Our Team

We are a solid team of seasoned veterans and rising stars with passion and persistence to tackle energy poverty through entrepreneurship


Founding Partners


Jennye Greene

Jennye is the lead on the Embark’s technical design and specifications for the innovative education and coaching systems. She is an expert on energy enterprise development through training and blended learning using web-based platforms and social media. Jennye started her career as an Innovations Specialist at E+Co, a pioneering company in energy enterprise investing, where she worked on an array of projects involving knowledge management, service delivery, cross sectoral collaboration, gender, and payment innovations. She brings expertise and experience in consulting and field-based assignments in Asia and Africa focused on energy enterprise development and finance. Jennye has a Master of Arts degree in Climate and Society from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts from Brown University.


Ellen Morris, Ph.D.

Ellen leads partnership engagement, resource mobilization and the consulting practice at Embark. She is a recognized leader in the energy and development arena with over 20 years of experience working with international public and private organizations throughout Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Ellen has been teaching graduate level courses at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs since 2007, and continues to provide hands-on learning opportunities and mentoring for her students in energy and development. She has led applied research and analysis of energy issues as they relate to economic and social development and has solid expertise in the area of energy and microfinance, which led to her founding of Arc Finance in 2007. Ellen has Ph.D. in geological oceanography from University of Rhode Island and a Bachelor of Science degree in geophysical engineering from Colorado School of Mines.


Philip LaRocco

Phil is the architect and visionary behind the Embark entrepreneur training and coaching curriculum and is the lead author of the extensive set of teaching materials. He brings over 20 years of experience as a practitioner and thought-leader on energy enterprise development and is the founder of E+Co, the award-winning non-profit that provided entrepreneurs around the globe with business training and medium-sized business loans to start and grow their clean energy businesses. Phil’s work at E+Co resulted in 7+ million people receiving access to clean energy by way of 300 direct investments in 200 companies in over 20 countries. To further his dedication to learning and skills development, Phil teaches at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs and in the Sustainability Management program where his courses on energy and enterprise development are some of the most popular.


Gina Rodolico

Gina is the director of operations and strategic planning at Embark. Prior to Embark, Gina had a 20 year career at E+Co, the energy enterprise investment social enterprise, where most recently she was the Chief Operating Officer and Director of Innovations. She managed complex international field projects in more than 20 countries, opening offices and supervising staff and contractors. Gina also pioneered the now widely used Triple Bottom Line Impacts Assessment Program that tracked and analyzed 30+ indicators to document the financial, social and environmental impacts of energy investments. She also designed custom technology and information management systems to streamline operations and the collection of impact data. Gina has a Bachelor of Science in Business and a Masters of Arts in Administration and a Masters of Science in Counseling from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh and a Certificate of Finance from New York University.

Key staff


Evgenia Sokolova

Genia is the Director of the Embark Finance Team, where she leads the work in bringing in strategic investors for our entrepreneurs, structuring innovative financing mechanisms and providing business development support to entrepreneurs.  She has worked extensively creating and implementing programs targeting small and medium sized enterprise creation across Africa, Asia and Latin America. Genia brings more than 10 years of credit and investment management experience as a Vice President at JP Morgan Chase, where she was responsible for a managing portfolio of natural resource companies in emerging markets. Genia has Master of Public Administration in Development Practice from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts from Mount Holyoke College in Economics.


Joshua Kabugo

Joshua is the Director of Entrepreneur Development of the Embark office in Arusha, leading the work to coach and advise local entrepreneurs in helping them develop investment-ready business plans. He also provides strategic planning support for the roll out of Embark in East Africa. His prior work at Bank of Africa for 5 years focused on financing and relationship management for small and medium enterprises giving him solid experience in credit risk, sales, marketing, and community engagement. Joshua is underway with his studies for a Master of Business Administration at Makerere University due for completion in June2014 and has a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences also from Makerere University in Uganda.


Diana Sierra

Diana is Embark’s Chief Design Officer, focusing on the product supply chain and distribution models in East Africa. She brings her strong skills in industrial design to also support the design of the marketing and communication materials for Embark. Diana built her career in industrial design, working for almost 10 years for different multinational companies on their consumer product lines. In developing countries, she has worked in East Africa and South America on better designs for cookstoves, agro-processing machines, and soil testing devices. Diana holds a Master of Science degree in Sustainability Management from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Industrial Design from the Universidad de Los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia. She also teaches product innovation and design for sustainability for small businesses at the SENA in Medellín, Colombia, and collaborates with the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum, on educational workshops for teens.


Hélène Roy

Hélène is the Senior Finance Associate leading the design and resource mobilization for the Embark Seed Capital Facility, a catalytic fund providing early-stage capital for energy entrepreneurs. Hélène has been instrumental in creating the Embark finance network of potential investors and providing input on the finance curriculum for entrepreneurs. Hélène has done consulting work with the Rainforest Alliance on the design of a sustainable finance program in West Africa and with CleanStar Ventures on assessing business development opportunities in Haiti. She brings 4 years of experience in fund due diligence, financial analysis and modeling of investment portfolios as well as investor relations with large asset managers, non-profit organizations and social ventures across Europe and the U.S. Hélène has a Master in International Affairs from Columbia University and Diplôme Grande Ecole de Commerce from Audencia Nantes School of Management in Nantes, France.


Heejung Yim

Heejung is the lead on research and operations support for Embark. She brings strong administrative and planning skills to manage and guide the Embark operations and resource mobilization. Prior to Embark, Heejung worked at IBM as a Market Analyst and Management Consultant. Heejung has a Master of Science degree in Sustainability Management from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration and Management from Sogang University in Korea.

Embark network of technical experts

The collective experience of the Embark team and our strong relationships with trusted colleagues around the world allow us to identify and engage key people to working with us on different projects, programs and field assignments. We have worked on the ground in more than 30 developing countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America to create a strong network of practitioners in private companies, government, academia and non-governmental organizations that we can tap into. We leverage our experience and networks to provide world-class planning, execution, management and oversight to deliver solid results.