Secondary Network (Mar 08-10)

Secondary networks are vital to systems that support power needs in urban areas. These interconnected pathways improve reliability, but are also complex to inspect and maintain. This annual forum addresses the reliability, safety and protection challenges of spot networks and grid systems that comprise the secondary network. Designed as an open forum, attendees are encouraged to bring their challenges and opportunities for discussion and to share best practices.

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General Details

  • Program Chair(s)
  • Ryan Bradeen, Spokane Operations Manager, Avista; Co-Chair Samuel Helms, Downtown Network Manager, Avista

    • Program Location
    • The Historic Davenport, Autograph Collection
    • 10 South Post Street, Spokane, WA 99201
    • Who Should Attend
    • Utility professionals involved with power distribution reliability planning, engineering, operation, standardization, protection & control, and power quality analysis of secondary spot network and grid systems will gain valuable insights and networking from attending this annual program. In addition, service company professionals who offer support to any aspect of the secondary network system are welcome to attend. 

  • Registration Options
  • Member: $699 USD
    Regular: $999 USD

    Registration prices increase $100 after February 8, 2023. Registration includes conference materials and food events.

    For vendor registration information, please see the Vendor Display 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.
  • Participation Policy
  • Western Energy Institute programs and events are open to energy companies (including gas production and electric generation, gas and electric transmission and gas and electric distribution utilities). Select programs and events are open to energy industry product and service suppliers. Programs and events are closed to all media representatives and to the general public. Recording is not permitted for any portion of the event.
  • For more information contact Traci Pepper, Program Manager at (971) 303-1004.


Wednesday, March 8, 2023

7:00 AM - 8:00 AM

Registration + Breakfast

8:00 AM - 8:15 AM

Speaker(s): Heather Rosentrater, Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer, Avista Utilities

8:15 AM - 9:00 AM

Welcome and Introductions

9:00 AM - 10:45 AM

Customers and Transformer Vault Agreements

Join us as representatives from Avista and Xcel talk about the challenges of establishing and renewing vaults and the issues that can arise during a project.

10:45 AM - 11:00 AM


11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Integrating Distributed Energy Resources into ENMAX’s Secondary Network System

In this 2-part  presentation, you will hear Pallavi Sehgal-Sidhu give an overview of EPC’s Engineering solutions. She will share the technical and operational challenges encountered during the project execution and the design solutions developed. The functionality of the new protection scheme will be discussed. Then Juval Bothe will present an overview of the Pilot Site and share the finding of the analysis done on data collected from this installation thus far. The impact of different invertor operation modes on the EPC’s secondary network system will also be discussed. 

12:00 PM - 1:00 PM


1:00 PM - 2:45 PM

Industry Topic

2:45 PM - 3:00 PM


3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Enclosed Spaces & Hidden Hazards
Speaker(s): Clint Sharp, Sr. Safety Specialist, Avista Corp.

The presentation is a general overview of confined spaces and will briefly cover fundamentals of confined and enclosed spaces, followed by myths and misconceptions about safe entry. 

4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Attendee Questions Roundtable

6:00 PM - 8:30 PM

Hosted dinner

Thursday, March 9, 2023

7:00 AM - 8:00 AM


8:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Vault Overview + Tour

Avista staff will lead a guided vault tour and be available to answer questions. Appropriate PPE is required to go into the vaults so each person needs to bring their own gear as detailed on the PPE Information tab on the WEI website.

12:30 PM - 1:30 PM

Lunch with Vendor Displays

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM

Electronic Mapping Integration
Speaker(s): Brian Chain, SR Network Engineer, Avista Utilities

2:30 PM - 3:00 PM

Break with Vendor Displays

3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Vendor's Platform

Learn about new products, issues, and major product changes during the vendor platform. Each vendor will give a brief presentation.

4:30 PM - 6:00 PM

Reception with Vendors

Friday, March 10, 2023

7:00 AM - 8:00 AM


8:00 AM - 9:30 AM

Attendee Questions Roundtable

9:30 AM - 10:00 AM

Break / check out of hotel

10:00 AM - 11:30 AM

Industry Topic

11:30 AM - 12:00 PM

Wrap Up

Discussion on future agenda, topics, and locations.

Hotel + Travel

  • Reservation Instructions
  • Please contact the hotel directly at (800) 899-1482 to reserve your room. Identify yourself as being with Western Energy Institute (WEI) to receive a special rate of $175 USD/night. A City of Spokane Tourism Promotion and Assessment fee of $4 and a Destination Fee of $10 per room, per night also applies. This rate is guaranteed until February 8, 2023 or until the WEI room block is full.

Vendor Displays

Registration Options

Member Attendee + Vendor Display Table: $999 USD
Regular Attendee + Vendor Display Table: $1,899 USD

Registration prices increase $100 after February 8, 2023. Registration includes materials and food events for the full conference in addition to one skirted display table for Thursday only and an invitation to participate in the Vendor’s Platform presentation.

Vendor Display Assistant tickets are available for $275. This registration can be added after an Attendee + Vendor Display registration and includes attendance and meals on Thursday only.

Vendor Display Schedule

Thursday, March 9, 2023
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM: Lunch with Vendor Displays
2:30 PM – 3:00 PM: Break with Vendor Displays
3:00 PM – 4:00 PM: Vendor’s Platform
4:30 PM – 6:00 PM: Reception with Vendors

PPE Information

For the Vault tour, attendees will need to have:

  • Long sleeve shirts
  • Long pants
  • Closed toe shoes
  • Safety glasses

Hard hats will be provided by Avista.

Meet The Speakers

Pallavi Sehgal-Sidhu

ENMAX Corporation

Senior Engineer - Protection & Controls

Clint Sharp

Avista Corp.

Sr. Safety Specialist

Christopher Steusloff

Xcel Energy Inc.

Cable /Supervisor

Brian Chain

Avista Utilities

SR Network Engineer

Heather Rosentrater

Avista Utilities

Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer