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Municipal Power Veteran Appointed as New SVCE CEO

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Dec 14, 2017 at 8:00am

SVCE Board of Directors appoints Girish Balachandran as new Community Choice Energy leader for SVCE starting in February 2018

Sunnyvale, Calif. – The Silicon Valley Clean Energy (SVCE) Board of Directors has appointed Girish Balachandran as the new Chief Executive Officer to lead the Community Choice Energy agency serving a majority of Santa Clara County communities. Balachandran has more than 28 years of experience in California utilities, most recently serving as the General Manager of Riverside Public Utilities (RPU). Mr. Balachandran will begin his new position as SVCE CEO in February 2018. 

“As a board, we were thrilled to have found someone with such a deep knowledge of the electric industry, as well as the leadership experience necessary to take Silicon Valley Clean Energy into our next chapter,” said Rob Rennie, SVCE Board Chair. “The CEO recruitment process showed us that working for a Community Choice Energy program is a highly desired position, and we had many impressive candidates. Mr. Balachandran was the best match not only in terms of his experience, but also his shared passion for our work, providing carbon-free electricity at competitive costs.” 

Balachandran is a seasoned veteran of the public power industry. Since joining RPU in 2014, Balachandran initiated a number of innovative and collaborative processes focused on rebuilding aging water and electrical infrastructure, utilizing advanced technology to improve service delivery and customer satisfaction, developing the workforce to meet new skills needed in the utility of the future, and developing business models for the utility to adapt and thrive in an uncertain environment. 

“Community Choice Energy is the future of California’s electric industry. Local control, customer choice and returning value to the community are all the same principles that I have shared throughout my career,” said Balachandran. “I am excited to return to the Bay Area, especially into the heart of Silicon Valley, where I will join a strong team of energy professionals and visionary elected leaders who have the noble mission of advancing a carbon-free future, not only for the region, but for the entire electric grid.” 

Balachandran got his start in public power as an analyst at the City of Pasadena Department of Water and Power. He then moved to Santa Clara County to work for City of Palo Alto Utilities as a Resource Planner. While at City of Palo Alto Utilities, Balachandran gained increasing levels of responsibility and moved into management as the Manager of Supply Resources, and eventually Assistant Director of Utilities, Resource Management.  

Balachandran became the General Manager of City of Alameda, Alameda Municipal Power (AMP) in 2007. As General Manager of AMPBalachandran led a series of changes that resulted in AMP’s #1 rating in residential customer satisfaction after years of steady improvement, bond-rating increase from A- to A+, and selling a failing telecom system to end years of financial losses.  


About Silicon Valley Clean Energy 

Silicon Valley Clean Energy is a community-owned agency serving the majority of Santa Clara County communities by acquiring clean, carbon-free electricity on behalf of residents and businesses. As a public agency, net revenues are returned to the community to keep rates low and promote clean energy programs. Member jurisdictions include Campbell, Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Los Gatos, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Mountain View, Saratoga, Sunnyvale and unincorporated Santa Clara County. SVCE is guided by a Board of Directors, which is comprised of a representative from the governing body of each member community. For more information, please visit 

Media Contact

Pamela Leonard
Community Outreach Manager
(408) 721-5301 x1004

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