"I don't know how you can focus on the broadness of the city without partnership."

- Paula Gold-Williams, CPS Energy

February 2020, just six weeks ago, almost feels like another lifetime. Paula Gold-Williams CPS Energy president and CEO and I sat on the San Antonio Riverwalk that was bustling with families and tourists taking in the outdoors. Now, the Riverwalk is barren as we all huddle inside our homes to help #flattenthecure of COVID-19.

Paula, a San Antonio native, speaks about the San Antonio community as if everyone is part of the family. The city thrives via partnerships between government, private, academic institutions, non-profits, and start-ups. “I don’t know how you can focus on the broadness of the city without partnership,” she says as we discuss the city’s continuous evolution in the quest to become a city of the future. Right now, San Antonio relies heavily on those existing partnerships to cater to its community during the global pandemic. Forged before the chaos and tested by the unfamiliarity of this particular crisis situation, these partnerships prove San Antonio is a community built on collaboration for the benefit of the community. As Cisco put it, “Partnerships are the core to any Smart City and the common thread of the advancements in San Antonio.”

CPS Energy has created another partnership opportunity through its new global RFP for 900MW of solar bundled with energy storage and firming capacity. The purpose of the RPF is to better serve the community; “We put an RFP out around the globe to see what great ideas we can apply here for the benefit of our customers,” says Paula. The utility is committed to creating a more equitable, liveable environment for all of its customers in the long run. After all, Paula reminds us smart cities aren’t built overnight. This 1:1 interview is made possible by Cisco,