Board of Directors

Jason Byars

Jason Byars is Vice President of Business Development at Mas Energy, LLC, an energy development firm. Jason has nearly 20 years of sales, business development and project management experience in the energy industry. He is responsible for Mas Energy's business and project development activities in North America, including identifying and developing long-term, integrated energy services contracts for North American clients, technical oversight, negotiations with customers and sub-contractors, and capital structuring.

Prior to joining Mas Energy, Jason served as Business Development Director for Veolia Energy North America, an energy services company focused on district energy, cogeneration and utilities outsourcing. He joined Veolia after serving as Program Manager for Combined Heat & Power at GE Energy and leading GE's response to the two most active North American hurricane seasons in decades as well as a cross-business response to the 2005 Southeast Asia tsunami. In addition, Jason served as a Sales Engineer at Exelon Thermal Technologies, then the world’s largest provider of district cooling services. He began his career as a project manager with McKenney’s, Inc., an engineering and contracting firm based in Atlanta, serving such clients as Coca-Cola, Hilton, General Motors, Georgia Tech and Emory University.

Jason holds a bachelor's degree in Mechanical Engineering from Georgia Tech, where he was a President's Scholar. He is a board member of Ferst Readers and volunteers as a facilitator at the Horizons Leadership Institute for college men. Jason also serves on the Leadership Council of Junior Achievement of Georgia. He is an elected deacon, Director of Bible Study and adult Sunday School teacher at Second-Ponce de Leon Baptist Church in Atlanta. Jason lives with his wife, Shauna, and their son in Atlanta.

“My family has long been a supporter of the Ferst Readers Community Action Team (CAT) in Lamar County, so I know well the impact Ferst Readers has on children receiving and routinely reading books. I also recognize the galvanizing effect that the work of a CAT has on a community's commitment to serving its children. Children in whom a love of reading is actively fostered soon find themselves on a trajectory for life that leads to success and personal fulfillment. Board service allows me both to acknowledge that reality and to do my small part in bringing it to as many children as we can.”


  • President
    Betsy Wagenhauser 

  • Accounting and Development Coordinator
    Amy Zygler 

  • Director of Operations/Translations
    Claudia Jasso 

  • Program Coordinator
    Susan Vaughn 

  • Regional Program Coordinator
    Debbie Ross 

  • Regional Program Coordinator/Technology
    Michelle Maddox 

  • Grant Coordinator
    Kelly Freyer 

  • Project Coordinator
    Emily Pettigrew 

  • Administrative Assistant Publications/Social Media
    Olivia Ramfos 

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