Chris Jimenez joined ACES in 2011 as an associate hourly trader at the company’s West Regional Trading Center (RTC) in Benson, Arizona. In January 2017, he was promoted to Portfolio Director, with the responsibility of managing the front office trading operations at ACES’ West RTC in Benson, Arizona.
Just days before taking on his new role, Chris became a new dad.
“My daughter, Loli, was born December 28, 2016,” Jimenez said, “and I started my new role at ACES shortly thereafter.” Talk about a life-changing moment — or two. “There’s certainly a lot of change happening for me at the moment,” he chuckled.
“I oversee the day-ahead and real-time energy markets for portfolios of our Members and Customers in the West. I help our traders analyze their decisions about various portfolios. I also support the company’s ongoing business implementations and the development of our traders.”
Chris has always had an interest in the energy industry. Holding a degree in business management from the University of Arizona, he took the opportunity to join the ACES team when it opened the West RTC in 2011. He worked a little over a year as an associate hourly trader before he moved into the hourly trader and day-ahead trader positions.
As a trader, Chris helped expand ACES’ business opportunities. Moving up the ladder at an accelerated pace, Chris became a senior trader and then took on his first management position as manager of real-time operations.
“After being the manager of real-time operations, I was promoted to portfolio director. As the portfolio director, I lead the team that manages the portfolios of ACES’ Members and Customers in the West. What I really enjoy, though, is working with our traders, working through our goals collectively and learning from them.”
Chris is also learning other new things — like how to change diapers. “I’ve always liked kids, but this is definitely an adjustment,” he said. “I enjoy trying to make my daughter laugh, making funny faces to try to coax her to smile. Being a dad has completely changed my perspective on life.”
Although Chris’ perspective has changed, his preference for reading material has not. “My wife, Maria, asks me to read to Loli before bed, so I read business economics books to her. My wife asked me why I can’t just read a children’s book, but I like to use that opportunity to do some reading myself,” he laughed.
What is Loli’s reaction? She likes the graphs. Plus, business books help her go to sleep.
“I’m grateful my wife is able to stay at home with Loli — she gets to enjoy quality time with our daughter. My wife and I have known each other since we were very young, and we dated for several years before we got married. She’s been there for me all these years, through the ups and downs of work and life. She has supported me the whole way, and she continues to support me every day.”
Coming from a humble background helps Chris keep the focus he has today. “The energy industry affects a lot of people, and I find it worthwhile to be a part of something that is so impactful to people across the country and the world,” he said. “I appreciate the altruistic views ACES has as a company. We strive to make a difference in the communities we serve, doing what we can to keep electricity costs down. We also started an initiative a few years ago to provide assistance to families served by our Members that may be struggling to pay their bills.”
“ACES manages multiple portfolios in many different regions across the country. We have a very unique business model and provide services to a diverse Member and Customer base, including cities, electric cooperatives, municipalities, banks, and electrical districts. Especially in the West, there are new and developing markets, as well as established markets, and I like that we get the opportunity to interact with all of them,” said Chris.
Chris would like to see the West RTC continue to expand, especially into new markets.
“I also want to help my staff develop, both professionally and personally,” he said. “I want to be supportive and help them grow as individuals.”
While he helps his staff grow, he’s also helping his daughter grow. “Seeing her learn and get to know her surroundings is truly amazing. It’s a joy and honor to be able to be part of her life.”