Montana Region Solar Power | Orion Thornton
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 since 2002, when he first started taking educational workshops and building his own wind and solar power systems. 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 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 live in Missoula raising their three young children in close proximity to extended family. 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, hiking, hunting, spending time on rivers, exploring Montana’s vast public lands, and most of all, the irreplaceable moments of being a father to three spirited little humans.