A solar energy installation done by a company founded by alumnus Troy Van Beek was recently recognized as “solar project of the year” by Solar Builder magazine as a result of reader voting and was featured on the cover of the November/December 2016 issue.

In addition, Mr. Van Beek, founder and CEO of Ideal Energy, is one of 40 leaders in Iowa selected to participate in the 2016-2017 Leadership Iowa program.

The project earning recognition by Solar Builder magazine involved repurposing a former school building into a 39-unit apartment complex, powered by a 300-kW solar array. The array included a 100-kW carport and a 200-kW installation on the roof.

Mr. Van Beek was selected for Leadership Iowa because of his demonstrated leadership, his contribution to the community and the profession, and his potential for future leadership in Iowa.

He founded Ideal Energy in 2009, and it has grown into one of the leading solar companies in the Midwest, installing solar energy systems for residents, businesses, farms, communities, and utilities. The company engineers, designs, installs, and maintains high-quality solar installations.

Sponsored by the Iowa Association of Business and Industry Foundation, Leadership Iowa seeks to instill passion in current and emerging leaders while fostering a high level of civic engagement.

At the opening retreat for new participants held in Red Oak, Iowa, Steve Langerud, MUM dean of admissions, served as the facilitator.