ABOUT US

HOURCAR has been changing the way Minneapolis and Saint Paul get around since 2005. Originally launched as a project under the Neighborhood Energy Connection, in June 2017, HOURCAR became its own, fully independent, nonprofit organization. To date, HOURCAR has a fleet of 47 hub-based vehicles available at 42 hubs. 

In February 2019, HOURCAR announced a unique partnership in a new, landmark electric vehicle transportation network with the cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, amongst others. Originally known as the Twin Cities Electric Vehicle Mobility Network, in 2022 new branding and project development began the EV Spot Network

On December 9, 2019, HOURCAR began pilot operations in the City of Rochester, expanding its operations beyond those in the Twin Cities for the first time ever.

HOURCAR prides itself as being a member of the Twin Cities community, driving transformational change in the way we work, live, and play. We celebrate the diversity of our team and are always working to reflect the values of our community. 

Mission

HOURCAR is a local shared-mobility nonprofit organization. We connect people to their communities with convenient, equitable, and sustainable multimodal transportation.

Values

We value sustainability, integrity, freedom, and equity.

Sustainability

We value socially and environmentally balanced and sustainable lifestyles.

Integrity

We value a responsible decision-making process informed by data, community input, and our values.

Freedom

We value the freedom to move within our communities, make new connections, and seek new experiences.

Equity

We value a fair transportation system that expands possibilities and enables more people to get where they need to go.

We strive to be helpful, imaginative, respectful, and effective.

Helpful

We do whatever we can to get our members where they need to go.

Imaginative

We generate new, unconventional ideas and bring them from concept to reality.

Respectful

We promote reciprocal respect between our staff, members, and community.

Effective

We use adaptable methods to achieve measurable goals. We evaluate our processes and ourselves in the pursuit of continuous improvement.

Our Board

President: Kevin Lawless

Principal, The Forward Curve

The vast majority of Kevin’s work life has been spent in the energy sector, mostly in the gas and electric utility industry. His career has focused on product development, business operations, business planning and large technology project management. Currently he is Principal at The Forward Curve LLC, a locally based consulting firm. The Forward Curve provides niche services to some of the largest gas and electric utilities across the country. These services focus on helping clients deliver excellence in energy efficiency, distributed energy services and smart grid applications.

Treasurer: Alexander Potter

Sr. Research Analyst, Piper Sandler Investment Bank

A principal and senior equity research analyst at Piper Sandler (formerly Piper Jaffray), Alex covers truck- and auto-related companies listed on the U.S. exchanges. Prior to joining Piper Sandler in early 2008, Potter worked as a Beijing-based consultant to the World Bank, Energy Foundation, and various other international organizations. He is fluent in Mandarin Chinese and holds degrees from St. Olaf College (bachelor’s degree, Asian studies) and the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Management (Master of Business Administration). Potter was a 2003 Fulbright Scholar at Peking University’s College of Environmental Sciences.

Secretary: Will Schroeer

Executive Director, East Metro Strong

Will is the Executive Director of East Metro Strong, a public-private partnership between counties, cities, and large employers in the eastern half of the Minneapolis-Saint Paul region. East Metro Strong works for public transit and sustainable transportation options that equitably improve quality of life, economic opportunity, and climate resilience, for all East Metro residents and businesses

Anjali Bains

Lead Director, Energy Access and Equity, Fresh Energy

Anjali joined Fresh Energy in November 2019 after spending five years in the solar industry, where she witnessed how federal and local policies shape market deployment. Most recently she worked at Sol Systems as its first dedicated project developer, where she secured permits and interconnection rights for five solar power plants in Maryland and Virginia while also leading its Diversity & Inclusion Committee. Prior to Sol she was a founding member of SunEdison’s rotation program, supporting the project finance and asset management teams. These experiences bolster her commitment to pragmatic and equitable clean energy policy. In September, 2021, Anjali stepped into a new role at Fresh Energy as our new Lead Director of Energy Access & Equity.

Anjali is a Clean Energy Leadership Institute fellow and graduated from Columbia University with a B.S. in Earth and Environmental Engineering. An avid cinephile, she enjoys studying filmmaking, writing, and exploring near and far-flung places on foot or by transit.

Saif Benjafaar

McKnight Distinguished Professor, Industrial and Systems Engineering Department, University of Minnesota

Saif is an internationally renowned leader in the field of operations management and supply chains. He is currently Distinguished McKnight University Professor at the University of Minnesota (one of the highest recognitions for a faculty member at the University of Minnesota). He is Director of the Initiative on the Sharing Economy, a university-wide initiative with participation from faculty in management, engineering, public policy, industrial ecology, and law. He is also Director of the Center for Supply Chain Research, Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering, Senior Faculty Scholar at the Center for Transportation Studies, and Fellow of the Institute on the Environment. He was the founding Head of Pillar (at the rank of Dean) for Engineering Systems and Design at Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), a new university established in collaboration with MIT. He was also Founding Director of

the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the University of Minnesota (formerly the Program in Industrial and Systems Engineering) which he led through a transformation from a small graduate program into a full-fledged department.

Susan Jepson

Cofounder, Hitch Health

Susan is an accomplished innovative executive leader with a track record of leading transformational change in healthcare through inspirational leadership. She possesses extensive strategy and product experience in the healthcare and financial services industry, as well as expertise in emerging strategies, innovation, and business and product development.

Susan Jepson joined HCMC in 2015 and co-founded Upstream Health Innovations. Upstream Health Innovations leverages a methodology called human-centered design. This research and design methodology develops solutions to problems by involving the human perspective in all steps of the problem-solving process to gain deep insights.

She is also the co-founder of Hitch Health, a patent-pending, proprietary software solution that integrates the Electronic Health Record and rideshare services, seamlessly removing transportation barriers and reducing “no show” rates by automatically syncing ride requests with medical appointments.

Meet the Team

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Our Leadership Team

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Paul Schroeder / CEO

Paul is a social entrepreneur and seasoned executive who has spent over two decades working in the nonprofit sector, with an emphasis on social enterprise and entrepreneurship. Before coming to HOURCAR, he founded and built a nonprofit social enterprise catering business in Portland, Oregon, providing employment training and placement to people looking for a second chance in the workforce. He is a published author whose latest book, Practice Makes PURPOSE, was released in the summer of 2017.

Melissa Summers / Business Operations Director

I need to work for something I believe is important, and to work with passionate people. Jobs should be fun and interesting, and should continuously challenge me to be creative.

Shannon Crabtree / Senior Planner & Community Development Manager

I believe that as a society, we can continually do a better job communicating with each other on issues that matter. Understanding the complexities of both urban and rural living drives me to understand, learn and push for change that will have a positive impact all communities. We only do better when we ALL do better.

Erin G / Member Services Manager

I help members. 

James Vierling / Product Marketing Manager

I do marketing.