Paul Lau

Chief Grid Strategy & Operations Officer | SMUD

As Chief Grid Strategy & Operations Officer, Paul Lau is responsible for the operations of SMUD’s power markets, transmission and distribution grids, including the Balancing Authority of Northern California (BANC), the development of a holistic smart grid strategy and SMUD’s research & development programs. Departments under his direction include Energy Trading & Contracts, Grid Operations, Grid Planning, Energy Strategy, Research & Development, Distribution System Operations, and Resources & New Business Strategy. He is the executive sponsor for SMUD’s deployment of advanced metering infrastructure and smart grid initiatives.

Prior to this appointment, Lau was the Assistant General Manager of Power Supply & Grid Operations, responsible for overseeing the purchase and sales of SMUD’s gas and electric commodities, the reliability of the electric generation, transmission, and distribution systems, and SMUD’s renewable portfolio standard. Earlier, he served as the Assistant General Manager of Customer, Distribution & Technology, overseeing retail and technology operations, including customer services, energy delivery, energy efficiency, customer renewable programs, telecommunications, and enterprise business applications.

Lau is an Executive Board Member & Commissioner of the Transmission Agency of Northern California and the Balancing Authority of Northern California. He also serves on the board for the Smart Electric Power Alliance. Locally, he is the Past Chair of the Sacramento Asian Chamber of Commerce.

Active in international energy issues, Lau serves as a delegate with the United States Energy Association, where he has helped with electrification, operations, and demand-side management in countries such as Bangladesh, India, and Jordan.

A registered professional electrical engineer in the state of California, Lau has more than 30 years of utility experience. He received his bachelor’s degree in electrical power engineering from California State University, Sacramento. He also is a Senior Fellow of the American Leadership Forum.