The WEI Operations Conference brings together over 600 electric and natural gas energy operations managers, supervisors and front line employees for three days of education and networking with breakout discussions for specific operations functions: Operational Leadership + Workforce Development; Environmental; Safety; Asset Management; Customer Field Services (Electric and Natural Gas); Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Management Systems; Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Integrity Management; Natural Gas Operational Excellence; Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Emergency Response; The Evolving Electric Grid (Grid Modernization); Electric Substation; Electric Transmission; Electric T&D System Operations; Electric Distribution Operations - Executing Work (Planning, Design, and Construction). The breakout sessions are complemented by thought-provoking general sessions by industry leaders and professional keynote speakers. This conference is a must for any professional in the energy business. Limited booth displays are available.
Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort
11111 North Seventh Street
Phoenix, AZ 85020
Who Should Attend
Electric and Natural Gas Energy Operations:
• Vice Presidents
• Front line employees
• Control professionals
• Engineering professionals
• Planning personnel
• Substation professionals
• Electric transmission professionals
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.
Conference Registration Member: $759 USD (speakers and delegates)
Conference Registration Regular: $1,599 USD
Prices for the conference registration increase $200 after March 16, 2018. Registration includes comprehensive conference materials and all food events. Guest tickets are available for $99 and allow for a personal guest (a spouse or partner who does not work in the energy
industry) to accompany a registered attendee at the event. Guest registration includes all meals and receptions, and all program materials.
For vendor registration options, please see the Vendor Displays tab.
General Cancellation Policy
Due to contractual obligations, cancellations received 15 business days prior to the program will receive a full refund. Cancellations received 6 to 14 business days prior to the event will receive a refund, less a $100 administrative fee. No shows and last minute cancellations, 5 business days prior to the event or less, will be responsible for the full registration fee. Substitutions from your organization for the same event are always welcome.
For more information contact Eric Christenson, Senior Program Manager at (971) 303-2118.
6:30 AM – 3:00 PM
Optional Networking Events
Check the Networking tab for details.
3:30 PM – 4:45 PM
Name Badge Pick-up
For guests who wish to pick up their name badges prior to the Welcome Reception, we provide early registration check-in. After 5:00 name badges will be available at the Welcome Reception at the Palm Terrace.
Operations Conference program app sponsored by:
Lanyards sponsored by:
4:45 PM – 5:15 PM
First-Time Attendee Meetup
If this is your first time attending a WEI event show up early to meet experienced WEI veterans and fellow first timers. We want you to get the most out of your experience at the Operations Conference!
Directional signage for the Operations Conference sponsored by:
7:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Continental Breakfast + Registration
Location: West Courtyard
Breakfast sponsored by:
WiFi for the program sponsored by:
8:00 AM – 8:15 AM
Operations 2018 Official Welcome
Daniel Froetscher, Executive Vice President of Operations, Arizona Public Service Company
Location: Highland Ballroom
All day coffee service sponsored by:
8:15 AM – 9:30 AM
It’s Your Ship – Achieving Breakthrough Performance
Speaker: Mike Abrashoff, Former Commander, USS Benfold
When Mike Abrashoff took command of the USS Benfold, morale was low, turnover was high and performance ranked at the bottom of the Pacific Fleet. Twelve months later the ship was the benchmark for performance – the shining star… using the very same crew. This inspiring talk is based on the vital leadership lessons Abrashoff learned as he led the remarkable turnaround of the ship.
The first lesson was Abrashoff’s realization that before the ship’s performance could improve, his own leadership style had to change from the traditional command and control model. When the crew would present a problem, Abrashoff became known for responding “What would YOU do? It’s YOUR ship!” His Leadership Roadmap principles created a high performance culture and empowered his crew to take charge and use ingenuity and initiative to improve every aspect of the way things were done.
9:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Break with Vendor Displays
Location: Grande Ballroom
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Concurrent Tracks – Breakout Session 1
Operational Leadership + Workforce Development – Generational Change – Perspectives on Leading the Workforce
Customer Field Services – Connecting With Your Customer at Their Door
Environmental – Struggles with Incorporating Environmental into Operational Excellence
Safety – Safety Leadership, Error Reduction & Human Performance
Asset Management – Technology for Informed Decisions
Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Management Systems – Committed to a Pipeline Safety Management System – Where are You in Your Journey?
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Integrity Management – Regulatory Update: How are you getting ready?
Natural Gas Operational Excellence – Don’t Give Up…Technology is Here to HELP!
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Emergency Response – Gas Incidents Lessons Learned
The Evolving Electric Grid – Electric Power System Communication
Electric Substation – Utility Staffing Challenges
Electric Transmission – Working Your Transmission System Live
Electric T&D System Operations – T&D One Grid – Closing the Chasm
Electric Distribution Operations – Executing Work – Disruptive Technology – Planning Ahead and Around
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM
Location: West Courtyard
1:30 PM – 3:00 PM
Just a Second Ago: The Impact of Unsafe Work Acts on Your Family
Location: Highland Ballroom
Speakers: Brad Livingston and Kayla Rath
You go to work every day expecting to come home to your family at night. But what if you don’t? What if you take shortcuts? What if you let pride and complacency get in the way of you safely doing your job? You could be hurt or killed, and then what happens to your family? The people you love most; what impact do your decisions have on them?
“Back-to-back explosions!! 100% preventable!!” “I didn’t think anything like this could ever happen to me!” “How long before I die?”
In this session, Brad Livingston explains each of these contributing factors – Pride; Shortcuts; Attitude; Complacency, and how they have affected every day of the rest of his life. His daughter, Kayla Rath, was nine years old when her father was involved in these workplace explosions. Brad and Kayla speak together to describe their real life, heart wrenching experiences and why you have no choice but to be safe at work.
3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Break with Vendor Displays
Location: Grande Ballroom
3:30 PM – 5:00 PM
Concurrent Tracks – Breakout Session 2
Operational Leadership + Workforce Development – Creating a Path to Leadership
Customer Field Services – Anticipating the Needs of Legalization: Are You Ready?
Environmental – Environmental Challenges of an Aging Infrastructure
Safety – Vehicle Safety and Distractions
Asset Management – ISO Certification? What is the Best Choice for Your Utility?
Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Management Systems – Pipeline SMS – PHMSA Voluntary Info shares – Preparation and Lessons Learned
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Integrity Management – Qualitative and Probabilistic Risk Models, Data Driven Models for a New Era of Pipeline Safety
Natural Gas Operational Excellence – Applying New Technology to the Gas Industry
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Emergency Response – The Evolving Landscape of ICS and How to Take Control of your Process
The Evolving Electric Grid – Electrification of Transportation System EVs and What They Mean to Utilities and their Customers
Electric Substation – Meeting Operational Training Challenges
Electric Transmission – Aerial Data Acquisition (LiDAR/IR)
Electric T&D System Operations – Keeping up with the Data in a Smart Grid
Electric Distribution Operations – Executing Work – Customer Impacts, Executing Work
7:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Location: West Courtyard
8:00 AM – 9:30 AM
Leadership and Building the Culture of Safety
Location: Highland Ballroom
Speaker: John Haarlow, AGM Distribution & Engineering Services, Snohomish County PUD
Mr. Haarlow explains his organization’s journey and how addressing the safety culture at Snohomish County PUD led to real results and improvements in operations.
9:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Break with Vendor Displays
10:00 AM – 11:30 AM
Concurrent Tracks – Breakout Session 3
Operational Leadership + Workforce Development – Leading an Internal and External Workforce – Addressing Challenges and Maintaining Relationships
Customer Field Services – Understanding Your Customer Base and Being Prepared to Interact
Environmental – Streamlining the Permitting Process
Safety – Distracted Mind & Mindfulness
Asset Management – Addressing the Tsunami of Aging Assets and Infrastructure
Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Management Systems – Pipeline Safety Management Systems and Safety Culture: What You Can Learn from PG&E’s Journey
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Integrity Management – Unique Ways of Pigging
Natural Gas Operational Excellence – Navigating the Changing Policy Environment
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Emergency Response – We’re Going In!
The Evolving Electric Grid – Non-Wires Alternatives: Solve Grid Challenges Without New Wires
Electric Substation – Sometimes You Win, Sometimes You Learn
Electric Transmission – Get the Most from Your System with Dynamic Rating
Electric T&D System Operations – The Distribution Operator of the Future
Electric Distribution Operations – Executing Work – Executing Permits
11:30 AM – 1:00 PM
Location: West Courtyard
1:00 PM – 2:30 PM
Concurrent Tracks – Breakout Session 4
Operational Leadership + Workforce Development – Leading Operations Workforce and Challenges
Customer Field Services – So, you THINK you can Communicate?
Environmental – Safeguarding the Public and Employees from Hazardous Materials
Safety – Improving Fitness to Minimize Injuries
Asset Management – Lifecycle Best Practices in Asset Management
Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Management Systems – Driving Value From Incident Investigation
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Integrity Management – Legacy Cross Bore and Material Traceability Programs
Natural Gas Operational Excellence – Contractor Governance: Are you getting the most out of your team?
Natural Gas Distribution & Transmission Emergency Response – Preparing for the Super Bowl and Responding to the Ventura Fires: Emergency Response Roadblocks
The Evolving Electric Grid – Evolution of the Distribution Control Center
Electric Substation – Technology in the Field
Electric Transmission – Industry Driving Transmission Projects
Electric T&D System Operations – Power Quality: Meeting Electrical System Demands in a Tough and Rapidly Changing Environment
Electric Distribution Operations – Executing Work – Executing Paper
2:30 PM – 3:00 PM
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Lead with How: Turning Values into Action
Speaker: Jen Waldman, Igniter, Start With Why
Location: Highland Ballroom
Great leaders start with WHY. But how do great leaders live their WHY every day? How do they successfully navigate challenging situations and continue to inspire their teams? How do they consistently deliver excellence with authenticity and integrity? In this interactive keynote, Jen Waldman does a deep dive into the second ring of the Golden Circle – HOW. Jen shares the ways in which HOWs allow leaders to make good on their promises, hold themselves accountable for their actions, and inspire their teams. The participants will learn how to turn their own values into HOWs and immediately put them into action.
7:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Location: Highland Plaza
8:00 AM – 9:00 AM
Pacific Gas & Electric’s Operational Response to the Northern California Wildfires
Speaker: Barry Anderson, Vice President of Electric Distribution, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Location: Highland Ballroom
The October 2017 Northern California wildfires were a series of wildfires that started burning across the state of California, beginning in early October. Twenty-one of the wildfires became major fires that burned at least 245,000 acres. At the outset of the wildfires, PG&E activated emergency centers with base camps for their crews in Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino and Lake counties. PG&E crews worked around the clock at the camps to return power and gas service – and a sense of normalcy – to the impacted communities.
The fires impacted service to about 359,000 PG&E electric customers and 42,000 PG&E gas customers. PG&E deployed more than 4,300 workers, including PG&E employees and mutual-aid crews to support the response. PG&E shares the story of this response and coordination to support their customers.
9:00 AM – 9:30 AM
Closing and Conference Adjourns
9:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Wrap-up and 2019 Planning
Open to all Ops participants who are interested in joining the leadership teams or just want to provide your feedback, you’re invited to participate in the wrap-up as we set the stage for 2019!
Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort
11111 North Seventh Street
Phoenix, AZ 85020
Phone: (602) 866-7500
The room block at the Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort is now sold out.
WEI has confirmed that the Four Points by Sheraton Phoenix North still has rooms available to reserve at the best available rate published on their website. Click here to be routed to the reservation page.
All networking events are scheduled for Tuesday, April 24, 2018.
Golf – Ambiente Course at Camelback Golf Club
6:30 AM – 2:00 PM
Registration Fee: $110 USD per person
Capacity Limit: 80
Refund Policy: No refunds after March 20, 2018
Registration closes Friday, April 6, 2018.
Here is your chance to network with your peers while enjoying a fun round of golf. Designed by notable golf architect Jason Straka on behalf of Hurdzan/Fry Environmental Golf Design, Ambiente presents a distinct challenge where accuracy and a good strategy command the day, as every hole will force even the best players to focus on each and every shot. Golfers find the eye-catching elevation changes, as well as rolling fairways with significant drops throughout the course, are among its most striking features. Ambiente was completely renovated and re-opened as a new course in November 2013.
Registration fee also includes transportation to and from the course, morning refreshments, and lunch.
Arizona Public Service Co. Palo Verde Nuclear Plant Industry Tour
7:00 AM – 1:30 PM
Registration Fee: $70 USD
Capacity Limit: 29
Refund Policy: No refunds after March 20, 2018
Registration closes Friday, April 6, 2018.
Participants will receive an orientation to the plant at the Energy Education Center and then will take a bus tour of the plant site. We return to the education center for any follow-up questions and a hosted lunch.
Salt River Project Hydroelectric System and Dam Industry Tour
7:00 AM – 3:30 PM
Registration Fee: $70 USD
Capacity Limit: 30
Refund Policy: No refunds after March 20, 2018
Registration closes Friday, April 6, 2018.
Join WEI for a tour of Salt River Project’s historic Roosevelt Dam and hydroelectric power plant. Situated in the desert 90 miles East of Phoenix, the dam enabled water storage, power production, and the prosperous development of the Phoenix Valley.
WEI Reserves the right to cancel networking tours if a minimum number of participants is not met. Space is limited. Includes: Round trip transportation from hotel, soft drinks, breakfast, snacks, and a catered BBQ lunch.
Southwest Gas Operations Tour
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Registration Fee: $70 USD
Capacity Limit: 19
Refund Policy: No refunds after March 20, 2018
Registration closes Friday, April 6, 2018.
Join WEI on a private tour hosted by Southwest Gas taking you behind the scenes of their Tempe operations center. The tour will include:
• Emergency Response Training Facility – simulated city where employees, contractors and emergency responders can participate in multiple live-gas scenarios to practice emergency response and ICS techniques
• Natural gas training facilities for Operations and Customer Service
• Emergency response trailer
• Fire pit with natural gas props
Southwest Gas will discuss how it utilizes the Emergency Response Training Facility to expand outreach and training opportunities with emergency responders, opportunities that are being implemented to increase liaison efforts with emergency responders and public officials, and damage prevention initiatives utilized for second party contractors.
Lunch will be provided on the bus. WEI reserves the right to cancel networking tours if a minimum number of participants is not met. Space is limited. Includes: Round trip transportation from hotel, soft drinks, snacks, and a catered lunch.
Conference Registration + Vendor Display Member: $1,259 USD
Conference Registration + Vendor Display Regular: $2,209 USD
+ Vendor Display Assistant for $499 USD
+ Guest Pass for $99 USD
Prices increase $200 for all registration options, except the Vendor Display Assistant + Guest Pass, after March 16, 2018. Conference Registration + Vendor Display includes comprehensive meeting materials, all sessions and all food events. This registration options also includes the registrant as the main vendor display representative, one (1) skirted Vendor Display Table for Wednesday and Thursday display events, plus comprehensive conference materials and all food events.
A Vendor Display Assistant registration is added to a vendor display registration and includes all meals on Wednesday and Thursday, April 25 and 26. The Vendor Display Assistant pass does not provide access to General Sessions nor breakout sessions.
The Guest ticket can be added to a conference registration and allows a personal guest (a spouse or partner who does not work in the energy industry) to accompany a registered attendee at the event. Guest registration includes all meals and receptions, and all program materials.
Pointe Hilton Tapatio Cliffs Resort
11111 North Seventh Street
Phoenix, AZ 85020
C/O: WEI Ops Conference Display + Your Company Name
Please note boxes should arrive no earlier than 3 days prior to the display date.
Vendor Display Schedule
Wednesday, April 25, 2018
7:00 AM – 9:00 AM: Check-in and set-up
9:30 AM – 10:00 AM: Break with Vendor Displays
11:30 AM – 1:30 PM: Lunch with Vendor Displays
3:00 PM – 3:30 PM: Break with Vendor Displays
5:00 PM – 7:00 PM: Reception with Vendor Displays
Thursday, April 26, 2018
7:00 AM – 8:00 AM: Breakfast with Vendor Displays
9:30 AM – 10:00 AM: Break with Vendor Displays
11:30 AM – 1:00 PM: Lunch with Vendor Displays
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM: Tear Down
Nancy Arroyoavila is a Manager for Gas Technical Training Curriculum Development at PG&E. She has worked in the energy industry for 7 year and has worked in Training and Development for over 20 years. When not traveling abroad, which she does regularly, Nancy spends much of her free time volunteering in her local community. Nancy retired from the U.S. Marine Corps in 2005 after 20 years of service and is now enjoying the next chapter of her life.
Dan Magnan is an operations manager with ATCO’s Pipelines and Liquids Global Business Unit. He oversees a team of 50 field technicians and support staff in the Grande Prairie Region of Alberta, Canada. Dan is passionate about leadership development and improving the employee experience and has been in a leadership role with ATCO since 2014.
Chris Moore is Vice President of Engineering at JANA. Mr. Moore received his Bachelor of Engineering Science in Materials Engineering from Western University. He has spent his entire career in the Transmission pipeline and Gas Distribution industry, with specific focus in Engineering and Operations.
With a career that spanned more than two decades at the Enbridge family of companies – Enbridge Pipelines, Enbridge Gas Storage and Enbridge Gas Distribution – Mr. Moore is well-versed in operational, engineering and regulatory requirements involved in managing pipeline assets. Mr. Moore has spent 15 years in leadership roles, from Engineering Materials & Construction through to EH&S, ultimately ending up as the Director of Operations for Enbridge Gas Distribution before transitioning to the private sector. As Vice President of Engineering at JANA, Mr. Moore leverages his 25 years of industry experience and his passion for people to train and mentor JANA’s staff of engineers.
Kaz is an Integrity Manager with ATCO’s Pipelines and Liquids Global Business Unit. He is responsible for the integrity management programs for ATCO’s transmission and distribution pipeline assets, and enjoys the challenge of driving for continuous improvement in asset and integrity management.
Carter is a licensed professional civil engineer who has spent his most of career of over 35 years in the fields of natural gas engineering and pipeline and facility construction. Since 2012 he oversees quality for major liquid pipeline projects at Enbridge Energy. Carter lives in Omaha, Nebraska and is employed by Avery Technical Resources of Sterling, Colorado.
Jason Walborn has 25 years’ experience with infrastructure analysis, development and renewal, and is currently engaged with hundreds of governmental entities, infrastructure owner/operators and utility companies, providing infrastructure renewal services. Jason’s knowledge on data management, processes and infrastructure condition help owners prioritize and budget their renewal effort. Jason’s career started in the early ‘90s in civil infrastructure (surveying, engineering & construction), and in 2011, Jason joined PRO-PIPE, a division of Hoffman Southwest Corp., to manage the business development strategy and provide renewal solutions to infrastructure owners. Jason is the company’s contractors-license qualifier, a member of NASSCO (Pacp/Macp/Lacp certified), and the Co-chair for the NASSCO Lateral Committee.
In his role as Senior Vice President, Electricity Operations, Frank Mannarino leads EPCOR’s Distribution and Transmission (EDTI) businesses. His team is responsible for the safe and reliable delivery of power to customers in the city of Edmonton, Alberta, along with wholesale energy transmission and sales, retail distribution and metering. Overall, EDTI distributes approximately 14% of the province’s energy consumption.
Before being appointed to his current position, Frank was Divisional Vice President of Municipal Operations at EPCOR Water Canada, responsible for water, wastewater and water distribution operations in all Canadian municipalities that EPCOR serves.
Frank held a number of senior roles in business and operations at Shell Canada prior to joining EPCOR in 2010. He holds a BSc in Chemical Engineering and an MBA, both from the University of Alberta. Frank serves on the Board of Directors of Edmonton’s Telus World of Science.
Jim Howe is Senior Vice President, Gas Engineering and Asset Management for CHA Consulting, Inc., an international, full service engineering firm. He is responsible for all of CHA’s work in the natural gas market segment.
Prior to joining CHA Consulting, Jim worked for Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation and, after Niagara Mohawk’s acquisition, National Grid for 34 years. Over the course of his career there he held a variety of positions in Hydro Engineering, Regional Operations, and Electric Operations, and was General Manager, Gas – Eastern Division, Regional Manager – Capital Region, Vice President Supply Chain, Vice President and Special Assistant to the CEO, and Vice President Operations Performance Improvement before being assigned as gas operations lead for National Grid’s integration effort with KeySpan. Prior to the completion of the KeySpan transaction, he was Acting Chief Operating Officer for US Gas Distribution. In his last position at National Grid, he was Senior Vice President for US Gas Distribution in New York, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire. In this role he was responsible for standards, policies and procedures, operations regulatory compliance, investment planning for capital and O&M programs, resource management, system reliability and integrity engineering, project engineering and design, and gas control centers for one of the largest utility gas transmission and distribution systems in the US.
Jim holds a BS in Civil Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and a MBA from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.
Gordon Ashby, Resource Economic Planner at Bonneville Power Administration, has been involved in hydro Asset Management since joining BPA in 2012. In his role, Gordon is responsible for the analysis and development of the Federal Columbia River Power System Strategic Asset Management Plan as well the economic analysis of proposed capital investments in the hydro system. He received a bachelor’s degree in Economics from the University of Oregon and a master’s degree in Finance from the University of Portland.
David Gabbard is the Senior Director, Transmission Asset Management at PG&E. Through his 12+ years with PG&E, Dave has held positions in T&D Construction, Project Management, Generation Interconnection, and Transmission Asset Management. In his current role, Dave leads a department responsible for the long term planning of PG&E’s transmission and substation infrastructure.
Dave received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo, Ca and his Masters in Business Administration from the University of Pennsylvania, Wharton Executive MBA Program. Dave is also PMP certified from the Project Management Institute.
CK started his career with ExxonMobil at their Baton Rouge Refinery, where he served as a Corrosion Engineer for 3 years. For the past 2.5 years, he has been with Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) as a Risk Management Engineer focused on transmission pipelines. Currently, CK leads PG&E’s transmission pipeline risk modelling process. CK graduated from MIT in 2012 with a degree in Materials Science and Engineering and has a professional certification in Strategic Decision and Risk Management from Stanford.
Mike Eutsey has been with Cascade Natural Gas for 15 years in varying levels of responsibility. He began his journey with Cascade as the last meter reader the company hired. He transitioned to the construction crew and was a welder for 7 years before venturing out of the ditch into a service tech role. Mike left the union in 2010 and took with him the knowledge he had acquired in the field. Mike has been a district manager as well as the manger of Standards and Compliance. In his current role as the Director of Operations Services he is accountable for multiple departments, including the CNGC Quality Assurance program. Mike was also selected as project lead for the Gap Analysis team that selected Jacobs Consulting from a group of esteemed consulting companies.
Nicole Garrett is the Manager of Quality Assurance for Vectren Corporation. In her current role she is responsible for Vectren’s Quality Assurance program, including the development of the Safety Management System. Nicole received her degree in Accounting from Butler University and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant. Prior to assuming her current role, she worked for the Vectren Internal Audit department, focusing on financial and operational audits. Before joining Vectren she worked for a Public Accounting firm leading audits for multi-family housing clients.
Marvin D. Moon is the Assistant General Manager of Power Delivery at the Pasadena Department of Water and Power (PWP). He is responsible for the management, design and operations of Engineering, Transmission, Distribution, Substation, and Load Dispatching functions at the utility. He is a PWP’s Electric Vehicle Program’s supporting management sponsor. Mr. Moon recently joined PWP after a 35-year career at the Los Angeles Dept. of Water and Power in various engineering and management roles. He has been the recipient of several City of Los Angeles Productivity Awards. In addition, he has twice received the City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Innovation Award and has been recognized as an innovator by the Electric Power Research Institute.
Jennie King, Director of Strategic Energy Management for SRP, is responsible for the overall management of SRP’s commercial customer relationships. Jennie has been with SRP since 1987 and has deep and broad experience in the utility industry with emphasis in market research, data management, data analytics and research insights, marketing communications, customer service operations, customer journey mapping and business process re-engineering. Jennie holds a bachelor’s degree in Finance and a MBA/MIS degree. Jennie and her husband, John King, have 4 sons and one grandson.
Erik Guerra is the Supervisor of Electric Geospatial Information System Department for Puget Sound Energy. Erik’s team plays an instrumental role by recording and providing network information that allows the company to safely, dependably, and efficiently operate our electric system 24×7. This includes network planning, construction, operation, maintenance and damage prevention. The information provided by Erik’s team also supports data integrity initiatives, and allows the company to make the grid “smarter” as technology and customer expectations continue to evolve.
Erik has a background in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas –San Antonio. Erik transitioned to the power industry in 2012 and has extensive experience in all aspects of distribution system design, construction, and project management, which was gained while serving as a Project Manager for PSE’s North King County service territory which contains the most complex and critical elements of its distribution network.
Robert is currently the Construction Field Maintenance Manager for Salt River Project’s Distribution Improvements division. He is responsible for managing the line construction operations that includes SRP’s cable replacement program and system improvements. Robert has over 19 years of experience in the power utility industry and holds a Journeyman Lineman ticket through the Department of Labor and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers along with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. He enjoys spending time with his bride of 17 years and their two children and serving in several ministries at their church in Gilbert, AZ.
Greg Frankamp is a Senior Communications Engineer at Idaho Power Company. He’s part of a team that designs, constructs, and maintains the company’s communication infrastructure. During his 10 years in this position he’s gained a diverse knowledge of the rapidly changing communication industry. He’s also served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force. He has a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Idaho, and he’s a registered Professional Engineer. Before devoting his work full time to Idaho Power, Greg spends his time with his most valued treasures, his wife of 18 years and their four children.
Michael Barigian is a Grid Application Integration Engineer with Southern California Edison’s Grid Modernization Team. His experience spans long-term distribution system planning, Distributed Energy Resource (DER) interconnection, competitive software procurement, and software implementation over the past 8 years. Michael holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, with a minor in mathematics from California State University, Fresno, as well as a master’s degree in Electrical Engineering, with an emphasis in utility power systems from the University of Southern California. Michael is a registered Professional Engineer in the state of California. In his free time, Michael enjoys 4×4 off-roading in the Southern California desert.
Raymond M. Hudson is the Global Solar Segment Director for DNV GL. Mr. Hudson has been involved in the power electronics and renewable energy industry since 1990 with an emphasis on power conversion and application of solar PV and wind power. His experience includes technical and management roles for a number of leading equipment manufacturers. Mr. Hudson holds Bachelors and Masters Degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Missouri.
Aaron Durivage is the District Manager/Bullhead City Operations for Southwest Gas Corporation (SWG) over the tristate area including Bullhead City all the way down to Ehrenberg, AZ, Laughlin, NV and Needles, CA. He has worked for SWG for 11 years and has spent time in Construction Department, Gas Operations Support Staff, and Operations management team in Tempe, AZ, Incline Village, NV, Winnemucca, NV, and now Bullhead City. Aaron lives in Bullhead City, AZ and enjoys the Colorado River along with the Casinos in Laughlin as ways to get away from the heat. He has been married to his wife Christina for almost 5 years and has 2 children, a daughter (Maisy) and a son (Lucas). Also, Aaron has served in the US Army for over 16 years now and looks to retire in less than 4 years. He spends his off time working with and helping veterans.
Zane White has worked at NW Natural for 18 years in the Human Resources department. She has been administering NW Natural’s drug & alcohol program since 2004 to ensure compliance with Company policies, applicable local, state and DOT PHMSA federal laws and regulations and has been part of the many changes associated with culture shifts with various drugs. She is also one of three Corporate Talent Acquisition Recruiters focusing on union and non-union positions. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from Central Washington University in Human Resources and Behavior Science.
Bryan Baker is a Field Operations Supervisor for NW Natural gas utility in the Southwest Portland area. Prior to his current role, he was a Technical Trainer for NW Natural’s Customer Field Service employees. He joined NW Natural in 1999. His home is Salem, Oregon with his wife Jacinta and two sons, Isaac and Nolan.
Victoria Person is the Diversity & Inclusion Manager at Southern California Gas Company, which is a part of the Sempra Energy family of companies. Victoria has been working with Sempra since 2001. She started in Marketing and Communications roles before making her way to her current – and favorite — position in Diversity & Inclusion. She was honored with the “2015 Phenomenal Woman Award” from the Greater Los Angeles YWCA. Victoria holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Mississippi, a Management Development Certification from the University of Southern California Marshall School of Business, and a Diversity and Inclusion certificate from the Cornell University School of Industrial & Labor Relations.
Tiffany Urland has worked for Cascade Natural Gas for 11 years and is currently the Manager, Compliance & Operations Programs in Mount Vernon, Washington. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology with a Minor concentration in Psychology. Tiffany is very involved in the community, including Leadership Skagit graduate (2013) and coach (2014). She is a member of the Mount Vernon Chamber, a Past President & Board President (2014-2015) of the Mount Vernon Noon Rotary and their respective Foundation. Tiffany was a founding member of the Community and Tesoro Advisory Group (CTAG), and has served on the Board of the United Way of Skagit County since 2013 and is currently the Resource Development Chair and member of the Executive Committee. This year she will present again at the Western Energy Institute annual conference and participate in their Business Acumen Course. She enjoys running and completed her first half -marathon in 2017.
Brian Taylor is the Gas Operations Manager in Medford, Oregon for Avista Utilities and has 22 years of experience in the utility business. He started his career in the natural gas industry working for his grandfather’s family owned distribution and maintenance contractor business prior to coming to Avista. Brian has held several positions including, Crewman, Journeyman Main fitter, Crew Foreman and Measurement Control Technician. In 2006 Brian moved into a formal leadership role as the Assistant Operations Manager in Medford. Brian has a wonderful wife Mary Jane and four active boys, Benny, Colby, Easton and Hayden.
Duncan is a international speaker, auther, operations executive and consultant with over 28 years’ experience in over 3 continents. He has spent approximately half his career working in heavy industry in leadership roles spanning operations, engineering, safety, asset management, general management and capital projects. He has worked as the Chief Operating Officer for a large publicly traded company as well as private companies and consulting firms.
As a consultant, Duncan is a recognized expert on leadership development, performance coaching, teamwork, culture and organizational development strategy. He has led and worked on a wide variety of successful projects worldwide supporting organizational transformations, operational excellence, performance management, safety and error reduction for organizations in the utility, oil, gas and mining sectors.
Duncan’s work has been featured in Incident Prevention Magazine, Utility Safety and Hygene News and Utility Products News and he has been selected to speak at the World Gas Conference in Washinton DC. Duncan is a Managing Partner at The Engine Room Group a workforce performance improvement firm that accelerates operational exclellence to achieve measurable business results.
• Bachelor of Engineering in Mining Engineering, University of McGill, Montral, QC • Directors Education Program, Institute of Corporate Directors
For a change of pace, Duncan enjoys outdoor sports including cycling and kayaking, or can be found pursuing fine woodworking projects in his home workshop.
Mitch Campbell is a Lead Operations Foreman for Dominion Energy in Utah. He has worked in the gas industry since 1994. He graduated from Weber State University, is a multi-qualified welder, and has ran a construction crew for the last 16 years. Mitch enjoys snow skiing, mountain biking, gardening, and spending time with his wife Alison, and children, Zach and Emily.
A Journeyman Lineman with 29 years in the Electrical utility construction, 13 years as a Safety professional in the industry.
Certified Utility Safety Professional, Certified Loss Control Professional,
Sitting member of the ETD Strategic OSHA alliance Best Practices committee, OSHA Outreach instructor, Certified crane instructor/Practical Examiner.
12 years as a Safety professional in the industry.
Carlos Alvarado is an Employee Development Advisor at SoCalGas and is certified as both a Sports Nutritionist and Wellness Coach. Carlos has also worked with top athletes throughout many professional sports leagues, including the NFL, NHL, UFC, & professional bodybuilding.
Prior to his current role, Carlos spent 4 years as a Wellness & Safety Advisor with SoCalGas. In that role he was responsible for creating several wellness & safety programs, including the industrial athlete training center. It was also in that role that he traveled throughout Southern California conducting his wellness seminars including ‘Hydration”, “The Power of Food”, “Sedentary no More”, “Rest/Recovery & Performance”, “Sleep deprivation”, & “The Distracted Mind.”
Bonnie Burns is the Safety Programs Manager for Southern California Gas Company, and a Certified Industrial Hygienist. In her 26 years with them, Bonnie has implemented and managed programs to protect employees such as exposure assessment, respiratory protection, asbestos/lead/mold and silica. Bonnie has been on the Cal/OSHA Advisory Committee for the recent wildfire smoke regulations since the petition for emergency regulations. She has authored the wildfire smoke policy and training program for her company and continues to follow the progress of permanent regulations.
Andrew J. Salvadore is the Vice President of Health, Safety, and Enviromental for Henkels & McCoy Group, Inc., and in that capacity he is responsible for providing the strategic leadership, as well as the interpretation, development, oversight, and direction of all safety and health programs, and environmental programs across the enterprise.
Mr. Salvadore has more than 30 years of experience as a Certified Safety Professional, with expertise in risk management and prevention, loss reduction, behavioral safety management, corporate governance, and compliance programs. Prior to joining Henkels & McCoy, Mr. Salvadore held positions at the Asplundh Tree Expert Company, Martin Marietta/GE Aerospace, and EBASCO Constructors, Inc.
Mr. Salvadore holds a Bachelor of Science in Safety Science from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.
Other notable accomplishments include numerous certifications from the Insurance Institute of America, OSHA, and the National Safety Council, among others. He is an active member of the Electrical Transmission and Distribution OSHA Partnership; the Edison Electrical Institute; the American Society of Safety Engineers; and the Penn Del Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture.
Over the past 25 years as an Industrial Physical Therapist and Kinesiologist, David Coates set-up his on-site clinical practices within large workplaces to develop client-specific ergonomics, musculoskeletal injury prevention and disability management programs to reduce the human and financial costs of musculoskeletal injury. Efforts included participatory ergonomics initiatives, movement safety training, industrial athlete programming, early intervention/job-attached rehabilitation and return to work programming.
David has culminated his years of experience into developing the MoveSafe Program. MoveSafe is an education and training program that teaches people WHY we need to train our bodies through specific warm-up routines to position and move properly at work, at home and at play. MoveSafe promotes the concept that we can get stronger and healthier from physical work and not deteriorate from seated work as long as we give our body what it needs and practice the ‘Big 3’ Positioning and Movement Fundamentals. Movesafe helps client organizations integrate ergonomics and biomechanics principles into daily safety management systems activities.
Gilbert Archuleta currently serves as Manager, Customer & System Projects for Puget Sound Energy. He is responsible for regional teams of project managers and engineering staff who drive new customer construction projects, plat/major developments and public improvement projects. He previously was the Manager, Customer Care Operations for PSE’s customer facing organization which includes a 200+ seat call center, back office team, escalated complaints and new customer construction services. He joined PSE in March 2009. Prior to joining PSE, Gilbert was a 13 year employee of Qwest Communications. Gilbert served six years as Chairman of the Board for a small Seattle arts organization, served as a City of Seattle Commissioner and is captain of his USTA tennis team. Gilbert holds Bachelors of Arts in Political Science and Communications from the University of Utah and a Bachelor of Business Management from the University of Phoenix.
I am the Manager of Facility Decommissioning and Demolition Services for Burns & McDonnell Engineering Co., Inc. I have a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and am a licensed professional engineer in 29 states. I have more than 34 years of experience of providing environmental services to various clients. My recent focus has been providing utilities and power cooperatives with assistance for the decommissioning and demolition of fossil-fired power plants. I am currently managing or participating in the demolition and remediation of 15 fossil-fired power plants and have completed more than 19 additional projects around the country.
Dirk McConnell is the District Manager of the Santa Ana District in the Transmission and Distribution (T&D) organization at Southern California Edison (SCE). In that role he is responsible for electrical and civil design, construction, maintenance and inspection of the overhead and underground electric distribution system in Orange County.
Previously, Dirk was the Operations Supervisor and District Manager in the Saddleback District, responsible for leading the 9 electrical crews to safely install more underground cable in a single year than any other district, over 100 miles. He began his career at SCE in 1984 and has held a variety of construction, supervisory, and management positions in the Transmission and Distribution Organization including Lineman, Foreman, Troubleman, and Field Supervisor.
Dirk was raised in the trade, with his father progressing in his career from Lineman to Operations Supervisor, and an uncle working as a utitlity lineman. Dirk has moved between management and trade positions during his career, and has worked for over 32 different District Managers. He has experienced a variety of management styles that have made an impression on him in different ways.
Maggie Trumbly is a manager in Environmental Management at Pacific Gas & Electric. She has worked in the energy industry for 13 years. She has specialized in environmental permitting and compliance. This year she is excited to be participating in an event call Bike Zambia, a project of Chooda, riding 325 miles across Zambia raising funds and awareness for HIV/AIDS prevention and economic empowerment of women in Africa.
Nate Lishman is a Sr. Land Planner and Environmental Lead for Pacific Gas and Electric Company’s Electric Towers Maintenance Program. He has worked in the energy industry for 5 years. He has specialized in environmental permitting and land planning and we are excited to hear his perspective on PG&E’s program to end the use of lead based paint. He is an expert fly fisherman and former fly fishing and whitewater guide throughout the western United States.
Tom Leslie is the Reliability Coordinator for the Predictive Maintenance department at Arizona Public Service. Since 2010 he’s been part of a team of specialized PDM Techs, Substation Techs and Chemists. The group inspects, tests and scans overhead & underground equipment as well as transmission and distribution substations throughout the state of Arizona. Before being promoted to his current position, he spent 4 years in a custom build Overhead Reliability Vehicle that covered the state scanning overhead lines for thermal and corona abnormalities. Tom enjoys spending his free time with his wife of 21 years and their 3 children.
Ryan Jamison is a Senior Instructor in the Operations Training Department for Dominion Energy Western Gas Distribution in Salt Lake City, Utah. Ryan attended Salt Lake Community College and Weber State University. Ryan began his career with Questar Gas in 2002 in the Meter Reading department. This is where he got his foot in the door to learn the basics about the Natural Gas Industry. In early 2004 Ryan transferred to the Operations Department and continued to learn about natural gas distribution, maintenance, in home customer service and emergency response. While attending school he continued to advance in his career and in 2011 was promoted to Operations Foreman. In 2012, opportunity led Ryan to the Operations Training Department where he currently sits as a Senior Instructor. Ryan also has taken on the role of Committee Chair for the Dominion Energy Western Gas Distribution Safety Committee.
Ryan was born and raised in Utah. Ryan and his wife Laura love just about everything outdoors and hopes to instill the same passion for his three daughters.
Mr. Jarnecke has been involved in the Gas Industry for over 20 years. His experiences have spanned various aspects of the natural gas industry; from distribution to transmission. Currently, he is the R&D Director for Infrastructure Pipeline Research programs. Responsibilities include directing the technical teams and formulating, developing, and managing research and development programs in GTI’s Infrastructure area to meet organizational needs for the improvement, cost reduction, and safety improvements. He has also led various consulting engagements with utility companies focusing on compliance, risk mitigation, and best practices.
Dennis has been developing new technologies and methods to improve and create options for the installation and replacement of pipe and maintaining the safety and reliability of gas distribution systems. This includes keyhole and trenchless construction techniques to facilitate operational efficiencies, and other construction and maintenance developments. In addition, Dennis has performed extensive work in the area of plastic piping systems.
Prior to GTI, Dennis held technical and managerial roles at Nicor Gas (a Southern Company) with responsibilities for design, construction, engineering, and developing both regulated and unregulated business opportunities. This included responsibility for numerous field activities including construction, system regulating facilities, and workforce management.
Mr. Jarnecke holds a BS in Industrial Engineering from Iowa State University.
Seth Plaizier works for Dominion Energy and is currently managing the Park City overseeing day to day operations for Summit and Wasatch Counties. Seth has worked for 15 years in the natural gas industry. Seth has 10 years experience designing and managing a variety of projects both in the high pressure and distributions systems, from M&R stations to the Company’s Belt Line replacement program. Seth does not like “death by PowerPoint” presentations. Seth enjoys spending time with family, camping, hiking, kayaking and playing with his children.
Chris Bolton graduated from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona with a Bachelor’s of Science (BS) degree in Electrical Engineering in 2011. Since then, he has worked at SDG&E in various roles such as District Engineer, Transmission Planning Engineer, and Substation Engineer. He is currently the Team Lead of the System Protection and Maintenance group managing SDG&E’s Substation Relay Technicians. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in the State of California.
Natasha Gentry is a manager of Transmission Line Design group at Bonneville Power Administration. She has over 13 years of experience with transmission and distribution utilities in the areas of line design, transmission line electrical clearance analysis, and transmission component health assessment. She holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Washington State University and a graduate certificate in Transmission and Distribution Engineering from Gonzaga University.
Corey Semrow is a Sr. Project Manager of Major Construction at Southern California Edison. Corey has a diverse background including nuclear construction, facility construction, energy efficiency, and transmission construction.
Corey is currently managing the Transmission Line Rating Remediation (TLRR) program, which is 15 year program designed to put SCE’s transmission grid back into compliance with the CPUC’s General Order 95. Corey is responsible for the day to day and long term strategy of the program which includes managing cost, scope, schedule, and risk through numerous stakeholders.
Jeff Laninga is the Live Line Methods Safety Engineer at Manitoba Hydro. He has worked at Manitoba Hydro for 19 years and completed his Masters of Science in Electrical Engineering in 2017. We are very excited to hear Jeff’s perspective on new innovations in dielectric net and rope technologies and the resulting safety improvements made for utilities wanting to work their system live. Jeff lives in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada, the original home of the Phoenix Coyotes and Home of many of your snowbirds; with his wife and 4 children. He enjoys playing basketball, biking ,camping and being in the great outdoors.
Jake Gentle is a senior power systems engineer for the Idaho National Laboratory, and is the INL Laboratory Relationship Manager to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Wind Energy Technologies Office (WETO). Jake is a program and project manager, developing technology and providing technical oversight by coordinating state-of-the-art and innovative solutions for the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) and Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability (OE), Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, and various electric power industry partners. Jake holds a Masters degree in Measurement & Controls Engineering and a Bachelors degree in Electrical Engineering from Idaho State University. Over the past eight years, Jake has led multiple power systems and transmission line projects at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Idaho National Laboratory.
Phil is a Principal Engineer for Transmission and Distribution Strategies in Idaho Power’s Transmission and Distribution Planning Department. In Phil’s 24 years with Idaho Power he has worked in a number of engineering capacities including Hydro automation engineer, EMS/SCADA engineer and Research, Development and Deployment engineer. Prior to Idaho Power, Phil worked for two other utilities in power generation engineering and has 31 years of engineering experience. Phil holds a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Engineering degree in Electrical Engineering. He is a Licensed Professional Engineer in the states of Idaho and Oregon.
Tyler Ashburn is a Senior General Engineer in the Transmission Line Design Group at Bonneville Power Administration. He has over 9 years experience in transmission and 16 years in engineering. He is also the chair of the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) task force on Increased Power Flow examining dynamic ratings, advanced conductors, and high-temperature operation of transmission lines. He holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Civil Engineering from Oregon State University.
Scott Stocker was born in Salem, Oregon on March 3, 1978. He graduated from Oregon State University in 2001 with a Bachelor in Science in Mechanical Engineering.
His employment experience includes LRD Performance, WARN Industries, and Portland General Electric. He is a licensed Mechanical Engineer in the State of Oregon. He is a Senior Project Engineer within Portland General Electric’s Transmission Engineering group.
Ian Grant is an Engineering Manager for the underground transmission line group in Black & Veatch’s Portland, Oregon office. He has over 12 years of experience and is a licensed Civil Engineer in the State of Oregon.
His fields of interest and expertise include high voltage underground transmission lines, underground distribution lines, seismic resilience of underground cables, horizontal directional drilling, augur boring and microtunneling. Mr. Grant has led the design and engineering of numerous underground transmission line projects, including the first 500 kV underground transmission line in North America for Southern California Edison in Chino Hills, California.
Dale leads a diverse group of 70+ union and exempt employees responsible for constructing, maintaining and operating PGE’s network of transmission, distribution and generation substations.
After college Dale has earned two journeyman Wireman certifications. He started his career with Chelan County Power where he earned his journeyman hydro plant Wireman certification with IBEW local 77. After seven years with the PUD he received his journeyman transmission / distribution substation Wireman with Local 125 and joined PGE in 1997. Since then he’s worked his way through various union leadership roles until he joined management in 2005. Dale is a graduate of WEI business acumen for emerging leaders and also served as a mentor.
Although many elements of his position are interesting and challenging the one he’s most proud of is seeing his staff arrive home safe each evening.
Dale has served on many committees including the Oregon state in house apprenticeship committee, union contract negotiations committee and currently serves on the board of directors for the Children’s Center in Clackamas county Oregon.
Barron began his career in Operations working as a dispatcher in the Operation’s Dispatch Department. During that time he became involved with developing the first of a series of applications for managing field service work in a mobile workforce environment. After working in that area for 6 years, he spent 10 years as a business consultant supporting the telecommunications for QGC that included the QGC Call Center, Dispatch applications, Radios, and field service’s applications in the vehicle. Barron also spent 5 years in the IT Department as a network analyst where he implemented and supported WANs/LANs, Firewalls, Web filtering services, and implemented VPNs to support a mobile workforce.
After finishing his MBA, Barron took a position in QGC Operations managing the Dispatch and scheduling Operations for Dominion Energy West Gas Operations, formerly Questar Gas, and is currently managing and supporting that group and other assigned IT projects that involve Operations.
Logan Monroe is the manager of PG&E Gas Operation’s emergency preparedness program. Logan comes to the utility industry from the public sector as a professional emergency manager, Incident Command System (ICS) expert, and disaster junkie. He spent his early career working for FEMA and NASA where he deployed to the front line of many large national disasters. He spent two years supporting the immediate response and long-term recovery of Hurricane Katrina. Currently, Logan is on a 6 months rotation learning the construction side of the gas business as a front line supervisor over Maintenance and Construction.
Logan holds a B.S. in emergency management from the University of North Texas, a Master Exercise Practitioner (MEP) from FEMA’s Emergency Management Institute (EMI), a Type II Planning Section Chief from FEMA, a Certified Emergency Manger (CEM) from the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM), and an Executive Leadership Certificate from The Graduate School in Washington D.C.
Mike Nushart brings more than four decades of natural gas industry experience and provides data-driven Pipeline Integrity Management and code compliance expertise with a focus on data definition, acquisition, integration and, analysis.
Experience includes 32 years of direct utility management of gas distribution and transmission, construction, operations, and maintenance with special emphasis on cost effective code compliance and system safety and reliability.
Subsequent to a successful utility career, the skills acquired have been applied to a consultancy that has assisted other LDC operators in achieving improved pipeline integrity, cost savings and efficiencies.
Wendy Veliz is an employee of Portland General Electric (PGE) where she currently works in the Local Government Affairs department. Her current responsibilities include managing utility and business issues that impact PGE’s operations with counties and municipalities both within PGE’s service and operating service territories. She focuses on the strengthening of partnerships with local government and community leaders. Prior to her role in local government affairs, Wendy served as a lead in field operations. Wendy currently serves as a member of the Oregon Community Foundation Metropolitan Leadership Council, the Oregon State Parks Foundation, and the Salem Chamber Board of Directors.
Wendy earned her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Eastern Oregon University. Wendy also completed the Utility Management Certificate program from Willamette University in Salem, Ore.
Wendy is a third generation Latina who grew up in Oregon’s lush Willamette Valley and resides in the small community of Aurora, Oregon with her family.
James Stefanuk is a senior lead engineer within the ATCO Electricity Global Business Unit, and has over 7 years of electrical utility experience within a variety of groups, including Operational Planning, Distribution Design and Construction Standards. Currently James leads the Design Technical Support group that looks after all distribution construction and design standards, as well as material specifications and approvals.
As President Luke is responsible for the day to day operations of Ampjack Industries/America/California Ltd. These functions include worldwide business development, engineering, project and manufacturing management and ensuring the company is fiscally responsible. Luke brings over 28 years’ experience in the utility industry.
Luke began his career with Manitoba Hydro International and retired with over 22 years from the position of Business Development Manager and Special Projects Manager, Manitoba Hydro International. He has also worked on numerous projects as a contract consultant for Manitoba Hydro International employed in St Kitts, Panama and St Lucia.
Luke is qualified as a professional engineer with a degree in Civil Engineering as well as Journeyman Lineman and Live Line Journeyman.
Bobby Lu has been with Southern California Gas Company (SoCal Gas) for 5-years. He began his journey with SoCal Gas as a Project Manager. Mr. Lu is currently a Gas Systems Program Manager for Southern California Gas Company. He is currently leading the effort to implement and maintain API 1173 PSMS conformance for both SoCalGas as well as San Diego Gas and Electric.
USDOT/PHMSA/Office of Pipeline Safety (OPS)
Tom has been a Community Liaison for the Western Region, which is in Lakewood, CO, since August 20, 2009. From 2002 -2009 he was the State Liaison Representative (SLR). His role in the OPS focuses on enhancing communications with Stakeholders including the Western Region States Pipeline Safety Programs. Tom attended the Colorado School of Mines from majoring in Petroleum Engineering. He has over 40 years of experience in the oil and gas industry. Prior to October 1999, he was employed by Cathodic Protection Services, working mainly in the cathodic protection of well casings and pipelines. Mr. Finch has completed the National Association of Corrosion Engineers (NACE) Cathodic Protection (CP) Level 1 thru Level 3 Courses. He joined OPS on October 12, 1999.
Stephen Sass has worked for PG&E for four years and previously spent 7 years at an EPCM company where he designed processing plants. Stephen has spent all his time at PG&E with the Process Safety department, which is responsible for implementing a risk based process safety management system to prevent and mitigate unintentional loss of containment (i.e., releases of potentially dangerous materials or energy) through the use of a robust process and good equipment reliability. He holds a degree in Chemical Engineering is a registered Professional Engineer in the State of California and is a certified PHA practitioner.
Jeff Salazar is the Pipeline Safety Oversight Manager in the Pipeline Safety Compliance Department at Southern California Gas Company (SoCalGas) where he is responsible for the company’s newly created Incident Evaluation Process (Root Cause Investigation), oversight of the Operator Qualification Program, and various pipeline safety compliance programs.
He has worked for SoCalGas for 18 years and has held roles in Customer Services working with major customers, Regulatory Affairs managing the company’s participation in pipeline safety regulatory proceedings, and Program Cost Recovery for capital projects.
Prior to joining SoCalGas he worked in contract management services in the healthcare industry for 10 years supporting clients’ efficiency and cost savings efforts for their support services departments.
Jacob Neal works in the Environmental Department at Portland General Electric. He has been doing environmental work for large industrial companies for 17 years and has worked in the energy industry for three years. He has specialized in the assessment and cleanup of contaminated property for his entire career and we are excited to hear his perspective on environmental liability related to older energy assets. Jacob enjoys all things outdoors and is currently teaching his daughters how to fish.
Erica Amt is an Environmental Specialist at Portland General Electric. She has worked in the energy industry for four years and before that in water resources consulting for five years. Her work at PGE includes managing the corporate drinking water program and an ecological water quality study evaluating impacts of hydro generation operations. She has a Masters of Environmental Science in Water Resources and a Masters of Public Affairs from Indiana University. Erica lives in Portland, Oregon, and as a native Midwesterner, enjoys the topographic relief of the Northwest.
Regan Brilz, District Operations Manager- Montana-Dakota Utilities Co.
Throughout his 21 year career in the electric and Natural gas industry, Regan has experienced many sides of the utility business. He began his career in the industry as a Journeyman Lineman. He shifted his career to leadership through several career growth opportunities as well as obtained his Bachelor of Science Degree in Energy Management. He has been involved in Electric Operations, Gas Operations, and HR Labor Relations.
Jerry Cox has 25 years’ experience working in telecommunications and network design and implementation. Jerry has been with PGE 12 years and currently heads the field operations as the General Foreman of the Substations Communications Support department at PGE. This department is responsible for building and operating one of the largest private communications systems in Oregon, interconnecting PGE facilities within the service territory and generation plants including mobile radio, fiber optic and microwave networks. Prior to PGE, Jerry’s professional experience includes active duty service as a US Navy Surface Warfare Officer, Infrastructure/Telecom manager in the insurance industry and as a contractor working designing and implementing high speed networking projects at NASA, Wells Fargo Bank, Dow Chemical and other large companies.
Jeremy leads the Craft and Technical Training team in the design, development and implementation of training programs across Avista’s electric and gas operations in four states. This work includes administering Avista’s 12 registered apprenticeship programs and the Avista/Spokane Community College Pre-Apprentice Schools. Jeremy holds a BA in Christian Ministry from Messenger College and a Master’s degree in organizational leadership from Evangel University.
Prior to Avista Jeremy served as an Engineering Laboratory Technician aboard the USS Parche and as an instructor in the US Navy’s nuclear power program. He has also managed training and leadership development programs at AT&T in Dallas, TX, Joplin, MO, and Bothell, WA. Jeremy facilitates the Joint Apprenticeship Training Committee at Avista and serves on the advisory board for the Pacific Northwest Center of Excellence for Clean Energy.
John is an independent consultant with over 40 year of experience assisting clients in the areas of PCB regulatory compliance and remediation. He has served as a consultant to AGA, INGAA and USWAG on national PCB management technical and regulatory issues and aided numerous natural gas transmission/distribution and electric utility clients in complying with the 1998 PCB Disposal Amendments. He holds a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering and is a registered Professional Engineer in several states. He is also a former Chairman of the Pacific Coast Gas Association (WEI) Environmental Committee.
Jason Regan is currently the Director of Electric Distribution System Operations & Emergency Management for Pacific Gas and Electric. Mr. Regan is responsible for PG&E’s Distribution Control Center Operations along with their Electrical Emergency Management Organization. His organization oversees the safe and reliably operation of PG&E’s electric distribution system involving nearly 142,000 miles of distribution and is also responsible for their 4.3 million dollar electrical emergency program along with PG&E’s associated electrical emergency preparedness needs. Mr. Regan began his career with PG&E in 1997 and has held positions in a broad range of functional areas including Safety, Gas Construction, Grid Operations and Electric Transmission & Distribution Maintenance and Construction Operations. Jason was PG&E’s Incident Commander for the Napa Earthquake, Super Bowl 50, the recent atmospheric river storm events in early 2017 and last fall’s Northern California Wildfires Response impacting PG&E’s service territory.
Maria Gudino is a Senior Analyst for Southern California Edison’s (SCE) Business Customer Division, Outage Communications Team. Maria has worked in the Outage Communications Team for 5 years, where she has gained experience on both the business and technical aspects of the outage communications process, and has taken a holistic approach to improve the customer’s outage experience. Leading the effort to develop and improve digital communications, letters/mailers, and customer forums, Maria has helped educate a wide range of customers impacted by civil and maintenance/repair work.
Ryan Murphy is the Manager of System Operations for Puget Sound Energy. Ryan’s team provides ‘around the clock’ oversight of all planned and unplanned activity occurring on PSE’s electrical distribution system. His team is ultimately responsible for the safe and reliable operation of the distribution system that serves over 1.2M PSE customers.
Ryan is a professionally-licensed Engineer in the state of WA, and he holds a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Idaho. Ryan has spent greater than 15 years working in the power industry and has accumulated a wide range of experience in the fields of power generation, transmission and distribution.
22 years with Puget Power, mostly in engineering and engineering leadership positions. Taught 500 utility distribution engineering classes and developed an engineering training program. Was manager for the Substation Department for 3 years. Retired in 1994 and started my own Consulting firm. Worked for Pacific Corp, Idaho Power, Snohomish PUD. Started and Managed Wilson Engineering, 1998 to 2000. Developed and managed engineering department for Potelco for service provider contract to PSE. (2000 to 2005). Developed and managed new engineering company for Quanta, North Sky Engineering (2005 to 2012) Taught utility distribution engineering classes (2013 to 2015)
Special projects consultant, teacher and engineering manager (2016 to present).
Mr. Norwalk has been involved in the electrical industry for more than 22 years and began his career as an Inside Wireman with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). As a Journeyman Wireman he worked on a wide range of commercial and industrial projects that include data centers, aerospace manufacturing, petrochemical, and commercial spaces. In 2004 he joined the Power Quality Department at Southern California Edison (SCE) where he has been involved with generation, substation, transmission, distribution, and customer side power quality investigations. Mr. Norwalk serves as a subject matter expert in the areas of grounding and power quality monitoring. He is involved with the grid impact assessment of renewable generation projects and was involved in SCE’s first large scale solar roof top projects that began operation in 2009. He is currently active on several International Association of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) working groups, including serving as the Vice Chair of the Power Quality Subcommittee.
Dr. Tina Drews is the Director of Talent Management at Salt River Project (SRP). She leads organizational change, leadership development, employee engagement, education, and talent strategy and manages leadership in Talent Acquisition, Learning & Development, Learning Technology, and SRP’s Skills and Apprenticeship programs. Dr. Drews is passionate about employee development, continuous learning, and the advancement of our workforce. She has extensive experience in public and higher education and has served on numerous community non-profit boards. She is the current chairperson of SRP’s Women’s Interest Network and an advocate for inclusion in the workplace.
Steve Carpenter is a Senior manager at Southern California Edison with over 30 years industry experience. For the past five years he has managed the regulatory and process governance for the SCE Distribution planning departments. Working with Mike Perez, he developed the Electric Utility Planner certification program at Cal Poly University, Pomona. In addition, Steve developed and managed a team that was the single point of contact for all residential development, including the tariff options of applicant design and installation.
Brandon Pfeiffer is currently the acting Chief UAS Pilot for APS. He holds both a Part 107 license and a Part 61 license. Brandon is also a Predictive Maintenance Senior tech conducting acoustic, vibration and ultrasound testing on transformers. He is Level III infrared certified as well as vibration and ultrasound certified. Brandon has worked for APS for 12 years and worked as a radar operator, systems administrator in the Army prior to working for APS.
Tyler Pilarcik (Pill – are – chick), based out of Esri headquarters in Redlands, California. Been with the company for 5+ years, 3 years as a Utilities Solution Engineer where I provide pre-sales support for our account teams and lead industry-specific product demonstrations. Before Esri, I earned a bachelor’s degree in Geography with an emphasis in GIS at UC Santa Barbara and am currently on tract to complete Penn State’s MGIS program by the end of 2019.
Mike A. Perez has over 31 years at Southern California Edison. He was a Journeyman Lineman, Service Planner, Planning Instructor, Planning Supervisor and is currently the Training Manager over the Planner training. Mike has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Organizational Management. He lives in Upland California with his wife whom he began dating in Junior High. When he’s not working he and his wife enjoy spending time with their 7 grand kids (Soon to be 8).
After being employed by a natural gas pipeline company for 10 years, Brad Livingston was involved in back to back explosions that were 100% preventable. Brad, now a Motivational Safety Speaker, speaks about the contributing factors to these explosions. These factors are the same as what exists in EVERY type company EVERYWHERE – Shortcuts; Complacency; Pride; Bad Attitudes; Improper Perspectives. Brad overcame a 5% chance of surviving his injuries and now shares his story.
Tom Nilan is the Manager of Portland General Electric’s Environmental Compliance & Permitting group, where he leads PGE’s team for air quality, energy facility permitting, and multimedia compliance, focusing on maintaining compliance while maximizing operational flexibility. He has worked at PGE since 2015, following over 20 years of environmental work in engineering air quality consulting, trade association, and analytical services areas. He has as BS in Chemical Engineering from Penn State, and is now firmly rooted in the Pacific Northwest where he and his family spend as much time biking, skiing, and hiking as possible.
Mike Rojo serves as an Environmental Supervisor for NV Energy. His two primary functions are to (1) ensure compliance with environmental regulations and requirements at 2 of their generating facilities and (2) to help manage environmental investigation, characterization and remediation actions at a recently retired coal fired power plant.
John is an Environmental Specialist for NW Natural Gas where he works to develop programs to address environmental compliance and management issues. Also, John provides construction/ operational support in site planning, site assessment, and environmental permitting. He holds a Political Science and Natural Resource Planning degree along with a Graduate Certificate in Geographical Information Systems (GIS).
Craig Geldard is the Manager of Environmental Management Electric Transmission at PG&E. He has worked in the energy industry for 18 years. He has specialized in aquatic biology, project management, and environmental permitting and compliance. He and his wife, who also works at PG&E, are the parents of two boys, ages 3 and 1. Most of his time away from work is spent chasing the boys around, outside and inside their home.
Becky Mandich is currently a Senior Advisor in Southern California Edison’s Environmental Affairs and Compliance group. Her responsibilities include developing and implementing positions on policy issues, engaging with leadership at external state and federal land agencies, and developing programmatic solutions that increase operational efficiencies. Becky has also held positions in SCE’s Transportation Electrification and Integrated Planning and Strategy groups with responsibilities ranging from overseeing the construction of two utility owned fuel-cell power plants to developing and implementing strategies that ensured reliable power could be delivered to its customers in light of an unplanned permanent closure of its largest power plant. Prior to SCE, Becky work in various project, construction and/or general management roles within the energy, home development, and environmental consulting industries. When she’s not working, she enjoying spending time with friends and family, volunteering, hiking all over the world (favorites include Kilimanjaro, Everest Base Camp, and Machu Picchu), traveling (just got back from a 3 week vacation in Japan), concerts, and exploring latest new restaurant, bar, or brewery in the area.
Jason has been with FortisBC for 16 years, and is presently the Director of Energy Solutions responsible for the Marketing and Sales efforts of FortisBC including the residential sales team, commercial and industrial account management, the development of new energy products and services (including new energy technologies for customers), and renewable natural gas customer demand. In 2018 these efforts resulted in the largest number of annual new customer attachments to the FortisBC gas system in over two decades and the introduction of a commercial carbon capture pilot.
Previously, Jason oversaw the FortisBC Market Development team and was responsible for negotiating and working with the Province to develop the Orders in Council approving the Tilbury LNG facility upgrades and the pipeline to service the Woodfibre LNG. Jason also oversaw the forecasting and resource planning departments. Prior to that, Jason was responsible for launching the FortisBC thermal energy business efforts with large commercial and institutional customers including schools municipalities and health authorities. Jason also spent four years in the Regulatory Affairs Department. Jason holds a Masters of Business Administration from Royal Roads University, a Bachelor of Education from Queen’s University and a Bachelor of Physical Education from the University of Calgary.
Greg Bailly is the Operations Manager for NorthWestern Energy in the Helena Division, responsible for electric and gas distribution in the Helena area, including the smaller communities of Lincoln, Boulder, White Sulphur Springs and Townsend. Before relocating to the Helena area, Greg, spent time working in various locations and departments within the state of Montana all for NorthWestern Energy. Some of those areas were Havre District, Livingston District (including Yellowstone National Park) as well as Butte at the company’s Montana headquarters. Greg has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Montana State University and is a licensed Professional Engineer with the state of Montana. He is married to his wife Tessa and has two young boys Matthew and Marcus and a fun loving yellow lab, Jake.
Jacob Policzer is the Co-Founder and President of The Cannabis Conservancy, a standards development and certification body that focuses on sustainable cannabis cultivation. Prior to TCC, Jacob has been working professionally in the fields of environmental science, agriculture, and corporate sustainability with previous work have including farm management, agricultural pollution research, and alternative energy adoption. Jacob obtained a M.Sc. in Environmental Science, Policy, and Management through the Erasmus Mundus MESPOM consortium with a focus in urban agricultural sustainability. He is a member of Denver’s Department of Environmental Health’s Cannabis Sustainability Work Group and NCIA’s Cultivation Committee.
Ray Payne manages Grid Operations at Portland General Electric. He is responsible for the T&D Dispatch, Balancing Authority, Grid Engineering & Compliance, and Grid Technology departments. He has held various positions over his 24 years at PGE in the areas of Transmission Planning, Dispatch, SCADA, and EMS. Ray has a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of New Mexico and is a licensed Professional Engineer.
Dr. Ellis is the Senior Manager of Transmission Operations Engineering in Electric Grid Operations at Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) Company in San Francisco, California. Prior to joining PG&E in 2004, she worked for General Electric Company in Schenectady, New York. She has extensive electric power industry experience in power system analysis, regulatory, infrastructure protection, strategic planning, controls, processes, and real-time operations. Also, she has supported testimony and developed work papers for Electric Distribution Technology in PG&E’s regulatory filing and has facilitated business case development to enable a multi-year technology roadmap. Most recently, Dr. Ellis leads an organization that provides engineering analysis to real-time grid operations, develops operating requirements and procedures, supports NERC Reliability Standards, and ensures delivery of safe, reliable, affordable and clean energy.
Dr. Ellis received her B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of California, Berkeley and her M.S. in the Electric Utility Management Program from New Mexico State University in Las Cruces, New Mexico. She is an active Senior Member of IEEE and currently serves on the Western Electricity Coordinating Council’s Event Performance and Analysis Subcommittee. Dr. Ellis is a Registered Professional Engineer in the State of California.
Robert began his professional career in the gas industry in 1986 with
Suburban Propane and in 1993 moved to Intermountain Gas Company where he worked in the field, and held several managerial positions including safety. Robert recently made the move to Director of Safety and Technical training where he directs the design, coordination and implementation of safety and technical training programs and initiatives for the Montana Dakota Utilities group of companies. This group includes Montana Dakota Utilities, Great Plains Natural Gas, Intermountain Gas Company, and Cascade Natural Gas Company.
I started at Salt River Project (SRP) in 1985. I completed the Lineman apprenticeship and worked as a Lineman and Working Foreman until 2001 when I accepted a position as a Distribution Operations Center (DOC) Dispatcher. I’ve worked in DOC ever since, first as a Dispatcher then Shift Supervisor and now Manager. My wife and I have four adult children, two daughter-in-laws and two grandchildren
With 15 years in the electric utility industry, Lora Anguay works as the Director of Distribution Operations and Maintenance for the Sacramento Municipal Utility District. Lora is responsible for Distribution Control Center Operations, Operations Engineering, Maintenance Planning, Electrical Design and Standards and Distribution Management Systems. Lora’s previous experience within Transmission and Distribution includes overseeing the work management activities for line design and construction, leading the deployment of SMUD’s Smart Meter project and management of SMUD’s distribution automation project. As part of SMUD’s grid modernization efforts, Lora is currently overseeing the automation of SMUD’s sub-transmission system, the update of SMUD’s communication networks and implementation of an Advanced Distribution Management System. Lora earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Business from the California State University, Sacramento.
Mr. Cassiadoro has 17 years in the electric industry with extensive experience in system operations. Mike held the positions of Distribution Operator, Transmission Operator and Grid Dispatcher for Southern California Edison and Real-Time Reliability Coordinator and Director of Reliability Coordination for the Western Electricity Coordinating Council before founding Total Reliability Solutions in 2013. Mike has served as a co-lead for the North American SynchroPhasor Initiative Control Room Solutions Task Team for four years and is dedicated to integrating new technologies into the control room environment for use in the Same-day and Real-time Operations Horizons.
Mike Legatt is the CEO and Founder of ResilientGrid, whose mission is to create resilient infrastructures by optimizing the human side and human-systems interaction. Mike has PhDs in Neuropsychology and Energy Systems Engineering, and is a Certified Performance Technologist. He spent a decade as ERCOT’s Principal Human Factors Engineer, and has experience in several other sectors, including IT, healthcare, education, and finance, and has worked with several electric utilities around the modernization and performance improvement of their control centers.
Kevin is a Special Projects Administrator in the Street Transportation, Design & Construction Management division at the City of Phoenix. In this capacity, his team is responsible for the plan review, permit and inspection of all dry utilities in the ROW for the nation’s 5th largest city. Before joining the City of Phoenix in late 2017, Kevin was the Regulatory Affairs Manager at the City of Chandler (AZ) and the Director of Telecommunications Policy at the City of Scottsdale (AZ). Prior to working in the government sector, he spent 12 years in management positions at U S WEST (CenturyLink) in the network, technical training and sales & marketing departments. Kevin holds an M.A. in Communication from Arizona State University and a B.A. in Economics and Speech Communication from the University of Hawaii at Manoa.
Mathew Johns is the Director of Environmental Remediation and Resource Development Strategies for NV Energy. Matt worked as an environmental consultant for 20 years prior to joining NV Energy in 2015. During this time Matt worked on site remediation and closure projects across the United States for power, manufacturing, mining, and oil and gas companies. In his current role with NV Energy, Matt is responsible for corporate asset retirement obligations for energy supply. Matt will share NV Energy’s experience in the operational shut-down and decommissioning work at the former Reid Gardner Generating Station.
I have worked at Dominion Energy for 25 years; spending most of that time in Operations working in different areas, including Construction, Technical Service, System Integrity, and Pipeline Compliance. I am currently the Manager of the Central Utah Region. I have been married for 25 years and have three children (2 boys, 1 girl). My family and I enjoy doing things in the outdoors.
Brian is the Vice President of Digital Innovation at SAP, responsible for working with Utilities across North America to drive adoption of innovative technology. He looks after the SAP Leonardo portfolio of solutions as well as manages the SAP partnerships with Itron, OSIsoft, Esri, and Siemens. Prior to his current role, Brian worked with strategic customers in a variety of industries to develop architecture roadmaps as an Enterprise Architect. He joined SAP in 2011 for a second tour after spending 10+ years on the customer side of the table doing implementations. He is based in Minneapolis with his wife, Karen, and two children, Connor and Anna.
Mr. Morris has 31 years of consulting and management experience with the last 24 years spent in the electric and gas utility industries. He is the North American leader of UMS’ Asset Management solution and an IAM Endorsed Assessor for ISO 55001. He has led Asset Management projects for AES, Avista, Enbridge, EPCOR, Manitoba Hydro, Nova Scotia Power, PG&E, PSE&G, SCE, SRP, Toronto Hydro, TVA, and Westar. These projects have included PAS 55/ISO 55000 assessments, asset management training workshops, development of asset management plans, creation of asset replacement and maintenance decision-support tools, organizational redesign to support Asset Management, and full business unit asset management transformations. Prior to joining UMS, Mr. Morris worked for both Andersen Consulting and Navigant Consulting. He holds a B.A. in Economics and an M.B.A., both from Cornell University.
One of the critical issues facing organizations today is safety….not just safety in the workplace but safety in all facets of our personal lives. After all, if people get injured at home, it affects their on-the-job performance, as well as medical costs.
No matter how hard we may try, you can’t order safety. It’s a culture we have to create and each person has to feel it personally. A US Navy destroyer is an inherently dangerous place and no Captain, no matter how good he or she thinks they are, can order safety. In the year prior to taking command of USS Benfold, 31 sailors out of a workforce of 310 were involved in some type of injury producing mishap. The first afternoon after I took command of the ship, one of my sailors was involved in a DUI off base after going to a bar after work. The very night I took command of the ship, one of my sailors was severely beaten in a mugging because he walked out the wrong gate of the base after sunset in one of the worst parts of town. It was a newly reporting sailor who didn’t know that you don’t go to that part of town after sunset. That fact wasn’t included in our welcome aboard program for newly reporting personnel.
Are all of these connected? Absolutely!!! It speaks to the culture that we try to create. You can never have a great organization if your top priority is not the safety of your people. The one thing that drove me throughout my entire tenure was that I never wanted to write the parents of any of my sailors and tell them that their son or daughter wasn’t coming home because of something we did or something we failed to do. When I looked at safety on the ship, I assumed my sailors wanted to be safe and so everything I looked at was whether our processes facilitated a safe culture.
We implemented a program whereby every week, I would focus on one of the 24 divisions. I would inspect their work spaces for safety and other hazards. I would observe sailors doing their maintenance and quizzing them on the safety precautions. I reviewed their safety training program and participated in seminars with them. During these events they could ask questions about anything they weren’t sure about. I wanted them to understand that the concept of safety was portable to their families and personal lives, as well. We trained on the dangers of drinking and driving and if they were drinking, they could call a local cab company to give them a free ride home which was then paid for out of our morale fund (and not taxpayers money). By the way, we also tried to create a culture of respect whereby sailors didn’t have to go home after work and blow off steam and drink to excess.
Any sailor could stop any process if they thought safety was being impaired. Any sailor had a direct line to me if they thought their chain of command wasn’t sufficiently concerned or didn’t see what they were seeing. Every sailor knew that I felt their safety was a top priority of mine and not just lip service.
The result? My last year in command, there were two minor incidents; down from 31 incidents two years prior. Was I satisfied? No!!! Two is two too many. But we never missed an opportunity to try and drive that culture of excellence and safety. They go hand in hand.
Kayla Rath was only nine years old when her father, Brad, was involved in these explosions. For three months, Kayla and her two sisters lived with family members while their mother sat with Brad as he fought to stay alive in a Texas hospital. The accident still impacts the family today. Kayla, now a Professional Safety Speaker, shares her story and what it’s like to grow up with her father’s unsafe decision impacting her life for the past 25 years.
Barry Anderson is vice president of Emergency Preparedness and Response at Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E). He is responsible for enterprise-wide emergency preparedness and response, including all hazard incidents and crisis management.
Anderson has more than 30 years of experience within the electric utility industry. Most recently, he was the senior director of Distribution System Operations at PG&E, where he was responsible for overseeing the organization’s efforts around system restoration, control center operations, power quality and business system applications.
Prior to joining PG&E, Anderson was senior director of Network Operations for Florida Power and Light (FPL), where he previously spent 27 years with increasing responsibilities including transmission and distribution operations, energy procurement and labor negotiations.
He received a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan State University and his MBA from Nova Southeastern University. Anderson holds a Professional Engineering license and is also certified as a NERC system operator.
John joined the PUD in February 2017, bringing nearly 30 years of experience in the electric utility industry. He is responsible for construction, engineering, operations and maintenance of the utility’s transmission, substation and distribution assets. He also oversees fleet, real estate and environmental functions.
Before joining the PUD, John worked for the Public Service Company of New Mexico, serving as both Director of Safety and Transmission and Distribution Engineering and Operations. While there, he successfully led a transformation of the utility’s safety program. John began his career at the Central Illinois Light Company where he was an IBEW journeyman for 10 years. He also worked as Vice President of Power Delivery for the Indianapolis Power and Light Company. John attended University of Illinois and holds a bachelor of arts degree in accounting.
Jesse Duffy is a Substation Maintenance Engineer at Portland General Electric. He obtained his BSEE from Oregon State University in 2004 and is a licensed Professional Engineer. In his 14 years with PGE, the majority of his experience lies in the maintenance and operation of substations and switchyards, but he has also dabbled in substation design and was a key player in the design and implementation of PGE’s asset and work management system. Jesse has also co-authored a paper on improved FOA transformer cooling protection, contributed to the update of the Doble Circuit Breaker Lubrication Guide, and is a member of the Doble Client Committee on Circuit Breakers. Jesse and his wife have 7 children, and he enjoys spending time with his family, homeschooling, apologetics, and occasionally working on automobiles.
Brian Standish is Vice President of Business Development for Quanta Services, where he has corporate responsibility for the company’s strategic growth initiatives at an enterprise level, as well as emergency response operations. He also leads Quanta’s business development initiatives around energized services and underground electric.
Prior to his current role he oversaw Quanta’s Marketing and Communications group and held positions in the areas of business development, project management, marketing and operations for several of Quanta’s operating units in both the electric and oil & gas divisions.
Standish is a graduate of Texas Christian University in Fort Worth, TX, where he received a Bachelor of Business Administration. He and his wife reside in Bellaire, TX with their three children.
Glenn Puzio is a process safety manager who joined Northwest Natural in November 2017 and has 9 years of experience in industrial gases and chemicals. He graduated from the University of Delaware with a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering and minors in Materials Science Engineering and Political Science. Glenn began his career as a process engineer, moved into plant management regulated under OSHA PSM (Process Safety Management) and EPA RMP (Risk Management Program), and found his true calling in process safety, risk management, and leading cultural change. As the new Pipeline Safety Management Systems (PSMS) Program Manager for NW Natural, Glenn is ready to share his experience and help the natural gas industry adopt safety management systems.
I have been employed by San Diego Gas & Electric since 2009. I started my career as an Electrical Engineer in a rotational program where I gained experienced in distribution, transmission, and field operations. After the 18 month rotational program, I worked as an engineer in our Transmission Planning group for about 2 years where I performed the annual Transmission Grid Plan and proposed projects through the CAISO process. Additionally, I worked with generation developers and the CAISO to study new generation that was coming online in the region and determine their impacts.
In January of 2013, I moved to the Electric Distribution Operations group as a Team Lead where I worked as a Technical Support Team member for our control center. In this role I acted as the main point of contact for our distribution operations department and assisted in outage restoration efforts and longer term efforts to improve reliability. In February of 2015, I was put on EDO’s Advanced Distribution Management Project as the Business Project Manager. In this role, I led the effort to role out several major upgrades to our Outage Management & Distribution Management software. In June of 2017, I was promoted to Manager of Electric Distribution Operations Control Center. In this role, I lead our distribution operations department where we manage all outage management processes and am a stakeholder in several key projects including a replacement of our SCADA Head-End System.
Charlie is currently leading the AMI system integration effort at Puget Sound Energy. This includes overall responsibility for delivery of IT services, vendor management, resource planning, release and environment coordination, and budget responsibility. He has more than 25 years of utility experience, with 14 years in IT Infrastructure leadership positions. Charlie also serves as the IT representative on the PSE Smart Grid Leadership team. He has a BSEE from Florida State University and an MBA from the University of Washington.
Shane graduated from the University of Alberta in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering. He joined ATCO Electric’s Engineer in Training program, completing rotations in SCADA Engineering, Distribution Planning, and Substation Commissioning. Upon completion of the program, he worked as a Protection & Control Engineer, Substation Commissioning Supervisor, and Protection & Control Supervising Engineer. He currently works as a Senior Engineer in the HVDC & FACTS Engineering group, which provides engineering support for ATCO Electric’s HVDC and SVC facilities throughout their design, commissioning, and operations & maintenance.
Ashlie Simpson is a Manager of Public Works Coordination with Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E). She manages a team of Agency Liaisons responsible for building and maintaining relationships with local cities and counties to ensure operational coordination. Over the past several years, Ashlie has been working with an internal team to develop an enterprise approach to local encroachment permitting. Ashlie has worked at PG&E since 2010 in Local Government Relations and Public Affairs prior to the development of the Public Works Coordination and Agency Liaison organizations. Prior to her time with PG&E, Ashlie worked for the California State Assembly and Blue Shield of California. She has a Bachelors of Arts degree in Political Science and a Masters of Business Administration with a concentration of Business Analytics.
Kathleen Kramer manages the digital marketing efforts of MBS Engineering. Her career in digital marketing utilizes her extensive background to apply digital marketing strategies and tactics to educate and attract customers within small to medium-sized businesses across a variety of industries, including Saas-based software, education, government, energy, healthcare, and automotive. Kathleen is certified in Google Analytics and AdWords, social media platforms, as well as the Pragmatic Marketing® framework. She uses her marketing background as a way to educate non-marketers about the importance of adopting a solid marketing strategy to become ‘data smart’, to drive revenue and growth.
Cyber Security Consultant with the Cyber Security Operations group at San Diego Gas and Electric. My major focus is in secure communications, secure networking, authentication, access control, and remote management. I am working on the serial to packet data project at SDG&E, supporting substation operations. I also assist in our Integrated Test Facility cyber labs.
Leann has been in the power utility industry for 35 years, the past 15 years as a Project Manager. During this time she has built 40 miles of 230kV transmission; worked on substations, both new and upgrades; and managed the delivery of upgrades to Puget Sound Energy’s SCADA system to ensure the Back-up Control Center met FERC Standards. Her current project will replace PSE’s 20 year old AMR system with AMI. She is the Program Manager for this project and the scope includes IT integration, Network design and installation, and Mass Deployment of 1.2M electric meters, plus 850k gas modules.
Brian has been with The City of Calgary for 14 years in various capacities. The last 10 years have been as a Utility Planning Specialist where he is responsible for reviewing/approving shallow utility (Gas, Power, Telecommunications) applications, as well as planning utility alignments within City owned Rights-of-Ways.
Brian graduated from Sir Sandford Fleming College with diplomas as a Cartographic Technician, and GIS Cartographic Specialist. In his spare time he enjoys hiking in the mountains, and is rarely seen without his camera.
Jeff Borders is Director of Electric Asset Excellence within Electric Asset Management, for Pacific Gas and Electric Company.
Jeff has been with Pacific Gas and Electric Company since 1989 and has over 29 years of experience in the gas and electric utility business including construction, engineering, strategic business management and asset management.
Jeff currently leads an effort to achieve Publicly Available Specification (PAS) 55 and International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 55001 certification of PG&E’s electric transmission and distribution business. Prior to his current role, Jeff led a diverse group of electric standards engineers in electric distribution, transmission and substation, focusing on system and component engineering standards and compliance processes.
Jeff has a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from the University of California, Davis. Jeff is a registered professional mechanical engineer in the State of California and is a member of the IEEE Power Engineering Society.
Sarah DeLozier is a supervisor for the Customer Service group at Chelan County PUD, a public utility in the state of Washington. She has over 18 years’ experience focusing on customer service and personnel dispatching in the electrical and water/wastewater distribution arena. Sarah worked to pilot a mobility initiative with line service personnel; ensuring the needs of our field staff meet the needs of our IT staff.
Harry Marks has worked in the electric utility industry for 27 years planning, designing and operating distribution systems. The past five years he has worked with Pacific Gas and Electric Company as the Manager of Distribution Automation leading the expansion of PG&Es successful FLISR and automation programs. He has Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from California State University and licensed in the state of California.
Fred is the President of Quanta Energized Services, in this position he oversees the day to day operations as well as energized training for Quanta Services’ electric business units. He has 42 years of experience in the powerline industry with more than half of that time specializing in energized live line maintenance. As a foremost expert in the field of energized construction he has had the opportunity to develop and manage innovative live line projects across North America and throughout the globe. Fred was born in Saskatchewan and served his apprenticeship with a municipal utility. Since that time, he has work for multiple utilities and contractors in Western Canada. He has been with Quanta Services since 2004 and currently resides in British Columbia when he is not travelling to support QES projects and business development.
Eric Albanese is a Professional Land Surveyor with 8 years of experience at PG&E, specializing in GPS network adjustments, terrestrial and aerial LiDAR acquisition and processing, and the ground control support supplementing these technologies. He graduated from California State University, Fresno with a Bachelor’s Degree in Geomatics Engineering. Eric became licensed by the state of California in 2013 to practice land surveying and also serves as a part-time lecturer at California State University, Fresno where he teaches Geomatics Engineering courses. He enjoys spending time with his wife and deaf pit-bull on the weekends going on hikes and visiting new places. He also enjoys spending time with his parents and two brothers barbecuing and playing horseshoes.
Chuck Eck is a Project Manager in the Transmission & Distribution division within Burns & McDonnell. He has worked in the power T&D industry for almost 30 years, with extensive experience in the management, design and construction of large-scale transmission and substation projects.
Jon Busby is an Associate Technical Consultant at Burns & McDonnell. He has worked in the energy industry for over 17 years. He has specialized in underground transmission and we are excited to hear his perspective on Tehachapi Renewable Transmission Project – Segment #8 Underground – 500kV XLPE cable, the topic of the panel Industry Driving Transmission Projects. He lives in Belton, Missouri and enjoys reading and playing with his new dog.
Jim Levers is the Manager of Pipeline Integrity Programs and a NACE Member and NACE Corrosion Technologist.
He has built a 31-year career at New Jersey Natural Gas Company on the transmission pipeline side of the NJNG gas system, including multiple positions in Corrosion Control (1986-2004) and Transmission Integrity Management (2004 to present).
David, a Veteran of the United States Navy Nuclear Powered Submarine Force, has served LADWP for over 17 years including Superintendent of the Electrical Mechanic Training Center. As a graduate of that Training Program, he has worked in Electric Station Maintenance and Construction, and had the opportunity to play a key role in large projects including New Station Construction, Solar Photovoltaic, and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition automation.
David has been the Co-Chair of the Solar Joint Labor Management committee since its inception nearly 10 years ago. He started this committee as a Labor Representative with IBEW Local 18 working the in the field installing solar systems and now serves as the Management Co-chair in charge of all solar projects.
A two-year special assignment with Power System Safety, coupled with the experience of constructing the two largest municipal owned, built, and operated solar farms gives him the unique perspective of the unusual safety hazards associated with distributed energy sources.
Paul Laursen is the founder of InvoDane Engineering and Pipetel Technologies. Pipetel is the leader in robotic inline inspection services for challenging pipelines, using state-of-the-art robotic technology developed by InvoDane Engineering in partnership with NYSEARCH.
Paul continues to inspire and motivate his Unique Ability team to achieve extraordinary results.
Prior to founding Pipetel and InvoDane, Paul worked for one of the world’s leading companies in the business of providing pipeline inspection and integrity services to the oil and gas industry. His responsibilities include leadership and supervision of all research, design and development activities on intelligent inspection tools.
Paul Laursen has a BS Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Sonderborg Teknikum in Denmark, and a MS in physics from Queen’s University in Canada.
He has authored and co-authored a number of papers, mainly in the area of Pipeline Inspection Tools and holds several innovative patents.
Dr. Guinn is Managing Partner at PSP Metrics in Pittsburgh. PSP provides employment testing services throughout North America and in numerous countries worldwide. PSP has worked in the utility industry for over 50 years. Dr. Guinn’s current responsibilities at PSP involve employee selection, talent development, and succession planning. He has consulted with electric power utilities for over 30 years in the selection of system operators, distribution dispatchers, and hydro-operators.
Dr. Guinn consults with organizations to improve selections and development. He writes frequently on how to select successful people, developing employees, work motivation, millennials, and the impact of technology on jobs. Dr. Guinn is also the author of the title chapter in Testing in Business (Quorum Books, 1991). He has written for a variety of publications, including HR Magazine, Training and Development Journal, Training Magazine, HR Forum, American Management Association.
A licensed psychologist in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, Dr. Guinn taught industrial/ organizational psychology at the University of Pittsburgh School for 15 years. He is a member the American Psychological Association. In his spare time, he enjoys fly-fishing, hunting, golf and trap shooting. He is also on the Advisor Board for Fallingwater and a board member of Western PA Conservancy.
Greg has 35 years in the energy industry with varied experiences that range from nuclear power to running a small metering company. At SRP, he has worked in
• Customer Services,
• Research & Development
• Power Quality,
• Power Plant Construction and
• Most recently in Grid Planning and Performance, where his team initiated SRP’s roadmap to grid modernization.
Greg has a BS in Electrical Engineering from University of Arizona and an MBA from Arizona State University. Prior to college he served for 6 years in the United States Navy on a nuclear submarine. He is also a private pilot and enjoys flying whenever he can.
Tony Morabe is the Director of Mobile Product Strategy in the Business Technology organization at Pacific Gas & Electric Company. Tony is part of the leadership team that created the now almost two year-old Digital Catalyst organization that was formed to design and develop, custom, consumer grade iOS mobile applications for use by field employees. Tony was the Product Owner for the team that designed, developed and deployed the Asset Inspection mobile application used to view and document abnormal conditions on electric assets, which won the 2017 InformationWeek IT Excellence award in the Data and Analytics category.
Tony is currently in his 31st year with PG&E and brings a wealth of business knowledge to the IT Organization having spent the majority of his career in utility operations, including Field Services, Dispatch, Gas Distribution & Transmission Engineering, Project Services, Service Planning, Gas Operations, and Technology Strategy & Solutions.
Tod Barker is a Product Manager leading Corrosion, Geometry, Mapping Technologies and Customer Facing Software with T D Williamson Inc.
Tod has more than 12 years’ experience in the Pipeline industry, which include leading the design of more than 10 In-line Inspection tools. Tod is a co-inventor of the SpirALL® MFL inspection tool design patent.
Tod is chairman of T D Williamson’s Community Relations Committee, Salt Lake City division, where he has led the committee for 4 ½ years. Tod is also a Certified Product Manager (CPM) through the Association of International Product Marketing & Management.
Terry Chen graduated from University of Alberta with a Bachelor’s Degree in Civil Engineering and a Master’s degree in Geotechnical Engineering. He joined ATCO Electric’s Engineering in Training program, completing rotations in Civil Engineering, Right-of-Way Planning, Transmission Lines Engineering, and Performance Engineering. He currently works as an E.I.T Graduate in Reliability Management & Technical Support group, which provides engineering support for ATCO Electric’s Transmission Maintenance activities.
Ann Steeves has held leadership positions in federal, state, local (city/county) and private arenas. Hired at PGE in April 2011, Ann is the Operations Manager for Business Continuity Emergency Management (BCEM) responsible for strategic and tactical planning, training and exercises on a companywide basis that involve any type of All Hazards emergency response.
Prior to that, Ann spent six years as a Regional Coordinator with the Hospital/Healthcare Preparedness Program brokering community relationships and conducting strategic and tactical planning across a six county, 12 hospital environment for any large scale medical surge emergency (hospital evacuation, critical supplies, logistics, communications, etc.).
Ann is a certified instructor in the Incident Command System (ICS), Homeland Security Exercise and Evaluation Program (HSEEP), Continuity of Operations (COOP), and is trained in Multi-Agency Coordination Group (MACG) and All Hazard Incident Management Teams. Ann is certified as a Master Continuity Practitioner (MCP) through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA); certified by the Disaster Recovery Institute International as a Master Business Continuity Professional (MBCP) and has authored or reviewed national level publications on Emergency Response and Mutual Assistance topics.
Ann works with Critical Infrastructure providers, all levels of Government and community based entities in this diverse collaborative and interdependent framework to improve and strengthen capacity and capabilities related to business continuity, information disaster recovery, and emergency mitigation, preparation, response and recovery.
Was a Pipefitter for over 20 years. Combination of utility company (Washington Natural Gas & Puget Sound Energy) also worked for service provider (Pilchuck & Potelco) for almost 5 years.
Front line Supervisor now for just over 3 years in the Seattle area. He has currently worked for the utility company for 25+ years.
Carrie Heglund has been with Southwest Gas Corporation (SWG) for 25 years in varying levels of responsibility. She began her journey with SWG in a satellite district office gaining a wide variety of experience all related to Operations and Customer Assistance. After nine years in the district she transitioned into management overseeing the activities of the Division’s Call Center. As the Company embarked in centralization of Call Centers, Carrie was key to the development, standardization and deployment of a centralized Credit and Billing team, responsible for billing compliance activities for the company. Having spent 19 years in the office, Carrie ventured out into Operations and was the District Manager in Southern Arizona before transferring back to Northern Nevada as the Manager of District Operations there. Carrie received her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration in 2014.
James D. Nowak, Sr. Director of Operations, Product and Services joined ARCOS in July 2014 after retiring from American Electric Power (AEP) after 37 years.
Nowak capped his career with AEP by directing their utility’s distribution emergency restoration planning group. Nowak held various positions within AEP including Dist. Engineering Supervisor, Dist. Line Supervisor, Dist. Records Superintendent, Region Operations Manager, Region Dispatching Manager and Dist. Dispatch Support Manager.
As Sr Director of Operations, Product and Services Nowak manages ARCOS Product Management initiatives by working closely with our customers and all internal employees. He also helps with implementing projects that benefit our customers and the electric and gas industries in the areas of day-to-day and emergency operations and services.
Presently a member of the All Hazard Consortium (AHC) Fleet Response Working Group (FRWG) on the movement of resources during restoration efforts and sits on their steering committee. He previously held positions as Southeastern Electric Exchange’s (SEE) chair for their Mutual Assistance Committee and Distribution Council and vice chair of their Smart Grid Task Force. Jim was one of the original Co-Chair’s for Edison Electric Institute’s (EEI) Mutual Assistance Committee and National Mutual Assistance Resource Team and a member of EEI’s National Response Event (NRE) governance and exercise sub-committees. Jim was also a co-founder of the Great Lakes Mutual Assistance Group and active member and leader in the Midwest Mutual Assistance Group and the Texas Mutual Assistance Group and represented AEP on the Business Round Table Disaster Relief Committee.
Jon Huddleston currently oversees all aspects of engineering and utility operations including regulatory compliance, capital construction, gas operations and maintenance, storage plant operations, and gas control functions for NW Natural. He currently represents NW Natural on several national and regional industry trade and research associations.
Over the past 27+ years, Jon has held a wide range of positions with NW Natural that include leadership roles in operations, gas storage, engineering, technical training, business systems support, business analytics, technology implementation and regulatory compliance oversight. He has been directly involved with union labor negotiations, federal and state regulatory policy and business process re-design.
Jon has volunteered in the community for many years as a youth soccer, baseball, softball and basketball coach. Jon has served on several non-profit boards over the years. He currently serves on the United Way Columbia-Willamette Board.
Jon is married and has three adult children. He has a BS in Civil Engineering from Oregon State University.
Shasta Culp, is founder and managing director of Culp Consulting LLC, a utility engineering management firm. Her background includes leadership and experience in both the utility and consultant industry with distribution system designs, automation, and operations including electric utility planning and grid modernization. She has managed a variety of internal and external workforces through strategic projects and operational changes. Recent client projects include leadership and support of California’s Distribution Resource Plan (DRP) and associated field demonstration projects which include integration of distribution energy renewables on a variety of operational platforms including, microgrids, high renewable penetration, and traditional capital project deferrals. She has a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering with a power emphasis from California Polytechnic University, Pomona CA.
Alison is a safety specialist supporting all aspects of ENMAX, including working with business partners across the company to proactively identify trends and safety initiatives. She is the Safety Representative on the Joint Utility Safety Team (JUST) for the five main power utilities in Alberta. Alison has a Bachelor of Science Degree from the University of Regina, and has over 20 years’ experience as an Environment & Safety Specialist in both Canada and the USA, including being a Canadian Registered Safety Professional and Certified Utility Safety Specialist.
Skip Chavis is a Principal Contract Administrator for major projects at PG&E. He graduated from Cal Poly SLO with a BSEE-Power Emphasis, is a CA PE and LSS Green belt. Skip has held many positions in his 30 year career with PG&E; however, most of his career has been in Substation Engineering as a project engineer, senior consulting electrical engineer and supervising engineer. Some of his most memorable assignments include engineering process development, converting existing substations, and designing new substations, especially “Evolution”. For hobbies, Skip enjoys almost anything outdoors but mostly on the calendar is golf, basketball, cycling and swimming.
Boudewijn Neijens holds a Master degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Brussels, an MBA from INSEAD in France, is a Certified Asset Management Assessor and holds a Certificate of the Institute of Asset Management. He is Chief Marketing Officer at Copperleaf Technologies in Vancouver, BC. In this role he works with large asset intensive corporations around the world to refine their asset management practices in the areas of Asset Investment Planning and Management, decision support systems and risk-based planning models. He is the Chair of the Canadian chapter of the Institute of Asset Management; convenor of Cigré’s workgroup on the use of ISO55001 in utilities; and convenor of ISO’s workgroup on ISO5500x communications.
Joab Ortiz manages real estate and public involvement services for Burns & McDonnell clients in the throughout the United States. Previously, he designed, developed and executed public involvement and communication plans for a range of clients. He has more than 20 years of marketing and communications experience and a deep understanding of community relations gained by serving businesses and municipalities, state and other government agencies. He is also experienced in developing and managing relationships with local interest groups and community leaders. Joab’s projects include public engagement, media relations, official’s briefings, and meetings for diverse populations. He provides clients with the materials, technologies, and strategies necessary for successful public involvement.
Chris McCall is the Manager of Project Delivery at Burns & McDonnell. He has worked in the Transmission & Distribution industry for 14 years and has specialized in design and delivery of electric and gas projects in all variation of contract model. We are excited to hear his perspective on the utility, contract, and consultant space. Chris lives in Anaheim, CA with his wife and two daughter, who occupy most of his free time. In addition he enjoys tennis, woodworking, and ranching with his extended family.
Ed Banuelos is a program manager for SoCalGas’ Pipeline Safety, Compliance & Emergency Management group. Ed has been with SoCalGas for over 20 years and has worked as a Field Operations – Area Manager, Field Technologies Manager, and Financial Analyst. Prior to joining SoCalGas, Ed worked for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s department as a Deputy Sheriff. In his personal time, Ed enjoys traveling with his family and spending time with his parents.
Jon Huddleston currently oversees all aspects of engineering design, planning, regulatory compliance, compliance inspection services, customer field services, emergency response activities, as well as construction, operations and maintenance of the NW Natural pipeline system. He currently represents NW Natural on several national and regional industry trade and research associations.
Over the past 29+ years, Jon has held a wide range of positions with NW Natural that include leadership roles in operations, gas storage,gas control, engineering, technical training, business systems support, business analytics, technology implementation and regulatory compliance oversight. He has been directly involved with union labor negotiations, federal and state regulatory policy and business process re-design.
Jon has volunteered in the community for many years as a youth soccer, baseball, softball and basketball coach. Jon has served on several non-profit boards over the years. He currently serves on the board of Friends of the Children and the Oregon State University Leadership Academy.
Jon is married and has three adult children. He has a BS in Civil Engineering from Oregon State University.
Jen Waldman helps people hone in on their unique gifts, empowering them to take action with authenticity and heart. Using her background in the arts, she encourages creative thinking and imagination, so that others can cultivate new ideas and share them with the world.
Jen and Simon Sinek united several years ago when Simon became aware that Jen was using the Golden Circle to inspire artists to make a greater impact with their work. The two recognized that by combining their efforts they could help people across many different industries discover their WHY and bring it to life. Jen now travels the world offering Why-inspired keynotes and workshops on leadership, communication, and presentation skills so that individuals and organizations can have more impact with their ideas.
Jen is on a personal mission to shine a light on the ways in which we might build a more diverse and inclusive world. As an active participant in the modern civil rights movement, she is an outspoken advocate for social justice and works to raise awareness and funds for the organizations and causes she believes in. She was honored with a Proclamation from the City of New York for her work as a “champion of equal rights.”
In addition to her work with Start With Why, Jen is the founder and Executive Director of Jen Waldman Studio , New York City’s premiere training studio for Broadway actors. She has worked with over a thousand artists to develop and nurture their creative voice and technique. Her clients include Tony Award winners and nominees, and in 2017 alone, her clients appeared in 28 Broadway shows. Her studio maintains a robust scholarship program for artists who have demonstrated a commitment to using their art to make a positive impact on the world. Jen is particularly inspired by and dedicated to mentoring young people. She recently served a 5 year term as the Theatre Chair for the National YoungArts Foundation and is a professor at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in New York City with her husband and daughter.
Todd Ryan, Director of Regulatory Affairs and Founding Chair of the WATT coalition, is working to ensure that Smart Wires’ technologies can be adopted in electricity networks around the United States. Todd’s career has centered around developing new energy technologies and speeding up their rate of adoption. Todd previously worked for Beacon Power, a flywheel based energy storage provider, and was involved in developing new market rules for energy storage. This includes tariff and business practice manual changes in New York ISO, MISO, and ISO-NE and worked to get incentives for fast and accurate frequency regulation providers (FERC Order 755). Todd has a Ph.D. in Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University and researches the economics and operations of electricity networks under high penetration of renewable generation. Specifically Todd is interested in removing unintended barriers to adopting novel energy technologies. Todd has also developed fuel cell and fuel reforming technologies after receiving his B.S. in chemical engineering from Tufts University in 2005.
Lance Elroy is the Director of Process Improvement and Operations Technology for MDU Utilities Group. His 23+ years of experience includes leadership and management roles in corporate operations, consulting, marketing, industrial services, district management and utility technology. Lance has an MBA from Idaho State University and BA in Business from the College of Idaho. He currently resides in Boise, Idaho with his wife Beth and two sons, Jared (18) and Lucas (17).
Evin Busey is a Journeyman Substation Wireman at Chelan County PUD. He has worked in the electrical power industry for seven years. We are excited to hear his perspective on how Chelan County PUD is using the technology Sarah DeLozier describes in the field. Evin lives in Wenatchee with his son Blaine, and when he is not working he enjoys restoring and collecting vintage cars.
Brian’s Utility career began in 1980. He received his Journeyman Lineman ticket in 1984, worked as lineman, line foreman, and taught Lineman apprentice school during that time. Brian has worked in a variety of roles, all in the distribution and fiber optic side of the Utility. Brian and his wife live in Cashmere, and when they are not working can be found on a river in Montana.
Alex Pischalnikov is an energy industry advisor specializing in strategic planning, regulatory policy, and grid modernization. Mr. Pischalnikov supports utilities in efforts related to operational performance improvement, rate design, resource procurement, and emerging energy technology across North America and Europe. In addition, Alex advises energy infrastructure investors, equipment manufacturers, and solutions providers on evaluating investments and strategic initiatives in smart grid technology and distributed energy resources in light of uncertain economic, operational, and regulatory conditions. Mr. Pischalnikov is based in Los Angeles and regularly analyses the impacts of market and policy reform on California’s energy sector.
Chico began working at SRP in 2003 and is currently the manager of Research and Environmental Policy. He previously has worked in a number of areas at SRP including as a senior engineer in the Renewable Energy and Technology group and as a principal engineer in Resource Acquisition and Analysis.
In his current role he has responsibility for both evaluating proposed environmental regulations and for corporate research and development. The environmental policy work includes evaluating new regulations and supporting SRP compliance activities for air permits, water permits, endangered species and hazardous materials. The R&D side of the group helps coordinate research projects throughout the company including transmission, distribution, conventional generation technologies, renewable energy technologies, water distribution and management, customer service and emerging customer sited technologies like rooftop solar and electric vehicles.
Prior to his career at SRP, Chico worked for 11 years as a process control and automation engineer for several manufacturing companies in Arizona. He holds a Bachelor’s in mechanical engineering and a Master’s in manufacturing engineering, both from Arizona State University.
Dan Austin is currently the Manager of the Metering Department at Avista Corp. Dan and his team manage residential and commercial metering applications as well as the Automated Metering Infrastructure and data analytics. Dan has worked for Avista Corp for six years and has a broad background ranging from T&D design to distribution operations management.
Joe Colett is an Emerging Technologies Product Manager at Portland General Electric where he is currently focused on transportation electrification and residential energy storage pilot program design and implementation. Joe has been with PGE for two years and previously worked as a technical consultant conducting research on energy efficiency standards and test procedures for utilities and advocacy organizations. Joe holds master’s degrees in mechanical engineering and sustainable systems from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Oregon State University.