Karen Austin, named
Senior Vice President
& Chief Information
Officer at PG&E
 
As part of an organizational realignment, Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) has made several new executive appointments, including Karen Austin as Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, Geisha Williams as Executive Vice President of Electric Operations, and Nick Stavropoulos as the Executive Vice President of Gas Operations.

Austin, who has worked at Kmart Corp. and Sears Holdings and has led successful efforts to restructure and modernize large-scale information technology (IT) systems for some of the nation's largest retailers, will lead all of PG&E's IT systems and customer technology initiatives effective June 1. She will also direct all cyber security initiatives to assure that protection of customer data is robust and effective, and will be responsible for the company's technology strategy and business systems that power the smart grid.

Williams, who was recruited to PG&E in 2007 after more than 24 years at Florida Power and Light Company, will lead a new operating unit consolidating all of the utility's electric operations. Among achievements with PG&E to date, she has played a major role in developing the company’s electric reliability investment strategy, adopting new and more effective and efficient operating practices and procedures, and revamping its employee safety programs. During her tenure, the company has reduced the frequency and the duration of customer power outages to the lowest levels in many years

Stavropoulos, a veteran natural gas pipeline operator with 30 years of gas industry experience, will assume responsibility for the utility's entire natural gas business. At PG&E, he will lead a range of improvement efforts, ranging from upgrading and replacing critical infrastructure to revamping its operating policies and practices.

All of these appointees will report directly to PG&E President Chris Johns.