National Association Taps New CEO - Carolina Country

National Association Taps New CEO

National Association Taps New CEO

Former U.S. Rep. Jim Matheson has been selected as CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association (NRECA), the national service organization for America’s electric cooperative network. Matheson assumed duties as the organization’s sixth chief executive officer last month, succeeding Jo Ann Emerson.

“On behalf of the NRECA Board of Directors, we are pleased to welcome Jim to our national electric cooperative network,” said NRECA secretary-treasurer and Roanoke Electric Cooperative CEO Curtis Wynn. “His experience within both Congress and the energy industry brings valuable perspective to the national issues our industry is facing.”  

Before joining NRECA, Matheson served as a principal at a Washington, D.C.-based law firm, following service in the U.S. House of Representatives from 2001 to 2015 — where he was a member of the House Energy & Commerce Committee. Before being elected to Congress, Matheson worked in the energy industry for several years. He was a project development manager in the independent power industry. He worked at two consulting companies, including his own firm, providing services to large energy consumers.

“The industry that electric cooperatives are operating in is growing increasingly complex,” said Joe Brannan, CEO of North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives. “Between new consumer-focused technology, distributed generation, cyber security considerations and uncertain emissions regulations, this is an unprecedented time of change. I have no doubt that what Jim brings to the table will help us in turning these changes into opportunities for electric co-ops and our members.”

Matheson was born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. He attended public schools in Salt Lake City, received a Bachelor’s Degree in Government from Harvard University, and an MBA in Finance and Accounting from UCLA.

“I am excited by the opportunity to lead NRECA and to continue to build on its remarkable record of service to its members,” Matheson said. “I am honored to be associated with this member-driven organization that has a strong reputation for quality and integrity. I look forward to working collaboratively with all of the cooperative community as we look to the future.”

Jeffrey Connor has been serving as interim CEO for NRECA on behalf of Emerson, who was stricken with a cerebral hemorrhage in August 2015.

“It has been a great honor for me to serve NRECA as interim CEO,” Connor said at a summer NRECA board meeting. “Thank you for the trust you have placed in me. It has been a gratifying experience to represent our employees and a humbling experience to represent our members. But most of all, thank you for asking me to continue to drive the agenda Jo Ann set for us.”

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