About Us

Who We Are

Texas PACE Authority is a nonprofit organization that advances Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) projects in Texas by administering a uniform commercial and industrial PACE program on behalf of local governments. This model approach ensures local governments can establish an effective TX-PACE program quickly and economically, providing a tool for property owners to invest in more efficient infrastructure.

The PACE Act, Chapter 399 of the Texas Local Government Code, is a local adoption model authorizing counties and municipalities to work with the private sector to finance qualified improvements using contractual assessments voluntarily imposed on the property by the owner. After the passage of the PACE Act in June of 2013, a nonprofit business association called Keeping PACE in Texas organized a coalition of more than 100 stakeholders, made up of capital providers, property owners, contractors, industry trade associations, and local government authorities. Together they created uniform standards, documentation, and best practices for PACE financing programs in Texas. The user-friendly toolkit was coined “PACE in a Box” and has been unanimously adopted by every local government establishing a TX-PACE program. Texas PACE Authority currently administers the use of “PACE in a Box” in ALL of the active Texas PACE programs.

Texas PACE Authority is committed to expand this vibrant program to every region in Texas, working with all parties – property owners, contractors, lenders, and local governments to bring energy and water improvements that are both economically sound and environmentally friendly.

Texas PACE Authority is funded through user fees and grants and does not compete with the private sector.


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Charlene Heydinger, President

Charlene Heydinger also serves as the executive director of Keeping PACE in Texas, the trade association created in 2012 to promote Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing in Texas. Ms. Heydinger is a public affairs strategist.

Charlene worked on Capitol Hill for over nine years and then as vice president and Washington counsel for ABC, Inc. She also served as executive director of the Morton and Angela Topfer Family Foundation. Ms. Heydinger is a member of the Texas, Washington, DC, and Michigan Bar Associations.


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Jonathon Blackburn, Managing Director

Prior to moving to Austin, Jonathon lived in the UK and worked for a venture and commercialization firm developing technology startups. He co-founded a University of Cambridge spin-out that is building a mobile clean energy storage system.  Jonathon started his career as an engineer at the electric utility Southern Company in environmental and energy policy, before moving to its wholesale division developing some of Southern’s first utility-scale renewable energy power plants.

Jonathon holds graduate degrees from the University of Cambridge and Duke University. He also has a BS in Chemical Engineering from Mississippi State University.


Amy Vanderbilt, Operations and Compliance Manager

With her diverse background and exceptional organizational skills, Amy brings a high level of efficiency to our daily operations and compliance program. She has over 20 years of experience in office management, accounting, and administrative support in a variety of industries, including government relations, fitness, electrical signage, and screen printing. Amy holds a Bachelor of Science from The University of Texas at Austin.


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Bridget Branch, Regional Program Manager (North Texas)

Bridget, a native of Las Vegas, recently relocated to the Dallas/Fort Worth metroplex. She comes to Texas Pace Authority from Susan G. Komen Nevada with extensive relationship building and fundraising experience. She spent 20 years in banking, a majority of it with Bank of America as a Vice President, Client Manager in Business Banking. Bridget developed a passion for community service and volunteerism while serving as the Vice President of the Bank of America Volunteer Network. She is enthusiastic, energetic, driven and ready to make strides in her new hometown.

Bridget has a Bachelor’s degree in Human Services with an emphasis in Human Services Administration.


Marina Badoian-Kriticos, Regional Program Advisor (Southeast Texas)

Marina serves as a member of Texas PACE Authority through HARC (Houston Advanced Research Center). Previously at the Institute for Market Transformation, Marina was a City Energy Project Senior City Advisor where she focused on expanding energy and water efficiency in the built environment and helped the City of Houston develop programs and policies that will lead to a healthier and more prosperous city. As the Sustainability Director for the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), Marina drove sustainability initiatives and developed tools for market innovation.


Deborah Camp, Creative Director

Deborah is the driving force behind the Texas PACE Authority brand. She has been working professionally as a graphic designer for 6 years. Before joining the Texas PACE Authority, Deborah received her Bachelor of Arts degree with an emphasis in graphic design from Texas A&M Corpus Christi.


Board Members

  • Steve Block, secretary
  • Michael Gromacki
  • John Hall
  • Charlene Heydinger, president
  • Penny Redington

Advisory Committee

  • Hon. Kip Averitt
  • Tony Bennett
  • Hon. Warren Chisum
  • Kathey Ferland
  • Debbie Kimberly
  • Luke Legate
  • Steve Minick
  • Terrie Salinas
  • Carlton Schwab

PACE in a Box

To expedite the establishment of local PACE programs in Texas and to facilitate a consistent, state-wide approach to PACE design and implementation, Keeping PACE in Texas, a nonprofit non-partisan association, organized a broad-based coalition of more than 130 stakeholders to develop a free toolkit for local governments to use in creating and implementing their PACE programs.

The toolkit, known as “PACE in a Box,” contains all of the design elements, documents, and implementation steps necessary for a local government to establish an effective PACE program quickly and economically. PACE in a Box is the first and only PACE program designed by market stakeholders. The open-market model creates a uniform, user-friendly, sustainable and scalable PACE program for Texas.

Find PACE in a Box at www.KeepingPACEinTexas.org

Texas PACE Authority’s Commitment
to being a Sustainable Business

The Texas PACE Authority is committed to leading Austin’s community as a sustainable green business. To find out more about AGBL and CityofAustin_AGBL_Logo_Gold_143C_RGB_how to join the program visit the website here:

Austin Green Business Leaders

Start Saving Energy, Water and Money Now

For more information about adopting a PACE program in your region, taking advantage of the program, or volunteering to educate municipalities and other stakeholders, visit the website: