Our People

2016 Spring Energy Symposium Track Agenda


Thursday, March 10th

10:00 AM — 11:30 AM
Breaking Tradition in a Regulated Environment: Top Talent Acquisition and Retention
Speaker: Theresa Alberts, Human Relations Analyst, Sacramento Municipal Utility District
Are you finding it difficult to balance compliance and innovation?  Is your organization unable to compete with other industries for innovative new talent?  During this session we will discuss how utilities can stay compliant while stretching and staying innovative in order to attract and retain top talent.

12:30 PM — 2:00 PM
HR’s Role in Leading Employees Through Change
Speakers: Anne Rail, Senior Human Resources Business Partner, BC Hydro
Joanne Thomopoulos, Director of Human Resources, BC Hydro
Angelique Pruitt, Regional Operations Manager, Idaho Power
Dawn Miller, Director of Organization and Workforce Development, Sacramento Municipal Utility District
Not another session on change management models. Join us for a lively panel discussion on the key role HR can play in guiding leaders to understand, adopt and support solid change management approaches from the very beginning of any initiative. Experts from 3 utilities will share their success stories and lessons they’ve learned from HR’s guidance as a true partner to the business. 

2:30 PM — 4:00 PM
Building Engagement for the Changing Needs of Tomorrow’s Workforce, Today
Speakers: Sue Mallah, Sr Diversity & Inclusion Consultant, Pacific Gas & Electric Company
Lesley MacDonald, Employee Engagement Program Manager, BC Hydro
Jason Riggs, Assistant Treasurer, Salt River Project
With the labor market’s expected shortages and the shift in demographics and employee retention, the importance of driving employee engagement initiatives and reinvesting in fundamentals help leading utilities to attract, develop and retain the workforce of the future.
Come and listen to success stories from PG&E, BC Hydro and SRP for examples of how these companies are meeting the changing needs of the energy industry.
Story topics will touch on leading practices in diversity and inclusion, rotational programs and career development to achieve operational excellence for the workforce of today and tomorrow.

Friday, March 11th

9:15 AM — 10:45 AM
Surfing the Data Tsunami – How Do We Manage All The Data?
Speakers: Ngoni Murandu, Chief Information Officer, NW Natural
David Schmitt, Data Governance Program Manager, SMUD
Our industry is building incredibly valuable stores of data from smart grid devices, meters, and, now, new data collection devices in our customers’ homes or businesses.  All this data holds the promise of dramatically improving utility operations and engaging customers in new ways.  But, inside our utility, do we have a clear picture of where the data is coming from and how all the different parts of the organization need to use it?  Worse, other companies, potentially competitors, are collecting information on our customers instead of us.  To sort out these issues, many utilities have Data Governance initiatives underway.  In this session, we’ll hear two perspectives on data governance progress:  solving this inside the walls of the utility and figuring out the right external data governance model.  Who are our organizations’ “data stewards?”  Do customers know where their data is going?  Which sources of data are most important?  Can you really solve these issues with 1 system?  We’ll explore these topics with two brief presentations and a 30 minute Q+A with the audience will follow.

11:00 AM — 12:30 PM
Company Branding, Recruitment, and Program-Based Staffing for Success
Speakers: Kirsten Derasmo, Generalist II, Southwest Gas Corporation
Angelique Pruitt, Employment Manager, Idaho Power Today’s job market is changing so what can a modern utility do to attract the best people and ensure that company objectives are met? This session will help you answer this question and enable you to promote your company to job seekers. Key topics include recruitment strategies, company and position branding, the value proposition, creating a staffing program, and adapting to generational change.