Lee Bristol retired from Standard Solar, Rockville, MD on January 1, 2013 to work full time as the Executive Director of Global Solace after working part time to get the organization started in 2012. He is a co-founder of Standard Solar Inc. with Board Member Neville Williams, a solar PV integration company in Rockville, MD, which has become the 73rd fastest growing company in the country as rated by Inc. magazine. With Standard Solar, Lee was first responsible for all operational aspects of the company including sales, design, construction, and management. His responsibilities at retirement included integrating advanced technologies into the product mix and engineering specialized commercial projects. Lee credits his Standard Solar partner, Neville Williams, with giving him the bug to improve the lives of people in the developing world through solar energy.
Mr. Bristol earned an Aeronautics and Astronautics degree from MIT in 1969. He worked as a systems analyst and fluid mechanics engineer on the early 1970’s before opening the first microcomputer store in Washington, DC in 1977. In 1982, he founded Leland Bristol and Associates, Inc., an IT company specializing in health insurance computer systems and software.
In 2002 he returned to his engineering roots and took a year off from IT consulting to learn about renewable energy systems; this included completing solar PV training courses at Solar Energy International in Colorado, installing solar PV and hot water on his home and starting LBA Renewable Energy Systems, Inc which installed solar PV and hot water systems. In 2006, he partnered with Neville Williams to open Standard Solar. In 2007, Lee became a NABCEP certified solar PV installer and system designer and in the spring of 2010 took the Solar Energy Institute course in Renewable Energy Systems in the Developing World.
Lee’s expertise is the engineering and construction of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and integration of computer hardware and software. It is the marriage of these technologies which gives Global Solace a technological advantage in the design of solar PV systems for schools and health clinics in which internet access and open source software are key components.
While the majority of his experience has been providing residential and commercial PV systems in the mid-Atlantic region of the United States, he spearheaded GSI’s Haiti project and has visited Tanzania and South Africa on behalf of GSI. Lee lead the GSI team in 2013 which performed site visits and system designs for 20 rural health clinics in Tanzania for the Henry M Jackson Foundation for Military Medicine.