As President & CEO, Paula leads its more than 3,000 team members with the vision she has coined, “People First”, whereby CPS Energy is evolving its efforts to create and deliver value to its customers, community, and employees into a new age of energy solutions.
Paula has more than 30 years of leadership experience in San Antonio, including being a Regional Controller for Time Warner’s cable and telephony regional office and the VP of Finance for Luby’s, Inc. before coming to CPS Energy in late 2004. Over her 13 years at CPS Energy, she has progressively served as Controller & Assistant Treasurer; VP & Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) – Organizational Excellence & Shared Services; EVP, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) & Treasurer; and EVP – Financial & Administrative Services, CFO & Treasurer.
In addition to her role at CPS Energy, Paula presently serves as a Board Member of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas – San Antonio Branch; Chair & Executive Board Member of San Antonio Public Television Station, KLRN; Chair on the Advisory Committee of Executives (ACE) for St. Mary’s University’s Greehey School of Business, her undergraduate alma mater; Co-Chair of the Dentons Smart Cities/Communities Think Tank; Co-Chair of the Keystone Policy Board; Board Member of The University of the Incarnate Word; Board Member and Executive Committee Member of the San Antonio Economic Development Foundation (SAEDF); Board Member and Treasurer of EPIcenter; CEO Member of Mayor’s Business Leaders Committee and the Mayor’s Airport Evaluation Committee; Member of the Large Public Power Council (LPPC); Member of the Texas Public Power Association (TPPA); Member of the San Antonio Medical Foundation (SAMF); Advisory Committee Member of FM Global (an international mutual insurance company); Advisory Committee Member of Southwest Research Institute (SwRI); Advisory Committee Member of the University of Texas at San Antonio School of Engineering; and is the 2018 Chair-elect for the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce.
In February 2018, Paula was selected as Zpryme’s “Energy Thought Summit (ETS) Thought Leader of the Year.” This award honors an individual among the ETS community of thought leaders with an inventive, brave vision to inspire the global energy ecosystem.
In 2017, Paula was inducted into the San Antonio Women’s Hall of Fame, was honored by the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (SAHCC) as Corporate Executive of the Year Award and was also named the Financial Executive of the Year by the Financial Executives International (FEI) association. She has also been honored with numerous awards, including the San Antonio Business Journal’s (SABJ) 2016 Elite Executive CEO Distinction, as part of their C-Suite Awards, and the San Antonio Women’s Chamber of Commerce (SAWCC) 2015 Constellation of Stars Award. She was appointed as Honorary Joint Base San Antonio (JBSA) Commander in 2014 and also received Best CFO and Finance awards from the SABJ and La Prensa, respectively. Additionally, Paula mentors numerous people inside and outside of CPS Energy, from college students to vice presidents.
Paula has an Associate Degree in Fine Arts from San Antonio College. She earned a BBA in Accounting from St. Mary’s University, located in San Antonio, Texas, as well as a Finance & Accounting MBA from Regis University in Denver, Colorado. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA).
Paula is married and has two daughters.
Deryl Brown was most recently the Chief Executive Officer and minority owner of North American Power & Gas – a successful fast-growing energy provider for Residential and Commercial customers serving across 12 States and 62 utility service territories. Mr Brown lead the company’s turnaround leading to a sale to Calpine which closed in January 2017.
Mr Brown is a proven energy business Chief Executive Officer with a track record of value creation in the competitive retail energy industry. He has broad experience in retail energy including strategy development, Financing, Risk Management, Operations, Supply, Technology, Customer Service, Marketing, and Sales. Mr Brown has received various industry awards and holds records for starting, building, growing, and selling retail businesses.
Prior to North American Power, Mr Brown was the CEO and minority owner of Hudson Energy Services a start-up and fast-growing retail energy provider to commercial and industrial customers in Texas, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Illinois. Mr Brown led the effort to sell Hudson to Just Energy in 2010. As part of the Just Energy / Hudson Energy transaction, Mr Brown stayed with the purchasing company for a 3-year period in various executive positions primarily starting and growing Hudson Europe in London.
Prior to Hudson, Mr Brown was the General Manager for Direct Energy Business Services, a leading retail energy provider in North America. Prior to Direct Energy, Mr Brown had a long career at TXU/EFH/Vistra playing a leadership role in establishing their retail energy business serving as their COO. Prior to building TXU’s retail energy division, he held a variety of senior positions in TXU’s regulated utility business, serving TXU (and predecessor companies) for some 28 years.
Mr Brown received his MBA from the University of North Texas and a BS with honors in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. Mr Brown is on the Board at the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin and previously served on the Board of ERCOT (Electric Reliability Council of Texas).
A pioneer of energy branding. Fridrik was the first person in the world to present a PhD. dissertation with a focus on energy branding. Fridrik is the CEO of LarsEn Energy Branding, a consultancy working exclusively on branding for companies within the energy space (www.larsen.energy). He has become a leading authority on branding within the global energy sector. Fridrik is passionate about consumer-centric energy markets. He has served on the board of the New York Energy Week and is on the advisory committee for the European Utility Week where he has lead the track on connecting with customers.
Fridrik is a sought out speaker and a consultant on the matters of branding and marketing for the energy space. He works with traditional integrated utilities as well as retailers, DSOs, TSOs and generation companies. He is the founder and chairman of CHARGE.
With one foot grounded in the professional environment, Fridrik keeps his other foot in academia at the Business Department at the University of Iceland. He is the author of the first book on energy branding which was published by Palgrave-Macmillan.
Friðrik is not afraid to bring a new approach to the energy sector by introducing energy branding.
Lorena has years of experience within the energy sector, focusing on Business Development, Business Strategy and Innovation. She achieved several go to market of different new Products in the sector and successfully expanded offerings of a conventional utility by telecommunication, Service by Design as well as hardware solutions. Lorena’s main effort is to reach highest customer satisfaction by developing new business models, products and establishing new markets. With regard to her international network, Lorena is connecting innovators and Start-Ups with the relevant industries and markets. Within the Blue Minds Company, Lorena is seeking to contribute the energy market transition from a very different perspective and in a highly dynamic environment. She is Brand Ambassador and Advisory Board Member of EUW and has been involved with CHARGE – Energy Branding Conference. Moreover, her efforts spread to different communities cultivating an international Environment of industry experts.
Kirk is a member of the team at Shell Ventures, Shell’s corporate Venture Capital fund. Shell Technology Ventures invests and partners with entrepreneurs to bring new technologies and business models to market in order to lower costs, make our existing operations more sustainable, and accelerate the energy transition. Shell Technology Ventures acts as a strategic partner and makes minority investments in select technology companies, including Shell technology spin-outs, and also acts as an LP in some externally managed venture capital funds.
Kirk has over 15 years of experience as an entrepreneur and over 7 years as a venture capitalist and early-stage angel investor. Prior to Shell, Kirk was the founder and managing director of SURGE Ventures, a mentor-driven accelerator and seed stage venture fund. During this period, he led the investments into over 45 technology companies solving problems across the energy value chain including oil & gas, cleantech, power, energy efficiency, and horizontal applications that reach across. Under his leadership and direction, SURGE recruited more than 200 industry-leading scientists, investors, policymakers, customers, and entrepreneurs to serve as mentors. SURGE was repeatedly recognized globally as one of the top startup programs and early-stage investment funds.
Prior to leading SURGE, Coburn created and was CEO of Chief Outsiders (acq. 2010), a strategy and marketing consulting firm with offices across the United States. Chief Outsiders was named the #6 Fastest Growing Company in Houston, and was noted as one of Inc’s 5000 fastest growing companies in the US in 2014. Prior to Chief Outsiders, Coburn launched The PGA TOUR Network on Sirius XM (acq. by SIRI). He remained CEO for four years from launch to successful acquisition. Coburn additionally spent 8 years at Dell during the 1990s and early 2000s in myriad senior roles including new business development, strategy, procurement, marketing, and finance.
Kirk has an MBA and BBA from the University of Texas at Austin. Kirk serves as an ambassador to the Texas Children’s Hospital and is an active supporter of the Rice Alliance and Station Houston. Kirk is an avid lover of the outside world spending time ultra-endurance running (completed the Leadville Trail 100) and standup paddle surfing.
REstore specialises in Demand Side Management. The company offers Demand Response services to Industrial, Commercial and Residential consumers and offers cloud-based Demand Side Management solution platform FlexPond™ to Utilities. The company has been the leader in the fast-growing European Primary Reserve / Frequency Control markets and operates in all ancillary services and capacity markets in Europe. The company’s proprietary solution FlexPond™ is used by more than 150 of Europe’s largest industrial energy consumers, and a range of utility clients that include five of Europe’s top-50 utilities and grid operators.
As Head of Marketing Communications at REstore, one of Europe’s leading energy technology companies specialized in Demand Side Management, Liene leads the development and delivery of brand and communications strategy.
Liene is an established senior brand marketeer with a solid background of successfully driving the strategic direction of integrated activity that works seamlessly across all marketing channels. Working closely with a high-calibre team at REstore, she has enrolled an agile & hybrid marcomm approach. As you’d expect, Liene strongly believes that each brand should have charisma and personality: “Every stakeholder, prospect and customer should understand your company’s dream.” She has always been interested in working in disruptive companies and sectors with lots of interesting challenges.
At REstore Liene started establishing and implementing its brand awareness strategy since 2015. Since November 2017 Centrica acquired REstore for €70 million (£62 million). Today REstore is working with Centrica Business Solutions to further scale the go-to-market of REstore’s automated demand response solutions & services in the UK, North America and other international markets.
The largest producer of renewable energy in Europe, Statkraft develops and generates power from hydro, wind and gas. Steinar Bysveen holds the position as Executive Vice President; Wind Power, District Heating, Project Delivery and Industrial Ownership in Statkraft. He has been part of the Corporate Management in Statkraft since 2010.
From 2003 to 2010 he was CEO of the industry organisation Energy Norway. His previous positions include managing director of Industrikraft Midt-Norge, as well as various positions in the oil company Saga Petroleum ASA.
Bysveen holds a master degree in civil engineering from NTNU and a degree in business administration from BI Norwegian School of Management.
Clay Koplin is the Chief Executive Officer of Cordova Electric Cooperative, Inc. Clay has a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Alaska Fairbanks (UAF) and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Indiana University’s Kelley School of Business. He served at Kodiak Electric Association as Staff Engineer and registered as a professional electrical engineer before moving to Cordova with his wife Lila in 1998 to work as Manager of Engineering and Operations. In 2007, Clay became CEO for Cordova Electric Cooperative. Clay is currently serving on the Northwest Public Power Association Board of Trustees, Alaska Center for Energy and Power Advisory Board, and is Mayor of Cordova. His professional specialities include project management, underground electric and communication design and installation best practices, various aspects of static and dynamic hydroelectric and hydrokinetic disciplines, electric utility business management, and strategic planning and execution. Infrastructure development included participation in the design and construction of three hydroelectric projects and an Organic Rankine Cycle heat recovery project. He has participated in recent US State Department Sponsored outreach to Greenland and Northern Canada around arctic, off-grid, renewable energy policies and practices. Clay enjoys community service, writing, hunting, fishing, and gardening.
Paddy Young is the Group Director of the European Utility Week, the largest meeting place for the European Smart Energy Community.
European Utility Week is the platform for achieving a fully integrated and interconnected electricity system and market in Europe. Hosting the environment for all key players in the smart energy ecosystem to come together and discuss European strategy to achieve a smooth transition towards a low carbon energy supply.
The event is a business, innovation, networking and information platform and is seen by the industry as their terrain. They use the event as their annual meeting place to thrash out strategies and do business to help drive efficiencies in meeting their sustainable development goals.
Bruce Stewart is Chief Marketing Officer at Current, powered by GE. He elevates Current’s product portfolio, increases demand for their solutions and drive revenue growth.
Prior to joining Current, Bruce served in dual capacity as CMO and Senior Vice President of the Mass Markets business division at Constellation Energy. In his CMO role, he managed the company’s marketing and branding strategy, analytics and corporate sponsorship initiatives, as well as channel partnerships, digital marketing and web services. As the head of the Constellation Mass Market’s business division, he created a new business focused on delivering energy services to consumers that grew rapidly from a start-up to a multi-billion dollar business in five years serving over 2.5 million customers.
Bruce’s experience also includes 20 years of leadership, expertise and innovation with several leading brands and digital platforms. Prior to Constellation, he served as CEO of mobile and digital of KGB, the world’s largest independent provider of directory assistance and enhanced information services, where he had overall global business management, P&L and operations responsibility for KGB’s mobile and digital division. He was also vice president and general manager for Yahoo! Inc.’s Connected Life division, where he served on the executive leadership team providing oversight of Yahoo!’s broadband, mobile and wireless, digital home and PC desktop application businesses in the Americas.
Ingrid Helsingen Warner is Managing Director for Leidar in Norway and supports internationally-minded leaders and companies with their positioning and thought leadership activities. Working with the client, she develops their North Star, finds unique news and insight to reach the right influencers and stakeholders through traditional media, social media and conversations. She profiles clients across traditional media through interviews with mainstream, national and trade media, and at global forums such as the World Economic Forum and UN General Assembly. Before joining Leidar, Ingrid was an account manager at Weber Shandwick in Switzerland. She worked with global clients in the energy, technology and healthcare sectors. Seconded in-house to StatoilHydro she served as the company’s regional communications manager for Africa and Latin America.
Ingrid is committed to building the global village where voices are heard, people inspired, and the right people know each other to shape the world around them. She is passionate about why and how to have the conversations that matter and has established Minds of Oslo, Council and Circles. Ingrid holds a BA in Politics and International Studies from The University of Warwick, UK, is the alumni representative in Norway and is learning Arabic.
Leidar is an international advocacy, branding and communication consultancy that helps clients set their course, navigate and communicate effectively.
Recognised for effective communication to stakeholders, Eirgrid manages and operates the transmission grid across Ireland. Rosemary was appointed Director of External Affairs in July 2015 having previously held the position of Director of Public Affairs since joining EirGrid in 2014. Rosemary also serves on the board of the AsIAm charity organisation. Rosemary has extensive Corporate Affairs, Government Relations and Corporate Social Responsibility experience from the Telecommunications, Utilities and Business Industry Body sectors. She has previously held senior positions in Vodafone, Shell and IBEC. Rosemary has a BA in Economics and Philosophy from Trinity College Dublin, an MBS in Logistics and Manufacturing from University College Dublin and a Postgraduate Diploma in Legal Studies from Dublin Institute of Technology.
The Panel for the CHARGE Awards consists of professionals with an overview of energy brands around the world as well as insights into how brands connect with consumers. They come from academia, consultancies, associations, solution providers and marketing- and advertising firms. The role of the panel is first to create a shortlist of brands in six categories that have the possibility of becoming finalists for the World’s Best Energy Brands. Finalists are between three to five in each category. The panel will then judge finalists based on cases they turn in for submission.
Akif Papas CGI
Albert Muñoz Jonsson & Le’Mack’s
Alexander Richter ThinkGeo / IGA
Amit Saraogi Oorja Solutions
Arild Soldal Cupit
Ben Parker Utility week live
Chris Oberle Marketstrategies
Debbie Millman School of Visual Arts – Masters of Branding
Dr. Pramod Paliwal School of petroleum management Pt. Deendayal
Francisco Puente USMARTCONSUMER
Jacob Benbunan Saffron Consultants
James Ngomeli Brands and Beyond
Jeremey Hogan Kraft+Toll
Johnny Yamaguchi Dentsu
Karsten Wiedermann BNE
Ken Black Esource
Koen Noyens EURELECTRIC
Lorena Skiljan The Blue Minds Company
Mark Coyle UtiliGroup
Matt Judkin Executive Energy Management
Meena Dayak Public Power Association
Nigel Broomhall BreakPoint Consulting
Paddy Young European Utility week
Patrick Hartmann University of the Basque Country
Phil Guiliano BrandActive
Rana Brightman Siegel+Gale
Roberto Zangrandi EDSO for Smart Grids
Rune Kirt Kirt+Thomsen
Liene Donckers REstore Energy
Stephen Woodhouse Poyry
Stian Madsen Enoro
Tom Emil Olsen Kind
Tronn Skjerstad Skjerstad
Zac Canders Data Capable
Monday – September 24th
Mr Guðni Th. Johannesson
President of Iceland
|09:15||Death of the Utility|
|10:45||The Space Invaders|
|13:00||Branding from the Inside|
|15:45 – 17:00||Magnet Workshops|
|17:00 – 18:00||VIP reception for Speakers and Sponsors|
|19:00 – 23:00||CHARGE Awards|
Tuesday – September 25th
|09:00||Sustainability and the bottom line|
|13:00||Green is the new Black|
|14:30||From an Incumbent to an Energy Brand|
|15:45 – 22:00||Aurora Networking Excursion|
The energy sector is changing rapidly. The business philosophy of simply connecting homes and businesses to a secure flow of electricity has changed and energy companies are finding ways to make a connection to the mind of consumers. The old incumbent utilities are faced with a new reality and are adapting by re-inventing themselves but is it soon enough to meet the challenge of entrants that have been emerging since the liberation of markets? How can strong brands from other sectors change the paradigm by either entering the retail market or becoming self-sufficient with the type of energy that fits their brands?
The energy space is under a threat of invasion from outside the space. Entrepreneurs armed with big ideas have been entering an otherwise stable market. Another invasion is pending from big brands from other sectors with both the distribution channels and already established connections to the minds of customers. Who are those invaders, and do they come in peace?
The utility business model has gone through changes and is constantly being disrupted. The prosumer has become a real challenge for the established utility in the form of brands that demand energy that fits their brand image. The utility space is being disrupted by some of the established utilities themselves that seek out to kill their image of being a utility in order to morph into something else.
Companies need to be constantly on their toes and keep their brands in pace with changing times. The most successful brands in the world are constantly updating their positioning. The energy sector has been no exception. Hear from energy companies that are re-identifying themselves, have gone through a rebranding, are in the middle of the process or are just beginning.
The green value proposition will be at certain crossroads soon. While sustainability claims used to be a point of difference for companies, it has become a point of parity and at the same time it has become a bottom-line no-brainer to use energy in a smart, sustainable way. With car brands moving from having one EV model to announcing that soon they will be EV exclusive, EVs are on full force entering other modes of transport – but how soon?
It seems that everyone has gone green, sustainable, renewable or circular. While there are different shades of green available – brands need to be green to the core in order to stand out from others. Green positioning needs to go beyond the source and connect in innovative ways to the hearts of the consumers.
Sustainability in the greenest sense has often been criticized for not being sustainable at the bottom line. With innovation and new technology, businesses are discovering that sustainability can have a positive impact on the balance sheet. The most valuable and sustainable energy is the energy that is never used.
The electrification of the automobile fleet is well underway with EV sales climbing steadily. Adding an EV model to car brands has moved from a governmental requirement to a consumer demand. Innovation has led to opportunities for other types of transport being powered by electricity while creating new challenges and opportunities for energy companies.
One of the factors that form brand image in the minds of customers is the stereotype they have in mind of the people working for the brand and the corporate culture in the organization. This influences how competent consumers consider the brand to be to fulfil their needs. A minority in a number of customers but a majority in the number of power usage, businesses form an important customer base for most energy companies.
A brand is reflected by everything an organization does and everything an organization does is a reflection of the people behind the actions. There is a war for talent going on and brands need to speak to both employees and possible employees. A brand must communicate in a simple, constant manner and every employee must know how to communicate on behalf of the brand. Branding is not exclusive to marketing and communications – it should be the matter of the whole organization, but this track focuses on the human resources side of branding.
Almost every industry or sector has two sides, the one facing the end-consumer and the part of the industry that caters to businesses. The difference between the consumer market and the business market are higher numbers involved in each business relationship which comes with greater responsibilities. Brands are a signal of trustworthiness and trust is of the essence for decision makers. It is often thought that price is the prime factor on the B2B market, but research has shown that brands on the B2B market that use emotional marketing message fare better off than ones using rational message. This track explores if this holds true in the energy space and which factors matter to the B2B energy consumer.
A ticket to CHARGE Energy Branding gives you full access to the conference proceedings, MAGNET workshops and networking events. You will have a seat on the Aurora Excursion, an exclusive networking event that will take you outside of Reykjavik for a memorable tour full of energy. CHARGE participants will get drinks and food during breaks and lunch. Included is admission to the CHARGE Awards ceremony and Dinner.
Well, the weather up here is pretty unpredictable but you should not expect any snow. But in mid-late September you could experience some wind or rain. We recommend you check the forecast the day you pack.
The Conference is the first of it’s kind in the world. The aim of the conference is to cover issues regarding branding of electricity.
The Conference will be held at Harpa‘s concert hall and conference center in Reykjavík, Iceland. The event will take place in October 2017. The conference program is October 9-10 and an icebreaking excursion will take place in the afternoon of October 8.
The aim of the conference is to get energy executives to meet and greet and to share, learn and discover energy branding. A secondary goal of the conference is to introduce the industry to marketing and connecting industry leaders with marketing leaders. A portion of attendees come from companies that provide services to energy companies as well as companies that want to learn more about how energy can contribute to their image and create a significant value for their brands.
Neither strict nor formal. We recommend business casual since you will do a lot of sitting.
Yes we do. The price for Early Bird admission will be 1.390 euros.
Sorry but it is not possible. Admission is only for the whole conference. You can however buy a ticket and attend as many tracks as you please.
It is possible if there will be any tickets available at that time. Price on-site will be 1.920 euros.
General registration is 1.660 euros.
It depends on where you stay. You could get there by foot or by a taxi, public transport or by renting a car.
The conference will be held at the Harpa‘s music hall and conference center. The Harpa is situated at the old harbor of historic Reykjavik.
There is a number of hotels and other accommodations in a walking or short driving distance from the conference center. A list of hotels can be found here.
At least 14 international airlines fly to Iceland on a regular basis. Travel time from London is just under 3 hours but just over 5 hours from New York.
Iceland is an island in the Atlantic ocean, midway between N-America and Europe.