Entergy Helps Empower Women in Energy During CBCI Houston Meeting

Dec 6, 2023 10:30 AM ET

In October, Entergy hosted an “Empowering women in energy” panel during the Congressional Black Caucus Political Education and Leadership Institute 2023 fourth quarter meeting in Houston. The CBC Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, social welfare organization whose primary mission is to “educate today’s voters and train tomorrow’s leaders,” as well as inform, inspire and ignite its communities into action on issues that affect them the most. The meeting was held in Houston to allow members of Congress and various industry governmental affairs representatives to tour the area and hear from local industries with a focus on the energy industry.

Entergy is a member of the CBC Institute Corporate Advisory Council. As we expand and enhance our profile in the national and federal landscape, relationships with organizations like the CBC Institute are critical to ensuring our ability to share our message with key stakeholders.

The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (the law enacted from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, or IIJA) has created an unprecedented amount of funding opportunities for clean energy and electrical grid resilience projects, such as the $55M grant that Entergy New Orleans was recently awarded through the Department of Energy’s “Grid Resilience and Innovation Partnerships” program.

All IIJA/BIL funding opportunities require a community benefits plan in order to comply with the Biden Administration’s Justice40 Initiative, which established a goal that 40% of the benefits of climate and clean energy investments flow to disadvantaged communities.

Because the majority of Entergy’s service territories fall within areas that qualify as disadvantaged communities, or DACs, under the Justice40 definition, and the scoring of the community benefits plan plays a significant role in award decisions, we are uniquely qualified to leverage our longstanding investment in our communities. Letters of support from respected national organizations like the CBC Institute that represent the interests of some of the members of these DACs can also bolster the credibility of our community benefits plans in these highly competitive application processes.

Participating in events held by organizations like the CBC Institute also present unique opportunities for us to share information about our industry-leading innovations and efforts to promote a just clean energy transition, ensure a reliable and resilient bulk electrical system and support the communities we serve.

"Entergy has been an active part of the CBC Institute's programs since our inception,” said CBC Institute Executive Director Vanessa Griddine-Jones, “They continue to be a valued partner in informing and educating members of Congress and other national stakeholders on key issues in the energy sector."

Kendra James, manager of communications for Entergy Texas, moderated the panel of five female vice presidents from across the company:

  • Elizabeth Adams, vice president of system planning
  • Yovanka Daniels, vice president of customer contact solutions
  • Louise Duncan, vice president of power plant operations
  • Kristin Johnson, vice president of human resources
  • Sandra Diggs-Miller, vice president of external affairs

The discussion focused on the crucial role of women in the energy sector during the clean energy transition. As the world continues to prioritize sustainable and clean energy solutions, ensuring gender diversity and inclusivity is imperative. The clean energy transition presents a unique opportunity to address historical disparities and create a more equitable energy workforce. Entergy has proactively joined forces to foster the advancement of women and minorities within the energy sector.

Panelists shared their experiences, insights, and strategies for promoting diversity, inclusion, and partnerships to advance the efforts. They explored the challenges faced by women professionals, best practices, success stories and practical steps to overcome barriers and create a more supportive environment. The panel also highlighted the collaborative efforts undertaken by the company, through policy and partnerships, to empower and support women professionals in the energy industry, particularly those in disadvantaged communities.