Tacoma Public Utilities Director / CEO Bill Gaines was unanimously elected by his peers as vice chair of the board of the American Public Power Association (APPA) at the association’s annual meeting today.
APPA is the primary industry association representing the nation’s more than 2,000 public power utilities to federal policymakers in Washington D.C. The association represents the interests of more than 48 million public power customers, and works with members of Congress, executive branch officials, regulatory agencies, industry members, and others to advance and advocate for policies that benefit customers and ensure the public power business model can continue to thrive.
APPA’s policy positions emphasize the importance of local decision making that puts customers first and ensures a stable supply of electricity while protecting the environment. Since, like Tacoma Public Utilities, two-thirds of public power systems do not generate all of their own electricity, securing competitively priced and reliable power in open and transparent wholesale power markets is a priority.
As vice chair, Gaines will help oversee the business affairs of the association, and will assist in the association’s advocacy activities. Gaines’ role will enable Tacoma Public Utilities to help shape how APPA focuses its future policy positions.
“It is truly an honor for Tacoma Public Utilities, and for me personally, to be elected APPA vice chair”, Gaines said. “To be acknowledged in this way by one’s industry peers is humbling.”
The Tacoma Public Utility Board nominated Gaines for an APPA board position in 2014. In 2015, Gaines was asked to join the Executive Committee of the Board. With his election as vice chair in 2017, he is positioned to assume the chairmanship of the APPA board in approximately two years.
Tacoma Public Utilities is among APPA’s largest members. Gaines is also the immediate past chair of the Large Public Power Council, which represents the interests of the nation’s 26 largest public power systems in federal matters.