Powering Strong Communities
Webinar Series

Raising Awareness of Public Power

Learn how utilities like yours are engaging audiences through different communication channels and community involvement.

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Series Description

As competition evolves in new and different forms, it’s more important than ever before to share the unique benefits of public power with multiple stakeholders. Whether in times of storm or calm, several easy, low-cost outreach initiatives can help you build lasting community trust and goodwill. Learn how utilities like yours are engaging audiences through different communication channels and community involvement. Up your game on outage and scam communications. And get best practices in employee communications.

The seven-part series, recorded in 2018 includes the following webinars:

  • Communications 101: Resources for Utilities and City Officials
  • #StopScams: Alerting and Educating Customers
  • Driving Engagement in the New Social Media Landscape
  • Outage Communications: Stepping Up Your Game
  • Reaching Tomorrow's Customers: Energy Education for the Next Generation
  • Rallying the Troops: Internal Communications Best Practices
  • Community Outreach: Get Out to Get Known

Recommended for

Our series of seven webinars is designed for utilities of all sizes, at any level in the communications journey.

Speakers

  • Brooke Bohnenkamp, Manager of Communications, Special Projects and IT City of Pierre, South Dakota
  • John Crooks, Utilities Manager, Shakopee Public Utilities Commission, Minnesota
  • Meena Dayak, Vice President, Integrated Media & Communications, American Public Power Association, Arlington, Virginia
  • Thomas Fladung, Managing Partner, Hennes Communications, Cleveland, Ohio
  • Sam Gonzales, Director, Digital and Social Media, American Public Power Association, Arlington, Virginia
  • Erica Manuel, Manager, Community, Economic Development & Education, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, California
  • David Mehlhaff, Chief Communications Officer, Kansas City Board of Public Utilities, Kansas
  • Tiffany Mousel, Community Outreach Specialist, Lincoln Electric Service, Nebraska
  • Erica Peden, Communications Specialist, Athens Utilities Board, Tennessee
  • Ethan Riegelhaupt, Vice President, Corporate Communications, New York Power Authority, White Plains, New York
  • Chris Riley, Communications and Community Outreach Manager, Norwich Public Utilities, Connecticut
  • Melissa Seifen, Communications Supervisor, Anaheim Public Utilities, California
  • Kelly Simonsen, Marketing and Communications Manager, Easton Utilities, Maryland
  • Nicole Stiff, Communications/Community Relations Assoc., Fayetteville Public Works Commission, North Carolina
  • Tim Trudell, Manager, Corporate Communications, Orlando Public Utilities Commission, Florida

Purchase the full 7-part series (half original price): $245 for members; $495 for nonmembers

Contact Us

Have questions? Contact 202/467-2997 or [email protected]

Return to webinar recordings

Webinar #1: Communications 101: Resources for Utilities and City Officials

Recording length: 1 hour, 21 minutes

How many of your customers know they are served by a public power utility and what that means for them? Do they know how you keep electricity affordable and reliable, while giving back to the community? It’s time to tell the public power story and win loyalty and trust from stakeholders so they’ll be on your side when competition and threats proliferate. Learn three basic tunes to toot your horn, with a suite of resources from the American Public Power Association. Invite your city coordinators or PIOs to join this free webinar so they’ll know how to get and share content for you. 

Speakers

  • Brooke Bohnenkamp,  Manager of Communications, Special Projects and IT City of Pierre, South Dakota  
  • Meena Dayak, Vice President, Integrated Media & Communications, American Public Power Association, Arlington, Virginia
  • Sam Gonzales, Director, Digital and Social Media American Public Power Association, Arlington, Virginia

Webinar #2: #StopScams: Alerting and Educating Customers

Recording length: 1 hour, 27 minutes

Impostors seem to target utility customers with new phone, in-person, and online scams every day. It takes a concerted effort to alert customers and save them from fraud. Learn what public power utilities are doing to educate customers and get new ideas for combating scams. Connect with your peers and get customizable resources to quickly alert your customers of potential scams. Explore how you can participate in Scam Awareness Week and join the national movement to educate customers about scams. 

Speakers

  • Melissa Seifen, Communications Supervisor, Anaheim Public Utilities, California
  • Tim Trudell, Manager, Corporate Communications, Orlando Public Utilities Commission, Florida

Webinar #3: Driving Engagement in the New Social Media Landscape

Recording length: 2 hours

Struggling to keep up with the latest in the constantly changing world of social media? Come and get tips from the experts on how to enhance the quality of your content, conversations, and engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Nextdoor, and other channels. Learn how to create great videos, images, and text. Discover the power of “stories.” Review your boosting and targeting strategies in the face of changing algorithms. Learn to better leverage geotags, hashtags, micro influencers, and advocates. Leave knowing how to make smarter social media decisions to make the most of your limited time and resources.

Speakers

  • Sam Gonzales, Director, Digital and Social Media American Public Power Association, Arlington, Virginia
  • Erica Peden, Communications Specialist, Athens Utilities Board, Tennessee

Webinar #4: Outage Communications: Stepping Up Your Game

Recording length: 1 hour, 30 minutes

When did you last update your crisis communications plan? Does it address the new demands and possibilities engendered by social media as well as the 24/7 news cycle? Are you prepared to tell a good story when you give and get mutual aid? Get some updates and tips from the veterans of many storms and crises, including the brutal hurricanes Irma and Maria in 2017 that commanded national media attention for months. 

Speakers

  • Thomas Fladung, Hennes Communications
  • Ethan Riegelhaupt, New York Power Authority, White Plains, New York 
  • Chris Riley, Communications and Community Outreach Manager, Norwich Public Utilities, Connecticut 


Webinar #5: Reaching Tomorrow’s Customers: Energy Education for the Next Generation

Recording length: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Learning about energy at an early age nurtures responsible energy use and stewardship among future customers. See how you can engage with the next generation of your customers through school-based and community programs. In addition to energy, you can teach them the value of public power and foster hometown loyalty. Get ideas from public power utilities that are reaching the next generation through unique educational experiences.

Speakers

  • John Crooks, Utilities Manager, Shakopee Public Utilities Commission, Minnesota
  • David Mehlhaff, Chief Communications Officer, Kansas City Board of Public Utilities, Kansas

Webinar #6: Rallying the Troops: Internal Communications Best Practices

Recording length: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Effective internal communication is much more than managing and distributing information and policies. A strong internal communications strategy can ignite passion for your mission, cultivate a healthy workplace, foster the development of a community among staff, and encourage employees to be better ambassadors for the utility when they are out in the community. Learn about creative ways your peers are getting key messages out to staff, hosting creative meetings, and finding new spokespersons to better tell their story.

Speakers

  • Carolyn Justice-Hinsen, Communications & Community Relations Officer, Fayetteville Public Works Commission, North Carolina
  • Kelly Simonsen, Marketing and Communications Manager, Easton Utilities, Maryland

Webinar #7: Community Outreach: Get Out to Get Known

Recording length: 1 hour, 27 minutes

You can’t run a public power utility from your desk or substation. You need to get out and build relationships with your customers who are also your neighbors, friends, and community partners. Discover how other utilities like yours are hosting and participating in community initiatives like school programs, scholarships, and fun events; volunteering with local projects; and supporting nonprofits. Learn how they are reaping the benefits in terms of goodwill and loyalty. Get ideas you can replicate in your community and learn about the costs and logistics of putting on an event.

Speakers

  • Erica Manuel, Manager, Community, Economic Development & Education, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, California
  • Tiffany Mousel, Community Outreach Specialist, Lincoln Electric Service, Nebraska

Purchase the full 7-part series (half original price): $245 for members; $495 for nonmembers

Contact Us

Have questions? Contact 202/467-2997 or [email protected]