Stacy Kuiper Hunt is a senior manager with more than 20 years experience successfully leading complex and challenging communications, outreach and education projects.
Although Stacy’s skill and art in management transcend industry and subject matter, for more than 17 years she has found a pretty clear niche. Her work bringing together federal government programs, national laboratories, and private industry stakeholders has enabled advancements in energy efficiency technology and practice and has promoted renewable energy use in buildings.
Stacy’s current work in her business – Confluence Communications – is as a senior advisor and consultant to the U.S. Department of Energy and the national laboratory system. Stacy works across many programs, and acts as coordinator, spokesperson, ombudsman, writer, strategist, event producer, program manager, and project triage nurse. Sometimes all in one day or one project, sometimes across many different teams.
Stacy loves her job, and considers it somewhere between managing a circus and playing chess.
In 2008, Stacy and her business partner establish Confluence Communications, combining their expertise in outreach programs and events with content development and continuing education. Between 2008 and 2017, Stacy establishes extensive federal agency and national laboratory contracts for Confluence and holds progressively more senior roles with the U.S. Department of Energy. Although Stacy is a contractor to DOE, she is held in high regard within the Department and National Laboratory System, and acts as a senior advisor on new program development, communications, and outreach strategy. She is known for her ability to manage complicated politics and programs with humor, candor, and exceptional skill. Stacy and her growing team are often called upon to work on projects that are difficult (programmatically or politically), or are in need “triage.” Stacy holds direct senior advisory roles to program managers at DOE, and holds specific “practical” roles within several programs.
In 2017, Stacy receives a “specialty crop grant” from the U.S. Department of Agriculture through the Missoula Community Food and Agriculture Coalition to expand Jasper’s Garden from selling to for only 8 weeks a year, to a goal of 20 weeks. She buys 175 new lavender plants, expands the growing area significantly, expands into a small peony crop, and creates a “real farm business.”
Stacy and her team are responsible for overseeing and implementing Solar Decathlon – a biennial collegiate competition in which teams are challenged to design and build fully functional solar-powered homes. Solar Decathlon is DOE’s largest public-facing event, and Stacy’s team is charged with contributing to a multi-million dollar sponsorship program, communications, education and outreach activities, and stakeholder engagement in a national, regional and local forum.
Jasper’s Garden is surprisingly prolific, producing nearly 200 bunches of French lavender in late July, around Jasper’s birthday. It’s so much lavender, Stacy can’t possible use or give it all away, so she sells it to a farmer friend, in exchange for her harvesting and weeding.In 2015, Stacy begins selling wrapped lavender and sachets to The Good Food Store. The crop sells out in two months. Proceeds from Jasper’s Garden go into savings accounts for Oscar and Gus.
Stacy and her team are responsible for overseeing and coordinating outreach, communications and media outreach activities for various programs within DOE/EERE’s Residential Buildings Integration program. During this time, Stacy develops and manages outreach, communications and media relations strategies, stakeholder engagement and sponsorship programs, and both large and small events for programs like Building America, Zero Energy Ready Homes, Race to Zero Student Design Competition, and others. Stacy prides herself in her ability to effectively engage government agencies, national laboratories, and private sector companies.
By now a pro at juggling pregnancy, birth, and babies with work, Stacy welcomes Gus into the world on October 5, 2010.
Stacy, Andrew, and Oscar pack it up and move to Missoula, Mont. for a change of pace, and to be closer to Andrew’s roots. They plant a large lavender garden on their new property in Jasper’s memory.
Stacy balances the pregnancy and birth of her second son, Oscar, with her ambition to stay active as a professional. Oscar is born healthy and happy on July 30, 2006.
She acts as an independent consultant to a variety of government and private companies, including the U.S. Department of Energy. She supports the launch of DOE’s voluntary energy efficiency initiative, Builders Challenge, through a series of workshops and high-profile events. She works with Oak Ridge National Laboratory on research planning meetings and develops extensive content for residential energy efficiency web sites, fact sheets, and brochures. Somehow, Stacy also finds time to work for Reed Business Information, developing articles for magazines and continuing education content for architects and engineers. During this time, Stacy refines her odd penchant for working within complicated, bureaucratic systems and decides it’s time birth a new company.
Stacy expects to welcome her first son, Jasper, into the world, but is met with his late-term stillbirth, instead. Stacy takes a deep look at her life, her work, and her future, and casts off on a different journey. She parts from IBACOS and, with their blessing, pursues clients with whom she’s developed relationships in the same area as their technical focus – energy efficiency and renewable energy in buildings.
In September 2000, Stacy marries her husband, Andrew, on a small island, in the middle of a lake in Western Montana (yes, there is such a thing). After Andrew’s job (along with thousands of other Seattleites’) falls victim to the dotcom bust, they find employment with sister-companies in Pittsburgh, Penn., pack up their cats and drive across the country.
Stacy works as Marketing Communications Director for IBACOS, Inc. a small, residential energy efficiency research and education company in Pittsburgh, Penn. Over the five years of her work with the IBACOS team, Stacy moves from Marketing Communications Director for IBACOS to Business Manager for a group of three related companies. These companies provide technical and process-related research, training, and land development services, with a focus on improving the energy efficiency and quality of our nation’s homes. Stacy is mentored by some of the best building scientists in the industry, and develops a passion for housing, sustainability, and the role of energy efficiency and renewable energy in creating a clean energy economy and protecting our natural resources. She also develops an almost savant-like skill for – and geeky enjoyment of – managing government contracts and navigating the complicated bureaucracy of government programs and national laboratories.
Stacy designs and manages special events, writes business proposals, and progressively takes more responsibility for managing and visually presenting information to sell events. She also acts as their impromptu IT manager, shepherding the small business through an anticlimactic Y2K transition. She spends New Year’s Eve rebooting networks and desktop computers.
A Semester at Sea through the University for Shipboard Education convinces Stacy to move to Seattle, Wash. She lands a job at Seattle Hospitality Services, a special events management company, and moves the day after her last final exam.
Stacy attends the University of Pittsburgh. While earning her degree in Nonfiction English Writing (aka business writing and journalism), she works for local floral company, where she is responsible for operating large weddings and corporate and nonprofit events, and “making flowers.” Little did she realize she was sowing the seeds for later positions.
The owner of Wheel Deliver decides to start a new restaurant chain called Mad Mex, and hires Stacy to help in the kitchen. Stacy prepares menus, hires staff, purchases kitchen equipment, paints and replaces flooring. Both Stacy and her employer realize that, while she is really good at planning and managing, she really sucks at high-volume commodity kitchen cooking. They amicably part ways and Stacy heeds the advice to “go back to school, child.”
Stacy is hired by a new “health food” vegetarian restaurant to work the lunch and brunch shift. She supplements her income by working in the catering kitchen of East Liberty Presbyterian Church, where she helps two old women, both named Mary, cook for hundreds of community members around major holidays. Between holidays, Stacy delivers restaurant food at Wheel Deliver, a local delivery service.
A chef at Simply French, a small bistro in the ‘burgh to whom Stacy delivers, hires her for dinner prep and dishwashing. Stacy decides cleaning hundreds of pounds of mussels and sweetbreads isn’t her cup of tea, and after the restaurant’s pastry chef leaves unexpectedly, convinces the head chef to train her. Stacy learns that cooking hundreds of crème caramel a day is only slightly less awful than cleaning mussels, and sustains the caramel injuries to prove it.
Stacy quits high school with the signature flourish of a rebellious 17-year-old. After a brief stint telemarketing, Stacy works for the Green Grocer, hauling cases of cabbages and broccoli to area restaurants during early morning shifts.