British Columbia

BC Hydro president stepping down

BC Hydro president and CEO Dave Cobb is stepping down to take a job with the Jim Pattison Group, the company has confirmed.

Dave Cobb leaving to join the Pattison Group after less than 2 years

BC Hydro CEO resigns

11 years ago
Duration 2:11
Dave Cobb revealed he is leaving the Crown corporation less than a week after 300 job cuts were announced, reports the CBC's Stephen Smart

BC Hydro president and CEO Dave Cobb is stepping down to take a job with the Jim Pattison Group, BC Hydro has confirmed.

The Crown corporation confirmed Cobb's resignation after CBC News broke the story on Wednesday morning.

"BC Hydro helped build our province and I've truly been honoured to lead the team during such an exciting and important time in our history," Cobb said in the news release.

"And while I would welcome the opportunity to continue meeting the challenges and opportunities inherent in my role, I've been presented with an unexpected, once-in-a-lifetime career opportunity with another iconic B.C. company."

Energy Minister Rich Coleman said in a release Wednesday that  Cobb's leadership through the Hydro review set the stage for low electricity rates in B.C.

"I want to thank Dave for his dedication and service to BC Hydro," he said in the release.

Doug McKay, the business manager of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, said Dave Cobb was respected by his employees and will be missed.

"He certainly stepped up to the plate on dealing with the safety issues in this corporation. He certainly stepped up and stood behind the employees when the government demanded 1,000 people to be laid off," said McKay.

"In my discussions with him, he didn't believe that should happen ... We needed to run a business and that's what he was trying to do."

Hydro comes under scrutiny

The board says it will appoint an acting CEO shortly and Cobb will remain with the corporation until Nov. 30 to help with the transition while a permanent replacement is sought.

Cobb was appointed CEO of the electrical utility in May 2010, and BC Hydro's operations have come under scrutiny on his watch.

The province recently launched a review aimed at cutting BC Hydro spending by $800 million, forcing Hydro to cut hundreds of jobs. The government panel also halted Hydro's plan to hike rates by 50 per cent.

Before joining BC Hydro, Cobb worked as vice-president of marketing for VANOC during the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver, and the Vancouver Canucks.

The resignation follows the recent announcement by BC Ferries CEO David Hahn that he plans to step down a year before the end of his contract.