O&M, Renewables

Black & Veatch makes five executive hirings in move toward serving energy utility transformation

Energy EPC firm Black & Veatch has made five executive-level hirings to lead new offerings focused around future utility investments and business modeling in the evolving energy resource sector.

The Kansas-based company will offer new consulting capabilities including transformational utility business modeling, sustainability, distributed energy, infrastructure modernization and asset management. Management consulting will also be expanding its talent acquisition efforts to attract experienced consulting professionals in support of the anticipated project growth generated by the increased portfolio offerings.

Earlier this month, Black & Veatch reorganized its global power business to put a fresh emphasis on its renewables arm and launch a distributed energy group.

“The U.S. electric industry, more than 130 years old, is navigating its most dynamic moment as the nation’s energy ecosystem changes with the surge of green energy. We know that confronts the industry with the daunting challenge – and opportunity – to modernize,” said John Chevrette, president of Black & Veatch Management Consulting. “By bolstering our already deeply respected management consulting team with these experts and expanded services, utilities can rely on us even more for their road map to solutions and sustainability.”

The new executives include:

  • James Hendrickson, Senior Managing Director: With more than 30 years of experience consulting, Hendrickson most recently was a Deloitte industry executive who consulted on corporate and competitive market strategies and broad transformational performance improvement planning within the utility industry. He also has held executive consulting leadership roles at Booz & Company and Accenture. Hendrickson is considered a driving force in the industry, brings to the consulting team senior-level expertise in wholesale and retail markets, business strategy, next generation business capability models and digital strategy analytics across both the competitive and regulated electric and gas markets.
  • Abhijeet Naik, Managing Director for Business Technology and Architecture: As a seasoned executive in strategic consulting, Naik will bring an expanded level of leadership and industry experience to the Business Technology and Architecture practice area within Management Consulting. He has held senior-level executive roles at EY, PwC, and Deloitte and has been recognized for developing and managing high-performance teams. His experience includes managing and delivering complex, technical initiatives around cloud, RPA, digital enablement, and Blockchain. Naik also is a highly regarded expert in utility transmission asset management and NERC-CIP compliance systems.
  • Doug Preece, Managing Director for Growth and Performance: A proven innovator within the power and utility marketplace, Preece has more than 33 years of consulting experience. He spent 12 years within the utility industry before transitioning to a career of more than 20 years in management consulting. Over the past eight years, Preece has been a senior advisor at EY, where he provided advisory support to utilities, with a primary focus on digital grid transformation, distributed energy, demand response, and distribution modernization. He is an industry thought leader on the grid of the future.
  • Mark E. Von Weihe, Senior Managing Director: Von Weihe was an executive leader with Structure prior to that company’s acquisition by Accenture, providing senior-level leadership and sales strategy support to drive its software and technology business, with a focus on the energy and utility segment. He served as a board member at Structure and helped execute the acquisition of their consulting practice to Accenture and their software business to Vyntex/ABB. He is a high-achieving business development leader and recognized throughout the utility industry for his strategic work around technology, commercial trading, renewable energy, and electric distribution operations consulting. As an executive-level leader within Management Consulting, he will be a key player in expanding our technology offering portfolio into new industry segments.
  • Robert T. Wilhite III, Senior Managing Director: As a global energy industry executive, Wilhite brings a unique combination of technical knowledge and business strategy experience to the Management Consulting leadership team. Over the past 5 years, he has been a managing director within Navigant’s energy practice, leading the global utility client segment. He also served on the energy practice leadership team. Wilhite has longstanding relationships within the energy industry globally and is a highly regarded industry thought leader.  He also has held multiple, high-profile board and committee positions. Wilhite began his career more than 34 years ago and has held leadership roles at KEMA, Accenture, and EPRI.

Mario Azar, president of Black & Veatch’s power business, will be one of the panelists in the “Across All Sectors” Mega-session Wednesday, November 20 at POWERGEN International in New Orleans.

POWERGEN International, which covers all sectors of the power generation industry, is happening November 19-21 in New Orleans. Click here for registration and education details.