Always Bet On Black - Hosted by Paula Glover

The Always Bet on Black Podcast hosted by Paula Glover 

Current Episodes

Conversations with African American energy thought leaders and others


This conversation starts by learning more about Shannon, why she studied law, how the energy business found her (not the other way around) and how to be the change we want to see in our companies.

About Shannon Pierce:

Shannon Pierce is Vice President and Chief External Affairs Officer for SouthStar Energy Services, part of the Southern Company family of componines

Since joining Southern Company Gas in 2004 as regulatory counsel for the company's legal activities with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Pierce has held additional leadership roles with increasing responsibility.

Prior to her current position, she served as vice president of external affairs for the southern operations division of Southern Company Gas, where she was responsible for regulatory and governmental affairs for three natural gas utilities: Atlanta Gas Light, Chattanooga Gas and Florida City Gas. In addition, she led engagement efforts with retail natural gas marketers in Georgia.

In previous roles, Pierce also served as Southern Company Gas senior counsel for gas operations and interstate transactions; as well as southern operations managing director of regulatory affairs and marketer services and vice president of state and federal regulatory affairs. Prior to joining Southern Company Gas, Pierce was an associate in the energy and utilities group at McGuire Woods LLP, based in Richmond, Va.

Previous Episodes

Paula Glover is back for another awesome conversation with her friend of over 25 years, Frank Reynolds, President of UIL Holdings which oversees multiple nation and state wide power infrastructure.

They chat Frank's time in the US National Guard, the many twists and turns his career took, how to balance patience with aggression, and again touch on the value of mentorship (common Always Bet On Black theme). If you laugh half as many times as they did, it was a successful episode!

Frank Reynolds Bio:

Frank Reynolds began his utility career in operations and administration at Connecticut Natural Gas and Southern Connecticut Gas, where he served as the assistant to the CEO during the merger of those companies with Energy East. His subsequent assignments included serving as Vice President of Asset Management and Planning for Avangrid Networks, and prior to that as Vice President of General Services for Iberdrola USA.

A Connecticut native, Reynolds holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the University of New Haven and a bachelor’s degree in industrial technology from Central Connecticut State University. He has completed executive course work at Iberdrola’s School of Management, the Ross School of Business and at Wharton.

In addition to his service with the Army National Guard, from which he retired in 2004 after 20 years, Reynolds previously served in both board and advisory capacities with the Urban League of Rochester, N.Y., Consumer Credit Counseling Services of Rochester and on the Advisory Board of Roberts Wesleyan College, also in Rochester. He is currently on the Advisory Board at the University of New Haven.

Episode #5 of Always Bet on Black with Paula Glover returns for another wonderful conversation, this time with Barrett Hatches, CEO of Chicago Family Health.  Barrett is a natural leader, having work in senior roles at numerous utilities companies. This conversation starts with Barrett's background, getting roles without really applying, and how to be your authentic self.

Barrett Hatches Bio:

Barrett Hatches joined Chicago Family Health Center in February 2014. He manages an operating budget of more than $20 million and oversees more than 200 staff members including physicians, dentists, administrative, clinical and support staff across five health center sites. He oversaw the expansion of services at CFHC resulting from a new state-of-the-art healthcare facility in Pullman, and the recent Affordable Care Act opportunities which include expansion of Medicaid and enrollment in the health insurance marketplace.

Prior to joining CFHC, Mr. Hatches served as Executive Consultant for Hatches Consulting, LLC in Kansas City, MO where he helped clients harness leading strategic solutions to ensure organizational success.  Mr. Hatches also served as President and Principal Owner of BHMM Energy Services in Indianapolis, IN.

Mr. Hatches has extensive experience in community health having served as CEO and Chief Operating Officer at Swope Community Enterprises for almost a decade. Like CFHC, Swope Health Services is a Federally Qualified Health Center serving the greater Kansas City area providing primary health, outreach and behavioral health to the underserved living below the poverty level.

Mr. Hatches received his Ph.D. in urban higher education from Jackson State University in Jackson MS, an M.A. in business from Webster University in Kansas City, MO and his B.A. in Political Science also from Jackson State University in Jackson MS.

Episode #4 of Always Bet on Black with Paula Glover returns for another wonderful conversation, this time with Carla Peterman, Senior Vice President Strategy and Regulatory Affairs at Southern California Edison.  In this episode, Paula and Carla talk about her background as an environmentalist, her journey to being a Rhodes Scholar, and how the energy business can move into this clean energy future.

Carla Peterman Bio:

Carla Peterman is senior vice president of Strategy and Regulatory Affairs at Southern California Edison (SCE), one of the nation’s largest electric utilities. She is responsible at the national and state levels for the company’s Regulatory Affairs, Energy and Environmental Policy, Strategic Planning, and Resource and Environmental Planning and Strategy organizations, overseeing regulatory strategy and operations and environmental affairs.

Previously, Peterman served a six-year term on the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), from 2013 to 2018. She led several CPUC clean-energy initiatives, including the adoption of the nation’s first electric utility energy storage mandate, approval of $965 million of utility investments in electric vehicle charging infrastructure, adoption of utility energy-efficiency goals, and the continued implementation of California’s Renewables Portfolio Standard.

Before her CPUC appointment, Peterman served on the California Energy Commission, where she was the lead commissioner for renewables, transportation, and natural gas. She also is a former board member of The Utility Reform Network, an organization that represents consumers before the CPUC and California Legislature.

She was appointed in 2019 by California Gov. Gavin Newsom to chair the Commission on Catastrophic Wildfire Cost and Recovery, which played a critical role in developing recommendations that led to passage of legislation that holds utilities accountable for reducing wildfire risks from their equipment and encourages a financially stable electric industry.

Peterman holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree in energy and resources from the University of California, Berkeley. She also earned a Master of Science and Master of Business Administration from Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes scholar. She earned a Bachelor of Arts from Howard University.

Peterman serves on the external advisory board for Sandia National Laboratories’ Energy and Homeland Security Portfolio. She has also served on the board of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners, was a member of the California Broadband Council, and served as Chair of the California Plug-in Electric Vehicle Collaborative.

Episode #3 of Always Bet on Black with Paula Glover is back, this time talking with Kevin Walker, Chief Operating Officer at Duquesne Light Company. Kevin and Paula have a wide ranging talk about leadership (and how it works both ways) mentorship, Kevin's background as a West Point grad and time serving overseas and much more!

Kevin Walker Bio:

Kevin Walker joined Duquesne Light on April 1, 2020 as Chief Operations Officer. Walker brings more than twenty years of operations leadership experience, having most recently served as the Senior Vice President of Customer and Operations Services and Nuclear Decommissioning at Southern California Edison. In this role, he oversaw the operational services group which included supply chain, corporate real estate, transportation services and corporate environmental services. Prior to joining Southern California Edison, Walker previously held Chief Operations Officer level positions at both Iberdrola and American Electric Power. Walker is a proud former member of the U.S. Army and served six years as a Field Artillery Officer during Operation Desert Storm. Walker holds a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from West Point Academy and a Master’s of Business Administration from Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.

Episode #2 of Always Bet on Black with Paula Glover is back, this time talking with Telisa Toliver, General Manager for Renewable Power at Chevron and Charmain of the Board for AABE.  This conversation ranges from Telisa's upbringing, the idea of being "double-counted" as an African American women in the workplace amongst so much more!

Telisa Toliver Bio:

Telisa Toliver serves as General Manager, which manages Chevron’s existing global portfolio of commercial power plants and identifies new growth opportunities for power generation worldwide.

Telisa was named to her current position in 2006, where she is responsible for the development of gas-fired and renewable power generation projects to support Chevron asset growth goals in the Americas, Europe, the Middle East and Africa. The Commercial Development group also provides optimal commercial power solutions for existing Chevron operations. Telisa began her career in the energy industry with Texaco where she has held various positions of increasing responsibilities in natural gas sales, fuels management, business development and strategic planning. She holds a bachelor’s degree in business management with honors from Tuskegee University.

Episode #1 of Always Bet On Black with Paula Glover debuts with Chris Womack, President of External Affairs at Southern Company.  This free flowing conversation covers everything from Chris's background, views on leadership and why maintain strong relationships make lasting companies.

Chris Womack Bio:

Womack joined the company in 1988 as a governmental affairs representative for Alabama Power. He has held his current position since January 2009. Previously, Womack was executive vice president of external affairs for Georgia Power. He has held numerous executive and management positions, including senior vice president of human resources and chief people officer for Southern Company as well as senior vice president and senior production officer of Southern Company Generation.

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