Kick-off your DISTRIBUTECH International journey with a riveting keynote session. Each keynoter is hand-selected and brings a unique perspective to shine on the future of energy. Stay tuned for additional speakers.


Debbi Wells
Conference manager
+1 918 832 9265
LinkedIn: Connect with Debbi

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.

Paula Gold-Williams

Paula Gold-Williams

President & CEO - CPS Energy

Paula leads more than 3,000 team members with the vision she has coined, “People First,” whereby CPS Energy is evolving its efforts to create and deliver value to its customers, community, and employees into a new age of energy solutions.

Paula has more than 30 years of leadership experience in San Antonio, including being a Regional Controller for Time Warner’s cable and telephony regional office and the VP of Finance for Luby’s, Inc. before coming to CPS Energy in late 2004.

Over her 14 years at CPS Energy, she has progressively served as Controller & Assistant Treasurer; VP & Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) – Organizational Excellence & Shared Services; EVP, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) & Treasurer; and EVP – Financial & Administrative Services, CFO & Treasurer.

In addition to her role at CPS Energy, Paula currently serves as the 2019 Chair of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, along with participating on countless boards and committees.

Paula has an associate’s degree in fine arts from San Antonio College. She earned a BBA in accounting from St. Mary’s University, as well as a finance and accounting MBA from Regis University in Denver, Colorado. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA).

Sophia Hackford

Sophie Hackford


Sophie is a futurist whose research entails meeting weirdos and troublemakers in off-the-beaten-track labs, makerspaces, garages around the globe - Shenzhen, Seoul, Detroit, Mumbai. As part of her research, she gives talks for executive teams and boards of large companies on the explosive new technologies defining the new economy. She has given more than 140 talks in 30 plus countries for corporate leadership and conferences.

Sophie is also co-founder of a data and artificial intelligence (AI) company, 1715 Labs, spun out of the Astrophysics department at Oxford University with her academic collaborator. This follows a career building businesses for WIRED magazine, for Singularity University at the NASA Research Park in Silicon Valley, and prior to California, the interdisciplinary Oxford Martin School at Oxford University, where Sophie raised more than $120 million of research investment. Sophie is a board member of three early stage tech companies.