California is leading the country in the race against climate change: the state hopes to derive 50 percent of its electricity from renewable resources by 2030. And Cuban-born Geisha Williams is at the helm.
Last year, Williams made history by becoming the first Latina CEO to lead a Fortune 500 company, as president and CEO of the Pacific Gas and Electric Company, California’s largest utility. And Williams oversaw the company as it charged past a goal it had set for 2020 to generate a third of its electricity from renewable sources.
Now Williams is focused on the transportation sector, which she has called the “single biggest opportunity to really make a meaningful impact on reducing greenhouse gases.” California will adopt plug-in electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, and a new electric grid able to integrate the clean-energy technologies.
Williams, who was the first in her family to attend college, was born in Cuba to political dissidents. The family flee to the U.S. in 1967, when Williams was five.
She credits her love of math to the afternoons she spent working in her family’s New Jersey grocery store as a girl, counting money and making change.
Coordination: Jessica Weiss, Olivia Liendo and Allie Jaynes.
Illustrations: Grace Berríos and Jackie Albano.
Web design and development: Juan Jesús Gómez.
Editorial: Nathalie Alvaray, Tamoa Calzadilla, Juliana Jiménez, Douglas Gómez and Rogerio Manzano.
Photo Editing: David Maris.
This story was produced in collaboration with Univision Contigo, Univision's social responsibility team.