Robert Phocas

Sustainability Director, City Manager’s Office, City of Charlotte

Rob serves as the sustainability director for the City of Charlotte, an organization of 7,000+ staff and a City with nearly 800,000 residents.  He supports a variety of internal and external programs in the energy, environment and sustainability spaces. Example internal initiatives include the implementation, and continued evolution, of the Internal Environmental Operations Plan (IEOP).  The IEOP sets, measures and reports out on goals from fleet to energy efficiency, employee commuting to green procurement practices.  The Sustainability office has developed an online dashboard to report out to the public the results of the plan and its continued evolution.  Externally, Rob works very closely with Envision Charlotte and other community entities to advance Charlotte’s sustainability goals.  

Rob’s work with Envision Charlotte, one of the leading urban smart city programs, has evolved into the creation of the North End Smart District.  A 3.6 square mile area north of Uptown Charlotte with a vision to become a vibrant center for economic development and job growth with a great quality of life fueled by data, innovative technologies, and collaboration, on a foundation of equitable community engagement.  Rob’s smart city efforts also include managing an internal smart cities cabinet, which consists of city staff from several departments leading smart city projects.

From 2010-2013, Rob lead the City’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program, which developed and implemented seventeen projects for the City as well as the community.  These programs ranged from the development of an electric vehicle program to a commercial building energy efficiency retrofit program.  He is also leading smart city efforts locally, nationally and internationally.