Hawaii public utilities commissioner receives national honor

By Duane Shimogawa
Pacific Business News

Hawaii Public Utilities Commissioner Lorraine Akiba was among f our of the nation’s public utilities commissioners to receive the 2014 Smart Grid Leadership Award, putting Hawaii and the state agency at the forefront of Demand Response and Smart Grid Innovation.

The award, which was presented at a national town meeting in Washington, D.C., by the Association for Demand Response and Smart Grid, recognized Akiba for her role in tackling issues, such as microgrids and renewable energy integration, that other parts of the country are already looking to Hawaii as a leader on, the executive director of the national association said.

The national town meeting, which focuses on the business and policy aspects of demand response and its enabling technologies and applications, featured Akiba in a roundtable discussion titled, “Do The States Have the Ball?”

It also hosted other regulators from states across the country that are on the front lines of some of the issues and developments that will affect response and smart grid, as well as the evolution of the electric industry.

Other award winners included commissioners from New York, Massachusetts and Maryland.

Akiba also has been invited by the U.S. Department of Energy Office of Electricity Assistant Secretary Patricia Hoffman to return to Washington to take part on a panel on the evolution of regulatory models at “The Future of the Grid undefined Evolving America’s Needs” National Summit on June 26.

The summit brings together senior electricity industry leaders from around the U.S., along with legislators, regulators and other key stakeholders to talk about the most important industry transition of the past 100 years.


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