Jessica J. Bian, PES President (2022-23)

Expanding What’s Possible

During the last two years, it has been my great honor and privilege to serve as your President-Elect (2020-2021) and help fulfill the PES Mission – To be the leading provider of scientific and engineering information on electric power and energy for the betterment of society, and the preferred professional development source for our members.

I want to acknowledge that since March 2020, our lives have changed drastically. The COVID-19 swept across the world and impacted all of us.  My deepest sympathy goes out to everyone who has lost a loved one, and my prayers are with those who are ill or suffering. The Power and Energy Society (PES) lost our own brave leader and dear friend, Frank Lambert.  PES recognizes and appreciates Frank for his effective and exemplary leadership, integrity, and dedication to the Society. In his PES roles, Frank made many friends around the world and his absence shall be deeply felt by all who had the pleasure of working and meeting him.

I also want to extend my gratitude to all of you for your efforts in keeping the lights on during this challenging time.

New Initiative in 2022

As your new Society President (2022-2023), I want to share with you what PES is committing to for the year to come. The total PES membership at the end of 2021 is 42,805 – an all-time high – a 7.9% increase over 2020. Most of the PES growth in 2021 is due to a large increase in student membership.

Frank said well in his March 2020 eNews interview, “There’s never been a time like today in the electric utility sector. Everything’s changing…the way we make it, the way we move it, the way we use it and the way we sell it…so many changes happening at the same time. The power industry definitely needs fresh, new talent to be able to address and integrate all of the changes that are coming.” One of PES’s goals is to “help engage the next generation to meet all of the changes coming our way,” and “we must work together to get the next generation involved and taking an active part in the leadership roles in PES as we move forward.”

Following the directions Frank set, the PES Governing Board (GB) at its January 2022 meeting endorsed a new initiative to improve PES nominations and appointments process.  The new process will put out a call for nominations to the entire PES membership, and members will be able to nominate themselves or others for consideration. This effort would go towards not only increasing the diversity and inclusion of our community but identifying new volunteers, particularly young professionals and student members to the PES leadership roles.

In addition, the PES Publications Board has already implemented an open call process and other improvements to increase transparency. You can view the changes here.

Reconnect In the Big Easy

After what will be four long years apart, the 2022 IEEE PES T&D Conference & Exposition (T&D) will provide an opportunity to reconnect as a global community of energy professionals April 25-28, 2022, in New Orleans. T&D is excited to announce the addition of the Smart Cities Pavilion. This dedicated pavilion on the exhibit floor will feature a variety of case study exhibits showcasing effective collaboration to make smarter cities a reality. Technologies will include smart street lighting, advanced electric vehicle charging infrastructure, sensors, intelligent monitoring, and more. In addition, conveniently located on the show floor, the new Innovation Stages will provide a unique forum to debut state-of-the-art technologies, and discuss practical product applications. While on stage, presenters will share case studies that offer insights into emerging trends and share valuable best practices. On the exhibit floor, you will be able to hear short presentations from some of the industry’s leading suppliers and knowledge providers.

T&D Utility Saver Package – To provide utilities with more opportunities to experience T&D as a team, an exclusive T&D Utility Saver package will be offered. It will allow you to send 10 utility employees, particularly young professionals, with full conference registration for a total of only $1,000, an enormous discount compared to the cost of traditional registration.

Technical Program – Our host utility Entergy has put together a world-class technical program with super sessions, keynotes, and panels.  The 2022 technical program will feature conversations around the electrification of infrastructure, the integration and operation of renewables, and lessons learned from the pandemic and recent climate disruptions.

Networking Sessions for Students and Young Professionals – Each T&D conference is designed with unique programming and networking opportunities for the next generation of energy professionals to advance in their careers.  Besides a student poster session and poster contest, a companion reception provides a relaxed environment for registered conference attendees to enjoy hors d’oeuvres and beverages while viewing hundreds of accepted papers in poster format. In addition, the conference has a Collegiate Program, offering an exciting and comprehensive schedule of student and young professional sessions and activities. The Collegiate Program is designed to help new talent launch successful careers in the power and energy industry.

New 2023 Grid Edge Technologies Conference & Expo

As we all know, 130 years ago a new industry, called electric power and light, was born. Throughout these years, the industry provided safe, reliable, and cost-effective electricity service. However, extreme weather – the main culprit – has increasingly affected the grid over the past 20 years. A trend that will likely continue. Millions of people around the world lost power at times when they needed it most. As power grids deal with an onslaught of heatwaves, wildfires, winter storms, and stronger hurricanes, these kinds of power outages cost customers billions of dollars each year, and are happening more often, taking longer to fix, and harming more people.  To help speed up the grid transition and meet climate change challenges, PES has launched a new Grid Edge Technologies Conference & Exposition to share the latest in grid edge technological developments.  The inaugural Grid Edge Grid Edge Technologies Conference & Exposition will debut spring 2023 in San Diego, California.

The Grid Edge Conference & Expo will be held every two years, bringing technologists and energy professionals together that drive the future design and development of a reliable, resilient, and carbon free grid. Through unmatched technical education backed by IEEE’s esteemed standards, and the widest display of next-generation solutions, you’ll be equipped to build the grid of tomorrow.

Saifur Rahman – 2023 IEEE President

Last but not least, after volunteering at IEEE for more than 40 years, our own PES Past President, IEEE Life Fellow, Saifur Rahman, was elected as the 2022 IEEE President-Elect.  I want to take this opportunity to thank Saifur for his remarkable accomplishments and a lasting impact he made on PES and IEEE. This is also the first time a PES member won the most coveted IEEE position in 50 years.  Before he became the PES President in 2018, Saifur served as the IEEE Vice President, IEEE Publications Board; the PES Vice President Publications twice; Vice President New Initiatives Outreach; the General Chair of the IEEE Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Conference for three years in Washington, DC.

Saifur was also the Editor-in-Chief for both IEEE Electrifications Magazine, and IEEE Transaction on Sustainable Energy, which has been one of the leading journals in the field. Saifur is an outstanding volunteer role model for all PES members to follow.

Both Saifur Rahman and the 2022 IEEE President Ray Liu will be speaking at the April 25-28, 2022 T&D. And with so many changes and new technologies in our industry, you won’t want to miss this year’s T&D. See you in the southern charm New Orleans.

Wishing you and your family a safe and healthy 2022!

Jessica Bian
PES President (2022-2023)