KANSAS CITY, Missouri — Meghan Calabro has been promoted to Director of Distribution Modernization, a new business group within Burns & McDonnell’s Transmission & Distribution (T&D) division. As leader of this multi-discipline group, Calabro will oversee teams that will provide engineering, construction and project management services in addition to data analytics tools, technologies and predictive modeling for utilities and others in the power delivery industry.
“The pace of change within the power industry is accelerating and we’re definitely seeing a shift in investment from high-voltage, transmission lines and substations to investments in lower voltage distribution systems serving the ‘last mile’ of the power grid,” says John Olander, President of the Burns & McDonnell Transmission & Distribution division. “We are shifting the focus of Meghan’s team to work with utilities and others in the industry to help them develop plans and execution strategies that will help them respond to these unprecedented changes.”
Prior to her promotion, Calabro managed the Networks, Integration & Automation department, where she led a department of more than 100 engineers, drafters, designers, specialists and field employees. In that role her department helped electric utilities build out reliable, secure, private communications infrastructure. She also was recently promoted to Principal within the T&D division.
“The electric power industry is transforming rapidly,” Calabro says. “It is being driven by a range of generation sources distributed remotely throughout the grid along with growing numbers of electric vehicle charging stations, the emergence of microgrids and a host of other changes that are driving a need for large-scale investments in the power distribution systems.”
Calabro and her team will utilize a new Burns & McDonnell Integration and Automation Lab that was built at the firm’s world headquarters in Kansas City, Missouri, in 2017 to enable real-time testing of advanced equipment that utilities are incorporating into their power grids. The testing and modeling results from this laboratory will help many of Burns & McDonnell’s utility clients plan for the impact of expected two-way power flows resulting from a huge influx of renewable and conventional power sources being installed at load centers on their distribution grids.
In addition, the distribution system of the future will need to accommodate expected load growth created by thousands of electric vehicles (EVs) charging on their systems. For example, new EV charging networks will need to accommodate new methods of utility/customer interactions based on the localized charging environments. Results from testing and modeling performed by Calabro’s group will drive solutions for electric utility clients, cities, electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) providers, automakers, and a range of other large commercial and industrial clients who are deploying charging infrastructure at scale.
Calabro holds a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, as well as a master’s degree in business administration (MBA) from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln.
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