Clean Energy Works Profile – Sam Lammers

Clean Energy Works Profile – Sam Lammers

Sam Lammers entered the renewable energy industry a little over a year ago but has already taken on a leadership role at Arch Solar as the DC Crew Lead. The Wisconsin native was raised in Sheboygan and until recently, she worked in the nearby Washington and Waukesha Counties as an Invasive Species Coordinator and also Conservation Warden for the Department of Natural Resources.

“…sustainability and conservation have always been a passion of mine,” Lammers said.

Lammers went to school at UW – Green Bay where she earned her Bachelor’s degree in environmental policy and planning. Her passions, however, extend beyond the environment. Lammers is also the owner of her yoga studio and it was through one of her clients that she learned about Arch Solar.

“Actually finding Arch Solar came as kind of an accident, I was having breakfast with one of my yoga clients,” Lammers said. “I actually own a yoga studio, and she was telling me about her job and how I would be a really good fit for it. She asked me if it’s something I would be interested in and if I would check out.”

Lammers quickly learned how right her client was. She has found the work rewarding and just shortly after her one-year anniversary, Lammers is already looking for ways to grow in her role. Within the next year, she hopes to be a part of the electrician apprenticeship program.

“I absolutely love the opportunities I get at the job,” Lammers said. “The role is always kind of growing and adapting, and that’s what keeps me going.”

Among the many things Lammers enjoys about her work is working with customers and generally educating the public about the work she does. Lammers said that when she gets on a job site she enjoys the opportunity to not only ease the minds of customers but help them realize their sustainability goals.

“I believe in all forms of sustainability and the renewable industry,” Lammers said. She added that she loves being able to bring her passion for being outside while working hard in a role within the renewable energy industry.

And though she has a deep appreciation for her role in the industry and the team she works with, the position is not without some challenges.

“I would say my biggest challenge, just being almost a decade older than most of the guys I work with on the roof, is just kind of the physical demand of the job,” Lammers said. She noted that there are days she doesn’t feel like getting on a roof, but she reminds herself how great it is to get to work outside. Good teamwork is essential when regulary working on roofs. As Lammers noted she has a fabulous team that trusts each other and has each other’s backs.

“I appreciate the wide variety of individuals that I get to work with in the renewables industry,” Lammers said. “The field crews, office staff, salespersons, and customers all bring their own experiences, expertise, and questions to every job we do and it’s incredible being able to learn from everyone involved. The renewables industry is an ever-growing field and there is always something new and exciting to learn about or adapt to our practices on the roof.”

Wisconsin Climate Action Navigators Visit Milwaukee Neighborhood, Lindsay Heights

Wisconsin Climate Action Navigators Visit Milwaukee Neighborhood, Lindsay Heights

On April 29 and 30, Wisconsin Climate Action Navigators (WI CAN) gathered in Milwaukee at the Wisconsin Black Historical Society for its second quarterly meeting to establish how Navigators want to engage in climate action in across the state. 

WI CAN is a collective action initiative to create a network of change leaders who foster authentic community engagement to advance transformative climate action rapidly. The group, born out of the State of Wisconsin’s Office of Sustainability and Clean Energy (OSCE) identified a gap in the outreach strategies, which is how the state is authentically engaging with communities. WI CAN seeks to inform the public through balanced and objective climate-related information. The organization hopes to empower the public to participate in policy discussions to create lasting change.

This meeting introduced Wisconsin’s Comprehensive Climate Action Plan (CCAP) which leverages qualitative data produced through boots-on-the-ground interventions. WI CAN’s vision for transformative climate action explores how community engagement can lead to desired climate action and outlines how the OSCE team will analyze outcomes to quantify how climate action impacts Wisconsin communities.

As a statewide initiative, WICAN represents disadvantaged communities, individuals and organizations engaged in climate policy, experts in specific climate action sectors such as renewable energy, and prominent community leaders, like Trasus Wright and Pastor Teresa, both representing the Environmental Justice and Infrastructure Initiative (EJII). EJII and RENEW Wisconsin have been WI CAN members since its inception in January 2024. WI CAN invited EJII to represent communities of color in Milwaukee and to help ensure that their efforts are continuously grounded through an environmental justice lens.

For the quarterly meeting, WI CAN members traveled to Milwaukee’s northwest side for a resident-led tour of the Lindsay Heights neighborhood. 53205 and 53206, the zip codes that makeup Lindsay Heights are shown to be two of the poorest not only in Wisconsin but also in the country. 

The rampant levels of poverty in these zip codes are due to historical disinvestment and city planning initiatives which include building a highway through the neighborhood that forced community members out of their homes.

A highlight of the meeting was a Faith Alliance Network activity at Canaan Education Center. The Faith Alliance Network is a group of Milwaukee-based churches brought together by EJII to create grassroots connections related to environmental injustices in the community. Over dinner, WI CAN members heard testimonials from members of the Neighborhood Improvement District (NID) about how Lindsay Heights continues to grow despite the lack of resources. 

Personal accounts of inaccessibility to basic needs such as affordable food, housing, and electricity – and the community’s collective efforts to secure them for all residents – are part of Lindsay Height’s story and resonated with WI CAN members working and residing in the urban areas of Madison, rural members in Viroqua, and tribal members in Black River Falls. 

This was an organization-wide reminder that storytelling is a way to build alliances. The programming was an inspiration for the future collaboration among WI CAN members.

In closing statements, Pastor Teresa, a local pastor and community leader thanked the group for their “willingness to learn and uplift with the Lindsay Heights community” and celebrated its new connection with the Wisconsin Climate Action Navigators and their efforts to expand state-wide.