JB Straubel was the co-founder of Tesla Motors and former Chief Technical Officer (CTO) of Tesla Motors. Straubel now holds the active role of senior advisor at Tesla.
At Tesla, Straubel managed the technical direction and engineering design of Tesla products including battery technology, power electronics, motors, software, firmware and controls. Straubel also created and managed many important Tesla initiatives including: the Tesla Energy business providing grid storage for commercial utilities and residential consumers; the worldwide Tesla Supercharger network of fast DC chargers; and the Tesla Gigafactory which is leading the way toward increasing worldwide battery production and lowering the cost per kWh.
Straubel is now co-founder and CEO of Redwood Materials. Redwood Materials is a circular economy startup that focuses on recycling complex materials such as batteries as the world transitions to electric vehicles and sustainable transportation.
In addition to his work at Tesla, Straubel has served on the Board of Directors for Solar City, the leading US residential solar company, since their founding. He is also a lecturer at his alma mater, Stanford University, where he created and teaches an engineering class and lab focused on energy storage integration (CEE 176C) in the Engineering Department.
Straubel has had a lifelong interest in electric vehicles, including rebuilding an electric gold cart at the age of 14, building an Electric Porsche 944 that held a world EV racing record, solar car racing and building a hybrid trailer system that he designed while in college. In 2008 the MIT Technology Review chose Straubel as “#1 Innovator of 35 under 35 for the year”. In 2009 DesignNews named him “Engineer of the Year”. And in 2015 he was listed as #2 on Fortune’s 40 under 40 most influential business and innovation leaders. Straubel is an inventor of over 30 patents covering most areas of Tesla’s core battery, motor and controls systems.