Occidental Petroleum(Oxy) CEO Stephen Chazen said Thursday a search for his successor is going slowly and he may stay on longer than was anticipated when his retirement plans were announced last year (see Daily GPI, Feb. 19, 2013). In response to a question during an earnings conference call, Chazen said Oxy's board will make a progress report in February, "but I expect to be doing significantly more of these [quarterly] calls than I had planned."

Miles Tolbert, former Secretary of the Environment for Oklahoma, is joining Chesapeake Energy Corp. in mid February to lead the company's environment, health and safety (EH&S) legal group. Tolbert served as Oklahoma's environment secretary from 2003-2008, where he was responsible for protecting the state's natural resources. He joined the law firm Crowe & Dunlevy in 2008. Previously Tolbert served the U.S. Department of Justice in the Environmental and Natural Resources Division. He also formerly was chief of the environmental protection unit for the Oklahoma Attorney General.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper has appointed Glenn Vaad to the state Public Utilities Commission (PUC), who has to be confirmed by the Colorado Senate. Vaad, a former state lawmaker (2007-2013), was named to take the remaining term of a vacancy when James Tarpey resigned less than a year into his second four-year term. Vaad supported the state's renewable portfolio standard (RPS) but his affiliation with the American Legislative Exchange Council, a conservative group that ran an unsuccessful campaign in 16 states against RPS programs, has caused environmentalists to raise concerns about his position.