David Hochschild was appointed Chair of the California Energy Commission by Governor Gavin Newsom in February 2019. He fills the environmental position on the five-member Commission where four of the five members by law are required to have professional training in specific areas - engineering or physical science, environmental protection, economics, and law.
Chair Hochschild's career has spanned public service, environmental advocacy and the private sector. He first got involved in the solar energy field in 2001 in San Francisco as a Special Assistant to Mayor Willie Brown where he launched a citywide $100 million initiative to put solar panels on public buildings. He went on to co-found the Vote Solar Initiative, a 60,000-member advocacy organization promoting solar policies at the local, state and federal level. He served as executive director of a national consortium of leading solar manufacturers and worked for five years at Solaria, a solar company in Silicon Valley. In 2007-2008, he served as a commissioner at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission.
For his work to advance clean energy, Chair Hochschild was awarded the Sierra Club's Trailblazer Award, the American Lung Association's Clean Air Hero Award, and the Department of Energy's Million Solar Roof True Champion Award. Chair Hochschild holds a bachelor of arts from Swarthmore College and a masters of public policy from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government, and was a Coro Fellow in Public Affairs.