ComEd Program Helps 100 Year Old Black-Owned Business with Expansion
“I just love the industry, I love the work, I love seeing what I do matter and just seeing the results of my work every day as you drive through the city,” she said.
Harston is the Project Coordinator for Taylor Electric Co. and a former IBEW Local 134 Journeyman. Taylor Electric Co. is Black-owned, family-owned, and was founded in 1922. Harston has been tasked with expanding the company’s service and maintenance department.
Harston recently graduated from the 2023 ComEd Energy Efficiency Service Provider (EESP) Incubator Program. She found it very helpful because it helped Taylor Electric Co. with networking and allowed them to learn about the ComEd incentives, which they will pass on to their customers.
Taylor Electric Co. was one of 27 businesses that participated in this year’s ComEd’s Energy Efficiency Service Provider (EESP) Incubator Program. The program was created in 2019. The goal of the program is to support the development of diverse contractors, while offering them training and education on ComEd’s Energy Efficiency Program offerings.
The program is geared toward minority-owned, women-owned and veteran-owned businesses. Participants in the program received one-on-one assistance with certification applications, building relationships with project financing lenders and creating business growth plans. They also received support in identifying, addressing and resolving barriers to developing a successful business in the energy efficiency industry.
Harston was assigned Merrick Trossman, owner of Windy City Lighting, as a mentor. He gave her a good plan of attack to service Taylor Electric Co.’s current customers. That insight from him was an encouragement that she could offer Taylor’s customer the same incentives.
“It was great because he knew where we were coming from, even though our company is a lot larger than his. Knowing that in the future that we can possibly do some work together, it was encouraging,” Harston said.
Harston is trying to expand Taylor’s service and maintenance department to have more diverse funding coming into the company, as well as the desire to offer the customers a lot more precise services and energy efficiencies. Taylor Electric Co. is retrofitting lightings and installing electric vehicle chargers around the city.
Harston was grateful for the opportunity to go through the ComEd Energy Efficiency Service Provider (EESP) Incubator Program. She encourages other minority and women-owned businesses in the energy field to participate.
“I think it’s very helpful, not only for business growth, but also to serve the communities that we are in. Because we are a minority business, we can offer these types of incentives to our own community,” Harston said.
For more information about the 2023 ComEd Energy Efficiency Service Provider (EESP) Incubator Program, visit https://diverseproviderprogram.com. For more information about Taylor Electric Co., visit taylorelectricco.com.
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