Empowering Communities

New Year, New COO at ComEd

January 25, 2024

ComEd veteran Dave Perez has risen through the ranks to become the company’s new Chief Operating Officer (COO) as of January 1st following the retirement of Terry Donnelly, ComEd’s most recent COO.

Dave steps into the role after two decades with ComEd, where he interned before graduating from UIC with an engineering degree, working his way from being an intern to his most recent position as Senior Vice President of Distribution Operations. In this role, Dave oversaw distribution operations for ComEd’s more than 11,000 square mile service area, including the construction, operation, and maintenance of more than 5,800 miles of transmission lines and nearly 400 substations.

Dave takes over the role of COO and Executive Vice President at a key time for the company – where he’ll be at the helm of overseeing operational performance for the largest utility in the Midwest, guiding grid readiness to ensure continued safety and reliability, and perhaps most notably, as ComEd prepares its customers for an equitable transition to clean energy in Illinois.

As a first-generation Mexican American, Dave brings a unique and inspiring perspective to his role in leading one of America’s most prominent energy companies. From humble roots, Dave grew up in a two-bedroom apartment with 5 other siblings only a few miles away from Wrigley Field, inevitably becoming a lifelong Cubs fan. He went on to marry a White Sox fan, with whom he raised two children, who all eventually sided with their mom and joined the White Sox fandom.

To learn more about Dave, we sat down with him to discover more about this new leader piloting into a new era of energy:


What do you see as the most significant challenge in the energy industry today, and how do you plan to address it in your role?

Though a positive thing, our biggest challenge today is the rapid pace of the clean energy transition and the electrification of homes, transportation, and industry. ComEd is committed to being a driving force in this transformation, however, we’ll need to be very intentional in how we execute our role so that the outcomes are equitable, and voices are not left unheard.

  • To achieve our goals for customers and the clean energy future, I’m focused on fortifying our partnerships with external stakeholders to bolster training and create opportunities for community members to fill industry roles that are high in demand.
  • Also critical is ensuring our teams are bought into the mission – bonding every individual employee to ComEd’s purpose, mission, and direct impact will keep us centered around the mission of serving our communities as electricity becomes an increasingly essential service.
  • And finally – safety is at the core of who we are and what we do. Under my leadership, ComEd will foster an inclusive work culture of safety and innovation where creativity will sprout new solutions and ideas.


What drives you to lead ComEd and the energy industry through all its challenges?

Impact. When I graduated college, I had the opportunity to go work in Silicon Valley, and although exciting, I remembered my summer internship experiences at ComEd and the purpose it provided as well as the impact it made in our communities’ lives – that, and the Cubs – brought me back to Chicago. I still get calls from community members I met when I worked out in the field who will ask for help when their elderly parent needs to power their medical equipment or when a small business owner needs power to avoid wasting product. The impact we have on society, and the purpose this field of work provides is something you can’t put a price on.


How will the ComEd’s focus on DEI principles impact communities in the years ahead?

We remain committed to attracting, retaining, and developing a diverse workforce that reflects the communities we serve. Including diverse voices in our future plans will deliver the best service, ensuring affordable and equitable service to everyone in our region.


If you could share one key message to ComEd’s customers and stakeholders, what would it be?

We don’t do anything at ComEd if it isn’t for the customer. We’re very much integrated with our communities – every employee is also a customer – which means that every success for ComEd is a success for our customers and vice versa.