Canadian Electrical Wholesaler

EHRC Leader of the Year Rob ListerFebruary 27, 2019

On February 21, 2019, Electricity Human Resources Canada (EHRC) presented five awards of excellence that recognize leaders powering Canada’s electricity sector in Toronto. EHRC is a not-for-profit organization helping to keep the lights on in Canada by enabling a world-class workforce for the entire electricity industry that is highly skilled, safety-focused, diverse and productive.

This year, the Leader of the Year was awarded to Rob Lister, President and Chief Executive Officer of Oakville Enterprises (shown in photo). Four other awards were issued as follows:

  • Emerging Leader of the Year Award — Courtnay de Rooy, FortisBC
  • Leader of the Innovation in HR Practices – Educational/Training Institution Award — IBEW Local 37 Training Trust Fund
  • Leader of the Innovation in HR Practices – Employer Award — The Workday Implementation Team, Hydro Ottawa
  • Workplace Diversity and Inclusion Award — Sara Phinney, Nova Scotia Power

Lister was celebrated and congratulated by industry peers for his extraordinary achievements, inspirational leadership and dedication to his employees. A leading figure in the energy and infrastructure industry for over 37 years, his visionary leadership ensures that his staff has the drive, opportunity, and skills to contribute to the business’s overall strategy and success.

Speaking on behalf of EHRC, CEO Michelle Branigan had this to say: “Rob Lister is an outstanding leader in our industry who walks the talk on all fronts. His commitment to people and innovation at OEC is beyond question, as is the respect he has garnered from his colleagues across the sector. The performance of his company and his overall contributions to our sector is second to none.”

Find out more about EHRC: https://electricityhr.ca

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 Young Leaders: Taylor Gerrie

Taylor GerrieOn a regular basis, our publications profile members of our industry through their responses to a Q&A. It’s a way of recognizing industry movers and shakers, and helping our readers get to know them better. 

Recently we launched an initiative with Electro-Federation Canada's Young Professionals Network to include profiles of up-and-coming leaders. We provided the list of questions below to Taylor Gerrie, Automation Account Specialist at Gerrie Electric Wholesale Ltd. in Burlington, Ontario. Here are Taylor’s responses.

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Susan Uthayakumar, President of Schneider Electric Canada: Driving Success

Susan UthayakumarBy Owen Hurst

First and foremost, sitting down with Susan Uthayakumar feels more like sitting down and conversing with a friend than conducting an interview with the Canadian president of one of the world’s largest electrical manufacturers. Of course, she exudes the confidence and knowledge her position demands, but equally identifiable are an open and engaging nature.

In a recent sit-down, we learned a little about Susan’s history and what drives her to succeed.

To begin, Susan was born in Sri Lanka and immigrated to Canada at a young age. She went to high school in Canada and attended the University of Waterloo where she earned undergraduate and graduate degrees.

Upon completing university Susan began her working career with Deloitte, which she describes as a great starting point as she was surrounded by highly driven and intelligent individuals. She welcomed being in a position that was demanding and helped nurture a strong work ethic. Her work with Deloitte also instilled a great interest in acquisitions, which would serve her well as her career unfolded.

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CEW 3 Perspective 400

We often learn how to look forward by first looking back, or at the very least we realize that despite our best efforts we have not truly advanced quite so much as we had thought. Sure, technology is rapidly advancing. That’s beyond question. But what about our approach to selling it? Have we changed that much in the last 20, 40, 60 years? Inevitably there have been advances and changes in marketing, the Internet causing the biggest shift, but many of the concerns and directives that have driven the distribution and marketing of industrial electrical products remain, or at least planted the roots of the concerns of manufacturers and distributors today. 

To gain perspective of the perceptions and directions of electrical product distribution in 1960, we turn to Edwin H. Lewis. In 1960 Lewis published “The Distribution of Industrial Electrical Products” in the Journal of Marketing.

To fully define electrical product distribution in 1960, Lewis broke his study into several categories. We will follow his direction and provide his insights on the industry in each of the categories he identified.

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