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Dawn Roth Lindell Sworn in as Next City Light General Manager and CEO

Today Mayor Bruce Harrell hosted a ceremony at Seattle City Hall to officially swear in Dawn Roth Lindell as Seattle City Light’s next General Manager and Chief Executive Officer. Seattle City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday, June 4, to confirm Lindell’s appointment. With this confirmation, Lindell becomes only the third woman to lead the 114-year-old public electric utility. Lindell brings more than 25 years of experience in the utility industry, having served in executive leadership roles in Colorado and California.

“I am honored to be Seattle City Light’s next General Manager and CEO,” said Lindell. “I want to extend my gratitude to Mayor Harrell and the Seattle City Council for putting their faith in me to serve in this role. This is an amazing organization made up of hardworking, dedicated professionals at every level, working together to safely provide affordable, reliable and environmentally sound energy for its customers. I can’t wait to continue the work that I’ve started to make a real impact for the City of Seattle and City Light.”

Lindell was nominated by Mayor Harrell in December 2023 following an extensive search by an 11-member selection committee that reviewed top candidates from across the country. Members of the committee represented business, housing, labor, environmental, and energy leaders, many with experience in clean energy and environmental justice.

“I am confident that Ms. Lindell will serve the City of Seattle through visionary leadership, collaboration, and commitment to quality customer service,” said Mayor Bruce Harrell. “She has the expertise, leadership, and vision to ensure quality, reliable, and affordable services to our residents and to accelerate our clean energy efforts as we build healthy communities now and, in the future.”

Lindell comes to Seattle from Burbank, Calif., where she served as the General Manager of Burbank Water and Power. Prior to her executive leadership role at the Burbank utility, Lindell was the Senior Vice President and Rocky Mountain Regional Manager for the Western Area Power Administration in Lakewood, Colorado. There she set strategic direction for more than 400 federal and contract employees of the Rocky Mountain Region for power marketing in 4 states, grid maintenance in 6 states and grid operation in 10 states with a $400 million+ annual budget. Over her career, she has focused on increasing environmental sustainability in collaboration with community, improved technology strategy and innovation, led disaster management and recovery, developed effective diversity, equity and inclusion programs, and transformed utility teams into high performing organizations.

“I share Mayor Bruce Harrell’s belief that Dawn is a true champion of the customer experience, and I am proud to have supported her confirmation. Her strong commitment to environmental stewardship and climate action is evident in everything she does,” said Councilmember Tanya Woo, chair of City Council’s Sustainability, City Light, Arts & Culture Committee. “Dawn leads with a vision that embraces sustainability, innovation, and responsibility. It is clear that her decisions are consistently guided by principles of equity and accountability, values that are crucial to the progress and well-being of our community.” 

Lindell assumes leadership at City Light at a time of great challenge and opportunity in the energy industry. Clean-energy goals across the nation have placed incredible cost pressures on renewable resources. While electrification is critical to decarbonization, it’s increasing City Light’s load forecast sooner than planned. Extreme weather events are driving spikes in energy demand that strain electricity supply. 

“I am excited to lead City Light in rising to meet these challenges through innovation and investment. I look forward to continuing to get to know the customers and communities we serve and building partnerships with industry leaders as a foundation for the work ahead. And we will do this work while ensuring that everyone can access and benefit from the transition to a clean energy future.”