America’s Natural Gas Alliance (ANGA) last Wednesday announced that Martin J. Durbin, a top lobbyist at the American Petroleum Institute (API), has been named president and CEO, effective May 1. Durbin comes to ANGA after serving as executive vice president at API, where he led advocacy efforts on behalf of the oil and gas industry (see related story).

Durbin, the nephew of Sen. Richard Durbin (D-IL), will succeed Regina Hopper, who resigned from ANGA in late February under pressure from the board (see NGI, Feb. 11). Durbin has been executive vice president of government affairs for the API since December 2009. Exports of liquefied natural gas and federal regulation of hydraulic fracturing are the two main issues that he is expected to tackle when he comes to ANGA.

Prior to joining API, which represents some of the nation’s largest oil and gas producers, Durbin was vice president of federal affairs at the American Chemistry Council and also had been senior legislative assistant for former Democratic Rep. Rick Boucher of Virginia.

“Marty comes to us with deep industry knowledge, nuanced understanding of the needs of our key demand audiences, and the ability to ‘hit the ground running’ as we seek to build on the momentum the board established over the first several years of this organization,” wrote ANGA Chairman Steve Farris in an email to member companies. Farris is CEO of Apache Corp.

Durbin is “highly respected among his peers and well-liked within the current administration and on both sides of the aisle on Capitol Hill. He is media-savvy and has played a key role in the development and execution of API’s advocacy efforts,” Farris said.

ANGA was created in 2009. Its members are some of the largest U.S. independent gas producers, including Apache, Chesapeake Energy Corp., Anadarko Petroleum Corp. and ExxonMobil Corp.

“With his industry knowledge and experience, political acumen and deep background running successful advocacy campaigns, we are pleased to have Marty leading this important alliance. Marty is a respected and well-known voice on energy issues,” Farris noted.

“It is a privilege to lead ANGA as an advocate for the many benefits natural gas offers America during this important time in our nation’s history,” Durbin said. “U.S. natural gas producers are part of a domestic energy renaissance, which is expanding the role of natural gas for American families, manufacturers, electric utilities, and our transportation system, as well as many other businesses.”

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