NiSource Inc., headquartered in Merrillville, IN, is expanding its Washington, D.C. presence to enhance the company's advocacy efforts on federal government issues, and beginning June 4, Rebecca T. Sczudlo will be the company's vice president of federal government affairs. Sczudlo has 20 years experience in government affairs and communications, including seven years as a staff member of the U.S. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. She also has worked for Shell Oil Co. as a government affairs representative. She will report to NiSource CEO Gary Neale on policy matters and to Ramon Arredondo, assistant to Neale, administratively.

Dearborn, MI-based CMS Energy Corp. has promoted David G. Mengebier, 43, to senior vice president of governmental and public affairs. He succeeds John W. Clark, who is retiring in August after 16 years in the position. Mengebier currently is vice president of governmental and international affairs in CMS's Washington, D.C. office. He joined the company in 1991 after serving as legislative counsel for Handgun Control Inc. He also served as associate staff on the U.S. House Appropriations Committee. He graduated from Michigan State University and the Thomas M. Cooley Law School.

Keith Jordan has been appointed as vice president of exploration and land for Houston-based Contour Energy Co. Jordan has more than 22 years experience in E&P and acquisition of oil and gas reservoirs. He previously had been vice president of exploration, production and operations for Santos USA Corp. He also has held positions at Occidental Oil and Gas Corp.

Plug Power Inc., based in Latham, NY, has appointed W. Mark Schmitz as vice president and CFO. He had been employed by General Motors Corp., where he had been serving as vice president and CFO for DirecTV Latin America LLC, a subsidiary of Hughes and GM in Fort Lauderdale. In his new position, Schmitz will manage the company's finance, investor relations and information systems departments. Plug Power designs and develops on-site, electricity-generation systems that use proton exchange membrane fuel cells for residential and other applications. It is a joint venture of DTE Energy Co. and Mechanical Technology Inc.

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