OPPD’s Response to Winter Storm Gerri Highlights the Value of Preparation

In January 2024, the Midwest braced for dangerously cold temperatures and wind chills, affecting the Southwest Power Pool (SPP) and OPPD’s service territory. SPP issued a Weather Advisory and Resource Advisory, prompting OPPD to mobilize and create action plans. With anticipated high loads, there was a risk of planned outages, including for OPPD. Proactive discussions began days before the event to prepare internal teams and customers. OPPD’s efforts to coordinate and prepare earned it Chartwell’s Silver Best Practices Award in Emergency Management for its strategic response to the impending weather event and its potential impact on the service territory.

Speaker:Mary Oswald, Manager, Employee Communications & Collaboration, OPPD
Mary Oswald joined the Public Affairs group at Omaha Public Power District in 2018 to formalize and build the function of employee communications. As the only member of Corporate Marketing & Communications dedicated to employee communications, Mary built relationships and trust with leaders and subject matter experts and, today, leads a team of business partners and specialists who support all areas of the business.
Prior to joining OPPD, Mary worked for First National Bank of Omaha as a communicator in the Human Resources department. She has a master’s degree in communications and a bachelor’s degree in human resource management.


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