WEC Hires General Manager

SusanGCoop News


The Board of Directors of Washington Electric Cooperative has selected Patricia H. Richards to become WEC’s new General Manager, effective July 1. She will take over management of the Co-op from Avram Patt, who is retiring at the end of June after 16 ½ years as manager and 8 years as an elected board member prior to that.

Patty Richards has a long history working in the utility world in Vermont. For the past three years she has been a Senior Consultant with La Capra Associates, the firm WEC has relied on since 1997 for power supply planning, contracting and management, renewable energy development analysis, rate design and other regulatory matters. She became WEC’s primary contact upon joining the firm. In addition to her work for WEC, she has managed a number of significant regulatory cases in other states during that time.

Prior to that, Richards was Director of Power Supply and Transmission for the Vermont Public Power Supply Authority, where she managed power supply for a number of small municipal utilities as well as WEC’s interactions with the New England regional power grid.

She started her utility career at Burlington Electric Department, where she worked for 17 years in administrative and energy efficiency related positions before becoming Director of Resource Planning. In that position Richards gained recognition for her regulatory work at the Public Service Board, at the State House and in energy education programs at schools and colleges.

“The WEC Board is very excited about bringing someone with Patty Richard’s qualifications on as the Co-op’s new General Manager,” said WEC Board President Barry Bernstein. “Patty has a long history of working with public power in Vermont and with WEC, both as our lead consultant and before that. We feel fortunate to have selected her as the person to take over the reins at WEC from Avram Patt.”

“Our Co-op has had a working relationship with Patty in each of her jobs, and especially most recently at La Capra Associates,” said Avram Patt. “I’ve known Patty pretty much since I began at WEC, and she’s the right person to lead WEC, as a utility and as a cooperative.”

Richards will begin transitioning to her new position in mid-June.

“I am looking forward to working for WEC members to provide high quality electric service, to championing WEC’s commitment to environmental issues and being a good community leader and partner,” Richards said. “The WEC team is top notch and working with this talented group of employees is an honor and a privilege. This is an exciting opportunity to serve Vermont’s rural communities and I will work diligently to continue the great work that is WEC’s mission and that has been so successfully forged by Avram’s leadership. I look forward to meeting new faces and being part of the WEC community.”