Working in Nevada to conserve our energy
Denee Evans is the Executive Director of Energy Fit Nevada, the state’s nonprofit sponsor of Home Performance with ENERGY STAR, Denee Evans oversees the Energy Fit Nevada program. Energy Fit Nevada is a rebate and home incentive program for homeowners who make energy efficiency upgrades made possible by a grant from the Nevada State Office of Energy provided by the United States Department of Energy to promote energy efficiency and conservation.
Under her decisive leadership and guidance, Energy Fit Nevada has grown from successful nonprofit connecting homeowners to qualified energy efficiency contractors and rebates to an emerging statewide authority on the energy efficiency industry.
The organization has commissioned an important economic study, created a dynamic teaching example of energy efficiency in the city of North Las Vegas. Evans personally collaborated with numerous city councils, elected officials, and organizations across the state to advance the efficiency movement.
Evans originally began in banking. “At a young age, I was one of those rare people who seemed to have a natural affinity for math and community. So I started where they seemed to intersect as a teller for Bank of America,” she said. After getting married and moving out of state, Evans returned to Las Vegas. “My original plan was to finish my degree in finance at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and then specialize in real estate with the specific goal of creating a greater sense of community right here in Las Vegas,” she explained.
“During my last semester, I reached out to the city of Las Vegas sustainability office to see if they had an internship available. They suggested an internship working with Green Chips, a nonprofit organization that collaborated with the city of Las Vegas and Nevada State Bank to establish a loan fund to help finance energy-efficient improvements through Energy Fit Nevada.
It was at Green Chips and then at Energy Fit Nevada that I learned where real estate, finance, and sustainability all work together toward achieving better communities.” As for mentors, Evans said she has learned from many people. “I came away with three traits that they all had in common. They would challenge me to do better even when I had done my best, ask me what my limits were and push me past those limits, and continually motivate me to set a stronger vision.
“Interestingly enough, not all of them were older nor did they hold prominent positions in our state or elsewhere. They were people who did things better, were different, or with a unique perspective. They have traits that are worth emulating and they are able to clearly define balanced goals across their lives.”
Evan’s greatest inspirations are her parents. Raised as the oldest of six children in the small unincorporated town of Overton, Nev., she describes her mother as an extremely hard worker who was never afraid to get her hands dirty. Evan credits her father for teaching her that there wasn’t anything a girl can’t do if not do better.
She also credits her husband of 13 years, Steve Hofer, as her biggest supporter and a great partner. Together, they are raising two daughters, Arla age 9, and Ada Lea age 4. Like Evans, they are very active girls with many diverse interests.
“I’m very proud to be a native Nevadan with a passion to share what a great place this is to live and how we can make it even better,” she stated. “The future of Nevada is bright and so is the prospect for women entering any number of professions today.” Denee Evans is truly a Fearless Female.