This agenda is subject to change.

Sunday, November 12

NRRI Board of Directors Breakfast Meeting (7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m., closed meeting) 

Location: Blake Room


Registration Open (8:00 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.)

Location: Key Foyer


Subcommittee on Supplier and Workforce Diversity

9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Key 6
9:00 a.m. - 9:05 a.m.

Welcome and Opening Remarks

Hon. Sherina Maye Edwards, Chairwoman, NARUC Subcommittee on Supplier and Workforce Diversity, and Commissioner, Illinois

9:05 a.m. - 10:05 a.m.

Panel: Hispanic-Americans in Energy

By 2016, the U.S. Latino population reached nearly 58 million and was the principal driver of U.S. demographic growth, accounting for half of the national population growth since 2000. However, the Latino population's representative in this industry does not reflect these statistics. This panel will discuss how to tackle the barriers of engaging more Latino communities into this industry, the obstacles that Latinos are facing with getting a seat at the table, and the challenges of trying to change the culture of a business. 


Hon. Sadzi Oliva, Illinois


Elba Aranda-Suh, Executive Director, National Latino Education Institute

Mario E. Dominguez, Associate, Rooney Rippie & Ratnaswamy, LLP

Martin Montes, Director of Regulatory Affairs, Commonwealth Edison

Jose L. Perez, Chairman and CEO, Hispanics in Energy

10:05 a.m. - 11:05 a.m.

Roundtable: Reflecting on the Past, Strategizing for the Future

As terms come to an end and we welcome in the new, we must reflect on our past to ensure we move the needle forward. This panel will discuss how Subcommittee on Supplier and Workforce Diversity leaders and members have advanced the subcommittee's goals, the vision for this subcommittee, and how to ensure its continued success. 


Hon. Ronald A. Brisé, Florida

Hon. Sherina Maye Edwards, Illinois

Nikki Hall, Director of Regulatory Strategy & Services, Pepco Holdings, Inc.

11:05 a.m. - 11:20 a.m.

Update: Workforce Diversity Toolkit

The Workforce Diversity toolkit was formally launched at the NARUC Annual Meeting in San Francisco. Today we will receive information regarding tools to promote workforce diversity and an update of the status of data collection.


Laurie Dowling, Executive Director, National Utilities Diversity Council

11:20 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. Subcommittee Business and Closing Remarks


Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment

9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Key 8
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Joint with Staff Subcommittees on Electricity and Electric Reliability

Next Level Demand Response

Demand Response (DR) programs are now familiar offerings in electric utilities nationwide, with many programs offering to place load control technologies like smart thermostats in customers’ homes and businesses to control loads and reduce peak demands. Is there room for DR programs to also provide other grid support services by using energy storage? This panel will explore different types of Storage DR programs, such as the shared ownership model in Vermont, contracts for peak demand reductions in New York and California, and the "reverse DR" pilot in Arizona. Discussions will focus on how customers and utilities are sharing dispatch control of their storage systems, what kinds of customer-specific benefits are realized by these programs, and whether the greater distribution grid is indeed benefiting from this next-generation form of DR. Additionally, the panel will explore how these DR programs may be transferrable to other types of DER technologies, beyond energy storage.

Moderator: Wally Nixon, Commissioner’s Legal Advisor, Arkansas Public Service Commission


Robert Dostis, Vice President, Stakeholder Relations and New Products, Green Mountain Power

Ted Ko, Director of Policy, Stem

Virginia Lacy, Principle, Rocky Mountain Institute

Damei Jack, Manager of Targeted Demand Management Programs, Con Edison

Kent Walter, Manager of Customer Technology, Arizona Public Service

10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. 

Joint with Staff Subcommittee on Water

Voluntary Climate Action Practices: Implications for Utilities and Commissions

With the recent hiatus in U.S. federal actions on climate change, more attention is focused on States; local governments; large corporate customers; markets affecting smaller customers; and the many actions they are taking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, mitigate future problems, and better adapt to climate instability and climate extremes. This panel summarizes several of the most impactful voluntary climate actions, and contemplates how those actions at each level might affect regulated utilities. Included are representatives from efforts that are focused on changes in energy and water use policies and practices.

Moderator: Jon Kucskar, Senior Advisor to the Maryland Public Service Commission


James Bradbury, Mitigation Program Director, Georgetown Climate Center

Adella Crozier, Director of Regulatory Affairs, DTE Energy

Sue Gander, Director, Environment, Energy & Transportation Division,
National Governors Association

Alice Kennedy, Deputy Commissioner, Division of Green, Healthy and Sustainable Homes, City of Baltimore


Staff Subcommittee on Water

9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Key 8
10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. 

Joint with Staff Subcommittee on Energy Resources and the Environment

Voluntary Climate Action Practices: Implications for Utilities and Commissions




Staff Subcommittee on Electricity

9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Key 8 / Key 2 / Key 6
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Joint With Staff Subcommittees on Energy Resources and the Environment and Electric Reliability - Key 8

Next Level Demand Response 

10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.


10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.


Joint with Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability - Key 2

Believers and Skeptics: A Debate About Distributed Energy Integration on the Distribution Grid

We’ve heard about the need to modernize the distribution grid to accommodate more solar generation. Some say grid modernization would allow more value to be extracted from intermittent and variable renewable energy sources, and that it would allow the batteries on electric vehicles, as well as hot water heaters, to be accessed to support overall grid operations. The future could include distribution system operators (DSOs) – organizations that would facilitate transactions but would not themselves provide energy, capacity, or related services. This vision of the future grid raises some fundamental questions:

  • If we want more solar energy, wouldn’t it be more efficient to interconnect large solar farms to the transmission grid, as opposed to installing rooftop solar on the distribution grid?
  • Should all electricity customers be forced to pay for distribution system upgrades and DSOs that are needed because of DER? 
  • Hasn’t the communications technology needed for demand response existed for decades without the so-called “smart grid”?
  • What about cyber risks of the so-called “smart” distribution grid?

Two skeptics and two believers will share their views, then we will open up the mic for audience participation.


Kimberly Jones, Chair, NARUC Staff Subcommittee on Electricity and Director of Clerk and IT Services with the North Carolina Utilities Commission


John Farber, former staff with the Delaware Public Service Commission

Mike Hyland, American Public Power Association

Bob Schulte, Schulte Associates LLC, former utility executive

Chris Villarreal, Energy Consultant and former Chair of NARUC’s Rate Design Staff Subcommittee, former staff with the California and Minnesota Commissions

1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Joint with Committee on Critical Infrastructure - Key 6




Staff Subcommittee on Electric Reliability

9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Key 8 / Key 2 / Key 6
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Joint with Staff Subcommittees on Electicity and Energy Resources and the Environment - Key 8

Next Level Demand Response

10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Joint with Staff Subcommittee on Electricity - Key 2

Believers and Skeptics: A Debate About Distributed Energy Integration on the Distribution Grid

1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. Joint with Committee on Critical Infrastructure - Key 6


Staff Subcommittee on Telecommunications

9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Location: Holiday 2
9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.

Mobile Broadband, Wireless Propagation & the 706 NOI

The FCC’s Section 706 Report previously stated that consumers were not adequately served with advanced telecommunications unless those consumers have access to wireline and wireless broadband.  The availability of high quality wireless service for voice, video and data can vary due to distance, physical geography, and structures, among other issues. Wireless carriers use propagation analysis and models to predict coverage and inform the engineering of the wireless towers and networks. At the same time, federal and State legislators and regulators rely on the coverage information provided from the telecom carriers in determining the existence of competition and the need for ongoing subsidies. This session is intended to educate the audience on the concept, models and variables of wireless propagation models. The panel will then discuss related issues and positions in the 706 NOI.

Moderator: Lynn Notarianni, Colorado


Joseph Witmer, Pennsylvania

Adam Nelson, Senior Consultant, Federal Engineering, Inc.

Gerald J. Duffy, Partner, Blooston Law

10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Networking Break
10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Wireless Resiliency

In December 2016, the FCC issued an Order aimed at promoting wireless resiliency. The Order adopted a voluntary framework that reflected earlier discussions with the wireless industry. The FCC recently issued a Wireless Resiliency notice on August 3, 2017 at DA 17-732 in Docket 11-60 seeking public input on how to address a voluntary framework in light of the December 2016 Order. The deadline for comments was September 3, 2017, 30 days after issuance of the Wireless Resiliency notice. The panelists will outline what they have volunteered to do and who has volunteered. They will also discuss what issues have been raised and remain in that docket, and what the States’ role may be going forward.

Moderator: Joseph Witmer, Pennsylvania


Hon. Johann Clendenin, USVI

Ben Aaron, Director, State & Regulatory Affairs, CTIA

Alvaro Pilar, Chief Executive Officer ViYA

Brent Struthers, Senior Strategist, State Government Relations, Neustar

11:45a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Lunch (on own)
1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

The State of FirstNet

FirstNet recently selected ATT to be their partner in the development of FirstNet, a network and service designed to facilitate nationwide First Responder interoperability. Verizon has recently stated that they intend to compete and compliment the FirstNet/AT&T network and are requesting full interoperability. The panelists will provide an update on the FirstNet deployment, and what Verizon’s role as a potential alternative provider could play in the delivery of a nationwide interoperable First Responder communications network.

Moderator: Cullen Robbins, Nebraska


Don Brittingham, Vice President Public Safety Policy, Verizon

Andrew Delaney, Government Affairs, FirstNet 

Edmond Vea, Director of Interoperability,  Rivada Networks

Gregory Rohde, President, e-Copernicus

2:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m. Networking Break
2:15 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.


The FCC’s universal service fund now supports voice and broadband networks and services. The FCC’s universal service assessments to support those services, however, are limited to voice services. There has been considerable discussion over a number of years on what, if any, reforms to the funding mechanism are needed to reflect the federal emphasis on voice and broadband networks and services. The panelists will address where the contributions issue stands and what, if any, issues the FCC and the States should consider when it comes to supporting voice and broadband networks and services. 

Moderator: Hon. Chris Nelson, South Dakota


Labros Pilalis, Pennsylvania

Rick Cimerman, VP External & State Affairs, NCTA

Joe Gillan, Consultant, Gillan Associates

Mike Romano, Senior Vice President of Policy, NTCA

Allison Ellis, Sr. VP Regulatory Affairs, Frontier Communications

3:15 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. Resolutions Discussion – Staff Final Disposition


Staff Subcommittee on Consumer Affairs

9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Key 9

9:00 a.m. - 10:15 a.m.




How the Sun is Shining in Low Income Communities
In the past few years, solar has become more affordable for even the average electric customer. But, how is access to solar options faring for low income customers and communities? This panel will explore some interesting programs and alternatives that are helping the sun shine in low income communities.
Moderator: Charlene Ketchum, Policy Advisor & Legal Counsel to Commissioner Maida Coleman, Missouri PSC
Sandra Mattavous Frye, Esq., People’s Counsel, DC Office of the People’s Counsel
Alison Kling, Project Specialist, Demonstration & Pilot Projects, Con Edison   
Taresa Lawrence, Deputy Director, Energy Administration, Department of Energy & Environment
Melanie Santiago-Mosier, Program Director, Low-income Solar Access, Vote Solar
Ingrid Schwingler, Policy & Regulatory Coordinator, GRID Alternatives
10:15 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

Networking Break


10:30 a.m.-11:45 a.m.

Is Net Metering Dead?

Utilities and some regulators say that current net metering of rooftop solar customers results in a subsidy paid by all other utility customers to the solar customer. Some states have never allowed net metering while others are beginning to move away from it. The solar industry and environmental groups say there is no subsidy and that the system attributes of rooftop solar are not being recognized by the utilities. This panel will explore these opposing viewpoints and seek to find common ground. 

Moderator: Phil Boyle, Consumer Services Manager, Oregon Public Utility Commission


Sean Gallagher, VP of State Affairs, SEIA

Ted Kelly, Assistant Counsel, New York Department of Public Service

Bill Malcolm, Senior Legislative Representative, AARP

Nathan Phelps, Program Manager DG Regulatory Policy, Vote Solar

Joelle Steward, Director of Rates & Regulatory Affairs, Rocky Mountain Power



Task Force on Military Workforce Development

9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Key 12
9:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Helping Veterans, Helping Ourselves - Part 2

The Task Force will continue its discussion of the benefits utilities and State commissions gain from hiring veterans and examples of successful veterans' hiring programs.

Moderator:  Hon. Judith Williams Jagdmann, Virginia


Jim Kibler, President, Virginia Natural Gas, a subsidiary of Southern Company Gas

Michelle Rostom, Director of Workforce Development, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association


Staff Subcommittee on Critical Infrastructure

10:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Tilghman
10:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

The Subcommitee will meet in closed session.  The meeting will be led by Chair Lynn Costantini (NJ) and Sharon Thomas (NARUC). 


New Commissioner Forum and Luncheon (10:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m., new Commissioners only)

Location: Ruth


Washington Action (closed meeting)

10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.
Location: Blake
10:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Closed Meeting. Agenda distributed at meeting.


Committee on Critical Infrastructure

1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Key 6
1:30 p.m. - 1:45 p.m.

Opening Remarks


Hon. Richard S. Mroz, New Jersey

1:45 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.

Partner Updates


Matthew Duncan, Program Manager, DOE

Joseph H. McClelland, Director, Office of Energy Infrastructure and Security, FERC

2:15 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.

Enhancing Grid Resilience: Strategic Insights

A recent report, mandated by Congress and sponsored by DOE, details a broad range of threats to the resilience of the electric grid in the U.S.  Dr. Morgan will share key findings and recommendations for stakeholder consideration.


M. Granger Morgan, Distinguished Chair, Committee on Enhancing the Resiliency of the Nation’s Electric Power Transmission and Distribution System, National Academies of Sciences

2:45 p.m. - 2:55 p.m.


2:55 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Toward Infrastructure Resilience: An Industry Perspective

The threat of high impact physical and cyber events continue to pose significant risk to power systems. Rapid response and recovery to such events is critical.   During this session, experts will discuss challenges to grid resiliency and activities underway to overcome them.


Hon. Swain Whitfield, SC


Scott Aaronson, Executive Director, Security and Business Continuity, EEI

David Huff, Electrical Engineer, Office of Electric Reliability, FERC

Andrew Phillips, Director, Transmission, Distribution and Substations, EPRI

3:45 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Resilience Priorities and Practices from the Field

Improving physical and cyber security remains a high priority for infrastructure owners and operators.  During this session, the costs and benefits of third party engagement in these resilience efforts will be examined.

Moderator:  Hon.  Sadzi Martha Oliva, Illinois


Peter Grandgeorge, National Security and Resiliency Programs Advisor, MidAmerican Energy Company

Dominic Saebeler, Director of Cybersecurity and Risk Management, Illinois Commerce Commission

Jamey Sample, Executive Director, Americas Advisory Services,Power and Utilities Cybersecurity Leader, Ernst & Young

4:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Resilience Metrics and Monitoring

Resilient infrastructure will depend on a combination of policy, practice, tools, and technology.  Significant investments have already been made and more will be required.  The question of how much is enough remains.   This panel explores potential means and methods of answering that question.


Sue Gander, Director, Environment, Energy & Transportation Division, NGA

David Miller, Regulatory Sector Coordinator, EIS Council


Committee on Consumer Affairs

1:30 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.
Location: Key 2
1:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

Business Meeting (closed session)

2:00 p.m. - 3:10 p.m. 

Not in My Backyard

A dynamic discussion exploring the complex issues surrounding utility and merchant transmission line projects including: federal versus State jurisdiction; federal, State, and utility eminent domain authority; utility easement rights; and the potential environmental impacts associated with high voltage transmission lines.


Hon. Colette Honorable, former FERC Commissioner, Partner with Reed Smith LLP Global Energy and Natural Resources


Ted Thomas, Chairman, Arkansas PSC

Rob Gramlich, President, Grid Strategies, LLC

Arturo Hernandez, Gibbs Pool and Turner, P.C. 

3:10 p.m. - 3:15 p.m.

Utilities United Against Scams

A brief update on the work of over 100 electric, water, and gas utilities' consumer education efforts on imposter scam awareness and its 2017 Utility Scam Awareness Week Campaign (Nov. 13-17).


Sheri Givens, Executive Director, Utilities United Against Scams and President, Givens Energy


Committee on International Relations

2:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Key 12
2:30 p.m. - 2:35 p.m.

The Wide World of NARUC – Welcome and Introductions

 Hon. David Danner, Chair, IRC, Washington UTC

2:35 p.m. - 2:40 p.m.

Approval of minutes/resolutions

Hon. David Danner, Chair, IRC, Washington UTC

2:40 p.m. - 2:50 p.m.

Remarks by Terry Barnich Award Winners

The Terry Barnich Award is presented annually by the International Relations Committee to commissioners or staff in recognition of outstanding efforts to further international cooperation among utility regulators and to promote professional regulation. This year winner will deliver brief remarks.

Moderator: Hon. David Danner, Chair, IRC, Washington UTC

Panelists: Mr. Andreas Thanos, Massachusetts DPU

2:50 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

Rural Electrification and Global Cooperation

Dan Waddle of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association will describe NRECA’s extensive programs around the globe. With assistance from more than 300 US electric cooperatives, NRECA International has brought electricity to more than 120 million people in 43 developing countries. Mr. Waddle’s presentation will include an overview of NRECA’s work and its interactions with regulatory agencies in the countries in which it works, as well as a discussion of some of the challenges and issues it encounters. This is an opportunity for NARUC members who have done international work to exchange thoughts and ideas with an organization engaged in similar efforts.

Moderator: Hon. David Danner, Chair, IRC, Washington UTC

Panelist: Mr. Dan Waddle, Sr. Vice President, NRECA International

3:45 p.m.  - 4:00 p.m. Networking Break
4:00 p.m. - 4:40 p.m. 

An Update from Mexico: Energy Reforms, WFER, NAFTA and Other Matters

The International Relations Committee has been following the implementation of energy reforms in Mexico. That country’s chief energy regulator will provide a progress report. Chairman Garcia also will preview the 2018 World Forum on Energy Regulation, which will be held in Mexico next year, and discuss the potential impact of NAFTA renegotiation on North American energy markets.

Moderator: Hon. David Danner, Chair, IRC, Washington UTC

Panelist: Hon. Guillermo García Alcocer, Chairman, Energy Regulatory Commission of Mexico

4:40 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. 

Report on NARUC International Programs

Ms. Erin Hammel, Director of International Programs, NARUC



Staff Subcommittee on Executive Management

1:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Location: Blake

1:30 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

For Commission Staff Only.


Discussion items

  • From Blue to Black Skies – Preparing for Large Scale and Long Term Power Outages
  • Protecting Information – Being Transparent versus Being Secure
  • Operational Challenges – Roles and Responsibilities
  • State Legislative Updates – What’s Hot and What’s Not
  • Roundtable

Future Meetings/Adjournment


Task Force on Innovation

1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Key 8
1:30 p.m. - 2:00 p.m.

The Importance of Innovation in the Energy Sector; Setting the Stage for the Future of Digital Utility Transformation

There is a technical foundation for innovation support: complex “networks” are evolving that potentially connect electricity, gas, heat, water, telecommunications, and transportation/mobility, i.e., the “Integrated Energy Network.” Electric utilities are deploying sensors and smart communications technologies to provide greater intelligence on cost-effective, real-time performance across multiple infrastructures. State regulatory models may not provide support for these combined services in which utilities are an integral component.


Hon. Brien J. Sheahan, Illinois


Anda Ray, Senior Vice President, External Relations and Technical Resources, EPRI

2:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.

Perspectives from Regulators and Consumer Advocates


Hon. Brien J. Sheahan, Illinois


Hon. Lorraine Akiba, Hawaii

Hon. Kara Brighton, Wyoming

David Kolata, Executive Director, Citizens Utility Board

2:30 p.m. - 2:50 p.m. Break & Networking
2:50 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.

Perspectives from Innovators 


Hon. Brien J. Sheahan, Illinois


Dawn Lippert, Co-Founder, CEO, Elemental Excelorator

Jiong Ma, Partner, Braemar Energy Ventures

Michael Polsky, Founder, President & CEO, Invenergy LLC

Elena Vasconi, Acting Managing Director, Itron Idea Labs

3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Roundtable Discussion & Roadmap


Hon. Brien J. Sheahan, Illinois


All speakers from Innovation Session

During this roundtable discussion, all of the presenters from the Innovation Session will gather on stage and open up a dialogue with the audience. The participants will answer questions from the moderator, the Task Force Members, State commissioners, and other audience members. Participants will also take questions from NARUC members using the NARUC app. This will be an interactive session using multimedia tools to create a roadmap for the future.


Staff Subcommittee on Gas

3:15 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Location: Key 2
3:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.

History and Understanding of R&D Funding for Natural Gas in the United States

A history of U.S. Collaborative natural gas R&D from 1976 to today: benefits, costs, enabling decisions, challenges of the competitive marketplace, and prospects and needs for future R&D.


Andreas Thanos, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Gas


Ron Edelstein, Director, Regulatory and Government Relations, Gas Technology Institute

3:55 p.m. - 4:25 p.m.

Natural Gas Price Transparency in the Next Decade  

The U.S. natural gas market may be the most transparent in the world, but some are worried about declining levels of voluntary price reporting. An expert on the natural gas market with years of commercial experience and policy interpretation provides her perspective on price index reporting in the natural gas market and why participants may be reporting less.


Andreas Thanos, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Gas


Jennifer Fordham, NACD Governance Fellow, Senior Vice President, Government Affairs, Natural Gas Supply Association 

4:25 p.m. - 4:55 p.m.
Update on Liquefied Natural Gas Export Permitting and Office of Oil and Natural Gas Research & Development
It has been almost two years since Asia Vision, the first LNG tanker filled with domestically produced LNG, left the Sabine Pass facility for Brazil.  A U.S. Department of Energy representative will provide an update on the LNG export permitting process and DOE supported natural gas R&D.


Andreas Thanos, Chair, Staff Subcommittee on Gas


Amy Sweeney, Director, Division of Natural Gas Regulation, DOE Office of Oil and Natural Gas



Welcome Reception (5:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.)

Location: Holiday 6