addition to the Team of Mendocino Solar Service.
Julia Vazquez, BookkeeperSolar electricity and the off grid lifestyle is not new to Julia who lived off grid for 21 years near Taos, New Mexico; the town that calls itself “the solar capital of the world”. Her organizational and bookkeeping talents are put to good use at Mendocino Solar Service, where she helps anchor the operations as our Administrative Assistant. When not working Julia enjoys the coastline and spending time with friends. She also is inspired by alternative building and permaculture design, participation in Mendocino’s Transition Town activities and fine-tuning her beekeeping skills from the high desert to this coastal region.
John Huxsol, Office ManagerJohn Huxsol recently moved back to Mendocino County after working for the hospital foundation in Taos, New Mexico. He loves being back home at the coast, and is thrilled to be working in the sustainable energy field at Mendocino Solar Service. John served at the Planning and Building Department during his former years in Mendocino County, has an extensive background in customer service and administrative assistance, and has studied website design and internet technology at UNM-Taos. He is excited about promoting and providing solar energy systems to local residents, and loves increasing his knowledge about solar each day while managing the priorities of the office.
When away from work, John enjoys spending time with his wife Catherine Hart, sharing gardening, dancing, touring the California coast and visiting their granddaughters in the Bay Area. John is a musician/performer on the drum set, and with Catherine has co-hosted a well-loved music show on public radio.