Obama names LaFleur, reappoints Moeller to FERC

President Obama has nominated utility executive Cheryl A. LaFleur and renominated Commissioner Philip D. Moeller to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

The nominations of LaFleur, a Democrat, and Moeller, a Republican must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate. In January, the Senate confirmed Obama’s nomination of Iowa Democrat John R. Norris to the commission. (HydroWorld 1/4/10)

LaFleur was nominated March 8 to succeed Commissioner Suedeen Kelly, a New Mexico Democrat, who announced in September 2009 she would not accept nomination to a third term.

LaFleur has more than 20 years’ experience as a leader in the electricity and gas industries, retiring in 2007 as executive vice president and acting chief executive of National Grid USA. The former New England Electric System, National Grid USA delivers electricity to 3.4 million customers in the Northeast. LaFleur helped lead the company through several regulatory and corporate transformations.

Since retiring from National Grid, LaFleur has served as a non-profit board member and leader. She has a doctorate in law from Harvard, was editor of the Harvard Law Review, and worked as a lawyer for Ropes and Gray in Boston from 1978-1986.

Obama also renominated Moeller, a Washington Republican, to the commission. Moeller was named to the commission by President George W. Bush in 2006, serving a term slated to expire in June 2010.

Prior to joining the commission, Moeller worked in Washington, D.C., for Alliant Energy Corp. and Calpine Corp. From 1997-2000, he was energy policy adviser to Sen. Slade Gorton, R-Wash. Before joining Gorton he was staff coordinator to the Energy Committee of the Washington State Senate.

No more than three members of the same political party may serve on the five-member commission. Democrats will include Chairman Jon Wellinghoff, Norris, and LaFleur. Republicans include Moeller and Marc Spitzer of Arizona.

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