VC Associate @ Third Derivative in Basalt, CO

New technologies and business models are critically needed for the energy transition but suffer from inadequate investment. Third Derivative is a joint venture between RMI and New Energy Nexus that reimagines how early-stage cleantech is brought to market by combining an accelerator, 8+ integrated VC funds ($800M+ in capital), 15 global corporate partners (including Microsoft, AT&T, Wells Fargo, Shell, and others), and RMI’s knowledge, expertise and network. Vertically integrating an early stage accelerator and VC fund with corporates’ resources and know-how will overcome the capital intensity and timeline challenges of cleantech investing.

Position Overview

Third Derivative is seeking a Venture Associate that serves a critical role in supporting the VC funds and accelerator. The Venture Associates will be cleantech subject matter experts, familiar with technologies, market trends, competitive landscape, etc. They will develop investment theses, support due-diligence, portfolio startups, and link startups to corporates, RMI, and external stakeholders. Specifically, we are seeking an Associate that will cover industrial climate technologies.

Key Responsibilities

  • Be a subject matter expert in novel, industrial climate technologies, especially those with a chemistry or electrochemistry component (e.g. Fischer-Tropsch, hydrogen electrolyzers/fuel cells, carbon capture, green steel, etc.). Expertise will include knowledge of emerging cleantech markets, trends, technologies, and go-to-market strategies
  • Work with VC funds, corporates partners, and RMI to develop cleantech investment theses
  • Facilitate critical conversations by serving as an interface between portfolio startups, corporates and RMI
  • Support VC due-diligence
  • Support and monitor cohort startups’ progress
  • Generate emerging technology and business model thought leadership

Qualifications and Skills

  • 4+ years experience working directly with startups and investors
  • Masters degree or equivalent preferred
  • Technical expertise (e.g., ability to perform techno-economic analysis to determine if new technologies can be cost-competitive), especially with regards to chemistry and electrochemistry
  • New technology commercialization and investment experience
  • Academic background in science or engineering
  • Strong verbal and written communication skills
  • Outstanding analytical skills, detail-oriented, proactive and self-motivated


We offer a comprehensive benefits package including:

  • Medical, Dental, Vision Insurance
  • 403b Retirement Options (5% match immediately)
  • Generous PTO
  • Parental leave
  • Life, AD&D, Short Term and Long-Term Disability
  • Commuter and Wellness Benefits


Increasing the diversity of thought, perspectives, ideas, and opinions within RMI is a critical change element supporting our long-term sustainability and mission to build a clean, prosperous, and secure energy future.

We strive for a level of diversity that reflects the communities we serve. Achieving this—regardless of ability, race, ethnicity, ancestry, age, gender, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, socioeconomic class, educational attainment or other social identities—is critical to the success of each RMIer and collectively as an organization, ensuring that we:

  • Have the different array of thinking that comes from diverse backgrounds and cultures, enabling us to solve some of the world’s greatest challenges.
  • Strive for a culture of inclusion and belonging by treating others with dignity, respect and appreciation enabling them to feel welcomed, supported and valued.
  • Effectively connect, communicate and build long-lasting relationships with decision makers, stakeholders and constituents within diverse communities.

Rocky Mountain Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer.


RMI US office. Locations include Basalt and Boulder, Colorado; New York City; Oakland, CA; Washington, D.C. Note that the position will remain remote through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rocky Mountain Institute

If interested, please apply here.