Fortnightly Magazine - October 25 2021

Innovation Imperative

Top Innovators and More

A culture of innovation is an imperative for the utilities industry, if only because the challenges we face, from the threat of climate change to the demand for customer centricity to the complexity of today’s grid to the aging of the legacy infrastructure, and so on and so on, require continuous learning, invention, and integration.

Fortnightly Top Innovators 2021

Innovation Imperative

Conversations with this year’s Extraordinarily Inspiring Innovators: Arizona Public Service’s Jim Holbrook, Miguel Bravo and Christine Helmuth, California Public Utility Commission’s Commissioner Genevieve Shiroma, Leuwam Tesfai and Forest Kaser, CenterPoint Energy’s Eric Easton and David Mercado, PPL’s Horst Lehmann and Eric Rosenberger, Southern California Gas’ Eric Coene, Matt Gregori and Ron Kent, and Xcel Energy’s Nadia El Mallakh.

Top Innovators: Genevieve Shiroma, Leuwam Tesfai, Forest Kaser

California PUC

The Microgrids and Resiliency Team develops and executes regulations, tariffs, and programs for microgrids to enhance resiliency of the electric grid and reduce barriers for microgrid deployment. Their work has streamlined the interconnection process to ease customer burdens for microgrid installation while maintaining the safety of customers and utility workers, and empowered local and tribal governments looking to leverage microgrids as part of their resiliency planning.

Top Innovators: Eric Coene, Ron Kent, Matt Gregori

Southern California Gas

The Gas Research, Development, and Demonstration Program Team develops and demonstrates products and technologies that promote decarbonization across the natural gas value chain and a diversified portfolio of clean energy sources, distributed networks, tools, and applications.

Top Innovators: David Mercado and Eric Easton

CenterPoint Energy

During Winter Storm Uri and the power generation shortfall, the Real-Time Operations Team of 44 helped protect the Texas electric grid and prevent a statewide blackout, by complying with the Electric Reliability Council of Texas’s orders to shed load. They simultaneously worked to restore electricity to customers and devise innovative ways to rotate power outages among customers.

Top Innovators: Nadia El Mallakh

Xcel Energy

The Electric Transportation Team works to address customer barriers to EV adoption and build out EV infrastructure. Over the last year, the team has worked to approve and implement the Colorado Transportation Electrification Plan.

Top Innovators: 2021 Individuals and Teams

Innovation Imperative

PUF is excited about the Fortnightly Top Innovators 2021, because their stories are inspiring and uplifting. It's what we all need after a most trying and unusual pandemic time in our lives. It's about looking to the future and making it better.