Bright Employee: Michael Brusic, Technical Director


Michael BrusicWe’re proud of the intelligent, passionate, and hardworking people that make up the Bright Power team. Each month, you’ll get a chance to meet one of them, understand how they contribute to the organization, and what makes them excited to come to work every day.

Meet Michael Brusic, Technical Director.

What are some of the things you like most about working at Bright Power?
Bright Power has allowed me to indulge my curiosity with a fascinating breadth of projects. In the last two weeks I’ve troubleshot variable speed drives on a cooling tower in Manhattan, kicked off repairs on a standing column well geothermal system in the Bronx, scoped out the fire protection system for an energy storage project in Brooklyn, and helped lobby for changes to New York State’s energy policies on distributed generation. I don’t think I’d get to do all that – and more – anywhere else. Bright Power encourages curiosity, and our leadership gives us the space and freedom to pursue interests like these because they understand that doing so will only grow our experience and capabilities.

I also feel fortunate that the impact of our work goes far beyond saving energy.  Improving the spaces where people live and work can help to reverse historical injustices and improve lives.

What are some projects and accomplishments you’re most proud of?
There’s a project we’ve been developing for almost four years that is closing on its construction financing this month. It will be one of the largest deep-energy retrofit projects on affordable housing in New York City. It will involve fuel conversion, a new heating plant, controls, rehabilitation of the ventilation system, lighting, and distributed generation. At the conclusion of the project, Bright Power will be acting as the complex’s energy manager to help make sure that the project remains a success post-construction. I see that as a culmination of many different services that Bright Power provides.

I’m also proud to be able to work on our distributed generation projects, many of which are helping to define the business case for, and drive forward the regulation of, complex multi-technology distributed generation.

Finally, I am honored to have served as the official commissioning agent for Bright Power’s new kegerator system and am excited about our plans to take it partially off-grid.

What’s the one service offering we have that you think is the most beneficial to clients and why?
Though it’s hard to pick, I think our commissioning and retro-commissioning services are unique. The goal of these services is not to deliver a product, but to deliver performance. Many traditional architectural and engineering firms don’t take responsibility for how a building performs operationally. There is tremendous value in having someone on your team who is willing to take the responsibility of both ensuring that the systems that were designed are installed and set up correctly, and also to ensure that they continue to operate effectively and efficiently. I think this can and has been valuable to our clients.

What are some of your hopes for the future of Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) and Value of Distributed Energy Resources (VDER) in NYC?
REV, and the sub-efforts of VDER, represent a tremendous leap into the unknown for New York State and for the energy industry globally. I’m concerned about how fast the first phase of VDER was put into place and about possible negative impacts to the solar industry in New York State. But in the long term, I think the state’s willingness to “move fast and break things” represents an opportunity to revolutionize how a vast spectrum of technologies interact with energy markets. I hope that the State and the many diverse stakeholders in the REV proceeding will work together to tackle the vast amount of work that will be necessary in the coming years to do REV and VDER correctly with just the right amount of disruption.