Download the PDF Brochure
Discover how to support and grow businesses in your community to enhance your reputation and revenue. Your commercial and industrial key accounts need special attention—the Key Accounts Certificate Program is designed to show you how to nurture strategic relationships and build trust and loyalty. Whether you plan to start a utility key accounts program or want to take your current program to the next level, this curriculum provides the skills, knowledge and tools for success.

Join the program to learn from real-world examples, get tools and templates, practice skills, and network with public power peers from across the nation. Participate in the program’s five courses and get a free copy of our Key Accounts Field Manual: A Guide for Public Power Professionals. Courses can also be taken individually.

This program is designed for public power key account managers and representatives. Other utility staff involved in key accounts, or those looking for professional development credentials, will also benefit.

To earn this certificate, participants must complete the following requirements within one year:

1. Complete the five required courses

2. Pass an online exam

3. Submit a customer action plan

*Participants who can demonstrate knowledge of the utility industry, through work experience or coursework, may opt-out of this course. Contact for more information.


After completing the required coursework, participants must:

1. Pass an online exam
Consists of 100 multiple choice questions, based on the five required courses.

  • You must score at least a 75% to pass the exam. You’ll have two opportunities to pass the test.

2. Submit a customer action plan
Demonstrate how your utility plans to address the needs of a selected account.

  • You must score at least a 70% to pass


Participants must complete the program requirements within one year of attending their last course in the certificate program curriculum.


Tim Blodgett, President and CEO, Hometown Connections
For over 16 years, Tim has served as the president and CEO of Hometown Connections, providing consulting, training and facilitation support to hundreds of public power utilities and their governing boards. He has worked with municipal governments and non-profit organizations on strategic planning, governance, organizational assessments, public participation, market research, and customer service. Previously, Tim served as the director of sales for en-able, an affiliate of KN Energy and PacifiCorp, assisting energy distribution companies with their customer care and energy services programs.

Erick Rheam, Vice President, Business Development, Automated Energy, Inc.
Erick is a consultant, speaker and author on key accounts and human dynamics. He co-authored the Association’s Key Accounts Field Manual: A Guide for Public Power Professionals. He has been involved in public power for 15 years. He worked as a key accounts manager and customer relations division manager for public power utilities in Indiana and Colorado, managing industrial pretreatment, key accounts, mid-market, conservation, and marketing programs. In partnership with Automated Energy, Inc., Erick offers key accounts consulting and education across the country.


APPA Members
Before Sept. 11 - $2,200
After Sept. 11 - $2,450

Before Sept. 11 - $4,400
After Sept. 11 - $4,650

The enrollment fee includes the four courses, cost of study material, exam grading and review of the business plan.

How Can I Participate?

Attend an APPA Education Institute
The Key Accounts Certificate Program classes are held once a year, in conjunction with one of our seasonal education institutes (winter, spring or fall), and they provide a great opportunity to network with industry peers from across the nation.

2017 Schedule
The next offering will be in conjunction with our Fall Education Institute:

Oct. 2-6, 2017
Francis Marion Hotel
Charleston, SC

Let Us Come To You!
We can bring our courses to your location at any time—a convenient and cost-effective option for groups of eight or more. This format also allows you to customize course content to address the specific goals that are important to your organization.

Pool Your Resources
Partner with neighboring public power utilities, state and regional associations, or joint action agencies to bring the training to your area. This is a great way to share costs and to secure a location that is within driving distance (ideal for utilities facing strict travel guidelines or joint action agencies looking to add services to their members).

Contact APPA’s Education Department, at 202/467-2919 or