February is Black History Month, a time to celebrate the cultures and accomplishments of the Black community, as well as recognize the work that must be done in order to continue to strive toward a more just society.

We have teamed up with Black & Brown @ Invenergy, our employee resource group focused on expanding opportunities for people of African ancestry in the renewable energy industry, to spotlight a few of our Black colleagues and learn more about their work at Invenergy, career journeys, and the significance of Black History Month to them.

Ayeola Barnett, Manager, Accounts Payable, is one of our newest colleagues, joining Invenergy at the beginning of 2021. Meet Ayeola and find out who has inspired her on her career path and how she’s overcome obstacles that have brought her to where she is today.

Tell us about your role and how long you have been with Invenergy.

I started with Invenergy as the Accounts Payable Manager on January 4, 2021. I manage a great team of six processors, as well as the current payment processes. I am currently managing efforts for process improvements, working with other Invenergy teams to increase productivity and optimize efficiency for invoice payments.

What drew you to Invenergy?

Invenergy’s mission to build a sustainable world enhances the quality of life for everyone. I was drawn to working for a business that is thinking about the future, and about my future.

Who are some role models that have inspired you and/or helped you pursue your career path?

I was inspired by a previous manager. She was tiny in stature but big in performance, an educated, well-respected person whose knowledge and experience were extremely admirable and inspirational to my growth.

What are some challenges you have faced along the way?

Obtaining my MBA. Early on, I knew I would need to pursue a graduate degree in order to progress and succeed in a business career. Raising a family while working full time and attending graduate school was an immense challenge, but one that was well worth it.

What does Black History Month mean to you?

Black History Month means understanding what Black people before me went through to get where we are today. It means realizing and recognizing the struggles so many Black people endured that afforded me the opportunities that I have now - so that my family can have the same civil and human rights as anyone else. I believe if everyone truly understands Black history and culture, it will help us create a brighter future for everyone.