Energy Central Professional


Brian Groth, Director of Electric Utility at City of Naperville, Joins the Energy Central Power Perspectives Podcast to Highlight Lessons Learned from Small, Municipal Utilities

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    This week's iteration of the Energy Central Power Perspectives Podcast saw a guest joining from a municipal utility to highlight that these smaller power providers have much to teach their massive peers in the investor-owned utility space. Brian Groth is the Director of the Electric Utility at the City of Naperville in Illinois, where he and his team have been hard at work to advance fiber optic technology, integrate smart grid capabilities, and more. But in doing so at the community level, Brian is able to hear directly from customers and interact with the stakeholders in a way that's not always as achievable by the larger utilities, meaning he has some keen insights to share.

    While most utility customers in the United States are served by investor-owned utilities, thousands more municipal utilities exist than other company types, meaning the laboratories for experimentation and optimization are arguably greater at the municipal level. And by not being beholden to investors, that offers the municipal utilities some unique advantages. As Brian notes:

    Ultimately we answer to our customers, our public utility advisory board, and ultimately the city council. I'll often get text messages about a streetlight that's out or a power outage. We have crews out on the streetlight the same day or the next day, and then power outages are addressed by 24/7 crews in combination with our control room who keeps everyone safe. Our city website shows our open checkbook and we have a thorough budget vetting process by our city council.

    This entry into the podcast, like all of the series episodes, can be found on all major podcast outlets, including iTunes and Spotify, or it can be listened to directly on the Energy Central platform. Give it a listen and share your reaction in the comments.

    Episode #75: 'Highlighting What Large Power Providers Can Learn from Smaller Municipal Utilities' with Brian Groth, Director of Electric Utility at City of Naperville [an Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast]

    About Energy Central Podcast Series:

    The ‘Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast’ features conversations with thought leaders in the utility sector. At least twice monthly, we connect with an Energy Central Power Industry Network community member to discuss compelling topics that impact professionals who work in the power industry. Some podcasts may be a continuation of thought-provoking posts or discussions started in the community or with an industry leader that is interested in sharing their expertise and doing a deeper dive into hot topics or issues relevant to the industry.

    The ‘Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast’ is the premiere podcast series from Energy Central, a Power Industry Network of Communities built specifically for professionals in the electric power industry and a place where professionals can share, learn, and connect in a collaborative environment. Supported by leading industry organizations, our mission is to help global power industry professionals work better. Since 1995, we’ve been a trusted news and information source for professionals working in the power industry, and today our managed communities are a place for lively discussions, debates, and analysis to take place. If you’re not yet a member, visit to register for free and join over 200,000 of your peers working in the power industry.

    The Energy Central Power Perspectives™ Podcast is hosted by Jason Price, Community Ambassador of Energy Central. Jason is a Business Development Executive at West Monroe, working in the East Coast Energy and Utilities Group. 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.

    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 hear about in more detail, feel free to send us a note to nominate them. To contact us, email Podcast interviews are free for Expert Members and professionals who work for a utility. We have package offers available for solution providers and vendors.


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