Antoine Lucas

Director of Transmission Planning

Southwest Power Pool Inc.

Little Rock

Age: 38

Antoine Lucas

Even as a youngster entranced by sports, Antoine Lucas dreamed of designing sleek machines. He never got to build cars, but his job at Southwest Power Pool in Little Rock provides him the perfect playground. “The power grid is the biggest machine on earth.”

Lucas’ job “is essentially maintaining the power system’s transmission infrastructure,” and his 34-member team is responsible for planning to meet future energy demands for SPP. Based in Little Rock, the company oversees the grid and wholesale power markets for utilities and transmission companies in 14 states. “It can be challenging, but we have a great team here,” he said.

After childhood in Lake Providence, Louisiana, along the Mississippi just south of the Arkansas line, Lucas earned an engineering degree at Louisiana Tech in Ruston. A summer internship with Entergy changed his path, and he worked for six years with Entergy in Pine Bluff before shifting to SPP.

Management, he said, “is a whole different ballgame requiring a different skill set.” He loves life with his wife and daughter in Little Rock, which strikes him as a “big city” after his small-town upbringing. The family welcomed a son last month.

His business philosophy? “How we do what we do determines the sustainability of our success.”