ROB MARTENS

Founder, Owner, Better Together Solar and Solar Action LLC Co-Founder, MUSL (Midtown Urban Solar Laboratory)

Rob is the president of a solar construction business, based on Prospect Avenue, in Cleveland. Since its start in 2007, Better Together Solar and its predecessor companies, have installed and manage more than 5MW of commercial and residential solar systems, working with top-tier organizations like Baldwin Wallace University, Near West Theatre, Ohio Desk, Great Lakes Brewing Company, Vitamix, Fortec Medical, University Hospitals, Case Western Reserve University, Lake Ridge Academy, Fairmount Santrol, Kalman and Pabst Photo Group, and Cumberland Development.  Their focus on rugged, reliable solar installations has earned them a reputation for quality, aesthetics and productivity.  Moreover, Rob has backed up his passion for solar with more than $4Million invested in solar arrays, mostly in NE Ohio. Rob’s side hustle involves inventing a new solar racking solution. Working with ACME Express this development project has garnered $1.5 Million in Phase 1 & 2 awards from the Department of Energy’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program.  
31 years ago Rob published a critical analysis of the US Renewable Energy Program.  At the time, commercially available solar technology was in its infancy.  Much of it was made by hand in small batches. Over the years, Rob kept a close eye on the industry and became very excited in 2000. Around that time, battery-less grid tied inverters became commercially available, allowing photovoltaic systems to be installed without the cost, risk, and inherent inefficiencies of lead-acid batteries.  After 14 years in California, Rob and his family returned to the Cleveland area in 2001.  
A homegrown resource, Rob graduated from University School, went on to receive a Bachelor degree from Miami University, then a Master’s of Science Degree from San Diego State University.   Rob has extensive technical and business experience from his time with the U.S. Navy, The Lincoln Electric Company and Key Bank. Rob is a Certified Solar PV installer and designer having successfully passed the NABCEP exam in 2009 as well as re-certifying in 2012, 2015, and 2018. Rob proudly served in the U.S. Navy for 15 years, 7 years on active duty.  Rob and his wife, Holley, now live in San Diego and have three children, Alycia, Charlie and Claire.

 

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