Dominion Energy named top 10 utility company

Site Selector Magazine recently named utility company Dominion Energy as one of the top 10 utility companies fostering economic development.

The publication cited several reasons for this recognition, including the Dominion economic development team, which helped bring in more than $2.7 billion in corporate facility investments, which in turn supported 3,615 new jobs in its footprint last year.

Additionally, the company’s growing list of data center sites, renewable energy initiatives -- such as solar generation and offshore wind developments -- and its involvement in the Atlantic Coast Pipeline project also were acknowledged.

"Creating economic opportunities while focusing on delivering safe, reliable and cost-effective electricity continues to be Dominion's mission in the areas we serve in Virginia and northeastern North Carolina," Paul Koonce, president of Dominion Virginia Power, told Power News Wire. "By attracting new economic growth in an extremely competitive environment, we help create sought-after opportunities that appeal to domestic and international companies seeking to establish business in our core regions." 

Teamwork at Dominion Energy is a major contributor to the Richmond, Va.-based giant’s success, Charles Donato, Dominion’s director of economic development, said.

Donato recently answered questions from Power News Wire about the national recognition as well as future plans. The following discussion has been edited for length and clarity.

Question: What does this recognition mean to Dominion?

Donato: We're very honored to receive this recognition. There are excellent, professional economic developers and economic development organizations throughout the nation -- we've met many of them through organizations like the Utility Economic Developers Association. This means Dominion is recognized as a company that represents its core values (Safety, Excellence, Ethics and Teamwork). Now the challenge is to stay successful in an incredibly competitive environment.

Question: What has contributed to the company's success in this area?

Donato: Great teamwork from Dominion employees and equally great teamwork in economic development by our state, regional and local partners.

Teamwork at Dominion means that when all employees work well together toward common performance goals, it results in our customers enjoying one of the most-reliable, low-cost energy systems in the country.

This is a great sales feature for us on the economic development team. And we can never forget that we are always part of a team with the communities we are fortunate to serve with our energy products.

The professionals in economic development throughout our footprint are the best in the business, and much of our success is in their hands. We know most companies don't move or locate based solely on energy criteria -- it is the "total package" that lands the deal.

Question: What are the company’s future plans regarding economic development?

Donato: First, we plan to continue to help develop the economic development capacity in our service area. We already certify potential data center sites, for instance.

Second, we will continue to focus on new opportunities like the proposed Atlantic Coast Pipeline project, which if approved, will add another tremendously important fuel to our footprint area's marketing mix.

Our economic development partners all know that adding a large, reliable supply of low-cost natural gas to our mix of a great workforce, great transportation systems and a strong quality of life can equal future success.

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