Business Acumen for Emerging Leaders: Opportunity (Aug 16-18)

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 and 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

Course Facilitator
Denise Wilcox, Director, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

Program Location
Portland General Electric
121 Southwest Salmon Street
Portland, OR 97204

For more information contact Eric Christenson at 971.230.6984.

Session Four Theme
Strategic Planning

Session Objectives
• Learn how to champion your company’s strategic plan in your role
• Align employees to strategic and resource planning
• Track and measure execution


Tuesday, August 16

7:30 AM – 8:30 AM
Breakfast at the Hotel

8:30 AM – 9:00 AM
Gather and Walk to PGE
Meet in the lobby at 8:30 AM for a short (three block) walk to the meeting location.
25 SW Salmon Street
Two World Trade Center
Portland, OR 97204

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Applying a Shark Tank Approach to the Utility Model
Speakers: Michael Barkhuff, Electric Services Manager, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power
Shannon Dumar, Manager, Customer Care Center, Arizona Public Service
Lance Elroy, Director, Operations Services, Intermountain Gas Company
Alan Rose, Energy & Utilities Industry Marketing Director, Intel Corporation
Kari Chester, Senior Manager, Electric Dispatch & Scheduling, Pacific Gas & Electric Co.
Travis Renk, Senior Manager, Pipelines, ENSTAR Natural Gas Company
Create a culture of innovation and stop thinking from a utility perspective by taking an entrepreneurial approach to provide solutions that will make you a top customer choice provider, increase operational efficiencies, employee engagement, reduce regulatory pressures, provide reductions to our rates, offer additional revenue streams, and adapt to a changing business model while managing environmental and safety risks.

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Energy Storage: As Goes California, So Goes the Nation
Speakers: Michael Chase, General Manager/Operations, Southwest Gas
Uzma Siddiqi, Principal Electric Power Systems Engineer, Seattle City Light
Alice Massara, Business Performance Supervisor, Tacoma Power
Justin Withers, Supervisor, System Integrity/Operations Compliance, Questar Gas Company
Rick Oliver, Construction Crew Supervisor, NPL Construction Company Inc
Robert Vertefeuille, Manager, Environmental Laboratory and Field Services, Salt River Project
California has mandated investor-owned utilities to have 1,325 MW of electric grid energy storage in operation by 2024. The team will briefly explain the drivers for and regulatory framework of the California mandate and present a high-level overview of possible energy storage options with an emphasis on grid benefits and economic viability of the technologies. The team will also present a forward-looking view of energy storage for other western utilities given the momentum created by the California mandate and project possible business opportunities presented by storage integration.

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Plugging in Millennials – Energy Customers of the Future
Speakers: Noah Davis, Manager, Lewiston District, NorthWestern Energy
Tim Kelley, Reliability Compliance Manager, Sacramento Municipal Utility District
Danielle Stoddard, Manager, Human Resources, Avista Corporation
Kit Seulean, Manager, Risk Management, Reporting & Controls, Portland General Electric
Janet Green, Manager, Gas System Assets, FortisBC
Jeff Brigger, Manager, Economic Development, NV Energy
What if you had a choice? Energy companies today need to shift their focus towards the growing customer segment – Millennials. Offering additional enhanced services that meet the energy needs and align with the values of this group will keep the utility relevant in a changing market – becoming the energy provider of choice.

12:00 PM – 1:30 PM
Lunch on Your Own
Lunch provides an opportunity for the class to get outside and visit Portland’s famous food cart and dining options.

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM
Hacked: If It Can Happen to Apple, It Can Happen to You
Speakers: Jake Perryman, Regional Customer Relations Manager, Idaho Power Company
Hollie Bierman, Senior Counsel, San Diego Gas & Electric
Shana Kuhn, , Deputy Chief Administrative Officer, Bonneville Power Administration
Lonnie Lozano, Account Manager – Short-Term Marketing US Natural Gas Pipelines, TransCanada
Michelle Dandridge, Major Markets Credit, Collections & Compliance Manager, Southern California Gas Company
Jason Zyskowski, Manager, Substation Engineering Department, Snohomish County PUD
It is a topic that can get swept under the rug in the daily pursuit of employee safety and quarterly profits, but recently unsealed documents showing how a state actor hacked and gained control of the Bowman Dam in Rye, NY should be a stern wakeup call to all industries, but specifically utilities. Cyberattacks on banks and retail outlets offer their own dangers to customer security and information, but cyberattacks on energy infrastructure are proving that physical safety to the population could be in danger as well. In order to protect yourself, one needs to critically analyze current systems and procedures. Only after looking in the mirror can you begin work on detecting threats, and ultimately responding to them.

2:30 PM – 3:30 PM
Bridging the Knowledge Transfer and Training Gap with Technology
Speakers: Greg Conlin, Maintenance Manage, Calgary and Crossfield Energy Centres, ENMAX
Jennifer Boyer, Manager, Electric Operations, Puget Sound Energy
Jeff Groff, Business Systems Manager, Clark PUD
Matt Sanders, Manager, Gas Corrective Action Program, Pacific Gas & Electric
Patrick Winkel, Corporate Safety and Health Compliance Manager, Consumers Energy
Mary Parker, Southern California Edison, Southern California Edison Energy companies are facing an unprecedented challenge related to training and knowledge transfer. The issue is compounded by the fact that many energy providers have up to 40% of their work force eligible for retirement. Technology provides an opportunity to bridge the gap between the experienced workforce and the new generation of employees. Through championing current and future technologies, we’ll demonstrate potential solutions to overcome the training gap between long-term employees and the new generation of the industry.

3:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Day 1 Close
Speaker: Denise Wilcox, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

Wednesday, August 17

7:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Breakfast at the Hotel

8:00 AM – 8:30 AM
Gather and Walk to PGE

8:30 AM – 9:00 AM
Introduction and Session Objectives
Speaker: Denise Wilcox, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

9:00 AM – 9:45 AM
Welcome and Perspectives on Leadership
Speaker: Jim Piro, President and CEO, Portland General Electric

9:45 AM – 10:00 AM

10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Strategy Exercise
Speaker: Mark Lewis, HR Consultant, Portland General Electric

11:15 AM – 12:15 PM
Perspectives on Leadership
Speaker: Kristin Stathis, Vice President, Customer Service Operations, Portland General Electric

12:15 PM – 1:00 PM

1:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Strategic Intent
Speakers: Elizabeth Paul, Director, Retail Strategies, Portland General Electric
Erin Dopfel, Retail Strategy Analyst, Portland General Electric

3:00 PM – 3:30 PM

3:30 PM – 4:30 PM
WEI Facilitated Activities
Speaker: Denise Wilcox, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

4:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Day 2 Close
Speaker: Denise Wilcox, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

5:00 PM – 6:30 PM
Reception on the Plaza Center
Join Portland General Electric leaders in a reception hosted by the WEI 2016 BAEL participants in appreciation for the support provided by PGE to this program.

7:00 PM – 8:30 PM
No-host Dinner for Students and Mentors at Rock Bottom Brewery
206 SW Morrison St
Portland, OR 97204
RSVP required

Thursday, August 18

7:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Breakfast at the Hotel

8:00 AM – 8:30 AM
Walk to PGE
Meet in the lobby at 8:00 AM for a short (three block) walk to the meeting location.

8:30 AM – 9:00 AM
Welcome and Recap
Speaker: Denise Wilcox, Director, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

9:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Think Tank/Shark Tank Workshop
Test your ability to develop create answers and pitch them to investors seeking to give you seed capital in the energy industry.

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Shark Tank Report Out and Voting
Speakers: Bruce Barney, Manager, Customer Spec. Programs, Portland General Electric
Arya Behbehani, General Manager, Environmental Services, Portland General Electric
Jon Bildner, Fuels/Forecasting Analyst, Portland General Electric
Stephan Brown, Manager, Rates and Regulatory Affairs, Portland General Electric

12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
Catered Boxed Lunches

1:00 PM – 1:30 PM
Wrap-Up and Annual Meeting Expectations
Speaker: Denise Wilcox, Director, CRM Strategic Solutions and Human Resources, New Mexico Gas Company

1:30 PM – 3:00 PM
Capstone Project Work Time
We reserve time for Capstone Groups to work with Mentors and the Facilitator in advance of Session Five (Annual Meeting)

Hotel + Travel

Hilton Portland and Executive Tower
921 SW 6th Ave
Portland, OR 97204
Phone: 1.800.HILTONS

Please contact the hotel directly at 1.800.HILTONS to reserve your room, or complete your reservation online. Identify yourself as being with Western Energy Institute and use the discount code ‘WEN’ to receive a special rate of $229/night. This rate is guaranteed until July 13, 2016 or until the WEI room block is full.