Engineering & Operations Conference

The conference of choice for public power professionals charged with designing, developing, and maintaining the nation's electric system.
March 28 - 31, 2021
Pasadena, California

The 2020 event has been cancelled

APPA will issue a full refund to all registrants. Please cancel your hotel reservations directly with the hotel. Hotel contact information is available on the Hotel tab.

The 2021 Lineworkers Rodeo will be held March 26-27 and the Engineering & Operations Conference will be held March 28-31 at the Pasadena Convention Center in California.

Please feel free to reach out to us at [email protected] with any questions or concerns.

The Engineering & Operations Conference is the American Public Power Association's annual meeting for utility professionals in the areas of:

  • Communications & Control 
    Design, construction and maintenance of system-wide communications, security, protection and controls
  • Environmental
    Environmental-related matters, particularly in the area of regulatory developments and compliance requirements
  • Generation & Fuels
    Utility generation facilities and fuels, including nuclear power
  • Safety
    Utility safety policies and practices, including disaster response
  • Transmission & Distribution
    Construction, operation and maintenance of utility transmission and distribution equipment, from main generation busbar to customer service entrance
  • System Planning
    Electric system planning, including strategic planning, load forecasting and modeling
  • Supply Management 
    Utility warehouse management, as well as the procurement of utility equipment and supplies

Registration is now open for the conference. Check out the preliminary program

Conference Mentor Program

Need help navigating the conference as a first-timer? Want someone to exchange notes with because you’re the only one from your organization attending? Eager to share your knowledge and experience as a long-time conference attendee?

The conference mentor program pairs up new attendees with seasoned conference-goers. You’ll meet at the Welcome Reception and stay in touch throughout the conference.

Ask for a mentor or volunteer to serve as one — check the box when you register, email, or call 202-467-2965 to participate.

Who Should Attend

Designed for public power technical personnel and safety managers. The conference also has much to offer to utility directors, public power professionals involved in electric utility management and operations and city managers. With the advent of smart grid, IT and communications specialists will benefit as well.

Join the interest list to receive the latest information about this event. If you have any questions or would like additional information on the conference, please contact us via email.

More information

Phone: 202-467-2978; Email: [email protected]

Phone: 202-467-2941; Email: [email protected]

Phone: 202-467-2921; Email: [email protected]

Phone: 202-467-2967; Fax: 202-495-7467; Email: [email protected]

This event has been cancelled

The 2021 Lineworkers Rodeo will be held March 26-27 and the Engineering & Operations Conference will be held March 28-31 at the Pasadena Convention Center in California.


The Engineering & Operations Conference offers four days of keynotes, breakout sessions, and networking opportunities from Sunday to Wednesday, April 19 - 22. Learn more about each of these offerings, and check out the preliminary program

  • Preconference seminars
  • General sessions
  • Breakout sessions 
    • Monday A.M. sessions
    • Monday P.M. sessions
    • Tuesday A.M. sessions
    • Tuesday P.M. sessions
    • Wednesday A.M. sessions
  • Special conference events

Breakout Sessions

Benefit from engaging breakout sessions led by industry experts and public power colleagues — take home actionable ideas and tactics.

Breakout sessions are offered Monday through Wednesday, April 20 - 22. Several breakout sessions run concurrently in each time slot and you can go to any sessions you like. Browse sessions below or download the program [coming soon!] for a listing by date/time that you can share with colleagues and use to plan your itinerary. 

Breakout sessions cover topics in these tracks:

  • Communications & Control
  • Environmental, Generation & Fuels
  • Safety
  • Supply Management
  • Transmission & Distribution/System Planning

Agenda at a Glance

Sunday, April 19

8 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.
8:30 a.m. – Noon
Preconference Seminars
  • Improving Your Overhead and Underground Line Design Practices
  • Building Back Stronger: Disaster Recovery and Resilience Funding
1:30 – 5 p.m.
Preconference Seminars
  • Integrating New Technologies to Future-Proof Your Utility
  • Grounding and Lightning Protection Best Practices
5 – 6:30 p.m.
Welcome Reception

Monday, April 20

7 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Conference Registration
7:30 – 8:30 a.m.
Breakfast with DEED & Awards Ceremony

Join us to celebrate the 40th anniversary of DEED, public power’s exclusive research and innovation program. The RP3, safety, and DEED award winners for 2020 will be recognized at this event.

8:30 – 10 a.m.
Opening General Session

Chair's Address

Decosta Jenkins, Chair, American Public Power Association, and President & CEO, Nashville Electric Service, Tennessee

Public Power in 2020 and Beyond

Joy Ditto, President & CEO, American Public Power Association 

10 – 10:30 a.m.

RPand Safety Award winners

10:30 a.m. – Noon 
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • Smart Utilities for a Smart Future
  • Make Your Performance Evaluations Matter
  • Supply Management Opening Roundtable
  • Environmental Regulations: A Federal Update
Noon – 1:30 p.m.
Lunch on your own
1:30 – 3 p.m.
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • More Than Just a Map: GIS for Digital Transformation
  • Why Safety School Should Be Old School
  • Prepare Now: System Hardening, Planning, and Materials Management Tips
  • Navigating the Complexities of Electricity Markets
1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Expo Preview Hours

Get a sneak peek at the Expo and meet vendors offering deals on the products and services your utility needs.

3 – 3:15 p.m.

3:15 – 4:30 p.m.
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • Feeder Automation: Whose Line Is It Anyway? 
  • Virtual Training for a Real-World Experience
  • How Does Your Warehouse Stack Up?
  • Natural Gas Supply: Managing the Risks
  • Terminal Condition: A Power Quality Case Study
4:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Expo Opening Reception

Enjoy some down time with colleagues. Unwind over drinks as you connect with industry suppliers, vendors, and consultants and discover how their products and services can help your organization succeed. 

Photo Op
All award winners can have their pictures taken at this time. 

Tuesday, April 21

7:15 – 8:30 a.m.
Women in Public Power Panel and Networking Breakfast

Grab your continental breakfast and join a lively discussion about the growing influence of women in public power. Share challenges and wins with your peers. 

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.
Networking Continental Breakfast

Power up with coffee and connections at this informal breakfast. There are no speakers or moderators — just visit with your peers and chat with sponsors.

8:30 – 9:45 a.m.
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • Store Up on New Ideas in Battery Storage
  • 7 Questions to Transform Your Safety Culture
  • Building a Strong Foundation for Construction Procurement
  • Drones: Buzzing with Possibilities, and Threats
9:45 – 10:45 a.m.
Expo & Refreshment Break

Enjoy a refreshment break, hear sponsor presentations and continue to network with sponsors. The expo hall will be remain open till Noon. 

10:45 – Noon
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • Securing the Supply Chain: Risks and Best Practices
  • Towing Utility Trailers: A Safety Checklist
  • Reducing Emissions: How Utilities Can Lead the Way
  • Managing the System Impact of Distributed Energy Resources
Noon – 1:30 p.m.
Lunch on your own
1:30 – 2:45 p.m.
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • To Broadband or Not to Broadband
  • Find and Fix: Identifying and Fixing Safety Issues
  • Warehouse Site VisitTour filled to capacity; please contact [email protected] to inquire about the wait list. 
  • Coal Plant Decommissioning: How to Avoid a Debacle
  • Building Resiliency: What Does it Mean for You?
2:45 - 3 p.m.
3 - 4:15 p.m.
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .1 / PDHs 1.25 / CPEs 1.5
  • Working Safely Around 5G Pole Attachments
  • Warehouse Site VisitTour filled to capacity; please contact [email protected] to inquire about the wait list.
  • Nearman Creek Power Station: 316(b) Compliance Tour
  • Drinking Out of the Data Firehose
4:30 – 5:30 p.m.
Operations and Reliability Power Hour

Join the American Public Power Association’s reliability team for an overview and open discussion of public power reliability and operations benchmarking metrics. Discuss the latest benchmarking data, share reliability stories, and help define the path forward for public power to continue to excel. Network with your peers over a drink (cash bar) during this informal session.

6 p.m.
Young Professionals Happy Hour

Meet up with other young professionals from public power utilities, affiliates, and partner organizations at a relaxing, fun, pay-your-own-way happy hour. Share a drink and discuss how to take on the future.

Wednesday, April 22

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.
Networking Continental Breakfast

Network with your peers at this informal breakfast. There are no speakers or moderators.

8:30 – 10 a.m.
Breakout Sessions
Recommended CEUs .2 / PDHs 1.5/ CPEs 1.8

Roundtable discussions are open only to employees of public power utilities, state and regional associations, and joint action agencies. 

  • Communications & Control Roundtable
  • Environmental Gen & Fuels Roundtable
  • Safety: Association Safety Manual Roundtable
  • Supply Management Roundtable
  • Transmission & Distribution/System Planning Roundtable
10 - 10:30 a.m.
10:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
Closing General Session

"Find a Way:" Fighting to Live Your Dream

Merril Hoge, Retired NFL Running Back and author of “Find a Way: Three Words That Changed My Life”

11:30 a.m.
Conference Adjourns


Platinum Sponsors

This event has been cancelled

The 2021 Lineworkers Rodeo will be held March 26-27 and the Engineering & Operations Conference will be held March 28-31 at the Pasadena Convention Center in California.


Conference Fees

Register by March 20, 2020 to receive the following rates:

  • Association Members: $775
  • Nonmembers: $1,550

Preconference Seminar Fees

Preconference seminars require a separate registration fee. Register by March 20, 2020, to receive these preconference seminar registration rates:

  • Association Members (half day): $350
  • Nonmembers (half day): $700

After March 20, 2020, all registration fees will increase by $50.

Not an American Public Power Association member? Join today and save $775 on your conference registration. Call Member Services at 202-467-2936 to learn more.

Conference Mentor Program

If you’re a first-time attendee, or the only one from your organization, pair up with a seasoned conference-goer who’ll show you the ropes. Your mentor will meet you at the Sunday Welcome Reception and stay in touch with you throughout the conference.

Want to have a conference mentor or serve as one? Select the check box on the online or PDF registration form or contact us at [email protected]; 202-467-2965 by March 15 to participate.


The following meals/food functions are included in the registration fee:

- Welcome Reception (light appetizers)

- Continental breakfast; Reception (appetizers)

Guest Registrations

Conference registrants may bring a guest to the Welcome Reception and the Vendor Expo Opening Reception.

Cancellation Policy

Registrants who cancel in writing on or before April 10, 2020, are entitled to a refund of their registration fee, minus a $50 cancellation fee. Registrants who cancel after April 10 will not receive a refund, but attendee substitutions will be allowed for the 2020 Engineering & Operations Conference only. Registrants and no-shows who do not cancel on or before April 10 are responsible for the full registration fee and are not entitled to a refund.

Cancellations must be made in writing and emailed to [email protected].


Email [email protected]

Gold Sponsors

This event has been cancelled

The 2021 Lineworkers Rodeo will be held March 26-27 and the Engineering & Operations Conference will be held March 28-31 at the Pasadena Convention Center in California.

Cancelling your hotel reservations

Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown
The Crowne Plaza has automatically cancelled all reservations in the APPA room block for this meeting. You do not need to do anything further. If you need documentation of your cancellation (cancellation number) and you have not already received a cancellation email from the Crowne Plaza, please call the Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown at 816-474-6664 to get a cancellation number. 

Marriott Kansas City Downtown
Guests must cancel their reservations on their own.  You can cancel your reservations using this link:



Conference Location & Hotels

The 2020 Engineering & Operations Conference will be held at the Kansas City Convention Center (301 W 13th St., Suite 100, Kansas City, MO 64105).

The American Public Power Association will have a room block at the Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown. 

Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown
1301 Wyandotte St. 
Kansas City, MO 64105


  • Main/Reservation telephone: 1-816-474-6664
  • Group rate: $189 (Single/Double) per night (plus 16.975% tax)
  • Reservation cut-off date: March 26, 2020
  • Group code: APP
  • Reservation link

About the Hotel
The Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown is fully serviced, and conveniently located in the heart of downtown Kansas City. The Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown is accessible by foot, shuttle or street car to world class dining, live music and entertainment at the Power & Light District, Crossroads Art District and the River Market Neighborhood. In addition, The Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown features a sparkling roof top seasonal pool. Perfect for relaxation after a day of meetings or an opportunity to soak up the sun under the Kansas City skyline. 

Reservations and Cancellation Policy
The cut-off date to receive the group rate (plus tax) is Thursday, March 26, 2020. If rooms remain in the block after the cut-off date, the group rate will be honored. If not, you may be charged a higher rate. The room block may sell out before March 26, so early reservations are encouraged. For individual reservations call 816-474-6664 and reference “American Public Power Association” or make your reservation online at here. The Crowne Plaza Kansas City Downtown should receive all reservations no later than March 26, 2020.

Cancelled reservations that are not resold may become a financial liability for the Association, so please make your reservations thoughtfully. If you require additional assistance with housing please contact Meeting Services at 202-467-2941 or [email protected]

Scam Alert
Please do NOT make hotel reservations through any third party that may contact you by phone or email. Attendees are encouraged to only use the online reservation links, phone numbers, and discount codes available directly from the Association, on our conference brochures and on the Association website for this event.

The hotel is approximately 20 miles from the Kansas City International Airport (MCI).

The typical daily high temperature in Kansas City during the conference will be 65° F with an average daily low of 45° F. As meeting room temperatures vary, prepare to dress for cool conditions. The attire for the conference is business casual.

For assistance making your hotel arrangements, please contact Meeting Services at 202-467-2941 or [email protected].

Contact us at [email protected].

This event has been cancelled

The 2021 Lineworkers Rodeo will be held March 26-27 and the Engineering & Operations Conference will be held March 28-31 at the Pasadena Convention Center in California.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where and when is the next Engineering & Operations Technical Conference?

March 28 - 30, 2021
The Pasadena Convention Center

Pasadena, California

What educational credits are available?

Academy events include the following opportunities for educational credits:

  • Continuing Education Units (CEUs) from the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET)
  • Professional Development Hours (PDHs) as established by the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES)
  • Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Ccedits from the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA)

Is there international registration?

Online meeting registration is for U.S. and Canadian residents only. International registrants must provide a signed registration form — signed by the authorized cardholder — if paying with a credit card. Fax the completed registration form to 202-495-7484 or email it to [email protected]

Alternatively, you could send a check from a U.S. bank payable to American Public Power Association. Please mail completed form with full payment to our bank lock box:

American Public Power Association
P.O. Box 418617
Boston, MA  02241-8617

Are meals included?

The following food functions/meals are included in the registration fee:

  • Sunday - Welcome Reception (light appetizers)
  • Monday - Plated Breakfast; Reception (light appetizers)
  • Tuesday - Continental Breakfast
  • Wednesday – Continental Breakfast

What is the conference dress code?

The attire for the conference is business casual. Meeting room temperatures vary, so prepare to dress for cool conditions.

How can I present at the conference?

We welcome your topic and speaker ideas for future conferences and events. To submit your idea for consideration, complete this form. Conference topics are generally determined 6-8 months before the event is held. Ideas will be kept on file for a full year, so if the agenda for the conference has already been determined, your ideas will be considered for the next year’s event, or in case any space opens up in the current year’s program. You will be contacted only if your idea is selected for an upcoming conference.