Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Perry Appoints Smitherman to Railroad Commission of Texas

Friday, July 08, 2011  •  Austin, Texas  •  Appointment

Gov. Rick Perry has appointed Barry Smitherman of Austin to the Railroad Commission of Texas for a term to expire at the next general election.

"Barry's strong leadership at the Texas Public Utility Commission helped make Texas energy and telecommunications markets stronger and more affordable, and served the best interests of Texas consumers and families. As he did at the PUC, Railroad Commissioner Smitherman will continue to push back against the Obama Administration's misguided energy policies, which threaten Texas jobs and our nation's energy security," Gov. Perry said. "His knowledge of Texas' energy market and our energy needs is unparalleled, and I'm confident he will continue to serve our state well in his new capacity at the Railroad Commission."

Smitherman is chairman of the Public Utility Commission (PUC), a position he has held since 2007. He has served as a member of the PUC since his appointment in 2004. He is a member of the U.S. Department of Energy Electricity Advisory Committee, and a board member of the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners and Energy Resources and Environment Committee. He is vice chair of the Governor's Advisory Panel on Federal Environmental Regulation, vice president of the Southwest Power Pool Regional State Committee, an ex officio board member of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, and a member of the State Bar of Texas.

Prior to his service at the PUC, Smitherman spent more than 18 years in various public banking and legal positions. He is a past Harris County Assistant District Attorney, and formerly managed the Houston Public Finance offices of Lazard Freres and J.P. Morgan. He is also a past managing director and national director of the Bank One Tax-Exempt Bond Department, and a former adjunct professor of public administration at the University of St. Thomas in Houston.

Smitherman received a bachelor's degree from Texas A&M University, a law degree from the University of Texas School of Law, and a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University.


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