Board of Trustees
The North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) is governed by an eleven-member independent Board of Trustees. For information about each of the Board members see below.
 
 
 

 Board of Trustees Members

Roy Thilly - Chair

Roy Thilly was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2011 and was elected to chair in February 2017. He served as vice chair and chair-elect in 2016. Mr. Thilly serves as liaison to the Member Executives Committee, an Electricity Sub-Sector Coordinating Council (ESCC) observer, and as an ex officio member of all other Board committees.
 
Mr. Thilly served as president and chief executive officer with WPPI Energy from January 1, 1992, to January 31, 2011. WPPI Energy is a bulk power utility with 51 municipal utility member systems located in Wisconsin, Iowa, and Michigan. He also served from 2001 through 2010 on the Board of Directors of the American Transmission Company.
 
Before joining WPPI Energy, Mr. Thilly was a partner in the Madison law firm of Boardman, Suhr, Curry, and Field, where he represented municipal utilities from several states and other clients before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and in power supply negotiations and general litigation.
 
A native of New York, Mr. Thilly completed his bachelor's degree in English at Columbia University in 1968. For the following three years, he served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines. Mr. Thilly graduated magna cum laude from the University of Wisconsin Law School in 1974.
 
Mr. Thilly has been active on national and state electric issues for many years. He previously served on NERC’s Board from 1991–2002. From 2011 to 2013, he chaired the Stakeholder Steering Committee of the Eastern Interconnection Planning Collaborative, on behalf of the U.S. Department of Energy, helping to oversee the development of an interconnection-wide transmission planning process. In 2014, the secretary of energy appointed Mr. Thilly to the Department of Energy's Electric Advisory Committee.
 
Mr. Thilly is a past president of the American Public Power Association and of the Mid-Continent Area Power Pool (MAPP) and a past member of the Board of Directors of the Midwest Reliability Organization. From 1992 through 2010, he served as chair of the Transmission Access Policy Study Group (TAPS), a national organization of transmission-dependent utilities that promotes equal access and competition in electricity at wholesale.
 
On the state level, he served as co-chair of the Wisconsin Governor's Task Force on Global Warming in 2007 and 2008. In 2004, he served on the Governor's Task Force on Energy Efficiency and Renewables. He is past chair of Gathering Waters Conservancy, Wisconsin’s alliance of land trusts, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Door County Land Trust and chair of its endowment.
Kenneth W. DeFontes, Jr. - Vice
Chair

Kenneth W. DeFontes, Jr. was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2016 and was elected to vice chair in February 2017. Mr. DeFontes is the liaison to the Standards Committee and serves on the Compliance and Technology and Security Committees.

Mr. DeFontes served as president and chief executive officer of Baltimore Gas and Electric Company (BGE) from 2004 to 2014, and prior to that served in a number of different positions at BGE beginning in 1971. While at BGE, he led a major transformation effort to position BGE for a fast-changing operating environment and future opportunities, implemented major investments in energy conservation, peak demand reduction and smart grid, and served as a witness in a number of regulatory matters before the Maryland Public Service Commission, as well as testifying before the Maryland General Assembly.
 
In addition to serving on the Board of Directors of BGE, Mr. DeFontes served on the Board of ReliabiltyFirst from 2006 to 2012, and on the Boards of a number of different organizations, including the Southeastern Electricity Exchange, the American Gas Association, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra (where he also served as chair), the Greater Baltimore Committee, and St. Joseph Medical Center.
 
Mr. DeFontes earned a bachelor’s degree in Engineering from Swarthmore College and a master's degree from Loyola College.
James B. Robb

James B. Robb assumed the role of president and chief executive officer of NERC in April 2018.
 
Mr. Robb oversees NERC’s mission of assuring the reliability and security of the North American bulk power system. As president and CEO, Mr. Robb directs key programs affecting more than 1,400 bulk power system owners, operators, and users, including mandatory NERC Reliability Standards, compliance monitoring, enforcement, situational awareness, event and risk analysis, reliability assessments and forecasting, cyber and physical security, and government relations. Mr. Robb also oversees the operations of the Regional Entities who support the reliability mission across North America.
 
From 2014 to 2018, Mr. Robb served as president and CEO of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council (WECC) where he was responsible for the strategic direction and leadership of all of WECC’s activities.
 

Mr. Robb has more than 30 years of experience in the energy sector as an engineer, a consultant, and a senior executive. Prior to becoming WECC’s CEO in 2014, he held three major leadership roles in the industry at Northeast Utilities (now Eversource Energy) as senior vice president of Enterprise Planning and Development; at Reliant Energy (now part of NRG Energy) where he served as senior vice president of Retail Marketing for the competitive retail business in Texas and the Northeast; and at McKinsey & Company where he was a partner and the leader of the West Coast’s Energy and Natural Resource Practice. During his 15-year career at McKinsey, he worked closely with prominent electric power companies in California, western Canada, the Pacific Northwest, and the Rocky Mountain states, as well as with some of the region’s largest energy consumers.

Mr. Robb earned a bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University in Indiana and a master’s degree in Business Administration from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA.

Janice B. Case

Janice B. Case was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2008. Ms. Case is the chair of the Compliance Committee and serves on the Nominating and Technology and Security Committees. She previously served as vice chair of the Board of Trustees and on the Electricity Sub-Sector Coordinating Council (ESCC).
 
Mrs. Case was employed by Florida Power Corporation/Florida Progress Corporation for nearly 25 years in a series of increasingly responsible management positions. Her executive level roles included five years as senior vice president reporting to the CEO and chair of the Board, a member of the Senior Strategic Leadership Team, and the head of the Energy Solutions Strategic Business Unit. In that role, she was responsible for the company’s 1.3 million residential, commercial, and industrial customers. For the six years prior to that, she was vice president of the Suncoast Florida Region with distribution operating responsibility for the two most populated counties of the FPC service territory. She served her company and industry in national and state leadership roles on EEI, EPRI, the Marketing Executive Committee, and Florida’s Conservation Steering Group Committee.

Since leaving full-time corporate employment, Mrs. Case has served on numerous corporate and not-for-profit boards. She served for four years as chair of the Board of Cadence Network Inc., a company formed by a joint venture between Florida Progress, Xcel Energy, and Cinergy (Duke), and then sold to Advantage IQ, Inc. From 2001 to 2007, she served on the Board of Directors of Central Vermont Public Service Corporation, an investor-owned electric transmission and distribution utility that provided energy and energy-related services to customers throughout Vermont. From 2002 to 2008, Mrs. Case served as a non-affiliated director of the Western Electricity Coordinating Council, one of eight regional entities with delegated authority from NERC. She served as the chair of the Human Resources and Compensation Committee of the WECC Board from its inception in 2002 and served on the 2007 Strategic Planning Committee. Mrs. Case also served for six years as a director and trustee for three mutual funds managed by Aegon/Transamerica Fund Advisors, Inc.

In addition to NERC, she currently serves as an independent director and trustee of the Thrivent Mutual Funds, the Thrivent Financial Securities Lending Trust, and the Thrivent Series Fund, Inc., where she serves as chair of Corporate Governance for all three entities, in addition to serving on the Contracts Committee, the Audit Committee, the Ethics and Compliance Committee, and the Investment Committee.

Mrs. Case earned a bachelor's degree in Economics from Rhodes College and a master's degree in Finance from the University of Mississippi.
Robert G. Clarke

Robert G. Clarke was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2013. Mr. Clarke is the chair of the Corporate Governance and Human Resources Committee and serves on the Compliance and Finance and Audit Committees. Mr. Clarke previously served as vice chair of the Board of Trustees.
 
From 2000 to 2009, Mr. Clarke served as chancellor of the Vermont State Colleges. From 1999 to 2000, he served as interim chancellor. Prior to that, he served as president of Vermont Technical College.

Mr. Clarke served as member of the Board of Directors of Central Vermont Public Service and as chair of the Board of Vermont Electric Power Company, Inc. and Vermont Electric Transmission Company, Central Vermont affiliates, from 1997 to 2012. He was chair of the Board's Audit Committee and a member of both the Executive and Corporate Governance Committees. Additionally, Mr. Clarke served on the Board of TD Banknorth Group, Inc. from 2003 to 2009. He also served as a director of the Richard E. and Deborah L. Tarrant Foundation (a charitable giving foundation).

Mr. Clarke earned a bachelor's in Occupational Education from Southern Illinois University, a master's in Occupational Education from Central Washington State College, and a doctorate in Administration and Supervision from Lehigh University.
 
 
Frederick W. Gorbet

Frederick W. Gorbet was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2006. Mr. Gorbet is the chair of the Nominating Committee and serves on the Corporate Governance and Human Resources and Enterprise-wide Risk Committees. Mr. Gorbet previously served as vice chair of the Board of Trustees and served as the chair from 2013 to 2017.
 
Mr. Gorbet has extensive experience in public policy advice and formulation, particularly with regard to financial institutions and energy policy. During a 25-year career in the Canadian public service, he served as senior policy advisor to the Department of Energy, director of policy for the International Energy Agency in Paris, associate secretary to the Cabinet for Strategic Policy, and deputy minister of finance.
 
After leaving the public service, Mr. Gorbet held senior executive positions in the life insurance industry. He served as executive director of the MacKay Task Force on the future of the Financial Services Sector of Canada, as executive director of the Saucier Task Force on Corporate Governance, as senior policy advisor to Credit Union Central of Canada on the National Initiative, and as the founding chair of the Market Surveillance Panel for administered electricity markets in Ontario. He was also a faculty member at the Schulich School of Business at York University from 1999 to 2013. During this time he held the CIT chair in Financial Services (2002–2011) and was director of the Financial Services Program.
 
Mr. Gorbet has served on a number of Boards of Directors in the private and not-for-profit sectors, most recently as chair of the Board of Directors of Assuris and vice chair of the Government of Canada Audit Committee. He is currently a director of LAWPRO (Lawyer’s Professional Indemnity Company), where he chairs the Audit Committee.
 
Mr. Gorbet’s most recent public policy assignment was to chair the Automobile Insurance Anti-Fraud Task Force, which was appointed in July 2011 by the minister of finance for Ontario and reported in November of 2012.
 
Mr. Gorbet has a bachelor's degree from York University and a doctorate in Economics from Duke University. He is a member of the Advisory Council to the Dean of the Schulich School of Business and an Honorary Governor of York University.
 
He was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2000.
David Goulding

David Goulding was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2010. Mr. Goulding is the chair of the Enterprise-wide Risk Committee and serves on the Finance and Audit Committee.  
 
Most recently, Mr. Goulding was the chair of the Northeast Power Coordinating Council and a regional representative on the NERC Member Representatives Committee. He is also a member of the Board of Rouge Valley Health System, which operates hospitals and mental health facilities in the Toronto and Durham (Ontario) region.
 
A graduate of the University of Bradford UK, his early years in the industry included progressive positions in transmission and generation construction, operations, and maintenance with the Central Electricity Generating Board. During this time, he also worked on shift in a power system grid control center and was section head for computer support and operations planning. After joining Ontario Hydro in 1977, he held several senior positions including director of Grid System Management; general manager of Electricity Exchange; vice president of Central Market Operations; and senior vice president of Central Market Operations. Duties included directing the operation of generation and transmission facilities, fuel requirements and utilization, transactions with other utilities, and regulation of 313 municipal electric utilities. As senior vice president, he was responsible for preparations for a competitive wholesale electricity market, compliance with market rules, and the establishment of what is now the Ontario Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO).
 
Mr. Goulding was appointed president and CEO of the IESO in early 1999, a position he held until retiring in late 2006. A past member of the NERC (Council) Stakeholder Board and NERC Stakeholder Committee, he was also the Canadian member on the CIGRE Study Committee on Electricity Markets and Regulation and a member of the Ministers’ Electricity Conservation and Supply Task Force. He has post graduate qualifications in Advanced Power System Protection and attended the Banff School of Advanced Management.
George S. Hawkins

George S. Hawkins was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2015. Mr. Hawkins is the chair of the Technology and Security Committee and serves on the Corporate Governance and Human Resources and Nominating Committees. Mr. Hawkins is also an ESCC observer.
 
Mr. Hawkins most recently served as the chief executive officer of the District of Columbia Water and Sewer Authority (DC Water) from 2009 to 2017.

In his role, Mr. Hawkins launched an ambitious agenda to transform DC Water into a customer-oriented enterprise driving innovation and delivering improved value to its ratepayers. The core goal is to improve aging infrastructure while complying with stringent regulatory requirements. DC Water is implementing the $2.6 billion Clean Rivers Project to nearly eliminate overflows of sewage and storm water to the Anacostia and Potomac rivers and Rock Creek. DC Water is also nearing completion of a $470 million waste-to-energy program to help manage solids being removed from reclaimed water while generating 13 megawatts of green power. Finally, Mr. Hawkins tripled the rate of DC Water's program to replace water and sewer infrastructure.
 
Prior to joining DC Water, Mr. Hawkins served as director of the District Department of the Environment (DDOE). Previously, he was the executive director of several non-profit organizations in New Jersey, including New Jersey Future, the Stony Brook Watershed Association, and the New Jersey Council of Watershed Associations. Mr. Hawkins held senior positions with the United States EPA and served then-Vice President Al Gore on the National Performance Review, playing an integral role in strengthening environmental protection programs at EPA and OSHA.
 
Mr. Hawkins began his career by practicing law for the Boston firm Ropes & Gray. He is a member of the Bar in Massachusetts and the District of Columbia. He graduated summa cum laude from Princeton University and cum laude from Harvard Law School. Since 1999, Mr. Hawkins has taught Environmental Law and Policy for the Princeton Environment Institute at Princeton University.
Suzanne Keenan
 
Suzanne Keenan was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2018. Ms. Keenan serves on the Finance and Audit, Nominating, and Technology and Security Committees.
 
Ms. Keenan served as the chief information officer and senior vice president for Wawa Inc., a leading East Coast retail chain with more than 750 stores and one of the largest privately held companies in the United States, from 2008 to 2017. In her role, she led the development and implementation of technology, process, and support strategies, as well as the creation and evolution of the company’s cyber security program.
 
Prior to joining Wawa, Ms. Keenan served in executive positions with Comcast Cable Communications, where she was responsible for Cable Human Resources and Customer Operations. Previously, she served in a series of positions with PECO Energy, including vice president of Customer and Marketing Services and roles focused on field services, reengineering and performance, regulatory performance, and emergency preparedness. Ms. Keenan’s community board roles have included board positions with the USO of Pennsylvania and Southern New Jersey, Greater Philadelphia’s Big Brother Big Sister organization, and Delaware Community College. She is also a member of SAPs Independent Executive Advisory Council.

Ms. Keenan received a bachelor's degree in Nuclear Engineering from Pennsylvania State University and master's degree in Health Physics from the University of Pittsburgh. Her honors include being named Penn State’s Nuclear Engineering Outstanding Alumni Lecturer for 1999 and Penn State’s Outstanding Engineering Alumna in 2000.
Robin E. Manning
 
Robin E. Manning was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2018. Mr. Manning serves on the Corporate Governance and Human Resources, Enterprise-wide Risk, and Nominating Committees.
 
Prior to joining the Board, Mr. Manning served as vice president of Transmission and Distribution Infrastructure for the Power Delivery and Utilization research sector at the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). He had overall management and technical responsibility for the annual research activities conducted by EPRI’s transmission and distribution programs in collaboration with its global membership.

Prior to joining EPRI, Mr. Manning served as an executive vice president with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) from 2008 to 2014, where he was responsible at different times during his tenure for external relations, shared services, and power systems operations, and served as Chief Energy Delivery Officer. Previously, he had been a vice president at Duke Energy, with responsibility for power delivery and gas transmission.

Mr. Manning served on the University of Houston Engineering Leadership Board and serves as immediate past president of the North Carolina State Engineering Foundation Board. He is also the president of One Heart Global Ministries, a non-profit ministry organization.

Mr. Manning received a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina State University where he was recently named to the NC State Electrical and Computer Engineering Hall of Fame. He also holds a master's degree in Business Administration from Queens College in Charlotte, North Carolina.
 
Jan Schori

Jan Schori was elected to the Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation in February 2009. Ms. Schori is the chair of the Finance and Audit Committee and serves on the Compliance, Enterprise-wide Risk, and Nominating Committees.

Ms. Schori is the former general manager and chief executive officer of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD), the nation’s sixth largest publicly owned electric utility. During her 14 ½-year tenure as CEO, the utility earned a strong reputation for its renewable energy and energy efficiency programs, as well as being rated number one nationally in commercial customer satisfaction by JD Power & Associates her last two years there.
 
Ms. Schori is past chair of the American Public Power Association, the Large Public Power Council, and the California Municipal Utilities Association. She is also a past chair of the Business Council for Sustainable Energy and served on the Board of the Alliance to Save Energy as well as the board of CalCEF (California Clean Energy Fund), a not-for-profit clean energy technologies investment fund, and the CalCEF Innovations Board.
 
She presently serves on the Climate Action Reserve's Board of Directors and executive committee (as audit committee chair), a nonprofit entity which develops greenhouse gas (GHG) emission protocols as well as tracks and registers GHG offset/reduction projects. She is also a member of the UC Davis School of Law's Environmental Policy Center Advisory Council.
 
She was recognized by the Sacramento Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce with its 2008 Businesswoman of the Year award and by the Climate Action Reserve with its 2012 Climate Action Champion award. She obtained her bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley and her juris doctorate from the University of California, Davis. Prior to serving as general manager and CEO at SMUD, she spent 15 years on the legal staff there, including five as general counsel. She is a member of the California Bar Association.
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