By Teresa Waugh
Following the March 12 departure of Mark A. Gabriel, Tracey LeBeau became WAPA’s administrator and CEO. Closed Circuit welcomes LeBeau in her new capacity.
What is your most rewarding experience at WAPA thus far?
The honor and opportunity to be the interim administrator and CEO for WAPA. I use “for” intentionally instead of “at,” and all that it signifies.
It is certainly a unique time to step into this role. The continuing pandemic will require maintaining focus and planning to ensure employee health and safety, as well as continually sharpening our tools to aid in productivity for our largely remote employees and field crews.
We are also facing exciting opportunities to launch new partnerships while remaining resolute in our relationships with customers, stakeholders and the communities we serve. Continuing these pathways will be imperative and rewarding.
What is something most people do not know about you?
I grew up and lived all over the United States. I went to Alameda High School, just down the street from WAPA Headquarters.
Even now when I’m in Lakewood, I will find an ’80s station and reflect back on new wave mixtapes, hanging out at Southwest Mall and cruising my stick shift sedan down Alameda Parkway. Good times. And full-circle moments.
What are you reading right now? Do you have a favorite author?
I’m a toggler. I tend to have a few books going at the same time, usually fiction but every now and then I may sneak in an autobiography or something reality based.
I just started Stephen King’s The Institute. I really enjoy the horror genre. I’m also reading Doing Justice: A Prosecutor’s Thoughts on Crime, Punishment, and the Rule of Law by Preet Bharara. It’s hard to pick a favorite author so I’ll name two: Elizabeth Gilbert and Richard Russo.
What is your communication style? Is there anything employees should know up front?
I really enjoy conversations and getting to know people’s backgrounds, interests and ideas. I am a listener first.
As for taking in complex issues, I suspect it is my law background, but I have an appreciation for written briefs. Getting context and understanding authorities helps me organize my thinking as a starting place as I work through a business case.
I fully understand I just made my Office of General Counsel colleagues smile and my engineering colleagues probably frown. But, in fairness, I do genuinely admire a good transmission map and single-line diagram attachments.
Would you tell us about your current home coworkers?
My husband is a golf-teaching professional, so he enjoys an outdoor, out-of-the-house workplace.
Last fall, we fostered a Siamese cat while the rescue found her forever home. When she left, the house seemed so quiet, so we recently adopted a teenage tortie cat and are thoroughly enjoying her occasional photobombing of my Teams meetings.
What would you say motivates or drives your success as a leader?
It’s hard to pin down, but one thing that has definitely propelled my entire career is intellectual curiosity. It can get you to the cores of issues and ask all of the whys, and it naturally facilitates diversity of thought which, in my experience, can be its own benefit.
Note: Waugh is WAPA’s chief public affairs officer.
Last modified on September 12th, 2023