South Dakota Business Leaders Join National Organization to Tout Clean Energy Jobs in Rural America

Sioux Falls Business Leaders Jim Mikel and Paul Batcheller to Advocate for Clean Energy Jobs

Two Sioux Falls, SD CEO’s – Jim Mikel of RENEW Energy and Paul Batcheller of PrairieGold Solar – have joined the Advisory Board of New Energy America, an organization created to promote clean energy jobs in rural America. The group, launched in September with support from rural clean energy entrepreneurs, farmers, and former leaders in Congress, released the first Clean Energy Jobs in Rural America Report, which contains a detailed analysis of clean energy jobs in each of the 50 states. The report shows that clean energy jobs outpace fossil energy jobs in 41 states.

“Jim and Paul will be great additions to our advisory board,” said Mike Carr, Executive Director of NEA. “Over the last few decades, they’ve seen first-hand the sustained job growth that the new energy economy is bringing to rural states like South Dakota, Iowa and Nebraska.”

New Energy America will engage lawmakers representing rural communities to demonstrate how policies that support the deployment of clean energy create jobs for their constituents. While many politicians in these states have traditionally supported fossil fuels, the data is clear that policies that support reducing emissions are creating good jobs in rural America.

Jim Mikel is the President of RENEW Energy, the largest Independent Service Provider in the US Wind Industry with 12 service divisions and over 230 employees. RENEW has a strong customer base in North America which they service from eight locations across the country, including their headquarters and remanufacturing facility in Sioux Falls, SD. Jim joins New Energy America with over 21 years of wind industry experience.

Paul Batcheller, CEO of PrairieGold Solar, also resides in Sioux Falls. PraireGold Solar invests in and builds distributed-scale solar projects throughout the United States. In addition, Paul serves as a Partner at PrairieGold Venture Partners, a Sioux Falls, SD-based venture capital firm he co-founded in 2004. He has served as a director on the board of a variety of clean energy companies throughout the United States.

In addition to Jim Mikel and Paul Batcehller, the advisory board also includes; Roger Johnson the President of the National Farmers Union; Jon Powers the Co-Founder of Clean Capital; and Former Congressman George Miller.

For more information on RENEW Energy, please visit and for more information on Prairie Gold Solar, please visit

The Rural Clean Energy Jobs Report, and more information about New Energy America, can be found at