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Fortnightly Magazine - October 2011

New Opportunities : Ben Fowke became chairman, president and CEO of Xcel Energy . He succeeds Richard Kelly , who retired after a 43-year career with Xcel and its predecessors. Fowke previously was president and COO.

The Tennessee Valley Authority implemented a transition in the leadership of its nuclear generation development and construction group.  Mike Skaggs , formerly site v.p. at Sequoyah nuclear plant, becomes senior v.p. for NGDC, succeeding Ashok Bhatnagar who retired. John Carlin , who was site v.p. at Constellation’s R.E. Ginna nuclear plant, will be the new site v.p. at TVA’s Sequoyah nuclear plant. 

Alterra Power appointed John Carson as CEO. Carson was executive v.p. of Alterra since early this year when he joined Alterra’s predecessor company Magma Energy. Former CEO Ross Beaty remains executive chairman.

The Galvin Electricity Initiative reallocated leadership responsibilities within the organization, effective immediately. John Kelly will serve executive director, succeeding Kurt Yeager, who will continue to serve the initiative in an advisory role as vice chairman. Michael Galvin will also become vice chairman.

The New York Independent System Operator (NYISO) appointed Tariq N. Niazi as consumer interest liaison. Niazi served as the director of the utility intervention unit and as chief economist of the New York State Consumer Protection Board.

Arch Coal promoted Paul A. Lang to executive v.p., operations. Previously he was senior vice president, operations.

American Electric Power named Keith Darling president of barge transport company AEP River Operations. Previously Darling served as managing director of boat operations.

FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company (FENOC) named John Grabnar director of site operations at the Perry nuclear power plant in Perry, Ohio. Previously Grabnar served in several engineering and supervisory positions.

Foley & Lardner hired Roy P. Lessy, Jr. as a partner in its antitrust practice group and energy industry team. Previously, Lessy was a partner at Patton Boggs, and earlier in his career Lessy served as both the deputy chief hearing counsel and senior antitrust counsel of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

Foley & Lardner hired Charles Schwenck as a partner in the firm’s Los Angeles office, working with the energy practice group and other practices. Previously he was a shareholder at Greenberg Traurig and chair of its energy and natural resources practice. Earlier in his career Schwenck was senior vice president, general counsel and board member at LG&E Power Systems.

Envision Solar International named founder, Bob Noble , as executive chairman, while the current president and COO , Desmond Wheatley , was appointed to succeed him as CEO. Further, Chris Caulson was appointed CFO.

Conservation Services Group (CSG) promoted Sheila M. Daly and Jack Sheehan to vice presidents. Previously, Daly held senior professional services positions with Softrax Corp. and Prior to joining CSG, Sheehan was v.p. and corporate controller of DentaQuest.


Boards of Directors: James H. Lash , president of FirstEnergy Generation and chief nuclear officer for FirstEnergy Nuclear Operating Company, was elected to the board of directors for the Electric Power Research Institute .

Black Hills Corp. elected Steven R. Mills to its board of directors. Mills is the