Podcast / Audio

Episode #2: ‘Waterskiing with Churchill’ & Lessons in Utility Leadership with Lincoln Bleveans - [an Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast]

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The ‘Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast’ features conversations with thought leaders in the utility sector. Each two weeks we’ll connect with an Energy Central Power Industry Network...

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  • Dec 17, 2019

Today we bring you the second episode of the inaugural Energy Central podcast series: “Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast.” If you didn’t catch our premiere episode last week, check out our fun conversation on nuclear power and chili recipes with Dan Yurman. This week, though, we dive into the topic of leadership in utilities with Lincoln Bleveans of Burbank Water and Power (and recently established Energy Central expert in the Utility Management community). 

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Lincoln’s career has taken him all over the energy industry and provided him with a unique perspective of what it takes to be a strong and effective leader in the utility sector specifically. Lincoln’s posts to the Energy Central community typical focus on characteristics of utility leaders today and how those must evolve with changing energy industry, and they can be found on EnergyCentral.com.

Knowing we wanted to dig into Lincoln’s expertise on the utility leadership topic, we surveyed his recent posts entitled “Waterskiing with Winston” and “A Career in Leadership Roles.” These articles set the stage for us to discuss how utility leaders must be unique to leaders in other industries, what ideas decision-makers must embrace now that the long-stagnant utility sector is finally seeing rapid change, and more.


If you want to be a guest on a future episode of the Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast, let us know! We’ll be pulling guests from our community members who submit engaging content that gets our community talking, and perhaps that next guest will be you! Likewise, if you see an article submitted by a fellow Energy Central community member that you’d like to see broken down in more detail in a conversation, feel free to send us a note to nominate them.  For more information, contact us at community@energycentral.com. Podcast interviews are free for Expert Members and professionals who work for a utility.  We have package offers available for solution providers and vendors. 

The Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast is hosted by Jason Price, Community Ambassador of Energy Central. Jason is a recent NYSERDA scholar and NYU Clean Tech diploma recipient, having worked extensively in a multi-owner, utility-scale microgrid business model. Jason is joined in the podcast booth by the producer of the podcast, Matt Chester, who is also the Community Manager of Energy Central and energy analyst/independent consultant in energy policy, markets, and technology.  

Happy listening, and stay tuned for episode #3 in the New Year! Like what you hear, have a suggestion for future episodes, or a question for our guest? Leave a note in the comments below.

All new episodes of the Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast will be posted to the relevant Energy Central community group, but you can also subscribe to the podcast at all the major podcast outlets, including:

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Rami Reshef's picture
Rami Reshef on Dec 18, 2019

Enjoyed listening to your podcast, Lincoln, thanks very much. You are certainly correct that the business model for utilities will change more in the next decade than in the past century, forcing leaders to look to their customers and to other industry sectors and to the private sector to adopt more progressive approaches and to achieve essential targets such as sustainability and resilience. It sounds like other utilities can learn a lot from Burbank Water & Power. 

I agree with you that to succeed, leaders must be authentic, not just 'talk the talk" but also "walk the walk".  As in the example of sustainability, it isn't enough to use the buzzwords, but utilities must embrace sustainability in all aspects of operations, in deploying power equipment, executing billing, limiting use of plastics in employee cafeterias and all across the business. To succeed, tomorrow's utility leaders will have to challenge the assumptions that may have worked for past utility monopolistic business models that had no competition; they will need to creatively balance between regulatory requirements for safety, resilience and sustainability and customers' demands for broader choices, affordable prices and excellent service.  

Especially responsive to the issues of climate change, leaders in progressive utilities like you, who are early adopters that elect to deploy a higher ratio of renewables, can leverage innovative power generation and storage technologies to ensure energy stability and market responsiveness.  

Lincoln Bleveans's picture
Lincoln Bleveans on Dec 18, 2019

Thanks Rami!  So glad you enjoyed it and I appreciate your comments!  - Lincoln

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