Largest private healthcare solar installation unveiled on Shore

MD-solar power at tidewater 3x-081215

Special to Dorchester Banner/Michelle Zhao
Pictured from left: Pat Bilbrough, president & CEO, Talbot Bank; Michael Cavey, senior vice president, Commercial Sales Manager, Talbot Bank; Geoff Oxnam, vice president of operations, Easton Utilities; Robin O’Brien, vice president, commercial banking officer, Talbot Bank; Talbot County Councilman Chuck Callahan; Easton Mayor Robert Willey; Talbot County Councilman Pete Lesher; Dr. Jim Downs, CEO, Tidewater Physical Therapy; Al Silverstein, president & CEO, Talbot County Chamber of Commerce; Jenn Walter, COO, Tidewater Physical Therapy; Jeannie Haddaway-Riccio, director of intergovernmental services, Maryland Office of the Governor; Sheryl Mills, account manager, Avery Hall Benefit Solutions; Cindy Whaley, president, Avery Hall Benefit Solutions; Devon Dodson, senior advisor, Maryland Department of the Environment; Curt Booth, esquire, Booth, Booth, Cropper & Marriner, P.C.; Lawson Sharp, CPA, Anthony Walter Duncan LLP.

EASTON – Tidewater Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Associates, P.A. unveiled its solar project this week — the largest private healthcare solar installation on Maryland’s Eastern Shore – to leaders of the Governor’s Office of Maryland and the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) as well as business executives, and senior government and elected officials from the Mid-Shore.

Tidewater Physical Therapy is one of the largest physical therapy businesses on DelMar with 16 clinics spread throughout Maryland’s Eastern Shore and Delaware. The company’s shareholders committed to investing in this project as a way for the administrative headquarters building in Easton to become self-sustaining with its energy creation and consumption thus allowing the organization to meet one of its main goals to establish, use, and maintain green practices within its business.

Further, the project is in line with Maryland’s increasing drive to become more economically and environmentally conscious. Maryland has been working on its solar efficiency and is becoming a state leader in the solar field, currently ranking seventh according to the 2015 United States Solar Power Rankings by Solar Power Rocks. In the past eight years, the state’s solar capacity has increased from less than 0.1 MW to more than 225 MW by the end of 2014.

Tidewater Physical Therapy worked with Talbot Bank for the project’s financing and CNC Solar of Rehoboth, Del. installed the 300-panel solar system, which will produce an estimated 95,000 kWh of electricity per year, providing 100npercent of the expected electrical usage for Tidewater Physical Therapy’s Easton location that houses both the Easton physical therapy clinic as well as the administrative operations for the business. Tidewater Physical Therapy is helping Maryland push towards a more environmentally comprehensive method of energy by using solar energy. To weigh in on the subject of green energy, Geoff Oxnam, vice president of operations of Easton Utilities said, “Increasing local solar energy reduces pollution, saves money and strengthens our community. This project celebrates Tidewater Physical Therapy’s leadership and the power of partnerships between public power, community banking, and local business.”

Almost 50 individuals attended this week’s event from state environmental and energy agencies, representatives from Governor Larry Hogan’s office, and local business executives, government leaders, and elected staff. In his remarks to attendees, MDE’s Senior Advisor, Devon Dodson said, “What an opportunity for us to celebrate the marriage of business and environment and energy and taking control of that energy. And that is really what you are doing with this project. You’re controlling your energy costs, you’re bringing down your own bottom line, being able to do all of these great services that Tidewater provides to the citizens of the Eastern Shore, but you are also helping a little bit with the greenhouse gases too”.

Tidewater Physical Therapy CEO Jim Downs was quoted saying, “Tidewater Physical Therapy represents a growing trend of businesses that see the benefit of adding solar panels to their property as a way to save money in energy costs and as an additional revenue stream for the business while helping to protect the environment. As Maryland is a state leader in solar energy installations and consumption, we knew the support system existed locally in both financing and vendors to help us make this project possible. We would like to acknowledge the local financing, Talbot Bank, as well as state and federal funding which allowed us to become trendsetters in solar energy for private healthcare and medical offices on Maryland’s Eastern Shore.”

Tidewater Physical Therapy and Rehabilitation Associates, PA was founded in 1984 under the guidance of Dr. W. James Downs Jr., PT, DSc, ECS. Downs founded the firm in response to local physicians seeking progressive physical therapy services for patients on the Delmarva Peninsula. Since its foundation, Tidewater Physical Therapy has expanded to 16 locally managed offices. For more information about Tidewater Physical Therapy, visit or call 410-822.3891.

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