Executive Leadership Team

Austin Energy is part of the City of Austin, with budget and policy oversight by the Austin City Council. Our utility has nationally-recognized energy efficiency and renewables programs, excellent reliability, and competitive rates. The City Manager selects the General Manager, who hires the executive team. The team leads our public power utility in its mission to safely deliver clean, affordable, reliable energy and excellent customer service.

Jackie Sargent

General Manager

Jackie Sargent rejoined the Austin Energy team as General Manager in August 2016. She brings almost 30 years of utility experience, as well as the focus and passion to continue the utility’s cutting edge reputation while providing tremendous community benefits.

From 2010 to 2012, Sargent served as Senior Vice President of Power Supply and Market Operations at Austin Energy before joining Platte River Power Authority in Fort Collins, Colorado, as General Manager and CEO. Sargent also served as Vice President of Power Supply and Renewables Integration for Black Hills Corporation in South Dakota.

Throughout her career, Sargent has demonstrated leadership by working with teams to accomplish goals and plan for the future. Some notable accomplishments include managing major construction projects, developing resource plans, supporting acquisitions and mergers, leading utility rate cases, negotiating power purchase and sale agreements, developing and growing energy marketing departments, integrating renewable resources, and creating collaborative energy efficiency programs.

Sargent believes Austin Energy can be a great value to its customers by focusing on these five core values: safety, financial integrity, operational excellence and reliability, exceptional customer service, and engaged employees. A strong financial base along with operational excellence allows a publicly owned utility to be competitive while creating value for the community. By continuing Austin Energy’s standard of exceptional reliability and advancements in grid technology, the utility will be able to offer new levels of communication and collaboration with its customers. But these achievements can only happen with engaged employees in a safe environment that extends to the customers the utility serves.

Sargent is a licensed professional engineer and holds a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and a Master of Science in Technology Management from South Dakota School of Mines and Technology.

Elaina Ball

Deputy General Manager and Chief Operating Officer

Elaina Ball was promoted to Deputy General Manager and Chief Operating Officer Oct. 31, 2016. She served as Interim Chief Operating Officer beginning in late 2015. Ball served as Vice President of Power Production since October 2013, and joined Austin Energy in September 2012 as the Decker Creek Power Station plant manager, where she focused on plant operations improvements and employee engagement. Ball came to Austin Energy from CPS Energy in San Antonio, where she served most recently as the vice president of Technical Services & Energy Solutions, leading a team of more than 300 employees involved in transmission, substation, and distribution engineering, as well as smart grid and demand response programs. In addition to her electric utility experience, Ball has experience in quality improvement and process optimization in the chemical industry.

Ball has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from The University of Texas at Austin and attended the University of Idaho Utility Executive course.

Mark Dombroski

Deputy General Manager and Chief Financial and Risk Officer

Deputy General Manager and Chief Financial and Risk Officer Mark Dombroski is responsible for the financial management of Austin Energy as well as Corporate Services.  He also serves as Austin Energy’s Chief Risk Officer, responsible for enterprise risk management and financial compliance related to energy trading and hedging.

Dombroski’s financial experience includes two of the “Big 4” accounting firms — Price Waterhouse and KPMG in Houston.  He also served as the Director of Finance for Seattle City Light.

Dombroski served as an Officer in the United States Marine Corps after earning his bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas at Dallas. He earned his Master of Public Administration from Seattle University. He is a Certified Energy Manager with the Association of Energy Engineers.

Kerry Overton

Deputy General Manager and Chief Customer and Compliance Officer

Deputy General Manager Kerry Overton joined Austin Energy in 2000 and oversees the utility’s Customer Care Services and Customer Account Management. On Oct. 31, 2016, Overton took the expanded role of Chief Customer and Compliance Officer with responsibilities including Internal Audit, Reliability Compliance and Environmental Services.

Overton provides executive oversight to Austin 3-1-1 and the utility’s customer contact center, which handles 2.84 million customer interactions annually. Prior to his current role, Overton served as vice president of Customer Care and was a senior business process consultant. Customer billing operations generate more than $1.3 billion in revenues for the City of Austin each year. He previously served as deputy land commissioner in the Texas General Land Office, where he oversaw energy resources.

Overton has a Bachelor of Arts in managerial studies and political science from Rice University, a Master of Business Administration from The University of Texas McCombs School of Business, and a Master of Public Affairs from The University of Texas LBJ School of Public Affairs. He also attended the University of Idaho Utility Executive Course.

Mark Dreyfus

Vice President, Regulatory Affairs and Corporate Communications

Vice President of Regulatory Affairs & Corporate Communications Mark Dreyfus is responsible for managing local, state, and federal governmental relations, public information, and marketing communications services.

Dreyfus joined Austin Energy in 1999 as Director of Market Policy and Planning. He managed Austin Energy’s preparation and planning for the conversion of systems and processes for participation in the competitive wholesale market (wholesale deregulation), which opened in summer of 2001.

In 2008 Dreyfus was promoted to Director of Regulatory and Government Affairs, and beginning in 2010 successfully led a two-year process to design and implement the utility’s first electric base rate increase and rate restructuring in 18 years. Dreyfus manages Austin Energy’s interests before the Public Utility Commission of Texas and the Texas Legislature and represented Texas public power on the ERCOT Board of Directors from 2010 to 2014.

Before joining Austin Energy, Dreyfus worked at the Public Utility Commission (PUC) of Texas as an advisor to former Commissioner Judy Walsh, and before that as chief economist in the PUC’s Office of Policy Development. From 1984 to 1989 Dreyfus worked with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Toxic Substances as an economist and then section chief/supervisory economist.

Dreyfus earned a Bachelor of Arts in economics from the University of Texas at Austin, a Master of Public Policy from Harvard University, and a doctorate in economics from Duke University.

Gerardo (Jerry) Galvan

Vice President, Customer Care Services

Gerardo “Jerry” Galvan started at Austin Energy in July 2016 as the Vice President of Customer Care. Galvan has more than 15 years of experience directing and leading high-volume call centers.

At Austin Energy, Galvan is responsible for the City of Austin’s Utility Contact Center, Austin 3-1-1 — the City’s 24-hour information center — and customer service management, which includes customer escalations and Customer Assistance Programs.

Prior to joining the Austin Energy team, Galvan spent more than eight years at DTE Energy in Detroit, Michigan, four years in San Antonio at an outsource solution provider, and three years at Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation in Round Rock.

Galvan led teams of 100 to 300 customer service representatives that served about 3.8 million electric and natural gas customers. Also during his time at DTE Energy, Galvan was an integral part of the team that created a customer assistance program. This program partnered with charitable organizations to help identify eligible customers and refer them to be set up on an appropriate payment plan.

At Austin Energy, Galvan is excited to work with a talented team to improve customer collaboration through an enhanced customer experience when dealing with the utility.

Galvan has a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from The University of Texas at Austin and speaks both English and Spanish.

Elaine Veselka

Vice President, Customer Account Management

Vice President of Customer Account Management Elaine Veselka leads a division encompassing Revenue Measurement (meter reading, maintenance, and current diversion), Billing Services (billing, payments, collections, and branch locations), and Quality Management (quality and training). She coordinates with internal customers such as legal services and accounting work groups, as well as other City of Austin departments like Austin Water, the Watershed Protection Department, and the Austin Transportation Department.

Veselka has more than 20 years of experience in customer account management, including 10 years at regulated and deregulated utilities in senior management positions. Most recently, she was distribution process manager for Electric Service Delivery’s Support Services section. Within that role, she was responsible for supervision of operations for real estate and public involvement, line clearance, GIS and OneCall, infrastructure asset management, quality, and business continuity/emergency coordination. Prior to that she was customer service process manager for Customer Services Management, overseeing key functions such as operations of our credit and collections work group, customer escalation resolution, and the City of Austin Customer Assistance Program.

Veselka joined Austin Energy in 2008. She has a Bachelor of Science from the University of Texas at Austin, and completed her Master of Public Administration at the University of Phoenix.

 

Deborah Kimberly

Vice President, Customer Energy Solutions

Vice President of Customer Energy Solutions Deborah Kimberly joined Austin Energy in January 2013. This division is responsible for the utility’s energy efficiency and demand response programs, green building program, advanced transportation, market analytics, and key accounts, which serves Austin Energy’s largest customers.

Kimberly has worked in the utility industry for more than 30 years and spent more than 22 years at the Salt River Project in Central Arizona. Most recently, she was Salt River’s director of customer programs and marketing, where she was responsible for energy efficiency product design and implementation; marketing of all products, price plans, and services; measurement and evaluation; and market research. Previous roles included managing Salt River’s financial services and involvement in public policy and strategic planning initiatives.

Kimberly serves on the program advisory committee of the Consortium for Energy Efficiency and is an executive sponsor of the Austin Energy Pecan Street Working Group and the Texas Fuel Independence Project. She also is a new board member of SPEER, the South-Central Partnership for Energy Efficiency as a Resource. While in Arizona, Kimberly served on the board of directors of the Maricopa Health Foundation and the Desert Foothills Habitat for Humanity Chapter.

Kimberly earned a Bachelor of Arts in international relations from Stanford University and a Master's degree in international management from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona.

Khalil Shalabi

Vice President, Strategy, Technology, and Markets

Khalil Shalabi is Vice President of Strategy, Technology, and Markets. He joined Austin Energy in December 2013.

Shalabi has more than 20 years of leadership and management experience in the electric utility industry. His diverse work history includes research and development; resource planning and acquisition; project evaluation including renewable energy, business development, long-range planning, and market analysis; and nuclear power plant engineering, maintenance, and operations. He also has experience in treasury and corporate risk management. Prior to joining Austin Energy, Shalabi served as chief technology officer and director of Research and Development and Strategic Planning for the New York Power Authority.

Shalabi has a Master of Business Administration in finance and management from New York University, a Master of Science in mechanical engineering from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from the University of Notre Dame. He also completed a certificate course at the Vermont Law School on legal essentials for utility executives.

Dan Smith

Vice President, Electric Service Delivery

Dan joined Austin Energy in 2003 and is currently the Vice President of Electric Service Delivery (ESD). He is responsible for leading Austin Energy’s Transmission & Distribution organization. Dan has held various management positions at Austin Energy, including Director of Smart Grid and System Operations, Interim Vice President of Electric Service Delivery, Director of Transmission and Substation Engineering and Construction, and Engineering Manager of Substation and Relay Engineering. Dan is passionate about company transformation that starts with and is rooted in safety, and has been instrumental in leading and supporting several safety initiatives currently underway at the utility. Prior to joining Austin Energy, Dan spent 10 years with Advanced Micro Devices, where he focused on improving reliability and power quality of their electric supply in the United States, Germany, and Japan.

Dan earned a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering from Texas A&M University in College Station. He is a registered professional engineer in the state of Texas, a Member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and has presented and authored numerous papers at technical conferences and educational venues.

Greg Flay

Greg Flay

Chief Technology Officer

Greg Flay joined Austin Energy in October 2016 as Chief Technology Officer.
 
In his role as Chief Technology Officer, Greg oversees corporate strategic planning, technology roadmap management, enterprise architecture, technology selection and research and development functions — including oversight of Austin Energy’s relationship with the Electric Power Research Institute. His focus is on transparency, operations and the speed and strategic alignment of technology acquisition.

Greg has more than 20 years of leadership and management experience in the power industry and related fields. His diverse leadership roles include information technology; mergers and acquisitions; business operations; business analysis; strategy; technology process controls; program and project management; technology portfolio management; and enterprise architecture. Greg has a large amount of experience in the wholesale power generation and competitive retail segments of the power industry. He also has experience in residential solar and home services markets, including smart home, HVAC, electrical and plumbing services.
 
Greg holds Bachelor of Arts and Master of Science degrees in geography from Penn State University as well as a Ph.D. in geography from the University of Minnesota with a focus on spatial analytics.

Mercedes Sanchez

Chief Information Officer

Mercedes Sanchez took the role of Chief Information Officer in 2015 after successfully serving in the interim role for nearly two years. She has more than 23 years of service with the City of Austin, with 21 years at Austin Energy. She previously served as the Director of Corporate Quality Services for more than 10 years.

In her current role, she directs a team of more than 200 staff in day-to-day information technology operations for the utility, including service management, infrastructure, IT PMO, enterprise applications, compliance, and business and quality management.

Sanchez led various initiatives throughout her tenure with Austin Energy. She established the Corporate Project Management Office and led the development of standardized project management methodologies, governance, portfolio management and project reporting. She also successfully directed efforts to become the first utility in the nation to register its Electric Service Delivery, Customer Care, and Power Supply and Market Operations business units to the ISO 9001:2008 Quality Management System Standard.

Sanchez earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Texas at San Antonio. She holds a number of professional certifications, including Project Management Professional, ISO 9000:2000 Series IRCA Lead Internal Auditor and Six Sigma Green Belt. She is a graduate of the Utility Executive Course from the University of Idaho.

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