Business Acumen for Emerging Leaders: Challenge (Jun 25-27)

An intensive training for high potential managers and supervisors through exposure to broad perspectives of the utility business, its interrelationships and successful leadership strategies. This program is designed by a utility-driven Curriculum Development Team, and directed by facilitators, and executive and alumni mentors. Program sessions are hosted by member utilities and topics are presented by executives, subject matter experts and formal instructors. The first four sessions focus on leadership development, industry perspectives, customer connections, communications and strategic planning. The program includes a capstone project which is delivered to industry leaders at the WEI Annual Meeting. Participants build a broad peer network that continues well into their future careers.

General Details

  • Program Location
  • Idaho Power Company
  • 1221 W. Idaho Street
    Boise, ID 83702
  • Who Should Attend
  • Participants are nominated by WEI members and selected through a formal application review process. 

    Applicants make a commitment to attend and actively participate at each session, and should plan time for additional work between sessions. It is expected that students commit to completing “homework” assignments during evenings and off-hours with additional assignments required outside of the normal work day. Each group is assigned one executive and one alumni mentor who will support the group’s development throughout the program and guide them to a successful final project.

  • Upcoming Dates + Locations
  • Session 3: June 25-27, Idaho Power Company, Boise, ID
    Session 4: August 8-10, NW Natural, Portland, OR
    Session 5: September 23-25, Annual Meeting, Newport Beach, CA

  • General Cancellation Policy
  • Due to contractual obligations and the critical role of group compositions for the success of the program, cancellations received after January 5, 2018, will not be eligible for a refund, and the organization will be responsible for the full 2018 registration fee. Substitutions from your organization for the program are always welcome prior to session one.
  • Participation Policy
  • Western Energy Institute programs and events are open to energy companies (including gas production and electric generation, gas and electric transmission and gas and electric distribution utilities). Select programs and events are open to energy industry product and service suppliers. Programs and events are closed to all media representatives and to the general public.
  • For more information contact Beverly Woolf, Program Manager at (503) 688-2790.


Monday, June 25, 2018

9:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Optional Capstone group work time

12:30 PM - 1:00 PM


1:00 PM - 1:15 PM

Welcome to Session Three
Speaker(s): Neena Master, Director, Customer Contact Center, Southern California Gas Company

1:15 PM - 2:15 PM

Welcome to Idaho Power
Speaker(s): Darrel Anderson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Idaho Power Company, Lisa Grow, SVP and COO, Idaho Power Company

2:15 PM - 2:30 PM


2:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Tour of the World Center for Birds of Prey
Speaker(s): Natalie Turley, Senior Biologist, Idaho Power Company

World Center for Birds of Prey
5668 W Flying Hawk Lane
Boise, Idaho

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

7:00 AM - 8:00 AM

Breakfast at the hotel and walk to Idaho Power

Idaho Power Corporate Headquarters
Conference Room
1221 W. Idaho Street
Boise, ID 83702.

8:00 AM - 9:00 AM

Executive Speakers
Speaker(s): Adam Richins, Vice President of Customer Operations and Business Development, Idaho Power Company, Angelique Rood, Regional Manager, Idaho Power Company

9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Executive Speakers
Speaker(s): Todd Schultz, Customer Care Manager, Idaho Power Company, Theresa Drake, Senior Manager Customer Relations & Energy Efficiency, Idaho Power Company

10:00 AM - 10:30 AM


10:30 AM - 11:30 AM

Executive Speaker
Speaker(s): Jeff Malmen, Senior Vice President, Public Affairs, Idaho Power Company

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Business Acumen homework discussion
Facilitator(s): Neena Master, Director, Customer Contact Center, Southern California Gas Company

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM


1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

Executive Speakers
Speaker(s): Timothy Tatum, Vice President of Regulatory Affairs, Idaho Power Company, Krista West, Brand Manager, Corporate Communications, Idaho Power Company

2:30 PM - 3:30 PM

Mentor Panel: Leading Diverse Personalities and Work Styles
Facilitator(s): Neena Master, Director, Customer Contact Center, Southern California Gas Company

Leaders need to work through difficult situations to drive a positive impact and keep a team productive. A panel of all mentors will discuss how to work through conflict and drive productive results.

3:30 PM - 4:00 PM


4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Peer Roundtable Discussions
Facilitator(s): Neena Master, Director, Customer Contact Center, Southern California Gas Company

Students will break into groups for peer to peer roundtable discussions. Bring issues/best practices/questions to address with fellow students in these areas. The point is to get feedback and perspectives on how other companies approach your issue so you can have more tools to be successful.

5:00 PM - 5:30 PM

Transportation provided to reception

5:30 PM - 7:00 PM

BAEL Program Reception

Reception for Students, Hosts, and Special Guests from Intermountain Gas Company and Idaho Power.

Stueckle Sky Center
1910 W University Dr, Boise, ID 83725

Wednesday, June 27, 2018

7:00 AM - 8:00 AM

Breakfast at the hotel and walk to Idaho Power

Idaho Power Corporate Headquarters
Conference Room
1221 W. Idaho Street
Boise, ID 83702.

8:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Public Speaking Workshop
Facilitator(s): Seka Ojdrovic-Phillips, Associate, The Humphrey Group

The Humphrey Group will facilitate a workshop to discuss Delivering with a Powerful Leadership Presence and Improv in Everyday Communications.

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM


1:00 PM - 1:30 PM

Wrap Up and Debrief
Facilitator(s): Neena Master, Director, Customer Contact Center, Southern California Gas Company

1:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Optional Capstone group work time

Hotel + Travel

  • Reservation Instructions
  • Please contact the hotel directly at (844) 802-9815 to reserve your room. Identify yourself as being with Western Energy Institute to receive a special rate of $159 USD/night. This rate is guaranteed until June 11, 2018 or until the WEI room block is full.

Meet The Speakers

Darrel Anderson

Idaho Power Company

President and Chief Executive Officer
Learn More

Darrel Anderson has been President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of IDACORP and CEO of Idaho Power since 2014.

He was appointed to the IDACORP and Idaho Power boards of directors in September 2013.

Anderson began working for Idaho Power in 1996 and for IDACORP since its inception in 1998. Since then, his positions with the company have included Controller, Vice President of Finance, Treasurer, Chief Financial Officer, Senior Vice President and Executive Vice President of Administration.

Anderson graduated from Oregon State University with a Bachelor of Science in accounting and finance and completed the Harvard Graduate School of Business Advanced Management Program. He is a licensed Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in Oregon (retired).

Anderson serves on the board of the St. Alphonsus Health System.

Lisa Grow

Idaho Power Company

Learn More

Lisa Grow assumed the role of President in October 2019. Prior to this position, she served as Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Idaho Power since March 2017.

Grow has also served as Senior Vice President of Operations and, prior to that, Senior Vice President of Power Supply, overseeing operations and maintenance of the generation fleet, power plant engineering and construction, environmental affairs, water management, power supply planning, sustainability and wholesale electricity and gas operations.

She began her career at Idaho Power in 1987 and held many engineering positions before moving into management. This broad background allowed her to gain valuable experience in many areas of the company. In 2005, Grow was named Vice President of Delivery Engineering and Operations, and she assumed the role of Vice President of Power Supply in 2009.

Grow graduated from the University of Idaho in 1987 with a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and received a Master of Business Administration degree from Boise State University in 2008.

Grow is involved in a number of industry groups, currently or previously serving on various committees and boards associated with the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC), Northwest Power Pool (NWPP), National Hydro Association, and Pacific Northwest Utilities Conference Committee. She is also a current member of the University of Idaho Foundation Board and the College of Engineering Advisory Board. She also serves on the St. Luke’s Health System board.

Adam Richins

Idaho Power Company

Vice President of Customer Operations and Business Development
Learn More

Adam J. Richins was named Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Idaho Power in October 2019. Prior to that, Richins served as Vice President of Customer Operations and Business Development since March 2017. In this role, he oversaw teams dedicated to customer satisfaction and supporting the company’s brand. Since joining Idaho Power in 2011, Richins previously held the positions of Senior Counsel and General Manager of Customer Operations Engineering and Construction.

Before joining Idaho Power, Richins worked as an engineer and project manager on large construction projects and as an attorney at Stoel Rives, where he litigated complex business disputes and negotiated multi-million-dollar commercial transactions. Richins also clerked for the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and worked as an engineer on large construction projects, including airports and schools.

Richins holds two Bachelor of Science degrees, one in mathematics from the University of Puget Sound and a second in civil engineering from Columbia University, where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He earned his law degree from the University of Washington with high honors. Richins graduated from Harvard Business School’s Advanced Management Program in 2016.

Richins serves on the boards for the Boise School Foundation and the Boise Chamber.

Angelique Rood

Idaho Power Company

Regional Manager
Learn More

Angelique Rood joined Idaho Power Company’s human resources team in 2006. She spent nine years in the HR department holding the positions of HR Professional, HR Leader and Employment Manager. In 2015, Angelique moved to the operations side of the business and became the Regional Operations Manager over Idaho Power’s Southern region. In this role, she was responsible for daily operations of the regional electric distribution system to include all distribution line, metering, and customer movement/collection work activities. In 2017, Angelique accepted the role of Regional Manager for the Company’s Canyon West Region where she provides oversight of customer and distribution operations including distribution design, field services, construction, emergency restoration, customer and community relations, and business development. Angelique currently serves on Governor Otter’s Workforce Development Council and is the Chair of the Council’s Apprenticeship committee. In her free time Angelique enjoys her four children and farming with her husband, Chris.

Todd Schultz

Idaho Power Company

Customer Care Manager
Learn More

Todd Schultz is a 33 year “veteran” of Idaho Power. He started his career in 1985 as a Customer Service Representative. Currently, Todd is the Manager of Customer Care. In his role, he is responsible for implementing initiatives focused on customer self-service offerings that make it easy for customers to interact and conduct business with Idaho Power. He collaborates with multiple departments, key stakeholders, and subject matter experts within Idaho Power to deliver customer offerings across multiple interaction channels. Todd has held numerous leadership positions within Idaho Power spanning functional areas that include; energy efficiency and demand response programs, customer service, customer billing and collections, and cash remittance. Todd graduated from the University of Idaho in 1982, with a B.S. in Marketing, and is an alumni of the WEI Business Acumen Program.
Todd has been married for 31 years, he has a son who coaches football at University of Central Florida, and a daughter attending the University of Idaho. He enjoys golfing, skiing, and running. In 2017, he achieved a goal of running 25,000 miles and he continues adding to that total.

Theresa Drake

Idaho Power Company

Senior Manager Customer Relations & Energy Efficiency
Learn More

Theresa leads the research, development and implementation of customer satisfaction initiatives and customer programs, including energy efficiency efforts to engage customers in the wise use of energy and the development of transportation electrification efforts.

Under her direction, Idaho Power’s demand-side management programs have accumulated energy savings and demand-response reduction greater than any other time in the company’s history. Customers ratings of positive perception of Idaho Power’s customer experience efforts have also increased in recent years.

Theresa serves as Idaho Power’s representative on the Northwestern Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) Board of Directors. She began her career with Idaho Power as a Rate Analyst involved in regulatory issues and pricing strategies. During the past 22 years with the company, Theresa has provided expert testimony before the Idaho Public Utilities Commission in regulatory proceedings

Jeff Malmen

Idaho Power Company

Senior Vice President, Public Affairs
Learn More

Jeff Malmen was named Senior Vice President, Public Affairs for IDACORP and Idaho Power in April 2016.

Malmen joined the company in December 2007 as senior manager of Governmental Affairs. He was named Vice President of Public Affairs for IDACORP and Idaho Power in October 2008.

Before joining Idaho Power, Malmen enjoyed a 21-year career in state and federal politics, most recently serving as chief of staff for Idaho Gov. C. L. “Butch” Otter. He held the same position for Idaho Gov. Phil Batt and was administrator of the Division of Financial Management for Idaho Gov. Dirk Kempthorne. Malmen also served as chief of staff and in other key leadership positions for a number of Idaho congressmen and senators, both in the state and in Washington, D.C.

Malmen is a member of the board of directors for the Idaho Association of Commerce and Industry and the Idaho Mining Association. He’s also a member of the Center for Advanced Energy Studies Industry Advisory Board, Associated Oregon Industries and the St. Alphonsus Health System Community Leadership Council.

Timothy Tatum

Idaho Power Company

Vice President of Regulatory Affairs
Learn More

Vice President of Regulatory Affairs Tim Tatum assumed his role on March 1, 2016. In his position Tatum is responsible for the management of economic regulatory activities in both the Idaho and Oregon retail jurisdictions and with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

Tatum began his career with Idaho Power in 1996 in the company’s Customer Service department. He spent six years there before assuming the role of economic analyst supporting the implementation of Idaho Power’s energy efficiency programs.

In 2004 he joined the Regulatory Affairs department as a regulatory analyst, and has served as a company witness in numerous regulatory proceedings relating to revenue requirements and rate design as well as the company’s energy efficiency program activities.

Tatum was promoted to cost of service manager in 2008. In that role he was responsible for the company’s revenue requirement determinations and other cost of service studies used to support the ratemaking process. In 2015, Tatum was promoted to general manager of regulatory affairs where his responsibilities broadened to include rate design, integrated resource planning and matters related to power purchases under the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act, or PURPA.

Tatum holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in economics and Master of Business Administration from Boise State University. He completed the University of Idaho Utility Executive Course in 2012 and is currently on the faculty for that course.

Krista West

Idaho Power Company

Brand Manager, Corporate Communications
Learn More

Krista West began her career with Idaho Power as advertising coordinator in the Corporate Communications Department in 2004. She was promoted to Brand Manager in 2012. In this role, she works to enhance the company image and leads the company’s advertising efforts.

Krista grew up in Washington and graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications. She has worked in variety of communications and marketing positions over the past 30 years. She moved to Idaho in 1998 and enjoys many of the outdoor activities this area has to offer.

Seka Ojdrovic-Phillips

The Humphrey Group

Learn More

Seka Ojdrovic-Phillips is an Associate at The Humphrey Group where she works with organizations to develop programs that help leaders at all levels inspire action by the way they communicate. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration from Gonzaga University in Spokane with a focus in Marketing and Public Relations as well as a Masters in Organizational Psychology which she earned while living in Vancouver BC. Among other adventures, Seka lived in Wellington, New Zealand for four years writing speeches for Ministers of Parliament for the Ministry of Social Development and has also served as a Communications Consultant in Seattle. Along the way she has learned the importance of organizing data in an INSPIRATIONAL way… rather than getting too caught up in the information.

Neena Master

Southern California Gas Company

Director, Customer Contact Center
Learn More

Neena Master is the Director of Customer Services for Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas), the nation’s largest natural gas distribution company serving nearly 21 million consumers. SoCalGas has over 8,000 employees and is headquartered in Los Angeles.

Previously, Neena has experience in community relations, pipeline safety, billing operations, customer services and marketing. Neena has over 20 years in the utility industry and has working experience with energy, federal and local government agencies, and manufacturing industries. Neena also sits on the Board of Directors for the Orangewood Foundation, Orange County Human Relations and Korean Health Education, Information, and Research (KHEIR) organizations. She is a Certified Energy Manager and has earned a Master Degree of Business Administration from Claremont Graduate University in 1999 and a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from University of Southern California in 1995.

Natalie Turley

Idaho Power Company

Senior Biologist
Learn More

Natalie has worked for Idaho Power as a wildlife biologist for 22 years, the last 13 managing the avian protection program for Idaho Power. She received a M.S. degree in Wildlife Biology from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln. Go Huskers!