Preconference Seminars

Offering longer class times, smaller class sizes, interactive formats and experienced instructors, these pre-conference seminars will help you maximize the value of your conference experience.

Seminars require separate registration.

Sunday, September 17

Get Your Head in the Cloud
8:30 a.m. - Noon

Recommended CEUs .3/PDHs 3.25/CPEs 3.8, Information Technology

Cloud technologies are proving viable for utility mission critical system software — customer information, enterprise resource planning, financial management, meter data management, work management, AMI, etc. Cloud solutions require new criteria — for statements of work, service agreements, capitalization analysis, purchasing contracts, and more. They usher in new regulatory implications, system integration needs, and even business model changes. Learn how utilities like yours are leveraging the Cloud.


  • Emerging Cloud offerings and how to evaluate
  • Utility concerns and objections
  • Regulatory and financial implications
  • Implementing and integrating Cloud solutions
  • Statement of work and contractual considerations
  • Business model implications and value propositions

Rick Cutter, Managing Partner, AAC Utility Partners, Columbia, South Carolina


Assessing Your Utility’s Revenue Sufficiency in Light of Exposure to Distributed Generation
8:30 a.m. - Noon
Recommended CEUs .3/PDHs 3.25/CPEs 3.8, Specialized Knowledge

Discover ways to maintain revenue stability as distributed energy resources continue to proliferate. Work through real-world examples and apply progressive corporate and rate design policies to your business model. Respond to financial and rate design challenges. Develop actionable strategies to mitigate negative impacts from distributed energy resources through rate design. Instructors will demonstrate methods and key concepts for ensuring a financially sustainable utility of the future.


  • Financial basics for public power utilities (utility accounting concepts, sources of income, expenditures and cash flow concepts)
  • Long-term financial planning (general utility planning financial balancing act, challenges and direction)
  • Funding sources (things that drive capital needs including system growth or decline, aging infrastructure, new growth, upgrade projects, and R&R projects; planning documents, CIP and sources of funding for public utilities)
  • Traditional rate structures and revenue impacts (rate analysis and various rate designs; common key performance indicators)
  • DER rate structures — net energy metering, value of solar tariffs — and revenue impacts
  • Financial toolkit for long term revenue adequacy

Lisa Vedder, MPA, CIA, CCSA, Principal Consultant,Willdan Energy Services, Orlando, Florida; Jolynn Rains, Principal Consultant, Willdan Energy Services, Eloy, Arizona; and Dave Buemi, Senior Vice President, Clean Energy Programs, Willdan Energy Services, Washington, D.C.


Informed Decision-Making: Financial Trends and Impacts on Municipal Utilities
1:30 - 5 p.m.
Recommended CEUs .3/PDHs 3.25/CPEs 3.8, Specialized Knowledge

Discover how economic and market conditions influence and inform everyday financial decisions at your utility. Discuss the Trump Administration’s budget priorities and the impact on bond pricing and utility finances. See how utilities across the nation are adapting to changing market forces and distributed generation penetration. Learn how to communicate utility financial performance and potential rate changes to board/council members and customers.


  • Review of market conditions and expectations for public power
  • Pricing your bonds
  • Rating agency trends and new rate structures
  • Incorporating cost-effective renewables
  • Communicating with investors
  • Policy issues and developments to watch

Chris Lover, Director, and Mike Mace, Managing Director, Public Financial Management, Charlotte, North Carolina


Communicating for Better Work Relationships  
1:30 - 5 p.m.
Recommended CEUs .3/PDHs 3.25/CPEs 3.8, Personal Development

Your utility can achieve goals and succeed if you focus on building strong relationships among team members. And strong work relationships are built on effective communications. You need to understand and leverage the differences among multiple generations and personalities in your workforce and develop appropriate communication styles and processes. Strong communication can improve staff performance, break down departmental silos, and build trust to enhance the work environment and customer service across your organization.


  • Understanding communication and personality styles
  • Working with different generations and overcoming resistance to change
  • Avoiding and resolving conflicts from misinterpretation
  • Using feedback and questioning skills
  • Coaching for improved performance
  • Improving internal customer service

David Saxby, President, Measure-X, Phoenix, Arizona