Search firm finds Zahn trails other JEA CEO finalists in experience


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A review of the four people vying for the top job at JEA shows interim chief executive officer Aaron Zahn ranks last when it comes to experience and leadership ability.

Those are the findings of Heidrick & Struggles, the high-powered search firm hired to screen the finalists who made the short list for the publicly-owned utility’s chief executive officer job.

Zahn, who was selected by the board to become the interim CEO in April, has made it clear he wants the permanent job at the end of the day. 

However, a series of reports produced by Heidrick & Struggles on each of the candidates shows Zahn trails the rest of the finalists in terms of job experience and organizational leadership.

Other finalists include: Cris Eugster, chief operating officer for San Antonio’s CPS Energy; Frankie McDermott, chief energy delivery officer for Sacramento Municipal Utility District; and Pamela Hill, senior vice president for PowerSecure, Inc.

JEA’s board meets on Nov. 27 and could decide on a new CEO during that meeting.

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