Richard Kauffman has over 30 years of experience as an investor, corporate executive, and government official, with a focus on clean energy, clean technologies, and climate change.
Until recently, Mr. Kauffman served as the Chairman of Energy and Finance for New York State, where he oversaw the State’s energy agencies and led the comprehensive energy policy for the State’s energy transition, including its commitment to 100% carbon-free power by 2040. He continues to serve as Chair of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and the New York Green Bank, which is the principal entity for implementing the State’s clean energy deployment policies.
In 2015, Mr. Kauffman served as New York’s lead delegate in Paris at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP21), and in 2017 and 2018, he represented the US government on energy issues in Brazil, Nepal, and Norway. Prior to joining the New York State government, Mr. Kauffman served as Senior Advisor to Secretary Steven Chu at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), where he oversaw the restructuring of DOE’s Loan and the development of debt and equity capital markets policies, including uses of REITs and MLPs for renewable energy.
In his career in finance and investing, Mr. Kauffman was CEO and President of Good Energies, a leading investor in clean energy technologies; a partner of Goldman Sachs where he chaired the Global Financing Group and served on the Partnership and Commitments Committees; and Vice Chairman of Morgan Stanley’s Institutional Securities business and co-head of its Banking Department. In London, he served as Vice Chair of Morgan Stanley International.
Mr. Kauffman has served on numerous corporate Boards, including as Chairman of the Board of Levi Strauss & Co. and as a member of the Board of Q-Cells, a major German solar manufacturer. He is currently on the Board of Altaba, the successor company of Yahoo! Inc.
As a non-profit board member, he currently serves on the board of the Wallace Foundation and on the advisory board of the Precourt Energy Institute at Stanford. He previously served on the boards of the Brookings Institution, the Wildlife Conservation Society, the New York Philharmonic, and Alvin Ailey. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and currently serves on a study group on energy.
Mr. Kauffman received a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University, a master’s degree in international relations from Yale University, and a master’s in public and private management from the Yale School of Management.