Faces of The Energy Co-op: Noah Swistak

By Hillary Bedeian – 6/29/2021

Noah, in your own words, what do you do for The Energy Co-op? 

I provide a fun and fulfilling experience for our members. Everyday I’m working to ensure that our members have what they need and helping them understand all that’s available to them through their Energy Co-op membership. I also author and contribute to many of our communications and help plan our numerous educational events. In addition, I oversee our Member Services Internship program, which launched earlier this year.

What has been the best part of working here so far? 

It has to be the people I’ve met, whether that’s The Energy Co-op’s members, my colleagues on the staff, or our partners. Everyone that I’ve had the pleasure of encountering in my time here has been a true joy to work with, and I admire the folks in this community’s commitment to renewable energy.

Could you share more about your journey and your background that lead you here? And what that path was like? 

I have degrees in Geography and City Planning, and I’ve always had a fascination with the interaction between the natural and built environments. I’ve been lucky to work with some really cool organizations in Philly in the arts and hunger relief sectors. Before I came to The Energy Co-op in 2020, I spent five and a half years with the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education.

How do you practice sustainability in your own life? 

I’m a member of The Energy Co-op, and power my home with 100% renewable electricity, generated here in Pennsylvania. Besides that, I make an effort to be conscious of my footprint in several areas. I try to eat stuff grown and raised nearby. For shorter trips, I take SEPTA or my bike. I’m mindful of what I consume and where I purchase from. I also apply what I know and care about at a local scale – I serve on the Board of Directors of my local neighborhood group, the Queen Village Neighbors Association.

What is your favorite summertime activity? 

Is it a boring answer if I say “everything!”? Summertime really is the best, whether it’s hanging in the park, heading to the beach, baseball games, taking my daughter to the zoo, fireworks on July 4, testing mosquito repellant efficacy…the list goes on!

What do you like (or dislike!) the most about living in Philly?  

I like seeing what Philadelphians can achieve when they band together for a common cause – that’s really heartening for me. Different neighborhood groups, cooperatives, or collectives that come together for a common interest provide a well of inspiration for me. There are so many rad organizations and networks in the city that I think fondly of, and am always impressed with the communities they foster, and what they’re ultimately able to accomplish.

Do you have any goals for the rest of 2021? 

I’m hopeful that I’ll have an opportunity to meet my Energy Co-op colleagues and our members in person. Having come on board here in late 2020, I’ve been working remotely thus far, and am looking forward to a time when we can safely meet without the aid of a webcam.