Public Power Forward Summit

The power industry is evolving. Utilities must alter their business models to keep up with the changes—or customers will take matters into their own hands.
December 11 - 12, 2017
San Francisco, California

The power industry is evolving. Utilities must alter their business models to keep up with the changes—or customers will take matters into their own hands.

The American Public Power Association’s Public Power Forward strategic initiative prepares community-owned utilities for the future of the energy industry by helping them determine if, when, and how they should revise their rate structures, services, and operations.

Join industry thought leaders at the Public Power Forward Summit to discover new trends, technologies, and customer expectations and share your thoughts on public power’s future.

Who Should Attend

  • General managers and CEOs
  • Senior utility executives
  • Senior operations executives
  • Policy and strategy makers and future leaders
  • Governing board members
  • City council members
  • Mayors
  • Other utility managers and future leaders responsible for policy and strategy
  • Industry partners, strategic thinkers and subject matter experts
  • Utility communications leaders and specialists

Register now!

More information

Registration Information
Phone: 202-467-2941; Fax: 202-495-7505; Email: [email protected]

Hotel Information
Phone: 202-467-2941; Fax: 202-495-7505; Email: [email protected]

Program/Content Information
Phone: 202-467-2919; Email: [email protected]

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


Monday, December 11

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.
Registration & Coffee

8:30 – 9:15 a.m.
Welcome and Introductions

Transitioning to the Future
Sue Kelly
, President & CEO, American Public Power Association, Arlington, Virginia

9 – 9:45 a.m.
Corporate Vision on Energy: The Growing Interest in Sustainability
More corporations are pursuing sustainability goals, and they’re finding new ways to meet them. Hear about one company’s sustainability philosophy, how they’re working to implement it, and what it could mean for your utility.

Ben Bixby, GM, Energy & Safety, Nest Labs, Palo Alto, California

9:45 – 10 a.m.

10 – 11:45 a.m.
Implementing Solar Today and Tomorrow
Whether it’s rooftop, community, or utility-scale solar, you need to keep up with new options and opportunities in solar energy. Hear details about solar programs two public power utilities offer, and discuss the potential role for utilities in distributing and generating solar energy in the years to come.

Martin Adams, Chief Operating Officer, Los Angeles Department of Water & Power, California; and Ed Shikada, General Manager and Assistant City Manager, City of Palo Alto Utilities, California

11:45 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Lunch Keynote
A Smart City Success Story: San Diego

Learn how the San Diego region is emerging as a leader in the smart cities movement thanks to a collaborative approach that brings together public, private, and academic leaders. Learn how the collaborative is leading initiatives on electric vehicle adoption and charging infrastructure, net zero living, intelligent streetlights, and smart building projects at local landmark locations such as the port, airport, baseball park, bay front, and more.

Jason Anderson, President and CEO, Cleantech San Diego, California

1 – 1:15 p.m.

1:15 – 2:45 p.m.
Electric Vehicles: Driving the Grid
The U.S. has more than 400,000 electric vehicles on the road, and that number is steadily increasing. Automakers are helping the utility industry develop and standardize EV charging infrastructure, while customers are looking to the utility for guidance as a trusted energy advisor. Utilities must understand the system impacts and customer requirements associated with electric vehicles and prepare their systems to support the increased adoption of EVs. Learn how public power utilities are proactively addressing the increased number of electric vehicles and the resulting impacts on the utility.

David Wright, General Manager, Los Angeles Department of Water & Power, California; and Matthew J. Ide, Executive Director of Energy & Financial Markets, Massachusetts Municipal Wholesale Electric Company, Ludlow, Massachusetts

2:45 – 3 p.m.

3 – 4:45 p.m.
Energy Storage: Beyond the Tipping Point
Energy storage is positioned for unprecedented growth thanks to recent advances in technology, reduced costs, and mandates from regulators. Yet amid all the potential benefits and hype about storage, the technology’s future remains uncertain and challenges to adoption remain. Hear what public utilities are doing with energy storage now and where experts expect the technology to be in a few years.

Kevin Kelley, General Manager, Imperial Irrigation District, Imperial, California; Carla Peterman, Commissioner, California Public Utilities Commission, San Francisco, California; and Bob Rudd, Director of Energy Storage & Microgrids, Tesla, San Francisco, California

5 – 6 p.m.
Roundtable Discussions
Dive in to a deeper discussion – whether you have a policy or regulatory concern, an operations issue, or a communications challenge – find a group of attendees ready to solve problems and share ideas.

6 – 7 p.m.
Relax and network with your public power peers.

Tuesday, December 12

8 – 8:30 a.m.
Registration & Coffee

8:30 – 9:45 a.m.
Learning from the West: Where is the Industry Headed?
From 100% renewable portfolio standards and community choice aggregation in California to developing projects and initiatives in the Pacific Northwest. Hear different perspectives on what the future may hold for public power and your community and consider how these changes may impact your operations.

Michael Picker, President, California Public Utilities Commission; and Larry Weis, General Manager and CEO, Seattle City Light, Washington

9:45 – 10 a.m.

10 – 11:30 a.m.
When Microgrids Are the Answer
Microgrids may not be for everyone, but they may be a key solution for customers who need to disconnect from the grid — including military bases, data centers, and other customers who want to shift to onsite resources during outages. Learn about the latest developments in microgrid deployment and get a preview of the capabilities and possibilities of the microgrid of the future.

Dr. Robert B. Schainker, Senior Technical Executive, Electric Power Research Institute, Palo Alto, California; H. Scott Gibson, P.E., Generation Division, Snohomish County PUD, Everett, Washington; and Eric Walters, Administrative and Fuels Operations Director, Gainesville Regional Utilities, Florida

11:30 – Noon
Ideas to Action: Summit Key Takeaways
Association staff will lead this utilities-only roundtable discussion on the key themes and hot topics raised during the summit and ways to turn ideas into action. Join your colleagues in brainstorming the policies, tools, and practices you’ll be taking home, and help inform our strategy to keep public power moving forward.


Platinum Sponsors




Register online


Association Member
$645 before Nov. 13; $695 after Nov. 13

$1,290 before Nov. 13; $1,340 after Nov. 13

Not an APPA member? Join today and save $645 on your conference registration. Call Member Services at 202-467-2926 to learn more.

The following food functions/meals are included in the registration fee (all other meals are on your own):

  • Morning and afternoon beverage breaks (Monday/Tuesday)
  • Monday lunch
  • Monday networking reception

The attire for the 2017 Public Power Forward Summit is business casual. Since meeting room temperatures vary, please prepare to dress for cool conditions. Temperatures in San Francisco, California for the summit dates range from an average high of 58 degrees to an average low of 47 degrees.

The Intercontinental Mark Hopkins is located 15 miles from San Francisco International Airport. The estimated taxi rate is $54.

Travel Cost Policy
Travel arrangements and costs are the responsibility of the meeting participants. The Association will not reimburse for changes in travel expenditures regardless of the cause, including the cancellation of a course, meeting or workshop.

Registration Cancellation Policy
Registrants who cancel in writing on or before December 4, 2017, are entitled to a refund of their registration fee, minus a $50 cancellation fee. Registrants who cancel after December 4 will not receive a refund, but attendee substitutions will be allowed for the 2017 Public Power Forward Summit. Registrants and no-shows who do not cancel before or on December 4 are responsible for the full registration fee and are not entitled to a refund of their registration fee. Cancellations must be made in writing and mailed or e-mailed to [email protected].

More Information
Registration / Hotel / Program / Billing Questions

If you have questions about the meeting, please contact any of the staff listed below:

Registration Information – registration team:
Phone: 202/467-2941; Fax: 202/495-7505; Email: [email protected]

Hotel Information – meeting services team:
Phone: 202/467-2941; Fax: 202/495-7505; Email: [email protected]

Program/Content Information – education team:
Phone: 202/467-2921; Email: [email protected]

Billing Information – accounting and finance team:
Phone: 202/467-2967; Fax: 202/495-7467; Email: [email protected]

Silver Sponsors


NISC logo   UFS logo


The Public Power Forward Summit will take place at the:

Intercontinental Mark Hopkins Hotel
999 California Street
San Francisco, CA 94108

Main Telephone
: 415-392-3434

Group Rates: Single/Double $219 per night, (plus tax, 16.5%)

Reservation Cut-off Date: November 15, 2017

Reservation Telephone: 1-877-834-3613.

Group Code: “W0V” or “Power Forward Summit”

Online Reservation Link: Public Power Forward Summit(original link embedded here due to length)

: 3 p.m. / Check-out: Noon

Parking Fee: Valet Parking: $64.98 per day

In-Room Wireless: Complimentary standard wireless internet

About the Hotel
With a local legacy and grand architectural character that make it one of the most celebrated luxury hotels in San Francisco, the InterContinental Mark Hopkins is a landmark Nob Hill destination with breathtaking views of the Bay Area. Offering an experience of class and character, this historic hotel has been updated with modern amenities, high-tech features and elegant design. With unbeatable views, luxurious accommodations and historic charm, the sophisticated San Francisco hotel is an ideal choice for travelers who appreciate the finer things in life.

Hotel Reservations & Cancellation Policy
The cut-off date to receive the group rate (plus tax) is Wednesday, November 15, 2017.  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 November 15, 2017, so early reservations are encouraged. For individual reservations call 1-877-834-3613 and reference “W0V” or “Power Forward Summit,” or make your reservation online. The Mark Hopkins Hotel should receive all reservations no later than November 15.

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
Do NOT make hotel reservations through any third party that may contact you by phone or email. Use only the online reservation links, phone numbers, and discount codes available directly from the Association—in conference brochures and the website at

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

Frequently Asked Questions

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
  • Monday - Continental Breakfast
  • Tuesday - Continental Breakfast; Reception 
  • 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.