Commissioner Joseph T. Kelliher is expected soon to be named chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, sources have told NGI, replacing the current Chairman Pat Wood, whose term ends Thursday, June 30.

Wood was conducting his last open meeting at FERC Thursday. The announcement of Kelliher’s appointment was expected to come from the White House within the next few days.

Kelliher, a Republican who joined the Commission Nov. 20, 2003, will start his term heading up a three-person Commission, the minimum for a quorum. The other commissioners are Nora Mead Brownell, a Republican, and Suedeen Kelly, a Democrat. There have been reports of several others to be named to the Commission, but these so far have not materialized.

In the last year Kelliher has strongly supported FERC’s jurisdiction over LNG siting. He joined with other commissioners and Commission staff Wednesday in a celebration in the Commission meeting room of the 70th anniversary of the Federal Power Act.

Kelliher has held several government positions prior to becoming a FERC Commissioner on November 20, 2003. His term as commissioner expires on June 30, 2007.

Previously, he was Senior Policy Advisor to Secretary of Energy Spencer Abraham, joining his staff on the inauguration of President George W. Bush, and advising the secretary on a wide range of energy policy matters, Before joining the Department of Energy, Kelliher served on the Bush/Cheney Presidential Transition Team. He served as Majority Counsel to the House Committee on Commerce from 1995 to 2000, where he was responsible for electricity, hydropower, conservation, nuclear waste, and other energy legislation.

In the mid-1980s, Kelliher served on the staff of Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX), currently the chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Commerce. He also has been of Counsel with the law firm of LeBoeuf, Lamb, Greene & MacRae, worked for the American Nuclear Energy Council and at the law firm of Preston, Thorgrimson, Ellis & Holman.

During 1991 to 1995, Mr. Kelliher represented Public Service Electric and Gas Co. before the Congress on a wide range of energy legislation.

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