White House to Honor Veterans as “Champions of Change”, including Joseph Kopser, for Advancing Clean Energy and Climate Security

On Tuesday, November 5th, just days before Veterans Day, the White House will honor 12 local heroes as “Champions of Change,” including Austin business leader Joseph Kopser, CEO and Co-Founder of RideScout.  RideScout is a startup smartphone app created to increase transportation efficiency by getting people out of their cars and into other public, commercial, and private options. A West Point and Harvard Kennedy School graduate, Joseph served in the United States Army for 20 years, retiring in 2013 as a Lt. Col. His last assignment in the military was teaching Leadership and Strategy at The University of Texas at Austin. In addition to leading RideScout, Joseph is a Next Generation Project Texas Fellow at the Strauss Center at the University of Texas at Austin where he focuses on Energy Policy. He also serves on the Board of Directors at the CleanTX Foundation. Joseph's military awards and decorations include the Bronze Star, the Combat Action Badge, and the Ranger Tab.

The Champions of Change program was created as an opportunity for the White House to feature individuals, businesses, and organizations doing extraordinary things to empower and inspire members of their communities. The event will celebrate American veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan who are doing extraordinary work to advance clean energy and increase climate resilience and preparedness in their communities.

In a Presidential Proclamation on National Energy Action Month, President Obama challenged the Nation to build a clean energy economy and increase energy security. Noting that we now import less oil than at any point in the past 20 years, the President stressed the need to keep moving forward to protect these gains and fuel growth for decades to come. Additionally, the President’s Climate Action Plan maps out a way to drive advancements in the energy sector, add thousands of jobs to strengthen the American economy, and lead efforts to address climate change globally. The President has stated that developing clean energy technology and preparing for the effects of climate change are crucial to ensuring America’s continued growth and the health of future generations.

Upon returning home from service, many veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan have continued to utilize their specialized skills and experiences to advance energy efficiency and renewable energy, make communities more resilient to the effects of climate change and improve our nation’s energy security. Through the course of this event, these Champions will share their stories and details about their work. 

The event will be live streamed on the White House website at 9:00 am CT on November 5th.

Joseph Kopser, CEO and Co-Founder, RideScout (Austin, TX,  Washington, D.C.)


Read more about the other winners on the White House Champions of Change web page.

  • Dave Belote, Vice President for Federal Business, Apex Clean Energy (Virginia Beach, VA)
  • Adam Cote, CEO and Co-Founder, Thermal Energy Storage of Maine (Sanford, ME)
  • Robin Eckstein, Veteran and Advocate (Appleton, WI)
  • Phillip Green, President and Founder, Green Powered Technology (Falls Church, VA)
  • Avi Jacobson, Senior Sustainable Energy Coordinator, Washington State Housing Finance Commission (Seattle, WA)
  • Kevin Johnson, Senior Manager of Mergers & Acquisitions, Acconia Energy North America (Chicago, IL)
  • Joseph Knott, Director of Military Partnerships, Compatible Lands Foundation (Phoenix, AZ)
  • Nat Kreamer, President and CEO, Clean Power Finance (San Francisco, CA)
  • Andrea Marr, Commissioning Engineer, McKinstry (Costa Mesa, CA)
  • Elizabeth Perez-Halperin, President and Founder, GC Green (Vista, CA)
  • Drew Sloan, Sales Executive, Opower (Washington, D.C.)

To learn more about the White House Champions of Change program or to nominate a Champion for a future event, visit www.whitehouse.gov/champions.

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