Thursday Mayor Eric Garcetti announced the nomination of Anaheim City Manager Marcie Edwards to be the next General Manager of the Department of Water and Power (DWP.)
“This is great news,” said Fred Pickel, the ratepayer advocate, whose official title is Executive Director of the office of Accountability. “Marcie was on our list of potential candidates.”
Edwards began her career as a Clerk Typist at the DWP at the age of 19. She then became a Steam Plant Assistant, a Plant Equipment Operator, a Steam Plant Operator, a Load Dispatcher and a Senior Load Dispatcher.
She followed her father and grandfather who also worked at the DWP. According to Pickel. Edwards’ grandfather’s retirement certificate was signed by William Mulholland, the legendary engineer who brought water to Los Angeles and headed the predecessor department which ultimately became the LADWP.
After 24 years at the DWP, Edwards retired and went to work for the Anaheim Public Utilities for 13 years, delivering water and power for California’s 10th largest city, and became Anaheim’s City Manger. She has experience working on the inside and the outside as well as having a long successful career at the DWP, explained Pickel.
“Marcie is one of the few people who has actually worked all the jobs on her way up the ladder,” said Pickel. Edwards steadily worked her way up to become DWP Superintendent of Load Dispatching, Energy Control Center Manager, Manager of Bulk Power Operations/Maintenance, Bulk Power Business Unit Director, and finally Assistant General Manager for the marketing and the customer service business units.
“Marcie Edwards has the toughness and expertise necessary to take on the status quo at the DWP and deliver real, lasting change for DWP customers,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti in his official announcement. “During the mayor’s race, LA voters gave me a mandate to reform the DWP, and with Marcie Edwards, we’re going to make sure the DWP is more efficient, tightly managed, reliable and that costs are cut.”
“I am honored by the opportunity to join Mayor Garcetti’s administration and help drive the changes to this department that both he and the ratepayers are seeking,” said Marcie Edwards. “In my discussions with Mayor Garcetti, he made the mission at hand abundantly clear – to run this Department like a business and leave politics at the door – and that is a mission I will gladly accept.”
Pickel praised the Mayor for his interim appointments who would continue the work during transition period, noting that it could take a month or more to complete the confirmation process. Current DWP Assistant General Manager Jim McDaniel will serve as the acting General Manager until Edwards’ confirmation. Marty Adams will serve as Acting Assistant General Manager of the Water System, replacing Jim McDaniel. Former DWP General Manager David Wiggs has been appointed the Assistant General Manager of the Power System.
He also praised the efforts of retiring General Manager Ron Nichols whom Pickel felt did a “terrific good job of creating a much more transparent department over the past three years.”
The DWP Commission will consider Mayor Garcetti’s recommendation of Edwards at its February 4th meeting. Edwards’ nomination is subject to confirmation by the City Council.