PowerSpot: Erin Lane
This is PowerSpot, Plug Power’s blog series where we highlight the Plug Power employees who inspire us and, we hope, will inspire you, too. Today, we’re hearing from Erin Lane, Plug Power’s Vice President, Public Affairs.
Thanks for taking the time with us, Erin. Could you please explain what you do for a living in 20 words or fewer.
I provide strategic insight on government and industry affairs affecting our business and deploy resources to advocate for our priorities.
What is one of the most extraordinary/unusual experiences you’ve had in your career.
The best day of my career, so far, was on February 9, 2018. In my own Super Bowl moment, I was boarding a plane to Disney World when it was announced the President signed the restoration of the fuel cell tax credit into law. Due to unfortunate circumstances two years prior, wind and solar technologies were given a five-year extension of their tax credits while fuel cells and other technologies were “orphaned,” and left at a huge disadvantage. In response, we worked in partnership with our champions on Capitol Hill, industry and others, and fought for 2 years and 53 days to get the credit retroactively reinstated. It was extremely challenging, but I will forever be thankful for the trust Plug Power leadership put in our government relations team and the relationships we built along the way. In fact, the strategic partnerships we built with Members of Congress, staff, trade groups and clean energy technologies during that time paved the way for many of the exciting legislative successes we are having today.
What excites you about hydrogen and fuel cells?
Everything. I have been working with Plug Power in different capacities for over twenty-two years and there has never been a more exciting time. For the first time in my career, the United States and the world truly understand that hydrogen is necessary to meet all climate and decarbonization goals. Plug Power is absolutely leading the green hydrogen revolution, and I am proud to be part of the team.
If you were a super-hero, what powers would you have?
Obviously, I would want the mundane superpowers like flying, so I can skip the horrendous DC traffic, and selective mind-reading so I could sometimes know what was going through my teenagers’ minds. But my true power would be to get Congress to be bipartisan again.
Do you have a life philosophy? What is it?
Everything happens for a reason and hard work is usually the reason.
Who is your favorite author? Why?
That is pretty fluid but right now it is Stephen Dubner. I am a huge fan of all things Freakonomics. The podcast sends me down the rabbit hole of obsessing about interesting facts I had no idea I needed to know.
What motivates you to get out of bed in the morning?
Really good, strong coffee. The best part of my day is waking up ridiculously early and plotting out my day. I think about what I must get done immediately and how can I help make other people’s lives better – both personally and professionally. I always ask myself what I did well the day before and what can I do better today. I know how lucky I am to work in an industry, and for a company, that is focused on doing good so that allows me to drill down and focus what it is going to take to be successful.
We are so glad to have Erin on our team helping Plug make a difference in the world!