Meet the six winners of this year’s Bethesda Magazine Green Awards, held in partnership with Bethesda Green
The Energy Savers
After the economic downturn in 2008, Brad and Debbie Dockser saw the real estate and private equity markets scrambling to reduce operating expenses. They noticed that one key item was often overlooked: energy costs.
The couple saw an opportunity to be a one-stop shop for property owners looking for solutions—not just products—to reduce their energy consumption. The Docksers wanted to leverage new technology and provide energy expertise to clients in an integrated, seamless way. In 2011, they created Green Generation Solutions, which analyzes and improves the ways a facility uses electricity, water, steam and gas.
Brad Dockser, a Bethesda native and Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School alum, met his wife, Debbie, while both were working in commercial real estate in Chicago. Now, she focuses on the marketing side of Green Generation Solutions while he works on strategic growth. Today, the company has 30 employees at its offices in Bethesda, London and Tokyo. Revenue has grown about 100 percent a year since the business launched, and the firm recently doubled its office space in Bethesda to accommodate an expanding staff of mostly engineers and project managers, Brad says.
Green Generation Solutions works with private businesses and public facilities, including local clients such as Sunrise Senior Living, The Carlyle Group and Woodmont Country Club. A team typically reviews every system on-site, looking for ways improvements can be made, from lighting to smart control systems to heating and cooling equipment. The company tracks data to measure energy usage before and after the project to demonstrate the cost savings.
“At the heart is the belief [that] energy efficiency can drive value and cash flow,” Brad says.
Green Generation Solutions recently analyzed the 40-year-old Julia Bindeman Suburban Center at Washington Hebrew Congregation in Potomac and recommended changes to boost its energy efficiency. In 2016, the center added high-efficiency LED lighting, controls to automate lighting, and variable frequency drives to adjust cooling tower fans in response to demand, with financing from Pepco and the Maryland Energy Administration’s EmPOWER program covering about 55 percent of the $486,000 project. The result: a 20 percent savings in annual energy costs, about $45,000 each year.
Caralee Adams is a freelance writer in Bethesda.