When Jeff Finn began working on EV policy back in 2008, when the only mainstream EV on the road was a high-performance, high-priced sports car, he quickly learned a lesson: things take time. Since then, he has learned the ins and outs of getting EV policy implemented.
His story begins in 2007 when he was motivated to have a car with twice the mileage of his Prius. So, Finn converted his Chevy Metro to an EV and named it VoltRunner, an EV that now resides at the Historic Electric Vehicle Foundation museum.
In his early days of policy work on EVs, Finn shares how much of the action was opportunistic; because the technology and the market were so young, it was difficult to get policies passed, so Finn and other local advocates jumped at openings where they appeared. He also expresses the importance of educating policymakers who often know little about EVs, despite them becoming mainstream vehicles today. He advises developing strong relationships with local representatives, reaching out to them before the legislative session begins, and focusing on the economic benefits of EV policies, as budget issues are often their primary focus.
In conversation with Finn, he shares his philosophies about how to successfully advocate for EV policies, both practically with advice on working with legislatures, and personally with how he finds meaning and patience in his efforts.