Rogers-based solar energy company Shine Solar announced Wednesday (Jan. 13) it’s hired David Chidester as its first chief financial officer adviser.
“After a lengthy and thorough vetting process, I’m thrilled that David will be joining Shine as our first CFO-level team member,” Shine Solar CEO Nick Gorden said in a statement. “David brings a level of accounting and financial sophistication, not to mention an impressive track record, that will put us on a path to a nine-figure revenue in 2021.”
As CFO Advisor for Shine Solar, Chidester will work with the company’s controller in Arkansas from his home in Salt Lake City, said Jason Fulp, communications manager for Shine Solar. Chidester will play a key role in the development of strategic planning and growth opportunities for the company, according to a news release. The position is a part-time role and functions the same as a regular CFO, Fulp said.
Chidester, a certified public accountant, has more than 20 years of financial experience that includes 10 years as a senior executive in some of the fastest-growing companies in the United States, the news release shows. He was chief financial officer of Overstock.com and helped to build, grow and take the company public in 2002 by raising more than $400 million in capital. He also was senior vice president of finance at MediConnect Global in Sandy, Utah, and was instrumental in growing the business from $25 million to $100 million before it was sold to Verisk Analytics in 2012 for $375 million. Most recently, he was an investor in real estate and venture capital, specifically for early-stage technology companies.
“I am honored to begin working with Nick and the wonderful team at Shine Solar,” Chidester said. “They have amazing growth potential and bring a unique approach to the highly competitive residential solar industry. I feel fortunate that I can utilize my financial background and experience to help continue their momentum and assist with their aggressive 2021 initiatives.”
Chidester has a bachelor’s degree in accounting and an MBA from the University of Utah, where he serves on the advisory board for the Accounting School. He also serves as a board member at Neuroworx, a nonprofit physical therapy clinic for people with neurological conditions.
Shine Solar recently opened a satellite office in Pleasant Grove, Utah. The office is expected to eventually employ nearly 60 full-time sales workers. It will mirror the existing sales team in Rogers and work to acquire and process new solar sales in the four states Shine Solar operates: Arkansas, Missouri, Oklahoma and Tennessee. All business will be conducted over the phone with no Utah-based sales or door-to-door solicitation.
“We are excited to be coming to Utah,” Gorden said. “I’ve lived in Utah. I started my family and launched my first business there. I know the people, and there is a strong pool of high-quality, professional sales talent for us to draw on. As in Arkansas, Utah residents are driven, intelligent, dedicated to excellence and have a strong work ethic. I know this will make an ideal place for us to grow long-term.”
In 2016, brothers Nick and Caleb Gorden founded Shine Solar. It has grown to one of the largest solar installers in the region and also offers heating and cooling and home energy efficiency services through its Shine Air and Shine Home divisions. The company has 189 employees.