Meet the Team - State Energy Office

Molly R. Cripps, Director

Molly oversees the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s (TDEC) Office of Energy Programs (OEP), which is comprised of two sections: the Governor-designated State Energy Office (SEO) and the State Facility Utility Management Section (SFUM). In addition to Molly’s energy-related work, she serves as the Director of Operations for the Bureau of Environment, including emergency response efforts.

Molly is the Administrative Lead for Tennessee’s Volkswagen Diesel Settlement Environmental Mitigation Trust (VW Settlement EMT) allocation and a member of the Executive Committee for the Drive Electric TN Consortium. She serves as Governor Lee’s designee to the State Energy Policy Council and represents TDEC on the Energy Efficient Schools Council and various TVA information exchanges and working groups. She has served on the National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) Board of Directors since 2014 and is currently serving as the Vice-Chair of the Executive Committee.

Prior to joining the State in 2010, Molly spent several years practicing law in Tennessee, with a focus on compliance and municipal liability defense. She holds a B.A. in History and Political Science from the University of Tennessee and a J.D. from Vanderbilt University Law School.

Angela McGee, Deputy Director of Operations

Angela is the Deputy Director for TDEC OEP and serves as the State Energy Program (SEP) Manager for all OEP activities under U.S. DOE’s SEP; Director of OEP’s K-12 Energy Education Camps and Workshops; and the Tennessee Coordinator for  the National Energy Education Development Project. Angela manages OEP’s low-income energy efficiency programming and all fiscal, budget, procurement, compliance, and audit functions for OEP, including those under the VW Settlement EMT. Additionally, Angela serves as OEP’s Human Resources lead and Title VI Coordinator. Prior to joining OEP in January 2012, Angela was a Medical Transcriptionist in the field of Radiology for Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Alexa Voytek, Deputy Director of Programs, Innovation & Transportation, Communications

Alexa is TDEC OEP's Deputy Director of Programs for Innovation and Transportation, and Communications, and U.S. DOE SEP activities. Alexa serves as the Principal Investigator for the U.S. DOE’s State Energy Program, oversees OEP’s sustainable transportation and alternative fuels programming, and assists with the administration of the VW Settlement EMT. Alexa also serves as the Coordinator for U.S. DOE’s Clean Cities Middle-West Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition, through which she acts as a technical resource for fleets and individuals evaluating alternative fuels and advanced vehicle technologies, and is Co-Chair of the NASEO Transportation Committee. Prior to joining TDEC, Alexa interned with the UN Division for Sustainable Development and the U.S. Consulate in St. Petersburg, Russia. Most recently, Alexa served as Asst. Account Executive for the public relations firm Ketchum, Inc., where she was assigned to energy and technology related projects. Alexa holds an M.A. from Columbia University in Russian, Eastern European, Balkan, and Eurasian Studies and graduated summa cum laude from Duke University, with a B.A. in History and Russian Language / Area Studies.

Alisha Brewer, Grants Analyst 2

As a Grants Analyst for TDEC OEP, Alisha provides support for various programs and is responsible for fiscal, compliance, procurement, and administrative tasks. Alisha assists with OEP’s K-12 Energy Education programming  by providing professional development and classroom enhancement to educators and students. In order to increase public awareness of OEP programs, Alisha also assists with the development and distribution of newsletters and webpage updates. Finally, Alisha acts as OEP’s Records Coordinator and is responsible for maintaining compliance with records retention guidelines for OEP and its subrecipients. Prior to joining OEP, Alisha worked in hospitality management for Tennessee State Parks. 

Ben Bolton, Senior Energy Programs Administrator

As a Senior Energy Programs Administrator for TDEC OEP, Ben manages activities related to energy security planning, preparedness, and response, as well as the energy-water nexus. He currently serves as Co-Chair of NASEO’s Energy Security Committee and represents Tennessee on the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Hazard Mitigation Framework Leadership Group.  Ben is the lead Emergency Services Coordinator for Emergency Support Function 12 - Energy and is responsible for activities related to transportation and heating fuels under the Tennessee Emergency Management Plan. Prior to joining the State, Ben was an environmental scientist providing technical support to public and private sector clients facing environmental compliance issues involving air, water, and environmental public relations. He holds a B.A. in English and B.S. in Biology from Birmingham-Southern College.

Mark Finlay,  Senior Energy Analyst

As a Senior Energy Analyst for TDEC OEP, Mark contributes to a number of OEP’s sustainable transportation programming efforts, including activities under the Middle-West Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition and administration of the VW Settlement EMT. Mark also assists in the development and distribution of several OEP communications deliverables, including OEP’s monthly newsletters. Mark joined TDEC in 2019 after earning both an M.P.A. from Syracuse University with a focus on Environmental Policy and Administration as well as an M.P.S. in Sustainable Energy from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry. In Syracuse, Mark worked with the Central New York Clean Cities Coalition to promote the use of alternative fuels in the region. Mark graduated with distinction from the University of Michigan with a B.S. in Earth and Environmental Sciences.

Lizzy Gaviria, Grants Analyst

Lizzy is a Grants Analyst for TDEC OEP, where she supports a variety of OEP’s transportation efforts under the VW Settlement EMT and oversees compliance requirements. She also works on activities for the Middle-West Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition. Lizzy joined TDEC in 2022 after graduating from Rice University with a B.S. in Environmental Science.

Audrey Jackson, Communications Officer

Audrey is the Communications Officer for TDEC OEP. She leads the development of OEP’s communications and outreach materials and serves as the primary author and designer of the OEP website and Annual Reports. She also works to advance OEP’s sustainable transportation programming. Audrey came to TDEC in 2022 from the State's Department of Tourist Development, where she served as the Manager of Team Development.  Audrey graduated from Naropa University with an M.A. in Environmental Leadership, and before that, from Vanderbilt University with a B.A. in Environmental Science and Sociology.