Lead Contract Specialist
In 2013, Kasia Haynes was looking for a new career opportunity. She had
spent most of her professional career as a fashion buyer and merchandiser,
and was working for an international freight forwarding company when
she heard about an open position in ACES’ Contracts department. “I knew
nothing about the energy industry, but my friend who worked at ACES
assured me that I could learn what I needed to be successful in the role,”
Kasia recalls. “I was nervous about making such a big career change, but
I’m so happy I decided to apply and so grateful I was hired. It was the best
career decision I have ever made.”
Kasia is now a Senior Contract Specialist at ACES, spending most of her
time helping ACES’ Members and Customers negotiate various contracts
and monitor counterparty agreements. “Our Members and Customers
have a variety of contracts with various counterparties that allow them to
transact for power, natural gas, and other physical and financial products,”
Kasia explains. “There are a handful of basic agreements that are used
across the industry. We often help to negotiate special contract provisions
or to change language that might not pertain to a particular Member or
Customer. We work with so many different contracts and counterparties and understand why entities want certain provisions and whether or not what they ask for is commonly accepted. It allows us to help our Members and Customers make decisions that are in their best interests,” she adds.
“It’s rare that you find a job where you love the people you work with and the people you work to serve each day. The knowledge that ACES has inside its walls is incredible and I cannot overstate how appreciative I am to have such wonderful people to learn from. It is not an exaggeration to say that I learn something new every single day,” Kasia adds.
Another aspect of ACES that Kasia appreciates is community involvement. She has been involved with the Community Involvement and Employee Recreation Committee (CIERC) for several years and now acts as the team’s secretary. “I love event planning and opportunities to engage with more people at ACES. CIERC offers a lot of great opportunities for employees to engage with their communities,” Kasia says. Kasia is also involved with the Women’s International Network of Utility Professionals (WiNUP), which she says allows her to meet and network with a lot of women in various roles in the industry.
Outside the office, Kasia loves to travel. “My family and I love to go camping and hiking. We have a 35-foot travel trailer that we take to state parks across the U.S. We always try to go somewhere new and love exploring all of the beautiful parks,” Kasia exclaims. Kasia is also an avid music fan and travels to see various country, bluegrass, and folk groups perform. “We have some
really great venues in Indianapolis, but my husband and I love traveling to places like Tennessee to see shows at some really iconic or interesting venues, like the Caverns or the Ryman,” says Kasia.
Photography is another of Kasia’s passions, one that she pursues semi-professionally. “I started getting into photography after my son was born. My specialty is portrait photography and I love doing family portraits, senior pictures, and child portraits,” says Kasia.
Kasia is always seeking new experiences and opportunities to learn and grow and encourages other employees to take advantage of the opportunities ACES offers. “There are so many ways to be more involved at ACES. The more you can do to get to know people and what they do, the better you will understand the big picture of what ACES does. If you can get outside your comfort zone, you are bound to find opportunities,” says Kasia.
Her obvious desire to learn and improve is just one of many traits that make Kasia an ideal fit for ACES.
*Note that since being published, Kasia has been promoted to Lead Contract Specialist*