Incident Command System Leadership – Virtual (Jul 15-16)

Emergency events and integrated response requirements are increasingly dependent on energy company operations to provide core support in emergency management situations. The National Incident Management System is a structure for management of large-scale or multi-jurisdictional incidents. It is being phased in at the federal, state and local levels. Eventually, any jurisdiction seeking federal Homeland Security grant money will have to demonstrate that it is NIMS compliant. Within a utility organization, the Incident Command System strengthens the company's response to avoid emergencies developing into crises. WEI's ICS Leadership program supports our Members as they build utility-based ICS training programs for their companies, using examples and sharing training materials to efficiently and effectively implement and maintain ICS in their organizations.

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General Details

  • Program Chair(s)
  • Rod Price, Chief Engineering & Operations Officer, Eugene Water & Electric Board

    • Program Location
    • Virtual Event
    • No travel required. All agenda times are in Pacific time. Instructions to access the virtual event will be provided before the program.
    • Who Should Attend
    • This program is developed by and provided for electricity and natural gas employees with responsibilities in business continuity and emergency management, business resilience, incident command system training, first responders, those wanting to share US and Canada ICS best practices, and others considering ICS for their organizations.

  • Registration Options
  • Member: $149 USD
    Regular: $249 USD

    Registration includes provides access to forum sessions and meeting materials.

  • General Cancellation Policy
  • To best serve WEI members and program participants during the COVID-19 pandemic, WEI will be waiving its standard cancellation policy for this program and all programs through December 2020. Registrants can now receive a full refund should they need to cancel their registration up to the day before the program begins. This applies to both new and existing registrations for virtual programs.
  • 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. Recording is not permitted for any portion of the event.
  • For more information contact Beverly Woolf, Program Manager at (503) 688-2790.


All session times are listed in Pacific time.

Wednesday, July 15, 2020

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Virtual Registration + Helpdesk Open

WEI will host a virtual registration and help desk before the conference begins.  Stop in for a visit if you have questions about the agenda or need assistance with the GoToMeeting technology.

12:00 PM - 12:30 PM

Welcome and Introductions

You’re invited to share not only some information about yourself, but also a success story, challenge, or something the group might benefit from knowing or be able to help you solve.

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

COVID-19 and What We Are Learning at ConEd
Speaker(s): Anthony Natale, Emergency Preparedness, Consolidated Edison

Throughout the pandemic all eyes have turned to New York as they’ve dealt with the highest levels and earliest impacts of the crisis. Hear what Consolidated Edison has faced, how they’ve used the ICS structure, and what they are continuing to learn and implement for the future.

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM

NW Natural’s Evolving ICS Structure
Speaker(s): Todd Felix, Emergency Manager, NW Natural, Kerry Shampine, Distribution/Transmission Senior Manager, NW Natural

NW Natural used the ICS structure for a major planned event, moving to a new headquarters.  Then the pandemic hit.  And in the midst of Return to Work/Return to Workplace planning their new HQ was surrounded by protests and civil unrest.  Learn about the work they’ve done over the past several years to make their use of ICS successful and hear how they’ve applied the ICS structure and base practices to accommodate overlapping and shifting situations.

2:30 PM - 2:45 PM

Stretch Break

2:45 PM - 4:00 PM

The Virtual EOC
Speaker(s): August Ghio, Director, Emergency Management, San Diego Gas & Electric Company

What does a virtual Emergency Operation Center look like? We’ll cover not only considerations and practicalities when standing up a virtual EOC, but also documentation for future use, lessons learned, and much more along with ample time for Q&A.

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Virtual Happy Hour

Social distancing doesn’t need to dry up socializing. Grab a beverage and turn on your webcams for a virtual Happy Hour! WEI will open a virtual room for people to chat, network, and connect with colleagues and friends.

Thursday, July 16, 2020

1:00 PM - 1:15 PM

Welcome to Day 2

1:15 PM - 2:15 PM

Avista Utilities’ COVID-19 Labor Challenges and Response
Speaker(s): David Howell, Director of Electrical Operations, Avista Corp., Eric Rosentrater, Director of Labor Relations, Avista Corp.

Walk through a timeline reviewing both internal and external pressures and actions from the onset of the pandemic. Explore lessons learned and strategies for the future.

2:15 PM - 2:30 PM

Stretch Break

2:30 PM - 4:00 PM

A Conversation on Leadership During a Pandemic
Facilitator(s): Rod Price, Chief Engineering and Operations Officer, Eugene Water & Electric Board
Panelist(s): David Howell, Director of Electrical Operations, Avista Corp., Carmen Jandacek, Director of Ethics, Total Rewards and HR Technology, Arizona Public Service Company

After years of training to respond to a sudden event like an earthquake or storm, did you try to respond the same way to a slow moving event? As a leader, different preparation and skills may be needed for a “creeping crisis” like a pandemic. Join the discussion around the variability of leadership.

Meet The Speakers

August Ghio

San Diego Gas & Electric Company

Director, Emergency Management
Learn More

Augie Ghio is a 36-year veteran of the fire service. His career included 30 years with the City of San Diego, retiring as the Assistant Fire Chief and Director of Homeland Security and 6.5 years as Fire Chief with the San Miguel Consolidated Fire Protection District. Over the past 8 years, Augie has been with the San Diego Gas & Electric Company where he currently serves as the Director of Emergency Management.

Augie hold a B.A. degree in Business Administration, an A.S. Degree in Fire Prevention, a Certificate Program in Fire Administration. He has served as the President of the County Fire Chiefs’ Association, Board of Director of the San Diego Burn Institute, President of the San Diego Regional Technology Partnership, President of San Diego Medical Services, and President of the Regional Cooperative Care Partnership.

Rod Price

Eugene Water & Electric Board

Chief Engineering and Operations Officer

Todd Felix

NW Natural

Emergency Manager

David Howell

Avista Corp.

Director of Electrical Operations

Carmen Jandacek

Arizona Public Service Company

Director of Ethics, Total Rewards and HR Technology

Anthony Natale

Consolidated Edison

Emergency Preparedness
Learn More

Emergency Management Professional with over 25 years’ experience managing incidents within the petroleum, utility and hazmat transportation sectors. Strategic problem-solver with ability to manage complex and high hazard incidents while applying experience in industrial and municipal firefighting, large scale spill management, hazmat response and regulatory code compliance.

Eric Rosentrater

Avista Corp.

Director of Labor Relations

Kerry Shampine

NW Natural

Distribution/Transmission Senior Manager