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Co-op Veteran is New Head of BPA

By Steven Johnson | ECT Staff Writer Published: January 18th, 2013

A longtime G&T manager will be the next administrator of the Bonneville Power Administration.

Bill Drummond

Bill Drummond

Bill Drummond, who managed Western Montana Electric Generating and Transmission Cooperative for 17 years, will replace Steve Wright, who is retiring in February.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu made the announcement Jan. 16, and co-ops and other consumer-owned utilities greeted it positively.

“He is the right person for the job,” said John Gerstenberger, chairman of the executive committee of the Public Power Council and manager of Hood River Electric Cooperative, Hood River, Ore.

“Bill has decades of experience in the electric utility industry in the Pacific Northwest and has spent the last few years working on issues important to public power as the deputy at BPA,” he added.

Drummond has spent three decades in the energy industry. From 1988 to 1994, he directed the Portland, Ore.-based Public Power Council, which represents consumer-owned utilities on issues relating to the Federal Columbia River Power System.

He was at Western Montana Electric G&T, headquartered in Missoula, from 1994 to 2011, and served on NRECA committees during his time there. He joined BPA as deputy administrator in October 2011.

“Bill brings a wealth of experience, leadership, and even-handed integrity to everything he does,” said Scott Corwin, current executive director of the PPC. “We believe Bill will work very effectively with customers of BPA and other interests to guide the agency through the dynamic and evolving energy future in our region.”

Drummond will be responsible for managing the power marketing administration, as well as overseeing hot topics such as integrating wind into the Northwest grid and dealing with salmon recovery efforts.

“Bonneville represents the best expression of public vision and achievement; collaborative relationships, environmental stewardship, and a commitment to operational excellence,” he said in a statement.

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