I’m Jen Helms, an entrepreneur living in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am currently working to launch Shade Power, a solar energy company that builds solar pergolas and carports. Our customers have either maxed out their roof space with solar but need more energy or have roofs that aren’t conducive for installing solar. I also host a podcast, Impact Drivers, that explores how entrepreneurs can build more innovative companies by showcasing innovative entrepreneurs’ work. I also invite other experts onto the show that can help answer that question.
Previously, I started an educational games company that built games based on natural language processing technology. Our games won awards for their engaging and innovative learning mechanics. While working on Playmation Studios, I realized a need to build more community in the space and launched the Intentional Play Summit, a conference that brought in over 30 speakers from across the country to explore games and emerging technologies that promote learning and social impact. I have an MBA from Northwestern’s Kellogg School of Management where I focused my studies on entrepreneurship, strategy, and social enterprise. Prior to Kellogg I lived in Yosemite National Park. I worked as the Director of Operations of an educational nonprofit that served 14,000 participants annually from 300 schools throughout California. In Yosemite I also co-founded Sustainable Action, a nonprofit bicycle lending program. I hold a B.A. from Indiana University and graduated with high distinction.