Margo has over 20 years of experience building innovative solutions and opportunities for underserved communities.  Margo has been instrumental in TEPRI’s success since 2014, helping conceptualize and launch TEPRI in 2014, and serving as a member of the TEPRI Board since 2015, most recently as the Board’s Chair.

Margo is the founding Partner at City Lights Group, a strategic consulting firm established in 2011.  Margo’s work focuses on the nexus of entrepreneurship and social mission. She works with private and public sector clients to create strategic roadmaps, devise revenue and capital models, and conceptualize and build new impact programs. She has devised programs to address a variety of social, health, and economic needs, created social investment tools for philanthropists, and devised strategic roadmaps for public, corporate and nonprofit enterprises.

Prior to starting City Lights Group, Margo was a founder and CEO at PeopleFund, a statewide CDFI in Texas that finances small business and social ventures. Under her 15-year leadership, PeopleFund grew to a nationally recognized and award-winning CDFI and thought leader on economic opportunity, housing, and social entrepreneurship. PeopleFund produced an annual Economic Summit and created PeopleTrust, Texas’ first affordable housing land trust.  To date, PeopleFund has invested more than $130 million in underserved communities.

Margo has also served as an adjunct professor at the LBJ School of Public Affairs and the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin, where she has taught graduate level courses on designing effective community initiatives and impact investing.

A champion of innovative ideas, Margo has authored numerous editorials and reports, including the chapter on small business and entrepreneurship for “The NEXT American Opportunity: Good Policies for a Great America.” She has provided leadership on national and local boards, including the National CDFI Coalition and the Texas Association of Community Development Corporations. She has also served as Chairwoman for the Austin Mayor’s Small Business Task Force, and as a member of the Mayor’s Task Force on Institutional Racism in Finance/Banking.

Margo has received extensive recognition for her work, including the Exceptional Executive Leadership Award (Austin Community Foundation); “Profiles in Power” winner (Austin Business Journal); Social Entrepreneur of the Year (Ernst & Young); and “Austinite of the Year” (Austin Under 40).

Additionally, Margo was chosen as a distinguished German Marshall Fellow, which prepares leaders across the U.S. and Europe to participate in transatlantic relations.

Samantha has been with TEPRI since our formation.  She worked with TEPRI founder Becky Klein at the organization’s predecessor Power Across Texas. Samantha manages TEPRI’s programs, projects, and operations as well as communications initiatives.

Samantha is no stranger to wearing many hats and running multiple projects. She oversees TEPRI business operations by mixing her talent for strategy development and problem solving with a unique spirit of excellence.  By combining her strengths in communication, campaign management, and organizational and strategy development, Samantha creates results and provides focus and execution to deliver high return on engagement. Samantha’s reputation is defined by her ability to help lead an organization to succeed by understanding unique needs and developing strategy and implementation plans.

In addition to TEPRI, Samantha manages an association of the nation’s largest public power utilities, works with a higher education research center in Texas and a runs a small public affairs firm.

Prior to joining the TEPRI, Samantha was an account manager in the interactive industry where she successfully ran local and state-wide interactive campaigns. Samantha has over 10 years of experience in business management including communications, development, event planning, nonprofits and public relations.

A native Texan, Samantha was raised on the Gulf Coast before moving to Austin to attended the University of Texas where she received her bachelor of science in public relations.  In her spare time, Samantha owns and operates a wedding and special events venue in Buda, Texas.

Andrew received his master’s in global policy studies (MGPS) from the LBJ School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin in May 2020. His primary concentrations were on energy and environmental policy issues, both from a global perspective and with a focus on the Texas oil and gas industry. Andrew also focused on issues pertaining to climate migration in Oceania, water systems in Mexico City, and the environmental impacts of the global waste stream. He also received his bachelor’s of business administration (BBA) in marketing and international business with a minor in German from the University of Georgia in 2015.

Prior to joining the TEPRI team, Andrew worked for the Texas Senate Research Center during the 87th Texas Legislative Session. During his undergraduate studies, Andrew had the opportunity to work for both a Berlin-based international consultancy and at the United States Embassy in Berlin. Andrew also worked for a small digital marketing consultancy in Durango, CO. He is a native of Atlanta, GA and enjoys international travel and outdoor adventures.

Tiffany Wu is a senior project manager for the Texas Energy Poverty Research Institute (TEPRI). Tiffany is dedicated to deploying distributed energy resources (DERs) in low-income communities to improve energy affordability and resiliency. She leads efforts in piloting virtual power plants (VPPs) for multifamily housing and community resiliency hubs.

In her previous role, she was a Department of Energy Solar Energy Innovation Fellow and an advisor to Commissioner Will McAdams on DER policies at the Public Utility Commission of Texas. She helped create and manage the Aggregate Distributed Energy Resources (ADER) Task Force and pilot program and participated in policy discussions and actions related to DER operations, resiliency, and reliability in Texas. She spent 10 years developing and deploying carbon capture projects for Mitsubishi Heavy Industries as a process engineer, commissioning engineer, and a business development manager.

She holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering, a Master of Public Affairs, and an M.S. in Energy and Earth Resources from The University of Texas at Austin. For her master’s research, she quantified diversity of generation resources for each state in the U.S. and interviewed experts on resiliency issues considered during ERCOT’s market restructure.

Taylor Neal

Taylor Neal joined the TEPRI team in September 2021. Having worked in the nonprofit world, they understand the complexities and hard work it takes to build a vision to help others. Taylor’s talents lie in executing vision. From operations management to donor relations to social media and visual design, Taylor can wear many hats to get the job done.

They earned their bachelor’s degree in History with a focus in curatorial practices and museum leadership from Texas State University. After graduation they moved to New York City for a couple of years where they were shaped by the mosaic of people, culture, and most importantly, food! Some of Taylor’s greatest strengths are a can-do attitude and ability to think on their feet.

Taylor prioritizes coming along side businesses to provide organization and execution of everyday goals that pave the way to success.

Quality time with friends and hiking with their dog Augustine, are their favorite after work activities, often combining both while exploring the Green Belt in Austin, TX.