Debra Smith

Debra Smith

Seattle City Light

Debra Smith is the General Manager and CEO of Seattle City Light, one of the nation’s largest community-owned electric utilities. City Light serves more than 480,000 meters and 955,000 people across Seattle and parts of eight adjacent franchise cities, and unincorporated King County. Debra believes strongly in the value of teamwork, partnerships, and collaboration. As a public employee, she prioritizes customer needs while acknowledging that great customer service starts with engaged and committed employees. Under her leadership, City Light is focused on electrification, equity and creating customer value. Previously, Debra served as Central Lincoln PUD’s General Manager from July 2013 to October 2018. She brought 17 years of experience to that role from the Eugene Water and Electric Board, where she held a variety of positions, including Assistant General Manager. Debra earned a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Arizona State University and is a Senior Fellow with the American Leadership Forum of Oregon. She served as the first Chairwoman of the Public Power Council and is currently the Vice Chair of Long-Range Planning. Debra also serves on the board of the Pacific Northwest Utilities Conference Committee. Debra and her husband Dale have raised three sons and two daughters. They love city life and look forward to being part of downtown Seattle’s post-pandemic recovery. They also have a home in Eugene, Oregon and enjoy travel, time with friends and family and hanging out with their five-year old grandson Oliver.

All Sessions by Debra Smith

Day One August 24, 2021
9:00 am - 10:00 am

Smarter Buildings and a Changing Utility – A Vision of the New World of Energy

The conference kicks off with a moderated discussion featuring senior thought leaders in the technology and utility sectors. Panelists include Mary Kipp, CEO of Puget Sound Energy, Debra Smith, CEO Seattle City Light, and Ed Schlect, CSO of Avista Utilities, Stephanie Greene of the Rocky Mountain Institute, and Emmanuel Daniel of Microsoft. Moderated by Ash Awad, President and Chief Markets Officer of McKinstry, this panel will discuss the opportunities and challenges facing the energy industry and how that affects the built environment. A new cleaner and more flexible electrical grid is coming. These changes will be facilitated in part by smart building technologies and practices built on the fast-growing power of cloud computing and information technology services. This is sure to be an exciting and informative discussion which will frame issues getting discussed throughout the subsequent two days of the conference.