Great holiday gift idea from Florida Trend!
Florida Trend
Get FREE Business News Updates


December 1, 2015
Business Profile: Mr. Solar


Crook blames slow business not on demand but on the expense of installing energy-efficient retrofits.

Green Trends

Business Profile: Mr. Solar

Lilly Rockwell | 11/4/2013

As one of just a handful of trained solar-energy installers in Miami-Dade County, electrical contractor Kent Crook expects to reap the rewards if the PACE program booms.

He first heard about PACE two years ago. “I thought, ‘this is perfect; this is great,’ ” Crook says. He had spent a few years learning all he could about how to install and repair solar-energy roofs and water heaters. He traveled the country and went to trade shows. But business was slow, which he blames not on lack of demand, but on the expense of installing energy-efficiency retrofits like solar roofs, and the state policy of buying surplus energy at wholesale rates instead of retail rates.

When Crook heard Ygrene’s Clean Energy Green Corridor was getting ready to open during the summer, he made a drastic change to his business. “I have geared up in the last three or four months,” he says. In addition to his Mr. Solar installation business, he also launched Dr. Solar, which will focus on repair and service work. He also started the Florida Solar Institute, which will train solar contractors. He charges $1,295 for a one-week class. “I have hired seven employees,” he says.

Crook says he makes most of his money from his electrical company and he has poured $100,000 of his own money into the solar energy businesses. “I’ve been burning through a lot of money,” Crook says, but he’s optimistic about PACE’s potential.

“We are the Sunshine State. We should have solar here in Florida,” he says.

Tags: Miami-Dade, Energy & Utilities, Environment, Housing/Construction, Real Estate, Technology/Innovation, Green Trends

Digital Access

Add digital to your current subscription, purchase a single digital issue, or start a new subscription to Florida Trend.

An overview of the features and articles in this month's issue of Florida Trend.


Florida Business News

Florida Trend Video Pick

Amazon teases new delivery drones
Amazon teases new delivery drones

Amazon released a new video of its plans for drones, showing off footage the huge Internet retailer says is the real deal as opposed to simulated video.

Earlier Videos | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

Ballot Box

Are the proceedings at the Global Climate Summit in Paris important to you?

  • Yes, I am very interested
  • I am following it some
  • No, doesn't interest me

See Results

Ballot Box