TRAVIS COUNTY -- Becky Motal, general manager at the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA), announced Wednesday that she will be retiring Dec. 31.
“Leading LCRA was an incredible opportunity for me and one I thoroughly enjoyed,” she said. “The wonderful team at LCRA met every challenge and succeeded admirably. I am proud of the work my leadership team has done, and I am sure all LCRA employees will continue to do great work for this organization and the state of Texas.”
LCRA Board Chair Tim Timmerman said that a process to replace Motal has begun.
Motal has been with LCRA for 27 years. She's been its general manager for about two years.
Motal's tenure as general manager began during Texas' current drought, and according to the LCRA, took aggressive strides to protect the region’s dwindling water supply including "a new off-channel reservoir in Wharton County, LCRA’s first new water supply reservoir in decades."
The drought was not the only challenge Motal faced. The wildfires during Labor Day weekend 2011 threatened numerous LCRA facilities in Bastrop and Travis counties and directly affected more than 100 LCRA employees.
She also dealt with loss of revenue and a deregulated energy market in Texas.
The LCRA said in a press release, "By reorganizing, streamlining departments, and reducing the workforce by about 500, mostly through two voluntary severance programs, she saved millions of dollars. The changes also opened up new career opportunities for LCRA employees. To find water, Motal pushed for a new reservoir downstream of the Highland Lakes and for permits to use groundwater at the electric generating plants in Bastrop County, a first for LCRA."
According to LCRA, "Notable projects under Motal’s leadership include beginning work on a new combined-cycle, state-of-the-art Ferguson power plant in Horseshoe Bay. She also led the completion of the state-mandated Competitive Renewable Energy Zones (CREZ) transmission lines now bringing wind power from West Texas to major electricity markets in Texas."
Motal said that even though she is becoming an LCRA retiree, her career is not over.
“I want to look for new opportunities and new challenges,” Motal said.
Motal began at LCRA in 1987. She graduated from The University of Texas at Austin with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and later obtained her law degree and a Master of Business Administration degree from UT.