New energy officer hired at Springs Utilities

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The downtown coal-fired Drake power plant will become part of the domain of a newly hired executive to oversee Springs Utilities; power division. - PAM ZUBECK
  • Pam Zubeck
  • The downtown coal-fired Drake power plant will become part of the domain of a newly hired executive to oversee Springs Utilities; power division.

A long-serving official with Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has been hired as the new energy officer at Colorado Springs Utilities.

Eric Tharp was selected through an executive search and "rigorous, competitive process," according to an email from Utilities in response to the Independent's query about the new hire.

He'll be paid $270,000 a year, which Utilities says aligns with results of its executive compensation results, which showed the 50th percentile salary to be $270,537.

He starts on Oct. 27.

The previous energy officer, Bruce McCormick, retired earlier this year.

According to Utilities:
Eric is an accomplished municipal utility executive who has broad exposure to many different facets of running a large utility. He brings deep electric utility experience, strong leadership skills and experience working with communities, policymakers, Boards and City Councils.

Eric has over 30 years of experience at Los Angeles Department of Water and Power (LADWP), the largest municipal utility in the United States, with over 12 years' experience as a senior executive managing several different departments. He has managed budgets as large as $1.5 billion and groups of employees in excess of 500.

Eric's career accomplishments include:
*Engineer and construction supervisor for both the water and electric departments.
*Public Affairs, marketing and legislative affairs.
*Generation business management, overseeing the development of integrated resource plans.
*Director of Strategic Initiatives, which in addition to other things, was responsible for the utility's strategy around Smart Grid and overseeing the company's Smart Grid demonstration program.


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