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Chief Operating Officer Named at Blue Ridge Electric
Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corporation has announced that John Coffey has joined the cooperative as Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer.
Lee Layton, who has served as Chief Operating Officer since 2005, is retiring in May, 2017, and will continue working with Blue Ridge Electric as Senior Vice President and Executive Consultant.
At Blue Ridge, Coffey oversees system operations, electric plant, reliability, engineering, customer service, economic development, member and community relations. He will also assist in power supply planning and coordination.
Coffey, with 29 years of electric utility industry experience, comes to Blue Ridge from Shenandoah Valley Electric Cooperative in Virginia where he served as Vice President of Engineering and Operations for the past 11 years. Previously, he worked for Indiana Michigan Power and Kentucky Power, both subsidiaries of American Electric Power, and earlier in his career with Appalachian Power in Virginia.
“We’re excited to welcome John to Blue Ridge, said Chief Executive Officer Doug Johnson. “He will benefit Blue Ridge and those we serve with his breadth of experience to continue our nationally ranked electric reliability and consumer satisfaction efforts as well as community and stakeholder relations. He’ll also be overseeing our expanding energy efficiency and community solar programs,” Johnson said.
In his past roles, Coffey has helped successfully manage a corporate acquisition that more than doubled the utility’s customer base. He also led efforts to improve reliability by 38 percent through system enhancements and outage management efforts and implemented multiple initiatives that significantly improved safety performance.
John is also involved in community service though the Chamber of Commerce, United Way and Rotary.
He holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Liberty University and a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Tennessee Technological University.
John, his wife, Joan, and their children are in the process of relocating to Lenoir.
Blue Ridge Electric is a member-owned electric cooperative serving some 74,000 members in Caldwell, Watauga, Ashe, Alleghany, Alexander, Avery and Wilkes counties. Learn more at www.BlueRidgeEMC.com.