Earlier this week Lyndon Rive, founder and CEO of SolarCity, which was once America’s largest and foremost company engaged in selling residential solar panels, announced he is leaving Tesla in June. The former chief executive of SolarCity pushed his company to the forefront of the residential solar business before helping engineer it’s sale to Tesla. Since the sale of the company last year Mr. Rive has been serving as head of sales and services for Tesla’s energy division. Tesla announced that following his departure, his responsibilities will be distributed among Tesla’s leadership.

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SolarCity was acquired for $2.6 billion last August by Tesla as part of Elon Musk’s plan to create an energy and transportation company which has no carbon footprint. The plan has its detractors as some investors claim the debt which fueled the growth of the solar panel installer will weigh Tesla down. Since Tesla acquired SolarCity the company has focused less on installations and growth and more on profitable projects which generate immediate income.

Detractors painted Rive as a dreamer who was out of touch with reality with his populist vision to make rooftop solar power available to the masses. Rive’s stated goal of making solar power available to the people was part of a larger effort to slow the usage of fossil fuels and help the fight against climate change. This led to the founding SolarCity in 2006 with his older brother Peter, using funding made possible by their cousin Elon Musk, the world famous entrepreneur and founder of Tesla, SpaceX among other enterprises.

Throughout the next decade SolarCity grew quickly and captured the public’s imagination by offering easy to obtain financing options through a massive sales team. This led to rapid growth and as recently as 2013 the company had a stated goal of having 1,000,000 customers by 2018. This was not meant to be however, and amid mounting financing costs and demand sluggish, the company scaled back its plans by the end of 2015.

Late last year the company reached 300,000 customers, a number which Mr. Musk and Tesla hope to improve upon through the innovative program of using solar roofing tiles in place of solar panels. Mr. Rive stated his plans after leaving Tesla are to spend more time with his family and next year start a new company. His brother Peter will remain with Tesla to focus on the companies solar roofing tiles.