John D. Hewa is REC's President and Chief Executive Officer. Hewa has more than 20 years of leadership experience in the electric utility industry with an emphasis in technology and management of public and cooperative power utilities. His experience also spans technical and executive roles managing electric, water, wastewater, and wireless and fiber optic telecommunications systems.
Hewa holds a deep appreciation for the cooperative business model. He has served as the CEO of electric cooperatives in Texas and Florida and as vice president of research, engineering, and technical services at the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA) in Arlington, Virginia. At NRECA, Hewa and his teams worked to advance the adoption of beneficial smart grid technologies among the nation's electric cooperatives focusing on reliable, resilient and clean and distributed energy tech adoption. At NRECA, he also worked with federal agencies including the RUS and DOE to address co-op technical regulatory issues. Prior to his cooperative career, Hewa managed the utilities department for the City of Manassas, Va. and served as director of engineering for BTES, an electricity distributor in the Tennessee Valley region.
Hewa serves as immediate past chairman of the Board of Directors of the U.S. Energy Storage Association, a non-profit organization in Washington, working with utilities, industry, and stakeholders to promote the adoption of energy storage technologies. From 2013-2020, he also served on the Board of Directors of the Smart Electric Power Alliance, an educational non-profit headquartered in Washington, DC, working to advance the integration of clean energy solutions and smart technologies into the grid. Hewa is a director on the Board of the Virginia Chamber of Commerce looking out for Virginia's businesses interests, and is a Board member of the Fredericksburg Regional Alliance, and Fredericksburg Regional Chamber of Commerce promoting economic development across the region.
Hewa holds a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering and a Master of Science in engineering management from the University of Tennessee. He also earned his Doctor of Engineering at George Washington University focusing on engineering management, researching and modeling energy storage for electric cooperatives in the PJM structured wholesale electricity market. Hewa is a registered professional engineer.