LEA 2023 The Hollis Smith Legacy Award

The Hollis Smith Legacy Award

Dennis Thurston

Supplier Diversity Program Manager
Southern California Edison

Dennis J. Thurston, a 36-year employee of Southern California Edison (SCE), beginning in August of 1987 serving in his current capacity as a Supplier Diversity Program Manager for 25 years assisting small and diverse businesses understand the Company’s general procurement practices and procedures.

Prior to SCE, Mr. Thurston worked at Consolidated Edison in New York bringing 12 years of experience with him.

In 2021, Dennis received the 2021 Corporate Advocate of the Year Award from the Southern California Minority Development Council.

In 2018, Dennis received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Native American Indian Chamber of Commerce of California for outstanding work within the Native American business community and tribal leaders.

The U.S. Small Business Administration, Santa Ana District Office selected Dennis as the 2017 Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year for his devotion to the success and advancement of Veterans in business in his professional capacity at SCE and his personal life.

During the 2017 Inaugural Veterans In Business (VIB) Network National Conference, Dennis Thurston received the Above & Beyond Bravo Zulu Award recognizing Veteran Business Advocates that go Above & Beyond to help the Veteran business community grow and succeed.

In 2016 Dennis was nominated for the State Agency Recognition Awards (SARA) given by the Department of General Services.

In recognition of his contributions as a role model of Edison International’s values and guiding behaviors of integrity, continuous growth and improvement, excellence, respect, and teamwork, Dennis was awarded the Chairman’s Award, now the Edison Award in 2009.  Edison selects only 40 employees out of over 15,000 for the first of the prestigious award. 

Mr. Thurston still volunteers for many community activities geared toward mentorship and guidance of small and diverse businesses in the areas of career, jobs, and starting businesses.

For the past 28 years, served as an off-ice official for the National Hockey League (NHL) assigned to the Anaheim Ducks and Dennis represented the NHL at the first ever game played outside North America in Japan, Helsinki, and Berlin.

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