Russel Smith has 33 years experience in the renewable energy industry promoting renewable energy issues in Texas. Russel Smith helped found the educational non-profit Texas Solar Energy Society (TXSES) in 1976 and became Executive Director of TXSES in 1978, a position he held until 1992.  Smith co-founded the Texas Renewable Energy Industries Association (TREIA) trade association in 1984 and has served as its Executive Director from 1986 to present. His experience includes; working with governmental, educational and non-profit boards, and serving on state committees and task forces promoting the development of Texas’ solar, wind, biomass, geothermal and hydro resources. Smith is a registered lobbyist on behalf of Renewable Energy Industry initiatives in Texas.

Smith was the recipient of the American Solar Energy Society’s first National Achievement Award – Chapter Level in 1994. He chaired the Texas Energy Education Development Project for high school students for fifteen years. He has organized numerous renewable energy events including statewide, regional, and national conferences, trade shows, forums, and workshops. He has participated in several State energy planning processes, policy development summits, and initiatives. Smith also formed the Rural Alliance for Renewable Energy (RARE), a collaboration of state agencies, educational institutions, non-profit associations and industry representatives which is now a program of the Texas Department of Rural Affairs.