This week I am thrilled to talk to Angela Tucci, Uplight’s new Chief Operating Officer, or COO about why she’s joining right at this important time in the energy industry, her impressive background, and a bit on what she does outside of work.
Why are you excited to join Uplight?
After my last job, I wrote a list of wants for my future job which included: a mission-based organization so the work matters, great people to work with, the ability to learn and grow, a place where I could apply my strengths, a team-focus over individual focus and a fit with my values. And on a practical matter, I wanted to be able to drive to work most days. In my past roles, I’ve traveled up to 50 weeks, yep, 50 weeks in a year, and that’s not great for family or much of anything for that matter!
Uplight truly topped the list in every one of these categories–and the fact Uplight is a B-corp is a bonus! I feel so very lucky as I never expected to find all of those attributes in one company.
This appears to be your first foray into clean energy. Why now for joining this industry?
I have two primary reasons for wanting to work in the energy industry right now. First, at this point in my career I want to be in a mission-based business so that my work truly matters. Many companies have a mission, but those missions don’t focus on pressing world problems. Finding a business dedicated to making the world a better place is so rare that I was considering a non-profit role.
The second reason is that I want to work for a business where my step-kids are proud of me for having a real impact. At 9 & 10 they worry about the planet that will be left to them and the impact of climate change will have on their lives.
What unique perspective do you envision bringing to Uplight’s Exec Squad?
I can help guide Uplight’s growth by what I sometimes call “knowing the next chapters in the book.” Having worked in growing companies in the private/public markets, I’m familiar with scaling operations – the next chapters for us – across multiple functions. Nonetheless, having also started companies, I have a strong appreciation for the entrepreneurial spirit and not over complicating things. I can respect our roots while helping craft our operational future to scale.
I’m excited to see that you are on the board for AnitaB.org, which strives to help women in tech succeed. Tell me about your involvement and why you were drawn to this organization.
I’ve been on the board for AnitaB.org for eight years and will be the Chairperson this year. This year we had over 25,000 women in Orlando for the annual Grace Hopper Celebration, a technical conference. Despite the increased awareness regarding gender equity in tech, women and minorities are still grossly underrepresented in STEM. I donate my time to AnitaB.org to help the mission of 50-50 gender equity in tech by 2025. It’s a moonshot for sure, but AnitaB.org is going for it.
What will be your first initiative at Uplight?
If you believe Ben Horowitz’s “The Hard Things About Hard Things” as I do, the order of priority is People, Products & Profits in that order. The first thing is to build a foundation of trust and collaboration with our leadership. One of the fastest ways of building trust is making and meeting commitments and we have no shortage of those!
What was your first job?
My first income was umpiring summer league softball as a high schooler in the summers. And then my first job in college was doing laser tissue interaction research and blind eye studies in New Britain, CT. I was a total laser geek earlier in my career!
What is your favorite place to travel to?
Glacier National Park and the Many Glacier Hotel… it’s so breathtaking to stay there and hike. The flowers, the animals, the vistas — stunning.
Anything interesting that you’d like to note?
I’ve lived in every C-state.
Check out the press release.