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Mainzer is named BPA administrator

From the January 28, 2014 issue of Public Power Daily

Originally published January 28, 2014

By Jeannine Anderson
The Department of Energy announced yesterday that Elliot Mainzer has been appointed administrator of the Bonneville Power Administration, effective immediately. Mainzer had been BPA’s acting administrator since July 2013.

"Now, more than ever, BPA needs strong leadership, and I’m pleased that Elliot Mainzer has been promoted to serve as administrator of this critical agency," said Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash. "Like everyone, I’ve been extremely concerned by findings of illegal hiring practices at BPA, but I’m confident that Elliot has the ability to correct those issues and continue working closely with DOE while protecting BPA’s unique authority to provide reliable, low-cost power for the Northwest."

Mainzer "is the right choice at a difficult time for the BPA," said Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. "He has taken strong steps to address discrimination in veteran hiring, which was one of my main concerns. He will also provide much needed stability as BPA works to get back on its feet and win back the public’s trust. I appreciate the steps the Department of Energy has taken to preserve BPA's unique place as an independent agency, rooted in the Northwest. Naming Elliot as a permanent administrator is an important signal to the region that the department is committed to continuing that independence."

"Elliot has the skills to lead BPA into the future," said Scott Corwin, executive director of the Public Power Council, which represents consumer-owned electric utilities that purchase power from BPA.

"It is helpful to see BPA moving toward stability," Corwin said.  "This is a useful step, and Elliot will have a good team working with him." The Public Power Council "looks forward to continuing to work well with him in his new capacity on the many challenges facing our industry."

"I am excited to work with our employees, customers and constituents, state, local and tribal governments, and the Northwest congressional delegation to meet the energy and environmental challenges facing the Northwest," said Mainzer.

Mainzer was appointed acting deputy administrator at Bonneville in February 2013 and was named acting administrator last July. He has been with BPA since 2002 and has held a variety of other management positions within BPA’s power, transmission and corporate organizations, including trading floor manager, manager of transmission policy and strategy and executive vice president of corporate strategy.

Mainzer led BPA’s strategic planning and asset management programs, and provided policy direction for BPA’s work on renewable resource integration and technology innovation. He has also provided leadership and coordination of significant regional initiatives, including the Northwest Wind Integration Action Plan in 2007, the Northwest Power Pool Members’ Market Assessment and Coordination Initiative and, as acting administrator, served as chair of the U.S. Entity for the Columbia River Treaty.

Mainzer received an undergraduate degree in geography from the University of California at Berkeley and master’s degrees in business and environmental studies from Yale University. He lives in Portland, Ore.


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Senior Vice President, Publishing 
Jeanne Wickline LaBella

Editorial Director
Robert Varela

Editor, Public Power Daily
Jeannine Anderson

Communications Assistant
Fallon W. Forbush

Manager, Integrated Media 
David L. Blaylock

Integrated Media Editor 
Laura D’Alessandro