Poppe Inspires Employees to Put Michigan Neighbors First

What’s our secret to providing the people of Michigan the energy they need, whenever they need it? Having exceptional employees who are serious about service.

In honor of Careers in Energy Week, we are highlighting Patti Poppe, senior vice president of distribution operations, engineering and transmission at Consumers Energy. Colleagues consider her nothing less than an unwavering visionary who is eager to put customers first.

“Patti is passionate that our customers have a positive experience with us,” said Consumers Energy media relations director Dan Bishop. “That’s why her leadership has proven to cultivate engagement, commitment and enthusiasm among our employees.”

Poppe empowers employees to suggest solutions when told something can’t be done and listens to and evaluates their ideas. To get a sense of the daily hurdles her team faces in keeping our Promise to the people of Michigan, Poppe embarked on a “Let’s DOET (distribution operations, engineering and transmission) Tour” this past year to meet nearly 4,000 employees in her organization at 45 locations across the state. “They’re the ones who head out into the storm to restore power quickly and decisively,” she said. “The tour gave me a chance to share my values and goals and understand our employees’ challenges in serving our customers every day.”

Poppe has also been instrumental in connecting Consumers Energy to the communities we serve. Her initiatives include:

  • Raising awareness and funds for low-income families to have access to heat during frigid winters by championing Walks for Warmth
  • Revitalizing downtown Jackson through launching the Anchor Initiative with Gov. Rick Snyder
  • Preparing the next generation of STEM (science, math, engineering and technology) leaders through supporting Michigan kids in FIRST Robotics and Generation Genius

“When you love what you do, it’s fun to work hard,” says Poppe. The youngest of seven girls, Poppe inherited her love for science and math from her father, Bill Kessler, a nuclear physicist. Her love for learning and helping others do their best comes from her mother, Mary Ann Kessler, a former principal at East Jackson Community Schools.

Read Jackson Magazine’s recent feature story about Poppe at: http://www.jacksonmagazine.com/2/Digital-Editions

To learn more about how you can join our team, visit ConsumersEnergy.com/careers.