Downstream Clean Energy
& Advanced Materials

Paul Nelson, Managing Partner


Mr. Paul Nelson has over 25 years of energy, entrepreneurial, management and research experience.  He formed Saoradh Energy Partners in 2010 and currently is its Managing Partner. He is a board or advisory board member for various organizations. From time-to-time he takes on operating roles with portfolio companies and for Saoradh projects.  

From 2003 to 2010, Mr. Nelson was engaged in efforts to develop key aspects of the Colorado clean energy and technologies ecosystem.  These included the original legislative effort to create and fund the Colorado Energy Research Collaboratory; holding the founding Managing Director position at the Center for Revolutionary Solar Photoconversion (CRSP, a research center among NREL, CSU, CSM, CU-Boulder and industry participants); developing the industry interface at the Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI); and, being a founding board member for the Colorado Cleantech Industry Association. He raised millions of dollars to support these organizations.

In 1989, Mr. Nelson began his career in the energy industry at Julander Energy Company, where he led various natural gas related projects including a study for the Colorado Oil and Gas Association.  He was a member of the team that launched Natural Fuels Company, an unregulated joint venture led by Xcel Energy (XEL: NYSE) that also included Colorado Interstate Gas Company and Julander.  In 2000, he founded Blue Energy & Technologies LLC, raised strategic and venture capital and acquired Natural Fuels and the Alternative Fuels Division from TXU Energy.  He sold Blue Energy to ENRG Fuels in 2003 and the combined company was renamed Clean Energy Fuels (CLNE: NASDAQ).


Mr. Nelson received the Colorado Governor’s Award for Excellence in Cleantech Leadership in 2011, a special award from the president of CU and Director of RASEI at CU-Boulder in 2010, the Physical Science/Engineering/IT Business Advisor of the Year award from the CU Technology Transfer Office in 2008, and the NGVAmerica lifetime achievement award in 1998.


Mr. Nelson holds a B.S. in Business-Finance, a B.A. in Chemistry with a minor in biochemistry, and a research M.S. in Chemistry (thesis: evaluation of tris(tetrachlorosemiquinonate)iron(III) as a water oxidation catalyst) – all from the University of Colorado at Boulder.  He is an author on various professional papers and is a member of the American Chemical Society.