Procurement Management (Sep 09-11)

Successful supply chain management relies on a well-developed infrastructure, appropriate tactical resources, and thorough analysis. This process is multi-faceted and involves solid relationships within the utility, as well as strategic relationships with vendors to mitigate risk to the overall supply chain. This forum offers an opportunity for supply chain procurement managers and specialists to come together with their industry partners and suppliers for roundtable discussions and expert presentations. Topics include KPIs, supplier relationship management, sustainability, and best practices in purchasing and contracting. CEHs are offered for CPSMs through the Institute for Supply Management.

Register Now

General Details

Program Chair
April Spacek, Materials and Logistics Management, Avista Utilities

Program Location
The Historic Davenport
10 South Post St.
Spokane, WA 99201

Who Should Attend

  • Supply chain managers
  • Supply chain analysts
  • Procurement specialists
  • Materials managers
  • Investment recovery managers
  • Contract administrators
  • Inventory and salvage managers
  • Suppliers and service companies

Registration Options
Member: $599
Regular: $1,199

Prices increase $100 after August 27. Guest passes with a registration are available for $100. Registration includes networking receptions, events and comprehensive meeting materials, continental breakfasts and lunch. Guest passes include a reception and dinner.

For more information contact Eric Christenson at 971.230.6984.


Wednesday, September 09, 2015

2:00 PM – 3:00 PM
Registration Open
Arrive early and network with your peers before the event officially starts. Refreshments provided.

3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Introductions and Welcome to Avista
Speaker: Don Kopczynski, Vice President, Energy Delivery, Avista Utilities

3:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Roundtable Discussion/Introductions and Current Issues

4:00 PM – 5:00 PM
Where We Fit: Procurement, Logistics and Contracts within the Organization
Facilitator: April Spacek, Materials Management and Logistics, Avista Utilities
What are the specific responsibilities procurement, logistics and contracts in your organization? We will look at organizational charts for different utilities and discuss the pros and cons of different structures. Each attending organization will provide a short synopsis of how their Supply Chain organized is structured and are encouraged to share hand-outs with diagrams of how the supply chain function fits within the broader organization. Specific structures and the advantages and disadvantages of these structures will be analyzed through a group discussion.
Note: Please also bring titles and short descriptions for employee positions, as these often vary substantially between companies.

5:30 PM – 7:00 PM
WEI Hosted Networking Reception
Network with meeting attendees at the Historic Davenport and enjoy the beautiful scenery while connecting with colleagues.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

7:00 AM – 8:00 AM

8:00 AM – 9:00 AM
Supply Chain – Internal Metrics
Speaker: Vic Villar, Sourcing Manager, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Bob Buschow, Manager, Corporate Purchasing & Inventory Management, Southwest Gas Corporation
What are the key metrics that are used to measure success and what is the methodology to calculate these results? Join us as we take a deep dive into what key metrics are most valuable. Help make this a dynamic conversation by coming prepared to share what internal metrics you track on a monthly basis. Participants will be encouraged to share the methodology, and not the specific data they use to measure internal performance.

9:00 AM – 9:10 AM

9:10 AM – 10:00 AM
Supply Chain – External Metrics
Facilitator: Cody Krogh, Supply Chain Manager, Avista Utilities
Join this roundtable discussion on the external metrics that energy companies use to assess contract quality, vendor performance, and contract adherence.

10:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Networking Break

10:30 AM – 11:30 AM
Beyond Service – Partnerships with Business Units
Speaker: Dina Arellanes, Manager, Sourcing Portfolio, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Successful supply chain organizations collaborate with business units and receive executive sponsorship and support for their responsibilities. While this panacea may be difficult to achieve, supply chain can exist as a partner to business units and their goals. We also bring forth the conversation on metrics and define how organizations successfully translate these metrics to partner with specific business units and build common goals.

11:30 AM – 1:00 PM

1:00 PM – 1:30 PM
Materials Traceability
Speaker: Chris Humm, Supervisor, Sourcing Gas Materials, Pacific Gas and Electric Company
Materials Traceability is critically important when faced with a manufacturer’s recall or understanding where certain material originated.  For Gas Transmission materials 16” diameter and greater, Pacific Gas & Electric is implementing an industry-leading Materials Traceability Program designed to trace critical materials from source of supply through installation into PG&E service.  This presentation will give a high-level view of this important initiative.

1:30 PM – 2:00 PM
Cross Bore Issues and Concerns
Dawn Donahoo, Public Safety Specialist, Avista Utilities
A cross bore occurs when a new natural gas line is installed using a trenchless method and intersects an existing underground utility. Trenchless installation methods, commonly referred to as trenchless technology, could include use of the following: directional drills, augur boring equipment and plowing.

2:00 PM – 3:30 PM
P-cards – Can’t Live with ’em, Can’t do Business without ’em
Speaker: Mark Bond, Supply Chain Manager, NorthWestern Energy
P-cards allow for flexibility in meeting operational supply needs but their use impacts the organization at many levels. We will examine diverse policies and procedures among different utilities to learn how organizations deal with the impact they can have on standardization. We will also look at what controls are in place to ensure items bought are approved materials.

  • Drivers for customers using P-cards
  • General spend targets for different organizations (% spend and/or # of employees)
  • Where P-cards make sense for energy companies and the reasons why (% kick-backs, tracking, etc.)
  • What happens when P-cards are used inappropriately
  • Fraudulent usage protection – chip and pin technology

Participants are encouraged to share P-card policies as we will benchmark spend limits, which departments receive P-cards, controls in place, and what can and cannot be purchased on a P-card.

3:30 PM – 3:45 PM

3:45 PM – 5:00 PM
Avista’s Business Process Improvement (BPI) Journey & Discussion
Alicia Gibbs, Business Process Improvement Manager
Jared Akins, Business Process Improvement Facilitator
This presentation provides an overview of Avista’s business process improvement (BPI) journey and how BPI concepts can be applied to Supply Chain.  We will also explore what approaches have worked well for implementing and sustaining improvements, as well as experience a hands-on process improvement simulation.  Featured case studies include invoice processing (allowing for negotiation of early payment terms), and material scheduling improvement.

6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
WEI Hosted Dinner
621 W. Mallon Street
Spokane, WA 99201

Friday, September 11, 2015

7:00 AM – 8:00 AM
Continental Breakfast

8:00 AM – 9:00 AM
Supplier Rationalization
Speaker: Conrad Snover, Partner, Denali Group
Many utilities are talking about the need to rationalize their supply base. Any such effort must be undertaken very thoughtfully in order to avoid pitfalls. This discussion will present benchmarks and best practices, as well as cover a few case studies and lessons learned.

9:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Trends in the Power and Utilities Supply Chain
Speaker: Grant Poeter, Deloitte Consulting
A roundtable discussion on “what are Power and Utility (P&U) peers focusing on in supply chain”? Deloitte will present their findings from their recent P&U Benchmarking Survey as a backdrop of what SCM trends we are seeing in the P&U industry. The survey covers a broad remit of areas including; Category Management, Technology, Risk and Contract Management.

10:00 AM – 10:30 AM
Break + Hotel check-out

10:30 AM – 12:00 PM
Open Roundtable, Meeting Wrap-Up and Adjourn
Speaker: Cody Krogh, Supply Chain Manager, Avista Utilities
We reserve time to focus on any parking lot items brought up during the previous two days, and ensure that the goals set forth during introductions for each participant have been achieved.

We will also wrap-up the 2015 Procurement Management forum by requesting your feedback on the meeting content and your suggestions to build into next year. Opportunities will be available to volunteer for leadership positions on future Program Development Teams.

Hotel + Travel

The Historic Davenport
10 South Post St.
Spokane, WA 99201
Phone: 800.228.9290

Washington’s grandest hotel. Whether it’s the soaring architecture, award-winning amenities, rich history, or simply its proximity to nearby Spokane attractions, The Davenport Hotel has welcomed film stars, explorers, writers, politicians and other luminaries for more than 100 years.

Reservation Instructions
If staying additional nights other than September 9th and September 10th, you will need to call the hotel directly at 509.455.8888 or 800.228.9290 and request the Western Energy Institute rate ($145/night) when booking. Alternatively, you can make your reservation online. This rate is guaranteed to August 26, 2015 or until the WEI room block is full.

Travel Information
The Spokane International Airport is approximately 8 miles (15 minutes) from The Davenport Hotel. Alaska and Horizon flights are picked up right outside the doors at baggage claim. All other flights are picked up at ground transportation, just next to the car rental counters.

Airport service is $25 plus tax, one-way per room based on availability. The hotel will provide town car service for individual pick-up between the hours of 5am and 12 midnight within a two-mile radius on a complimentary basis. This service will be available to all registered guests, based on availability.

Self-parking is available in our garage on the southwest corner of First Avenue and Post. For valet parking, turn North (left) on Post for the main hotel or turn South (right) for the tower.

Self Park
$2 first hour/ $1 each additional Hour
$15 overnight

Valet Park
$15 Event Valet
$20 overnight valet

Driving Directions from the Airport
Eastbound: Take I-90 East to the Lincoln Street exit (number 280a). Turn North (left) on Lincoln.
Westbound: Take I-90 west to the Lincoln Street exit and proceed North on Lincoln.

Meet The Speakers

Don Kopczynski

Avista Utilities

Vice President, Energy Delivery
Learn More

Don is the VP of Avista Corp. and VP of Transmission and Distribution Operations for Avista Utilities. Don began working for Avista in 1979 as an electrical engineer and promoted to various management and director positions throughout the organization. He is a graduate of the University of Idaho with a BS in Electrical Engineering, MBA from Washington State University, and Masters in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University.

Dina Arellanes

Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Manager, Sourcing Portfolio

Victor H. Villar

Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Sourcing Manager

Robert Buschow

Southwest Gas Corporation

Manager, Corporate Purchasing & Inventory Management

Cody Krogh

Avista Utilities

Supply Chain Manager

Chris Humm

Pacific Gas and Electric Company

Supervisor, Sourcing Gas Materials

Mark Bond

NorthWestern Energy

Supply Chain Manager

Conrad Snover

Denali Group


Dawn Donahoo

Avista Utilities

Public Safety Specialist

April Spacek

Avista Utilities

Materials Management and Logistics

Dawn Donahoo

Avista Utilities

Public Safety Specialist

Alicia Gibbs

Avista Utilities

Business Process Improvement Manager
Learn More

Alicia Gibbs joined Avista in 2009 and currently serves as Customer Service Manager where she oversees teams responsible for credit and collection processes, commission relationships, escalated calls, and employee coaching. Within the company, Alicia has experience working as part of Construction, Supply Chain, Business Process Improvement, and Customer Service. Her leadership experience includes supporting process improvement facilitators, team leaders, analysts, specialists, and customer service representatives. She is passionate about building, developing, and supporting teams to accomplish business results.

Alicia holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Production Operations Management and Marketing from the University of Idaho. She is currently pursuing her Masters in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University. Alicia lives with her husband and two young boys in Post Falls, Idaho.

Jared Akins

Avista Utilities

Business Process Improvement Facilitator

Grant Poeter

Deloitte Consulting

Specialist Leader

April Spacek

Avista Utilities

Materials Management and Logistics

Alicia Gibbs

Avista Utilities

Business Process Improvement Manager

Jared Akins

Avista Utilities

Business Process Improvement Facilitator

Grant Poeter

Deloitte Consulting