President Joe Biden on Thursday stated his intentions to nominate Alabama native Willie Phillips to serve on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).
Phillips, a public utility regulator and 15-year veteran of the energy industry, currently serves as chair of the D.C. Public Service Commission (PSC). The utility professional has represented the District of Colombia in national and international policy discussions which include entities such as Congress, FERC and the Department of State.
The Yellowhammer State native is an advocate for clean energy and policies that seek to address climate-related issues. He has also played an integral role in leading efforts to modernize the capital city’s energy grid.
The president’s announcement was met with praise from current FERC commissioner Allison Clements.
Congratulations to DCPSC Chair Willie Phillips on his nomination. I wish @wlphillips the best in the confirmation process, and look forward to once again having a full complement of @FERC Commissioners. https://t.co/S2xDADbXJb
— Allison Clements (@ClementsFERC) September 9, 2021
Phillips began his tenure at the PSC as commissioner prior to becoming the entity’s chair. Previously, he served as assistant general counsel for North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC). He also served as an associate at Van Ness Feldman LLP as well as at Birmingham-based Balch & Bingham LLP.
He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of Montevallo and obtained a juris doctorate from Howard University School of Law, where he interned for the Office of General Counsel under President George W. Bush. He later went on to serve as deputy press secretary for then U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL).
According to Politico, his nomination has garnered the endorsement of the Black Economic Alliance, the Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies and the American Association of Blacks in Energy.
The outlet quotes Phillips as stating in regards to his nomination, “I believe that we have an opportunity here. We have an opportunity that we should not miss to harmonize and align some of the state’s policies regarding clean energy.”
Dylan Smith is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL