Jolene Thompson Receives Top National Award for Exceptional Leadership and Dedication to Public Power

Published on: 06/20/2023

SEATTLE, WA.: Jolene Thompson, President/Chief Executive Officer of American Municipal Power, Inc. (AMP) received the American Public Power Association’s (APPA) Alex Radin Distinguished Service Award. Thompson was presented with the award during the APPA National Conference, which took place in Seattle, June 16-21.

This award, initiated in 1953, was the first major award given by APPA. It was renamed the Alex Radin Distinguished Service Award in 1986 to honor Alex Radin, who served as APPA’s executive director from 1951 to 1986. It is the highest award granted by APPA and is bestowed in recognition of exceptional leadership in and dedication to public power.

“I’m incredibly honored to receive the Alex Radin Distinguished Service Award,” said Thompson. “I am grateful that I was able to meet Mr. Radin early in my career. His passion for the public power business model serves as an inspiration for all of us in the industry to follow."

Thompson, a previous recipient of APPA’s Harold Kramer-John Preston Personal Service Award, has served in public power since she joined AMP in 1990. In 2020, Thompson was named President/CEO of AMP, having previously served as executive vice president of member services and external affairs for AMP, overseeing the organization’s government relations, communications, technical services, environmental affairs and compliance, sustainability initiatives, risk, insurance, strategic planning, NERC compliance and member programs. She also served as the executive director of the Ohio Municipal Electric Association (OMEA) from 1997 to 2020. OMEA represents the state and federal legislative interests of Ohio’s more than 80 municipal electric systems. Thompson continues to serve as AMP President/CEO, overseeing the organization as it works to serve its Members through public power joint action, innovative solutions, robust advocacy and cost-effective management of power supply and energy services.

Throughout her more than three decades of work in public power, Thompson has distinguished herself in terms of industry knowledge and advocacy for public power on a local, regional and national basis. For more than two decades, she  was the chief legislative advocate  for AMP and the OMEA, including testifying before statehouse and congressional committees on varying matters impacting public power.

Thompson currently serves on The Energy Authority Board of Directors and as CEO Co-Chair of the Large Public Power Council (LPPC) Policy Task Force. She served on the APPA Board of Directors from 2015 to 2022, where she was Board chair from 2020 to 2021, a member of the Executive Committee from 2016 to 2022, an officer from 2018 to 2022, Nominating Committee chair from 2021 to 2022 and most recently as a member of the CEO Search Committee. Thompson was previously a member of the Transmission Access Policy Study Group Board of Directors, where she served on the executive committee and as chair of the legislative committee. She also previously chaired the APPA Advisory Committee of State and Regional Associations and Legislative and Resolutions Committee and sat on the Consumer Federation of America Board of Directors.

As the face of the public power industry for more than three decades, Alex Radin was chief executive officer of the APPA. During his tenure, he worked closely with numerous members of Congress and met with Presidents Truman, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter and Reagan to discuss energy policy and push for pro-consumer legislation. After retiring from APPA in 1986, Alex worked for more than a decade as a consultant for various public power utilities. Radin was one of the founders of the Consumer Federation of America and the author of Public Power-Private Life, an autobiography that chronicles his personal life and the public power industry during his years at APPA. Radin was hired as the editor of APPA's magazine in 1948. He was named General Manager of APPA in 1951.

View the official APPA news release here.

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