PWP’s management is under the control of the City Manager, subject to the powers and duties vested in the Municipal Services Committee and City Council. Pasadena’s City Council determines how PWP’s services are provided within the community, including setting rates and approving services. Council members are residents of Pasadena who are customers of the utility.
Gurcharan Bawa, General Manager
Gurcharan Bawa is the General Manager of PWP, which provides safe and reliable water and power to approximately 65,000 electric accounts in Pasadena and 40,000 water accounts in Pasadena and portions of Altadena. Mr. Bawa oversees a department of approximately 440 full-time employees with an annual budget of $272 million.
Mr. Bawa joined PWP in 1992 and served in several capacities. Prior to his recent appointment as General Manager, he served as the Assistant General Manager of Power Supply. There he managed the power portfolio; market interaction for energy, fuel, transmission, capacity and environmental attributes; strategic planning and execution; contracts; legislative and regulatory matters; environmental affairs; project management; risk management; budget; finance and labor relations. He led Pasadena to become a leader in achieving one of the highest renewable energy percentages and carbon reduction, well exceeding the state mandates. He was instrumental in modernizing Pasadena’s local electric generation portfolio. He was actively involved in several legislatively bills and regulations related to renewable portfolio standard, greenhouse gas cap and trade, biomethane, Clean Air Plan, and integrated resource plans.
Gurcharan Bawa is a board member of the Southern California Public Power Authority (SCPPA) and the California Municipal Utilities Association Board of Governors (CMUA) and serves on committees of Intermountain power project and Magnolia power project.
Eric Klinkner, Deputy General Manager
Mr. Klinkner has been with Pasadena Water and Power since 1995, a community-owned utility serving more than 125,000 customers. His utility experience covers a wide range that includes power generation, transmission, trading and scheduling, water and power conservation, renewable resource procurement, and environmental and strategic policy development. Early in his career, Mr. Klinkner was instrumental in preparing Pasadena’s electric system for deregulation and participation in the California Independent System Operator markets.
In 2000, Mr. Klinkner was promoted to Assistant General Manager of Power Supply where he guided Pasadena through the energy crisis and was instrumental in diversifying Pasadena’s power supply to include a variety of renewable sources and more efficient local generation. In 2004, Mr. Klinkner was selected as Deputy General Manager, where he spearheaded significant increases in Pasadena’s energy efficiency, water conservation, and solar incentive programs. Today, Pasadena ranks amongst the highest levels of energy efficiency and renewable resource goals in the state.
Previously, Mr. Klinkner worked for LADWP and Rockwell International. He holds a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in mechanical engineering from California State University-Northridge and is a state registered professional engineer. In 2008, he was selected to participate in the Senior Executives in State and Local Government program at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. Mr. Klinkner serves on the Board of the Southern California Public Power Authority, the Intermountain Power Authority Coordinating Committee, and is a member of the Pasadena Rotary Club.
Shari Thomas, Assistant General Manager – Finance
Shari Thomas joined Pasadena Water and Power (PWP) in January 2006 and began her career with the City of Pasadena in 2002 as the Deputy Director of Finance. Currently serving as the PWP Assistant General Manager for Finance, Ms. Thomas is responsible for financial planning and budgeting, cost of service analysis, rate setting, PWP information technology, customer service and billing, materials management, safety, energy risk management, and settlements.
More recently, Ms. Thomas served as Interim General Manager position for a six-month period from January to July 2016.
Prior to her career at PWP, Ms. Thomas worked for the City of Riverside for nearly 15 years in various financial positions. She completed her Bachelor of Science degree with majors in Accounting and Finance and attended the University of Wisconsin’s Advanced Governmental Finance Institute.
Mitchell Dion, Assistant General Manager – Water Delivery
Mitchell “Mitch” Dion joined Pasadena Water and Power in December 2017 as the Assistant General Manager of Water Delivery. He is responsible for all aspects of Pasadena’s water system services, which includes resources, engineering, construction, operations and water quality. Mr. Dion has extensive experience in the utility industry and has held senior management positions in both publicly and privately-owned utilities. As a former General Manager of water utilities in Northern and Southern California, Dion brings a distinctive perspective of California water issues to PWP.
Mr. Dion holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Southern California Viterbi School of Engineering. His awards include recognition by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for emergency management and the Association of Civil Engineers for overseeing design and construction of environmentally sustainable facilities.
Anthony D’Aquila, Interim Assistant General Manager – Power Supply
Mr. D’Aquila joined PWP in September of 1999, and has held the positions of Energy Settlements Analyst, Energy Trader and the Wholesale Operations Manager. In August 2016, Mr. D’Aquila was named Interim Assistant General Manager of Power Supply. In this current assignment, Mr. D’Aquila oversees Power Production, Resource Planning and Energy Trading and Scheduling divisions. He manages PWP’s long term and short procurement for power, natural gas, renewable resources, capacity, transmission as well as power generation and trading and scheduling.
Mr. D’Aquila has a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Business from the University of California, Riverside and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Cal State Long Beach.
Varoojan Avedian, Interim Assistant General Manager – Power Delivery
Varoojan Avedian joined PWP in April 2016 as an Engineering Manager, and currently serves as the Interim Assistant General Manager for the Power Delivery Division. Mr. Avedian has worked in the public sector for more than 13 years. Prior to joining PWP, he served Glendale Water & Power in a number of positions including Principal Electrical Engineer.
Mr. Avedian holds a Master’s of Science degree in electrical engineering from California State University-Los Angeles and is a state registered professional engineer.
The positions of Assistant General Manager of: Water Delivery, Power Delivery and Power Supply are currently vacant. PWP is conducting nationwide search to fill these critical positions. To learn more, click here.