Jack Baron has been named new managing director of Venture For ClimateTech, a Rochester-based nonprofit global studio and accelerator.
ClimateTech helps innovators launch startups and speed the commercialization of climate tech concepts that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Founded in 2021, the organization is supported by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and administered by NextCorps in partnership with SecondMuse.
“Jack is uniquely qualified to guide Venture For ClimateTech into its next phase of growth based on his more than 17 years of experience in the climate tech and energy industries, and his track record as a successful entrepreneur,” James Senall, president of NextCorps, said in a news release. “His global network of leaders and entrepreneurs, along with investor connections, will help bring a new level of support to startups participating in Venture For ClimateTech.”
Baron succeeds Jacqueline Ros Amable, who served as managing director since the program’s inception. Amable will continue to serve the program through consulting and mentorship.
She is credited with helping to develop the program’s unique curriculum and success, along with doubling the size of the accelerator’s latest cohort to support traditionally underrepresented founders in climate tech. Within the first two cohorts, 14 of the 23 startups have female founders, and nine are within BIPOC communities.
“Jackie has been a tremendous asset to our mission of supporting climate tech entrepreneurs with the tools, training, talent, and funding they need to build a company around an emerging climate solution, and to raising awareness for this important program,” Senall said.
The 23 companies participating in the first two cohorts raised more than $28 million in follow-on funding. Seven of those firms have ongoing pilots with potential customers, and three have contracts for sales. Team sizes have doubled as well, from 35 at program launch to more than 70.
There were 298 applications for the third cohort, Senall said.
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