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Satu Katajala Takes Charge as WANO Regional Centre Director, Spearheading Nuclear Safety Initiatives

Satu Katajala Takes Charge as WANO Regional Centre Director, Spearheading Nuclear Safety Initiatives

Satu Katajala’s appointment as the next Paris Centre Director of the World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO) marks a significant milestone in supporting diversity in the nuclear industry.

In a recent announcement, WANO appointed Satu Katajala as the next Paris Centre Director, making her the first woman to head any of the WANO regional centers. This appointment is seen as a significant step towards enhancing diversity within the nuclear industry.

Katajala brings with her more than three decades of experience in nuclear operations and radiation protection. Currently serving as the Vice-President of Nuclear Safety Oversight and International Co-operation at Fortum’s Loviisa nuclear power plant, she has worked in various roles throughout her career.

WANO CEO Naoki Chigusa expressed his delight at Katajala’s appointment, stating that she will be a great asset to WANO and its members. He also highlighted the importance of her leadership during a crucial phase in the development of the Paris Centre. The shared aim is to support members in driving sustainable improvements to all plants and facilities.

Katajala herself expressed her honor at joining WANO as the Paris Centre Director. She emphasized her commitment to working with her colleagues to assess, benchmark, and improve performance through mutual support, information exchange, and emulation of best practices. Her mandate is to continue the successful implementation of Action for Excellence and drive sustainable improvement in the industry’s performance.

WANO is a not-for-profit international organization established in 1989 by nuclear power operators worldwide. It aims to maximize the safety and reliability of nuclear power plants by exchanging safety knowledge and operating experience. With around 430 nuclear units in over 30 countries and areas, WANO’s members operate globally. The Paris Centre, which Katajala will lead, covers 70 nuclear power plant units across 17 countries.

Katajala’s appointment as the first female head of a WANO regional center is a significant step towards promoting diversity in the nuclear industry. It demonstrates the industry’s commitment to inclusivity and creating opportunities for women in leadership positions. With her experience and expertise, Katajala is poised to make a positive impact on the industry’s performance and support its expansion, including the introduction and operation of new technologies such as small modular reactors (SMRs).

Overall, Katajala’s appointment as the next Paris Centre Director of WANO is a milestone in the nuclear industry’s journey towards greater diversity and sustainable improvement. It is a testament to the industry’s recognition of the value that diverse perspectives bring to the table and the importance of inclusivity in driving positive change.

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