dylan underwood speaking with another SWPA team member

Dylan Underwood (right) talks with Accounting Officer Jason Gray during a June 2022 meeting of SWPA Managers and Senior Staff.

Dylan Underwood was named Director of Southwestern’s Division of System Protection and Communications (SP&C) in March 2022.  His promotion followed the December 2021 retirement of long-time Director Doug Johnson.

Underwood began his career at Southwestern as a student trainee in SP&C in February 2012. After graduating from college with a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology, he was converted to a full-time electrical engineering position.

He served as an Electrical Engineer for Southwestern from May 2013 until July 2019, during which time he became a Contracting Officer Technical Representative and licensed Professional Engineer and worked on a variety of projects involving protective relaying and related communications equipment replacements. Underwood also served as a subject matter expert for multiple North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) compliance standards pertaining to system protection.

In July 2019, Underwood accepted a position as Senior Operations Planning Engineer at Associated Electric Cooperative Corporation, Inc. (AECI), where he became a NERC-certified System Operator. During his time at AECI, he supported real-time operations by performing power flow studies, developing operational guides, ensuring the accuracy of system equipment ratings, and supporting state estimator modeling and real-time contingency analysis functionality.

Underwood returned to Southwestern as an Electrical Engineer in November 2021.

As head of the SP&C Division, Underwood lists the following top priorities to support Southwestern’s mission and provide system connectivity to facilitate the flow of mission-critical data:
•    Work safely for the protection of ourselves and others
•    Ensure protective relaying and related equipment reliably protect, control, and monitor Southwestern’s facilities
•    Ensure that communications systems perform in a reliable and resilient manner

Underwood says he is excited about the Director position.

“I am both humbled and honored to have the opportunity to lead such a diverse and highly skilled group of individuals, including engineers, electronics technicians, and meter/relay craftsmen,” Underwood says. “With the support of this Division’s expertise in system protection and communications, I’m looking forward to pursuing important innovations that support the reliability and security of our system.”