June 26, 2024

Tulsa Wins U.S. Department of Energy Grant to Advance Clean Energy Manufacturing

Seven communities are named as Phase 2 finalists for the Manufacture of Advanced Key Energy Infrastructure Technologies (MAKE IT) Grant

TULSA, Okla. | June 24, 2024 – PartnerTulsa, in collaboration with Tulsa Innovation Labs and Rose Rock Bridge, has been selected as a Phase 2 winner for its application to expand Tulsa’s thriving energy sector to include a hub for clean energy companies, from manufacturing through recycling. 

The U.S. Department of Energy’s Manufacture of Advanced Key Energy Infrastructure Technologies Prize, also known as the MAKE IT Prize, will provide approximately $30 million in funding for projects to catalyze domestic manufacturing of clean energy technology. 

Tulsa will receive $100,000 in additional funding for its project, Advancing Clean Energy Manufacturing: Enhancing domestic clean energy manufacturing and regional quality of life by accelerating local ecosystem growth. The project includes mapping out incentives to attract clean energy manufacturing, outreach to potential manufacturing partners and hosting a Tulsa Clean Energy Manufacturing Summit in 2025.

“We are thrilled to have been selected as a Phase 2 recipient and are grateful to our partners for their collaboration and hard work,” said Mayor G.T. Bynum, who serves as the chair for the Tulsa Authority for Economic Opportunity. “This $100,000 award helps position Tulsa as a continued leader for the next generation of energy creation.”

Each of the seven Phase 2 winners were recognized for engaging with their communities and stakeholders to create compelling concept roadmaps to enhance local clean energy manufacturing. 

“The Tulsa region has a strong base of advanced manufacturing and critical materials production for the energy industry, along with end-users creating a full-scale lifecycle clean energy ecosystem,” said Michelle Barnett, Interim Executive Director at PartnerTulsa. “The Advancing Clean Energy Manufacturing program seeks to accelerate this growth by building on our manufacturing reputation and attracting energy innovation to Tulsa.”

The project will advance to Phase 3, where project partners will create a final roadmap and obtain a commitment from a clean energy manufacturing facility for a chance to earn an additional $250,000 in funding. Finalists will be announced in December 2024.

PartnerTulsa is working collaboratively with Tulsa Innovation Labs, a tech-led economic development organization, and Rose Rock Bridge, a public-private partnership incubating technology startups in Tulsa. 

“We believe that expanding clean energy manufacturing in Tulsa will not only advance the energy industry, but also create significant economic opportunities. This growth will attract and support entrepreneurs who are driving critical innovations for the energy industry, boosting local employment and fostering economic development,” said Kastle Jones, managing director for Rose Rock Bridge and director of capital and entrepreneurship for Tulsa Innovation Labs.

“The advisory council behind our Advancing Clean Energy Manufacturing program is a collection of municipal, community and industry partners who represent Oklahoma’s history in legacy and renewable energy sectors, energy project development, and infrastructure, as well as Tulsa’s strengths in the manufacturing and logistics industries,” added Barnett.

The advisory committee includes Cherokee Nation Businesses, representing the Cherokee Nation’s economic activities; the Tulsa Regional Chamber, Navistar, the George Kaiser Family Foundation (GKFF); the University of Tulsa; Enel Green Power, which operates 13 Oklahoma wind farms; and 3Sun Energy, which is locating a $1 billion solar panel gigafactory in the Tulsa region.

The MAKE IT Prize was developed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Technology Transitions (OTT), in partnership with its Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) and its Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). The National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) administers the prize. 

This marks another win for Tulsa and underscores the city’s momentum following several major distinctions from the federal government.  In October, the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration designated Tulsa a “Tech Hub.” In 2022, the EDA awarded Tulsa a $38.2 million grant as part of the Build Back Better Regional Challenge.

About PartnerTulsa
PartnerTulsa is the City of Tulsa’s economic development Authority that streamlines and strengthens Tulsa’s economic development efforts through the merging of the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development (MOED), Tulsa Industrial Authority (TIA), Tulsa Parking Authority (TPA), and Economic Development Commission (EDC) into a single, enhanced Public Trust. Partner Tulsa (aka TAEO) is governed by a thirteen (13) member Board of Trustees and provides staffing for and oversees the operations of the Tulsa Development Authority (TDA). For more information about PartnerTulsa, visit

About Tulsa Innovation Labs (TIL)

Tulsa Innovation Labs is an initiative of the George Kaiser Family Foundation founded in 2020 to develop a citywide strategy that positions Tulsa as a tech hub, leveraging the strengths of the Heartland. Through a diverse coalition of public and private partners, TIL is creating programs that seek to make Tulsa the nation’s most inclusive tech community. 

About Rose Rock Bridge

Rose Rock Bridge is a non-profit energy technology incubator based in Tulsa that sources, recruits, and supports high-growth startups to build a leading energy innovation community in the region. Rose Rock Bridge is supported by a unique group of public and private partners to offer unparalleled startup support for early-stage energy technology companies.