Investor Spotlight

Karen Hutt photoThis month, we talked to Karen Hutt, President & CEO at Nova Scotia Power, Nova Scotia's primary electricity provider since the early 1900s. 

Tell us about Nova Scotia Power and the greatest opportunities/challenges that lie ahead.

This is an exciting time for Nova Scotia Power. We have placed our customers at the centre of everything we do as a company: we’re focused on delivering more service options, a better customer experience, cleaner energy, and stable power rates. We’re focused on innovation and the future of Nova Scotia. We’ve installed a network of electric vehicle fast-charging stations along the 100-series highway system. We’re testing battery storage at the grid level and in customers’ homes in Elmsdale. We’re leading Canada in reducing carbon emissions. And next year we’ll begin rolling out smart meters, creating a host of new options and service enhancements for Nova Scotia families and businesses. All of this is happening with a close eye on costs. We’re hard at work at implementing new ways to drive efficiency in the business, while at the same time improving service. We have an amazing team who are committed to doing their best for Nova Scotians every day. 

What do you see as the greatest advantages of operating a business in Halifax?

Who wouldn’t want to operate a business in Halifax? Living here, we sometimes take it for granted, but Halifax is an incredible place to call home. The greatest advantage Halifax has is its people. We have an increasingly diverse population. Nova Scotians are creative, compassionate, innovative and hard-working. And thanks to our universities and Nova Scotia Community College, we have a well-educated and highly skilled workforce. Nova Scotia Power has been rooted here since before Confederation with our history tracing back to 1840 with Halifax Gas Light and Water Co. Our parent company, Emera, grew out of Nova Scotia Power, so Halifax is now headquarters to an international energy company, and we couldn’t be more proud. 

Hiring youth is important to the economic growth of Nova Scotia – what is Nova Scotia Power doing?

We couldn’t agree more about the importance of hiring youth. Fueling our talent pipeline is a major priority for us. We currently have 17 young engineers working through our newly launched three-year Engineer in Training program. We have 12 young Nova Scotians in our Powerline Technician Apprenticeship program who just passed their Red Seal exams. We hire 40 to 60 co-op students on terms throughout the year. Those co-op terms sometimes lead to full-time employment after graduation. We have about 40 summer students currently working in our plants and customer care centre. We’re also investing in the education of tomorrow’s leaders through a scholarship program that in 2018 is providing more than $120,000 to 30 post-secondary students across Nova Scotia. New Canadians are crucial to Nova Scotia’s future, too; we have a growing number of newcomers on our team and we are proud to be a designated employer under the Atlantic Immigration Pilot.

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