9/21/2021 8:15:00 AM | AT&T Conference Center, Austin, TX

Save this date

GCPA Fall 2021 Conference

Register Now

36th Annual Fall
Conference & Exhibition

Tuesday, September 21st - Wednesday, September 22nd
at the AT&T Conference Center in Austin

 

Click here to reserve your room (link will open in new window)

Download the Fall 2021 Conference Brochure
Download the Fall 2021 Conference Sponsor Brochure

Conference Chairs:
J.P. Urban, Executive Director, PUCT
Erika Akpan, VP Policy & Govt. Relations, AECT

 


This Fall’s Largest “Must Attend” Power Industry Event

Seven Dynamic Sessions & Five Featured Keynoters
Compelling Discussion & Debate
600+ Power Professionals
Exceptional Networking

 


Pre-Conference Activities - Monday, September 20th

Half-Day Workshop - “Navigating the Way Back to an Efficient and Reliable Electricity Market:  Key Steps in the State’s Legal and Regulatory Agenda”

See the "Pre-Conference Workshop Agenda" tab above for further details

Evening: Welcome Cocktail Reception at AT&T Conference Center

 

CONFERENCE SUMMARY

Join us at 2021’s leading electric power conference
for the ERCOT/Gulf Coast region.

600+ attendance expected (based on 2019 registrations) with approximately one-third of these attendees holding upper level management titles ranging from CEO to Vice President

Pre-Conference Activities - Monday, September 20

  • Half-Day Workshop: “Navigating the Way Back to an Efficient and Reliable Electricity Market:  Key Steps in the State’s Legal and Regulatory Agenda” beginning at 1:00 PM

  • Welcome Cocktail Reception at 5:00 - 6:30 PM at the AT&T Conference Center


Conference Day One - Tuesday, September 21

  • Registration and Continental Breakfast opens at 7:15 AM

  • Conference intro begins at 8:15 AM, Session and Keynote Presentations from 8:30 AM - 5:15 PM

  • Cocktail Reception at the AT&T Conference Center from 5:15 - 7:00 PM


Conference Day Two - Wednesday, September 22

  • Registration and Continental Breakfast opens at 7:30 AM

  • Session and Keynote Presentations from 8:15 AM - 12:00 PM

  • Conference adjourns at 12:00 PM


Thanks to our Fall 2021 Conference Planning Committee

Conference Co-Chairs:
Tammy Cooper
, Vice President Regulatory, Austin Energy
Cheryl Mele, Regional Vice President - Texas, El Paso Electric

Tom Anson, Clark Hill Strasburger 
Jim Barkley
, Baker Botts
Donna Benefield, NRG
Vijay Betanabhatla, Guidehouse
Katie Coleman, O’Melveny & Myers LLP

Mark Dreyfus, MD Energy Consulting LLC
Mark Egan, Energy Evolution Advisors
Theresa Gage
Jolly Hayden
, GDS Associates
Jay Jayasuriya, Sendero Consulting
McCall Johnson, Innovant PR
Lori Simpson, Constellation Energy

Interested in sponsoring or exhibiting? CLICK HERE


THANKS TO OUR SPONSORS

Diamond Sponsors






Platinum Sponsors



















 

Gold Sponsors










 

Media Partner





 

HOTEL ROOM RESERVATION INFORMATION

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE ROOM BLOCK IS EXTREMELY LIMITED IN SIZE FOR THIS CONFERENCE; THEREFORE, MAKE YOUR RESERVATIONS EARLY 

AT&T CONFERENCE CENTER
1900 University Ave.
Austin, TX  78705

CLICK HERE to reserve your room

Guest rooms for single or double occupancy are available at the special rate of $225 / night and includes complimentary WiFi in room.

TO VIEW THE HOTEL WEBSITE FOR DIRECTIONS AND INFORMATION: Click Here 

AGENDA - TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 21

7:15 AM   REGISTRATION & CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST

8:15 AM   GCPA President’s Welcome: Katie Coleman, Partner, O'Melveny & Myers LLP
                Recognition of Co-Chairs: Kim Casey, Executive Director, GCPA
                Conference Introduction: Tammy Cooper, Sr. VP Regulatory, Austin Energy
                                                        Cheryl Mele, Regional Vice President - Texas, El Paso Electric Company

8:30 AM   KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Peter Lake, Chairman, Public Utility Commission of Texas

9:00 AM   Session I - Betting on Texas
An impressive number of companies are “betting on Texas” via headquarters relocation or choosing to grow their business in the Lone Star state. This dynamic panel will explore views on the people, power, infrastructure, and policy requirements essential for business success. Given the recent challenges on the ERCOT electric grid, why are these companies still betting Texas has what they need to achieve their goals? And what are they advocating for to make those business goals a reality?

Session Moderator: Craig Rhodes, Senior Director, Regional Economic Development, Greater Houston Partnership

Panelists:
John Hryhorchuk, Vice President of Policy, Texas 2036
Virginia Martinez Schaefer, Director Governmental Relations, Texas Instruments
Michael McNamara, CEO, Lancium
Sam L. Susser, Chairman & CEO, Susser Bank

10:00 AM   NETWORKING BREAK

10:45 AM   KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Brad Jones, Interim CEO, ERCOT

11:15 AM   Session II - Upping the Ante with Renewables
ERCOT was the first market to truly integrate renewable resources and investors continue to be bullish on renewables in Texas. This panel will focus on the driving factors for renewable investment, what renewable resources mean for resource adequacy and reliability, and how the market needs to evolve to ensure further investment in generation.

Session Moderator: McCall Johnson, VP Regulatory Affairs & Govt. Relations, Innovant PR

Panelists:
Bob Helton, Vice President, Government & Regulatory Affairs, ENGIE North America Inc.
Laura Manz, Director - Energy, Sustainability & Infrastructure, Guidehouse
Shalin Parikh, Vice President, EIG

Randa Stephenson, Sr. Vice President, Wholesale Markets, LCRA

12:15 PM   LUNCHEON

1:30 PM     KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Mark G. Lauby, Sr. Vice President & Chief Engineer, NERC

2:00 PM    Session III - Distribution Outage Management
During Winter Storm Uri, electric utilities across the state struggled to manage rotating outages on the distribution system. Electric service to circuits with identified critical facilities was not curtailed while many customers on circuits without critical facilities were without power for days. This panel will explore outage management issues and the potential to divide the grid into smaller operational segments to enable smaller, more granular outages with less customer impact. This panel will also discuss how smart meters and technology could potentially be leveraged to better manage future outages.

Session Moderator: Damir Novosel, President, Quanta Technology

Panelists:
Mark Carpenter, Sr. Vice President, T&D Operations, Oncor
Thomas Pierpoint, Vice President, Electric System Engineering & Technical Services, Austin Energy
Randy Pryor, Vice President of Distribution Operations, CenterPoint Energy
Jeff Stracener, Vice President, Distribution Region Operations, AEP Texas

3:00 PM   GCPA Pat Wood Power Star & emPOWERing Young Professionals Awards

3:20 PM   NETWORKING BREAK

3:50 PM   KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Jack Weixel, Sr. Director, Climate and Sustainability, IHS Markit

4:15 PM   Session IV - Natural Gas & Power Coordination
At the peak of Winter Storm Uri, it has been reported that more than 20,000 MW of natural gas-powered generation was offline due to an interruption of power supply to natural gas facilities and insufficient weatherization of natural gas and power generation facilities. The need for coordination between the two industries has never been more acute. This panel will explore the Texas Legislature’s directives and the industries’ need to identify critical natural gas infrastructure in the Texas Electricity Supply Chain, weatherization of natural gas and power facilities, curtailment, coordination, communication and other issues that need to be addressed.

Session Moderator: Jolly Hayden, Managing Director, GDS Associates

Panelists:
Natalie Dubiel, Attorney, Office of General Counsel, Railroad Commission of Texas
Peter Esposito, Principal, Crested Butte Catalysts, LLC
Thomas Gleeson, Executive Director, PUCT
Dan Hudson, Owner & President, Woodlands Energy Management, LLC

5:15 PM   ADJOURN

5:15 - 7:00 PM   COCKTAIL RECEPTION
 

AGENDA - WEDNESDAY, SEPTEMBER 22

7:30 AM   REGISTRATION & CONTINENTAL BREAKFAST

8:15 AM   KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Evan Smith, CEO, Texas Tribune

9:00 AM   Session V - How the Recent Legislation Will Impact the Power Industry
Following Winter Storm Uri, the 87th session of the Texas Legislature was laser focused on issues affecting the reliable delivery of electricity to consumers. After hours of hearings and a prolific number of proposed bills, more than 20 pieces of legislation affecting the electric power industry were eventually passed. In this panel discussion, we will hear how this new legislation will affect the future of the ERCOT power market from the perspective of a power generator, a retail electricity provider, an electric cooperative and a transmission and distribution utility. 

Session Moderator: Michael Jewell, Principal, Jewell & Associates PLLC

Panelists:
Amanda Frazier, Sr. Vice President Regulatory Policy, Vistra Corp.
Jay Harpole, CEO, AP Gas & Electric
Julia Harvey, Vice President, Government Relations & Regulatory Affairs, Texas Electric Cooperatives
Jason Ryan, Sr. Vice President, Regulatory Services & Government Affairs, CenterPoint Energy

10:00 AM   NETWORKING BREAK

10:30 AM   Session VI - Distributed Generation, Energy Storage & Demand Response: Valuable Resources for the Future
ERCOT’s Roadmap to Improving Reliability includes a plan to eliminate barriers to distributed generation, energy storage, and demand response/flexibility to allow more resources to participate in the ERCOT market. These valuable resources can be utilized to meet future peak demand, renewable intermittency, ancillary services and provide relief during periods of high stress on the electric grid. This panel will discuss the tools and systems necessary for deployment, current challenges/barriers and success stories in ERCOT as well as other markets.

Session Moderator: Kim Casey, Executive Director, GCPA

Panelists:
Paul Choi, Executive Vice President, Broad Reach Power
James McPhail, CEO, Enersponse
Sam Scuilli, General Manager, CashGen, a Voltus affiliate
Alison Silverstein, Consultant, Alison Silverstein Consulting

11:15 AM   Session VII - Outlook for the Retail Electricity Market in ERCOT
ERCOT has been described as the most successful retail electricity market in the world. This panel will explore how the fallout from Winter Storm Uri has affected the status of the Texas competitive retail market today and how future changes can create new challenges/opportunities for customers to benefit from retail competition in the future. 

Session Moderator: Cathy Webking, Attorney, Scott Douglass & McConnico, LLP

Panelists:
Jesson Bradshaw, CEO, Energy Ogre
Mark Parsons, Vice President Green Mountain Energy and Partner Brands, NRG
Jennifer Schmitt, Director, Operations, Got Rhythm

12:00 PM   CONFERENCE ADJOURNS

On Monday, September 20th:

REGISTER FOR ONE OR BOTH OF THESE PRE-CONFERENCE EVENTS
 

PRE-CONFERENCE WORKSHOP

“Navigating the Way Back to an Efficient and Reliable Electricity Market: Key Steps in the State’s Legal and Regulatory Agenda”

AT&T Conference Center - Check in at 12:30 PM, Workshop from 1:00 to 5:00 PM

Description: The outcome and aftermath of Winter Storm Uri challenged the fundamental design that in ERCOT we provide reliability through efficient markets. The Public Utility Commission, ERCOT and the stakeholder community are now challenged by the Governor and the Legislature to modify the rules and Protocols that govern the ERCOT electric market to restore the public’s confidence in the reliable delivery of electric service through efficient markets. The pre-conference workshop will provide an overview of the regulatory and legal agenda before the Commission and ERCOT to implement the Legislature’s revised framework. The workshop will review the regulatory agenda before the Commission, the legal challenges before the courts, and will dig into some of the key rulemaking topics before the Commission. The presentations and panel discussions will be structured for an audience of all levels of familiarity with the ERCOT market and the legislative agenda.

Early Bird Pricing through Monday, August 30th:

$200 Members, All Conference Attendees & Govt. Employees
$300 Non-Members without Conference Registration

 

PRE-CONFERENCE WELCOME RECEPTION

Join us for a casual networking reception from 5:00 to 6:30 PM at AT&T Conference Center

Appetizers and one drink ticket included
Early Bird Pricing through Monday, August 30th: $30

Full Workshop Agenda Coming Soon

PRICING INFORMATION

CONFERENCE PRICING - price includes one and a half day conference 9/21-9/22 and cocktail reception 9/21.   *Non-Member rate includes 2021 Individual Membership good through 1/31/22.

CONFERENCE

Early Bird Reg. through 8/30/21

Regular Registration 8/31/21-9/17/21

On-Site Registration
GCPA Members $650 $800 $900
Non-Members* $875 $1025 $1125
State Govt. / Agency $225 $225 $275
GCPA Members in Job Search Mode $250 $250 $350
Non-Members in Job Search Mode $475 $475 $575
Full-Time Students $90 $90 $100
 

WORKSHOP PRICING - price for 9/20 workshop includes beverage service and snack.

WORKSHOP Early Bird Reg. through 8/30/21 Regular Registration 8/31/21-9/17/21 On-Site Registration

Members, All Conference  Attendees, Govt.

$200 $225 $250

Non-Members W/OUT conf. reg.

$300 $325 $350



WELCOME RECEPTION PRICING - 9/20 welcome reception w/ appetizers and 1 drink ticket.

WELCOME RECEPTION Early Bird Reg. through 8/30/21 Regular Registration 8/31/21-9/17/21 On-Site Registration
Fee $30 $30 $35



REFUND POLICY - Cancellations must be received by 5 PM on Friday, September 3 in order to receive a refund. A 10% service fee (minimum fee of $10) will be charged against all refunds. Please direct all cancellation requests to Mary Armstrong at marmstrong@gulfcoastpower.org.
 

CONTINUING EDUCATION CREDIT INFORMATION

PEs: As part of the Continuing Education Program requirements for Professional Engineers in Texas, each licensed engineer is required to earn 15 hours per year of Professional Development Hours (PDH). Attendees will receive approximately 9.25 hours of credit if all conference sessions are attended. Credit of approximately 3.0 - 3.5 hours will also be available for the September 20th Workshop.

CPAs: GCPA is a Board Registered CPE Sponsor with the Texas State Board of Public Accountancy. This registration does not constitute an endorsement by the Board as to the quality of our CPE program. The learning objectives for CPAs are: to obtain an in-depth understanding of business climate and growth in Texas; investment in renewables; distribution outage coordination; natural gas and power coordination; how recent legislation will impact the power industry; distributed generation, energy storage and demand response as resources; and the outlook for the retail market in Texas. There are no prerequisites. Attendees will receive approximately 10.0 hours of credit if all conference sessions are attended. Also available is credit of approximately 3.0 - 3.5 hours for the September 20th Workshop. The learning objective for the workshop is to obtain an in-depth understanding of the effects of recent legislation on the power industry.

Attorneys: GCPA will be applying with the Texas State Bar for MCLE credit approval for certain portions of the conference. Please check back for updates.