Former NES CEO Decosta Jenkins receives APPA’s Exceptional Leadership Award

The American Public Power Association (APPA) recently recognized Decosta Jenkins, retired Nashville Electric Service (NES) President and CEO, with the Alex Radin Distinguished Service Award during the organization’s national conference. The Alex Radin Award is the highest honor granted by APPA and recognizes exceptional leadership and dedication to public power.  

Jenkins came to NES in 1991 and became CEO in 2004. Under Jenkins’ leadership, NES earned a Tree Line USA utility designation for 12 consecutive years and maintained a double-A plus bond rating. Prior to receiving the APPA award, he received APPA’s Reliable Public Power Provider Diamond designation five consecutive times and APPA’s Safety Award of Excellence in 2012 and 2013. Jenkins has also spoken at several APPA conferences and was elected to APPA’s Board of Directors in 2012. He also served on the executive committee and as Board Chair from 2019 to 2020, and on APPA’s CEO Climate Change and Generation Policy Task Force. 

“I am grateful to Decosta Jenkins for everything he has done for me, our organization, and his hometown. In my 15 years at NES, he has mentored me and invested in my professional development. He is a great visionary who has moved NES forward to being an industry leader,” says Teresa Broyles-Aplin, current CEO of Nashville Electric Service. “Decosta is also firmly committed to serving his community. His is an inspiring story about working hard to rise above challenges he faced as a disadvantaged youth to serving as CEO of a large utility. He continues to give of his time and talents to ensure that our youth have the same opportunities.” 

In addition to his longtime affiliation with APPA, Jenkins serves on local, regional, and national committees addressing civic, energy, and climate issues. He is a past board member and vice chair for the Tennessee Valley Public Power Association, serves on the board of Seven States Power Corporation, and is part of the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Customer Planning Council. Decosta retired this year after serving as a strong advocate for public power throughout his tenure.