Nov

16-17

Electric Utility Fundamentals + Insights – WEI Hosted – Virtual (Nov 16-17)

This program provides utility and service company employees with a broad understanding of how the electric utility industry works and a better awareness of their own roles within their organizations. Topics include (1) Fundamentals of Electricity, (2) Western North American Electricity Markets, (3) How Utilities Make Money, (4) Generation Choices, (5) Customers + Emerging Opportunities, (6) Distributed Energy Resources, and (7) Integrated Resource Planning. The class is delivered virtually over two half-days and in a one-day format at the WEI office in Portland, Oregon. WEI member companies may also host a customized on-line or in-person course exclusively for their own employees to provide a unique, individualized training experience. Contact WEI for more information.

Register Now

General Details

  • Program Chair(s)
  • Eric Christenson, Director of Program Curriculum + Analytics, Western Energy Institute

    • Program Location
    • Virtual Event
    • No travel required. All agenda times are in Pacific time. Instructions to access the virtual event will be provided to the attendee before the program.
    • Who Should Attend
    • Wondering if this course is right for you or your staff…

      • Are you new to the energy industry?
      • Have you worked in just one or two areas of the organization?
      • Are you looking for a broader perspective of the business of electricity and emerging issues?
      • Do you work for a service provider to the energy industry who wants to learn more about your customer?

      If the answer is yes to any of these, this course was designed for you.

  • Registration Options
  • Member: $399 USD
    Regular: $599 USD

    Registration prices increase by $100 after November 5, 2021. Registration includes course binder mailed directly to participant upon request, two half-day interactive course over the web.

  • General Cancellation Policy
  • Due to the uniqueness of this course, registration cancellations received within nine business days prior to the first day of class will be ineligible for refunds.
  • 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 Eric Christenson, Director of Program Curriculum + Analytics at (971) 303-2118.

Agenda

All session times are listed in Pacific time.

Tuesday, November 16, 2021

8:30 AM - 9:00 AM

Virtual Help Desk + Technology Check

The room will open early with optional time for participants to get familiar with the virtual platform, test their audio and webcam, or ask questions about the agenda before we begin.

Please join early as we will start the class promptly at 9:00 AM.

9:00 AM - 9:30 AM

Participant Introductions

Students share their own backgrounds within and outside the energy industry and what they hope to learn throughout the day. Please be prepared to share at least three questions you hope to answer during the course.

9:30 AM - 9:45 AM

Break

We will have several planned breaks throughout the day for participants to check email, answer calls, and check in with daily work requirements.

9:45 AM - 10:45 AM

Module 1: Fundamentals of Electricity
Speaker(s): Eric Christenson, Director of Program Curriculum + Analytics, Western Energy Institute

– Key influencers in the history of electricity
– Utility definitions and electricity terms
– Basics of how electricity is generated
– Electricity generation and “the Utility loop”
– Keys to power quality

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM

Break

11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Module 2: Generation Choices

– Number ONE rule of the electric grid
– Fossil fuel options
– Traditional low-carbon generation
– Today's renewables
– Energy storage

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Break for Lunch

1:00 PM - 2:30 PM

Module 3: How Utilities Make Money

– Types of utilities
– Common organizational structures
– Balancing interests of stakeholders
– Regulation and rate making fundamentals

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

7:30 AM - 8:00 AM

GoToWebinar Open for Participants

8:00 AM - 8:15 AM

Day 1 Review

8:15 AM - 9:15 AM

Module 4: Western North American Electricity Markets
Speaker(s): Robert Kendall, Senior Advisor, M.J. Beck Consulting LLC

– Service territories
– Federal regulators and departments
– NERC regions and the WECC
– Energy balancing

9:15 AM - 9:30 AM

Break

9:30 AM - 10:30 AM

Module 5: Customers + Emerging Opportunities
Speaker(s): Kristin Stathis, Vice President, Operations Services, Retired, Portland General Electric, Retired

– Types and expectations of electricity customers
– Customer care regulations
– Electric vehicles
– Solar programs – utility and customer
– Distributed Energy Resources
– The Trusted Energy Advisor

10:30 AM - 10:45 AM

Break

10:45 AM - 12:00 PM

Module 6: Distributed Energy Resources + Module 7: Integrated Resource Planning
Speaker(s): Eric Christenson, Director of Program Curriculum + Analytics, Western Energy Institute

– Energy storage
– Energy efficiency
– Electric Vehicles
– Distributed generation
– Demand response
– Meeting demand with resource portfolios
– Scenario planning and modeling
– The preferred portfolio and vetting The IRP.

12:00 PM - 12:15 PM

Q&A and Wrap-Up

We circle back to the original expectations of students to ensure that expectations were met.

Meet The Speakers

Robert Kendall

M.J. Beck Consulting LLC

Senior Advisor
Learn More

Bob has spent his entire career of over 45 years in the electric utility industry serving in senior management positions at Southern California Edison (SCE) for 30 years; EVP then President of Sunlaw Energy, a Los Angeles based generation owner and development company for 2 years; as a Managing Director with Navigant Consulting for 10 years; with M. J. Beck Consulting for 3 years; and is in his 2nd year as an instructor with WEI.

Bob’s primary focus during his career has been on designing competitive procurements for new fossil-fueled and renewable generation and transmission projects and negotiating the resulting contracts to make these projects a reality.

Bob also headed a division of SCE’s Revenue Requirements Department that was responsible for managing its response to regulatory proceedings initiated by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and for managing the company’s rate cases. In this capacity, he testified numerous times before the CPUC as an SCE policy witness to oppose or support proposed new rates, regulatory requirements and/or rules. Bob also served as SCE’s chief lobbyist to the CPUC. Finally, while at SCE during utility deregulation, Bob was a key member of the team that created the CaISO.

Currently, Bob focuses on procurements and contract negotiations of renewable energy resources including off-shore wind on the U.S. east coast and energy storage. He is a qualified and recognized expert in electric utility contracts, integrated resource planning, engineering economics, transmission planning, power generation, and several other subjects and has testified as an expert witness both in the U.S. and internationally numerous times.

Bob has a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering, an M.B.A. in Finance, and a J.D. in Contract Law. Bob is a member of the California Bar Association.

Kristin Stathis

Portland General Electric, Retired

Vice President, Operations Services, Retired
Learn More

As Vice President, Kristin Stathis led PGE’s Operations Services department, where she had oversight of the company’s supply chain, property and facilities, corporate resiliency, security, safety, project management, change management and environmental services programs.

In nearly 30 years at Portland General Electric, Stathis served in various roles throughout the organization. She previously served as VP of Customer Service Operations, where she oversaw the implementation of PGE’s Customer Touchpoints customer information systems. Other roles at PGE include general manager of Revenue Operations, assistant treasurer and manager of Corporate Finance and general manager of Power Supply Risk Management.

She also served as Board Member at the Western Energy Institute.

Stathis earned a bachelor’s degree from Willamette University and a certificate in accounting from Portland State University.Undo

Eric Christenson

Western Energy Institute

Director of Program Curriculum + Analytics
Learn More

In his role as Director of Program Curriculum + Analytics, Eric’s primary roles are leading the Executive Planning Committee and its Utility Fundamentals + Insights courses. He also supports the organization and his teammates as the Director of Analytics.

Eric joined WEI after seven great years at Portland General Electric. At PGE he developed and managed the company’s Enterprise Risk Management program and worked in several other areas including operations benchmarking, regulatory affairs, fleet services, AMI, and finance.

Prior to joining PGE, Eric developed his skills in a leading internet marketing company and as the Manager of Strategy and Analysis at a finance and lending organization.

Eric earned his Bachelors in Mathematics and Economics from the University of Oregon. He has served the community as a Past President of the Oregon Society of Association Management and Vice President of the Greater Portland Soccer District.