Grand Valley Power names new manager

Thomas Walch

A lawyer who’s worked for a Texas electrical cooperative for more than a decade is expected to take over next year as the new general manager of Grand Valley Power.

Thomas Walch has been hired as executive vice president and general manager of the Grand Junction-based not-for-profit electric distribution cooperative. Walch succeeds Jack Broughton, who plans to retire in February after serving as general manager for 22 years.

Walch will be only the seventh person to lead Grand Valley Power since the cooperative was formed in 1936, the first of its kind in Colorado.

Dennis Haberkorn, president of the Grand Valley Power board of directors, announced the selection. Haberkorn said Walch was hired following a nationwide search on the basis of his background and industry experience as well as personal traits that make him a good fit with the co-op.

“Tom is a trusted and well-respected leader, and we know that under his direction, we will continue our mission of serving our members with reliable energy at the lowest possible cost,” Haberkorn said. “Tom has strong moral convictions with the highest integrity and has a deeply rooted value system that I believe aligns perfectly with our membership.”

Walch said he’s looking forward to working with the Grand Valley Power board and staff as well as getting to know members of the co-op. “My goal is to develop a strong relationship of trust and mutual respect so that together we can meet the challenging times ahead for Grand Valley Power.”

GVP employs 42 people and provides electric power to a total of 17,000 members in Mesa, Delta and Garfield counties.

Walch has worked since 2000 with the Central Texas Electric Cooperative as in-house general counsel and director of administration. Before that, Walch operated his own law practice for eight years.

Walch holds a bachelor’s degree from Angelo State University and a law degree from St. Mary’s University Law School, both in San Antonio.

Walch said he brings to his new position experience in all aspects of electric  cooperative operations along with a commitment to the cooperative business model.

“Over the years, I have developed strong communication skills that will enable me to develop the cooperative’s message and serve as an effective spokesman for the cooperative,” he added.