Bill Hilliard, CEO
Bill has been an operating manager and/or private investor in clean technology, real estate, specialty finance, and technology for over 30 years. He is an inventor or co-inventor named on 14 issued US patents. Bill has had 3 successful exits as either a CEO or senior team member.
He founded Sonnetech Ltd. (now part of VeriSign) and served as CEO until its acquisition. Prior to that, he served as a senior executive at two technology companies during their initial public offerings (MicroTouch Systems and Phoenix Technologies). Bill was also the co-founder of CleanREIT Partners, a formative-stage solar REIT/YieldCo; and Residential Growth Partners, a real estate investment fund launched in partnership with Lewis Ranieri (father of the modern mortgage market). Together with Martin Sances, one of EcoVolt Solar’s Advisors, Bill is a minority owner in Solaris Technology Industry Inc., an online seller of solar panels and related components.
Bill has been a board member or observer representing investors in 2 venture-backed firms, and is a member of the North American Executive Board for MIT’s Sloan School of Management. He is a member of the American Solar Energy Society; IREC, the Interstate Renewable Energy Council; the U.S. Green Building Council, CalSEIA, the California Solar Energy Industries Association; the MIT Sloan Solar Financing Roundtable, Angels Forum and the Band of Angels. In March 2010, Bill briefed the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation about solar project financing issues.
Bill earned a Master's degree in management from MIT’s Sloan School of Management; and a Bachelor’s degree in mathematical economics from Pomona College. Concurrent with his business career, he was appointed as a Visiting Scholar at Wharton and at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. Bill’s academic contributions were published in the Journal of Business Venturing, Venture Capital Journal, Knowledge@Wharton, and Wharton Magazine.