Partner/Chief Technical Officer (CTO) Orion Thornton
Partner/Chief Technical Officer (CTO) Orion Thornton

Orion Thornton

Partner/Chief Technical Officer (CTO)
Orion has been dedicated to the Montana solar energy industry for over 13 years, both as an industry professional and advocate through education and community outreach. A Montana native who grew up off the grid, his interest in self-sufficiency and alternative energy sources started at a young age. His professional career in the solar industry began when he completed an A.A.S. degree in Photovoltaic (Solar Electric) Design and Installation from San Juan College in 2006 and was quickly hired by Independent Power Systems of Bozeman as a system designer/installer. In 2012 Orion founded OnSite Energy with a goal of providing premier solar electric services throughout the Northern Rockies. Upon partnering with Conor Darby in 2014, they quickly built one of the most highly qualified and effective team of solar professionals in the state, for which the foundation of OnSite Energy’s industry leading reputation has been built.

Other industry endeavors include a tenure as a board member for the Montana Renewable Energy Association (MREA) from 2014-2019 and a contract instructor for Solar Energy International (SEI) beginning in 2012.

Orion and his wife Megan moved to Missoula in the beginning of 2019 to raise their three children in close proximity to immediate family. After living in a net-zero energy home in Bozeman for 12 years the planning has already begun for converting their new home in Missoula to be 100% self-sufficient. Dedicated to a lifetime of teaching, living, and working with renewable energy technologies, Orion is hopeful for Montana’s clean energy future and works tirelessly to help make that future a reality. 

Outside of his day to day solar work he enjoys the irreplaceable moments of being a father to three spirited little humans, shooting his bow, and exploring Montana’s vast public lands.