CarterBaldwin Recruits CEO for Delaware Electric Cooperative

July 30, 2021 – After a national search, CarterBaldwin Executive Search recently placed Greg Starheim as the new president and chief executive officer of the Delaware Electric Cooperative (DEC), a Greenwood, DE-based not-for-profit utility. Chris Guiney, partner and energy and infrastructure practice leader, led the assignment for the search firm.

Mr. Starheim, who most recently served as senior vice president of business and industry development at the National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corp. (CFC),  replaces longtime CEO Bill Andrew, who has retired.

“The energy industry is currently undergoing an unprecedented transformation. The board is confident that Greg’s expertise will guide the co-op and its dedicated employees through these changes and allow DEC to provide members with energy that is even more reliable, sustainable and affordable,” said board member Michael Brown, who worked closely with CarterBaldwin Executive Search and other board members to select the new leader.

After decades working at General Electric, Mr. Starheim joined the cooperative world in 2003, serving as CEO and general manager of Delaware County Electric Cooperative in New York. From 2012 to 2015, he served as president and CEO of Kenergy Corp., a 56,000-member electric cooperative headquartered in Henderson, KY. He is an expert in power supply, finance and in delivering high levels of customer satisfaction. He brings more than 37 years of experience in the energy industry to DEC.

A Steady Focus

Mr. Starheim now leads a 170-person workforce. “I’m humbled to be given the opportunity to lead DEC,” he said. “The co-op has some of the most innovative and committed employees in the nation and our focus will remain on how to provide clean, affordable power and exceptional service to our 107,000 members.”

“Greg will provide the leadership and vision to ensure DEC continues to be a national leader in renewable energy, conservation and innovation,” said Mr. Andrew. “He is excited to meet our members and visit the communities the co-op proudly powers. DEC and our members will be in good hands.”

Delaware Electric Cooperative is a member-owned electric utility powering more than 107,000 homes, farms and businesses in Delaware’s Kent and Sussex Counties. The organization is a self-regulated cooperative. DEC is also a member of Old Dominion Electric Cooperative, a regional generation and transmission cooperative providing wholesale power and other services to its 11 member cooperatives.

Respected Recruiters

Headquartered in Atlanta, CarterBaldwin provides executive search services in the healthcare, technology, non-profit, consumer services, industrial and media/telecom sectors. Its clients include name-brand institutions, such as KPMG, ADP, Teradata, First Data, Duke University, Pepperdine University, New York Life, Fleet Pride and Berkshire Hathaway. The firm is listed among a variety of rankings published by Hunt Scanlon Media, including its Top 50, Private Equity Power 75, and Top 40 Higher Education Search Firms.

Related: CarterBaldwin Completes Two Top Searches for Christian Organizations

Mr. Guiney’s clients include energy, power, utilities, communications and infrastructure businesses as well as professional services firms. For over 25 years, he has assisted companies with critical team building initiatives including executive search, succession planning, executive effectiveness and organizational design. Before joining CarterBaldwin in 2016, he led global executive search consultancies and has also founded and led his own executive search and leadership consulting firm, the Guiney Group.

CarterBaldwin Places 16th President at Oklahoma Baptist University
CarterBaldwin Executive Search has recruited Heath Thomas as the 16th president of Oklahoma Baptist University (OBU). He will assume his role in January. The search was led by consultant Debby White and founding partner Price Harding.

Dr. Thomas was selected following a nine-month process, which included the partnering of CarterBaldwin and the elected presidential search committee. The committee was chaired by OBU trustee Ben Stewart and included seven additional trustees as voting members, along with four ex-officio, non-voting members representing OBU faculty, alumni, current students and the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma (BGCO).

Last year, CarterBaldwin  placed former Energy Northwest executive Brent Ridge as president and CEO of Dairyland Power Cooperative. He succeeded Barbara Nick who retired after leading Dairyland for five and a half years. Mr. Guiney and consultant Mike Little led this assignment.

“The board is confident that Brent will be an asset to Dairyland’s cooperative membership as we continue to work for safe, sustainable and reliable power in our four-state service area,” said Ed Gullickson, chair of Dairyland’s board of directors. “Brent is well respected as an ethical and transparent leader. He will bring broad strategic, financial and operational expertise gained by working with cooperatives and public power utilities throughout his career.”

Mr. Ridge came to Dairyland with extensive leadership and utility operations experience from Energy Northwest, where he worked since 2002. In his most recent role as vice president, corporate services, and chief financial officer and treasurer, his responsibilities included finance, treasury, enterprise risk management, asset management, human resources, supply chain, information services, and energy services and development. He was also vice chairman of the corporate nuclear safety review board for Columbia Generating Station.

Related: CarterBaldwin Executive Search Tapped by Pepperdine University to Find Chief Diversity Officer

Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media

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